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I am going to be a Bad Friend

Disclaimer: I am not going to be a good friend.

It is not that I do not want to be a good friend. It is not that I am not doing my best. Honestly, I am just not able to be the friend I used to be.

I still lecture my children "to have a friend you have to be a friend." It is true. I still believe it. Unfortunately, I just don't have it in me to be the friend I should be. I am barely able to be a good wife and mother... so, friends you'll just have to wait.

Why I am a Bad Friend:

1. I do not feel good. I really don't. Things hurt. Things cramp. Things go numb. Things burn. Things swell. Things feel like baseball bats have been hitting them. I have countless problems and I never know which one is going to be my enemy each day. It is not some lame excuse to avoid doing things, I just feel bad.

2. I do not know when I am going to feel good. From the weather, to the day or hour, to whether or not I have already overdone it the previous day... I have no idea how I am going to feel. And how I feel can change quickly. I can go from actually being upright with a smile to a desperate need for a nap. It isn't you... it is me.

3. I am already busy. I know we are all busy. I get it, but I am doing what most busy moms my age are doing, plus dealing with countless specialist's appointments, being a medical guinea pig, and other medical ridiculousness that is my life. I wish that I had time to hang out with friends instead of sitting for hours in offices.

4. I am constantly managing some type of problem (physically, mentally, & emotionally). It isn't just the normal early 40s, I have annoying kids, my life is stressful problems. My body has been poisoned and now is majorly medicated to work. Every part of me is coping or managing to function. I not only have the expected unexpected age-appropriate issues you have... I have other, bigger crap too!

5. I am exhausted from managing those problems. Seriously, just getting up some days means I had a successful day. I am not jut tired, but I have fatigue which is drop-dead exhaustion. It is like running a marathon but without actually doing anything. I am exhausted just thinking about my exhaustion and even more exhausted thinking about how to deal with my other problems.

6. I am not always dependable. I think I just defined that I don't know how I feel, so being able scheduled events is an impossibility. While I want to be that friend, I am however, going to bail on that excursion to the park, drinks after dark, or possible party. If it requires hours in the car... I'm not going to be there. So, if I can I will and if I can't I won't. You have to know I would be there if I could.

7. I can't keep up with you. I can't keep up with other people my age... I feel like I am in my 70s. The many activities, the constant activities... the option to stay out after dark. I am just not up for it. And even if I am, it will wear me out. I have to pace myself. I have to really be selective of my actions or I will pay for those actions. You can go and I will be happy for you... a non-jealous happy, because I am happy you can run infinite loops around me.

8. How I look does not define how I feel. When you see me I am actually at my best or am faking it. Usually when I go out in public I have gotten up the nerve and willpower to deal with people. The smiles, laughs, and time you may see me does not mean I am well or better. You can look good and feel bad... I bet you have done it a few times in your life too!

9. I don't have time for drama. Dude, I have been facing death... the last thing I want is drama. I just lived drama... I am still living in drama. The drama I am dealing with makes the general he-said, she-said drama of life seem pretty inconsequential. My viewpoint on what is and isn't important is similar to that little old age lady that says "it's all about love" and "don't sweat the small stuff".

10. I am not going to give back equally. If you are keeping a tally then expect you will be the one who is giving more. It's not fair, but I'm being honest. If you are giving expecting to get in return, then you are going to be disappointed. I am doing my best and if you are my friend, then I am going to show up when you're in that jam (most of the time), but I may have to pass... even on some important life events.

11. My first priority is my family. I have to give my best energy, my first energy to my husband and kids. I don't even know why I say "I give it to them"... seriously, they take it! It is not that I do not want to spend time with my friends, but I have to being a wife and mother first. I have to give my time to cook, clean, drive, play, fuss, nurse, counsel, and love my kids. I have to do all those things for my husband too! They get first dibs on my time and energy. Whatever is left is for my extended family and then friends.

I am sure I have more reasons why I suck at being a good friend, but mainly it is because I am and have been ill. I have spent over three years dealing with cancer, side effects, medicine, doctors, and life. And through all of it I figured I would bounce back... I would get past some of it. I can say, some of it has slowed down, but it never really ended. A concept most people cannot grasp unless they have a personal experience with it.

It is like most things in life, you'll have friends that stick and friends that don't. It happens in all stages of life, friendships can come and go and come back again too. With cancer you'll have the friends who want to help and actually do. And you'll have those who offer to help and don't. You'll have friends who say they understand why your a lousy friend and do. And those that say they understand and don't.

The important thing is you will have people in your life who understand that you're a sucky friend and love you despite yourself! And if not, well you didn't have time for them anyway!!!


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