Monday, January 17, 2011


you go to the hospital to visit your cousin and hopefully brighten his day a little bit, but you leave the hospital knowing that you got more out of the visit than he did.
And that is what happened yesterday.

Michael was back East when he first found out about his leukemia in 2007 and had to stay there during treatment so I had no idea what to expect. Admitting warned me before I even got to the transplant floor that I would need to be in gown/mask/gloves, but when I got to the floor I realized how serious they are.

The floor is locked. Once you are allowed in, you immediately wash and then put on your hospital clothes and these don't come off until you leave. Realizing how much impact one germy person could have on an entire floor of people is beyond comprehension.

He was just his normal self. I don't think I could ever do justice in explaining Michael to those of you who don't know him. He's like the most normal guy. But of the very best variety of man. Cool...but Warm. A little Sweet. A little Salty. Faithful and Faith Filled.

So it was all really normal. Just talking, passing time, like any other conversation I would have with him, yet when I left I realized I was leaving with like three new life lessons. Just regular stuff, yet profound just the same.

What I thought I would share today is that I have never sat down with Michael one on one for that long before and just talked. I don't think I've sat down that long with many people for that long before and just talked. Nothing else going on, just us two in a room sharing thoughts. I don't do that with my husband. I don't do that with my children, I don't even sit with myself for that long at a time without letting other things get in the way.
...And I wonder why not.
Because it was nice.
It was nice to focus on one person - especially a person I love.

When was the last time you slowed down enough to just focus on one person for an extended period of time? Gave that person all your attention and just shared? Has it been a long time? Or never? Do you let other things become more important than the things that really matter: Our people, our pack, our clan, our human fellow?
Who are your people?...and how will you spend time with them this new year?
Will it be hard for you like it was for me at times?...or is this something you do often and with ease?

And when was the last time you were on a slip 'n slide? Our family loves 'em!


misszippy said...

Fantastic post. And I'm willing to bet he got as much out of it as you did. Keeping you in my prayers.

Small Town Runner said...

Very good read tonight. I did that with a freind in the hospital once-a person who was 22 and waiting for a heart transplant.

I have a lot of regrets about not spending more one-on-one time with my grandfather and grandmother. I mean, I saw them like you did Michael, but only really in their last years and not often enough. I hope to start making up for that now with my Hubby's grand ma- but it could be anyone. There are so many lonely people out there!

I hope to get in to a nursing home and see some lonely strangers with my kids more this year. The folks there LOVE preschoolers and babies. Too bad the rules at nursing homes are getting tighter though. We have snuck in to one place in the past. Not sure if we could still, but it's worth looking into.

God Bless!
BTW...Stevie block must be active on my computer. Speakers are on. :)
Hope to post my tag tomorrow!

Megan said...

I agree, it does feel good when you make the time to sit down and focus just on one person in your family. I have regretted not doing this in the past because sometimes I have nothing in common with my extended family, but I quickly realized that we have EVERYTHING in common - we are family.

I personally benefit from not just the conversation, but just being there with a person that I love. A lot can be said without saying anything at all.

Julie said...

MissZ - Thank you!

ERG - What a good idea about going to the nursing home! Everyone loves a little kid, right?! Right!

Megan - I like what you said about a lot can be said without saying anything at all. I have to agree with that! Often it is just being in the presence of someone else that touches the heart. Words are not necessary! It's the contact...the closeness...the attention to each other that is so important!

Amanda@runninghood said...

Well said Julie, This is what I loved so much about getting away to the beach this computer, phone...just relationships and being together. So important for us to slow down and just be present with each other more often. Thanks!

Kovas Palubinskas said...

I'm trying to do this more with my wife and kids, not easy, but a good thing to do.

Rose said...

What a great post, definitely something to think about. I have a few people I love to have serious one-on-one time with, but more people in my life deserve that.

That slip and slide is AWESOME.

What happened to your oven?

Julie said...

Rose ~ We always slip n slide down the hill in our backyard but this summer Michael and Nicole hosted our annual family camp out on their property and my dad built us this HUGE slip n slide out of advertisement tarp type things. IT.WAS.AWESOME!

Our oven quit working and husband is looking for a good deal on a new one.................. (ahem)

Rose said...

I don't know how we'd function without an oven. Well, we went a month without one when we remodeled our kitchen, but we just went out to eat every night. It was kind of gross.

Speaking of gross, I can sort of understand needing to drop trow on a trail, but the mystery pooper on my run did his business on the city streets. Ewwww. It was a two minute walk from a McDonalds.

Julie said...

I eat a lot of stir fry :-)

Ya, the trail thing is pretty understandable... Been there (and maybe done that ;-)

our bike path mystery pooper was right by our house...BUT I guess if you gotta go...sometimes...YOU'VE REALLY GOT TO GO!

Jen said...

What a nice post and a great reminder. It reminds me of during my first marathon my oldest would ride his bike along side me and just talk. It was one of those moments that was worth it's weight in gold. I'll never forget those times we shared and try to make more of those moments.
Your oven is out? That stinks. We did crock pot and grilled a lot during our kitchen remodel. But it does get old! Hope you get a replacement soon!

Julie said...

Jen ~
That sounds like such a great time with your son! I love it!