Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Birthday Observations - Guest Post




This is a guest post by Jennifer Digmann

Last week my close college friend, Jen, turned 40. Jen’s husband surprised her with a party and there was no way that Dan and I would have missed it. We drank a little, laughed a lot and had a great time. Once the festivities were over, I wondered about a few things.

Like when people ask me how I am doing and wonder about my MS (healthline link), do they really want the truth?

I usually answer quickly that, “I’m fine,” but this weekend I felt comfortable enough to answer a little more honestly. That honest answer seemed to make one of my dear friends uncomfortable. This surprised me because she always has been supportive of my dealing with this disease. But it made me wonder if a close friend only wants to hear about the positive stuff, do most people who ask really want to know the truth about this disease?

Either way, I know that while there are several  medications to help people with MS, there really is no medicine as good for your soul as time spent with the best of friends.

With Jen turning 40, I realized that I also will be 40 in 13 months. I felt pressure, and I’m not sure why. But I know I better get to accomplishing something. What I need to accomplish I’m not yet quite sure. I wondered is this pressure because of my upcoming milestone birthday? Or is it something else? Do you ever feel that way?

11 comments:

Birdie said...

I think you should always be honest and authentic. If people don't want to hear the will eventually stop asking. Maybe some people just don't know what to say with the information you give them. At any rate, keep talking.

Judy at Peace Be With You said...

"I know I better get to accomplishing something."

My first reaction was, are you kidding me? This is the Jennifer who climbs her version of Mt. Everest every day, who advocates tirelessly, who has written a wonderful book, who has created a wonderful marriage. Then I realized it was probably your will toward excellence and creating value that was speaking. Well, keep on trying to do that, but in my opinion you have accomplished already more than most people could dream of. So give yourself an attagirl.

Joanne said...

When I turned 39 that whole year was spent feeling ...I hadn't done or accomplished enough. Once 40 hit...I decided that I could treat it like a new beginning...4 years later i was diagnosed with cancer.. I free now but I came to the realization that I cant look back. I look to what I can do right now and pray for the best for tomorrow... years later and still learning.
Blessings, Joanne

Sandra said...

if i ask i want to know the truth... we are all guilty of saying Fine when we are not. but your case is different, they know what you have and if i did not want to know i would not ask you... yes, i feel pressure and guilt because i play all the time and feel i should do something.. then i think why should I, I did something my whole life.. so i got back and forth with my self...

Wanda said...

Hi Jennifer, there is something about birthdays and seeing old classmates that makes feel like I have done enough.

Betsy Adams said...

I notice on all social media sites that most people just want to hear the POSITIVE in our lives. And many people only give the positive sides. YET we all go through trauma in our lives --some in different ways from others. A real friend is one who loves you through thick and thin. You/we HAVE to have people we can talk to about all of the issues in our lives---good and bad... I think we need to be truthful and honest at all times... However people respond to us is their situation, not ours... Just be yourself, Kim...

Hugs,
Betsy

Ginny said...

Your friends look like great fun to be with. Back in my day, people said Hello. That was IT. Now it is "How are you?", but it is not sincere, it is only a greeting. No one expects anything other than O.K. I find this very sad, it is like pretending to care, do not ask if you don't really want to know.

Elephant's Child said...

Gorgeous, real and familiar.
If people ask, I will often tell them. Sometimes it makes them uncomfortable - but tough. You asked, I didn't volunteer...

Small Kucing said...

yes most will want to know about the good stuffs and will be uncomfortable when they hear about the bad stuffs. Could be that they do not know how to help and felt helpless as they can't help to improve your condition

diane b said...

You shouldn't feel pressure to accomplish any more than you already have. To raise a family and deal with MS is one huge accomplishment. Real friends should be able to deal with the truth about anything and not just the positive stuff. However, people don't want to hear negative stuff all the time at every meeting but now and then when things are bad and need to be shared is okay.

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

If people get awkward, that is their issue. You have the right to answer any way you feel, and be honest about it.

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