About 8 months ago, I brought a meal and spent some time visiting a friend of mine who was having another bout with cancer.

Two months ago that same friend brought dinner to me as I recovered from my accident.

Two weeks ago I stood at her bedside as she unconsciously labored barely clinging to life. I held her hand and spoke with her son. Other visitors came and I knew it was time for me to go. Leaning close to her ear the words I really wanted to say were nowhere to be found, what came out instead was simply, “hang in there.”

I cried all the way home at the sheer stupidity of what I had said to a dying woman. How completely devoid of inspiration or hope.

Normally I have lots of words in my little arsenal, and rarely am at a loss for what to say. This was one of those moments to the contrary, and it breaks my heart.

At times in our life when we are confronted by situations that hit us like a brick wall we are caught off guard and often say things we regret. We may not know what to say at all, so something trivial, or inept slips from our lips instead.

This was that time for me.

Friday,  I attend her funeral. I will lift up a prayer and my sincere apologies to her. I imagine that perhaps she will look down kindly at me smiling and say, it’s ok Barb, all is well, hang in there.