366 Days of Writing Prompts – Day 139
Tell us about the most surprising helping hand you’ve ever
I’ve rarely received helping hands in my life. Generally, I am the one who does the helping. My Dad has helped me a few times in my life – moving me from place to place, small sums of money, and most recently, allowing me to move back home. I’ve had a few friends help me along the way – allowing me to stay with them for brief periods or helping me move.
The most surprising helping hand that I’ve received was from a woman that I met while in a mental hospital in OK. We were both patients when we met. We only spent ten days in there together, but forged a quick friendship. Before we left, we exchanged numbers. We got together a few times after the hospital stay and then tragedy struck. My husband and I got into a horrible fight and she offered to let me stay with her while he and I patched things up. The first stay lasted just a couple of weeks. I’d no sooner went back to my husband and we had another huge fight and she refused to let me stay with him. I again moved in with her for about two months. I again went back to my husband and things seemed to improve for a short while. I was going to Celebrate Recovery with this friend and my husband got jealous of all the time I was spending with her and my new friends at CR. He kicked me out. This friend again offered her home to me.
This third and final stay came with a lot of conditions. I was to not only go to CR with her, but also to her Church on Sundays. She expected me to stay longer than just a few weeks or a couple of months. I helped her with bills and food and ended up staying for six months that time. My health was failing (this was right before I found out I had uterine cancer) and I knew she couldn’t take care of me. My husband seemed to have a change of attitude and had started going to CR too. He made all of the right promises and so I moved back in with him. This ended my friendship though. She was mad that I went back as it caused a bit of a financial burden on her. She’d gotten used to the money I was giving her for bills and food and had overspent on her own income.
I guess it was a good thing that I went back home because just a month later, I was diagnosed with the uterine cancer and it was my husband who (surprisingly!) nursed me back to health.
Even though our friendship ended, she was the only person I’d met in the nine years that I lived in OK that ever showed me any kindness or extended a hand to help me. I wish things had ended differently, but sometimes you just have to let things go.
How about you, dear readers? Ever received a surprised helping hand? Share your thoughts with me in comments.