A Listening Ear

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Today I sat with my Mom in her apartment at the Assisted Living Center as we visited with her neighbor.  As one would expect…. those who live in an assisted living center have health problems.

Today this neighbor just needed someone to talk to.  She was obviously dealing with a little depression.  In the course of our conversation, I learned that she suffers with Bi-polar disorder, along with many other problems.  It seemed as though she was headed for a low time in her mood.

She expressed her frustration in dealing with her illnesses…. which are many……  and felt a sense of sadness as she told us about how her children don’t seem to visit much for one reason or another.  Her husband is still well enough to live on his own.  I guess they sold their home they had for years…. which can be depressing in and of itself….  and he now lives in a condo, which means she doesn’t get to see him everyday.

She is lucky enough that he takes her to the condo once or twice a week and they can spend some time together there, living a little bit ‘normal’….. but she is still frustrated with her situation and was feeling a little lonely and needed someone to talk to today.

She’s been friends with my Mom for quite a while….. at least since my Mom has moved there.  My Mom has always been a friend to everyone she meets.  This lady has appreciated Mom’s friendship and feels like she is the only one she can really talk to about her frustrations.  I don’t think she even discusses them all with her own husband.

Today I felt like Mom and I were a sounding board for her.  A listening ear.  She started to get emotional a few times and I told her it was OK…  sometimes we just need to let it out so it doesn’t build up inside and cause more trouble.

I was grateful I was there when she came to visit.  I was glad to have the opportunity to be a listening ear for someone in need.  I hope she felt a little better when she left my Mom’s place today.  Hopefully just bouncing her feelings off a few listening ears relieved some of the stress she was feeling.

It also made me realize how important it is to not let little stupid things effect our relationship with our loved ones.  Particularly when they are old and need our love.  I hope her children can recognize her need to see and be with them before it’s too late!  We all need someone who we feels cares enough about us to listen to us… to be a friend and be there when you need them.

I grateful my Mom and I could be that for her today.

I am Grateful!  How are You?

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