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6 Tips for when friends are struggling

A sad thing has happened in my family. Please find comfort as I attempt to use words to describe our shared experience. The kind of shocking twist one never sees coming; the only thing to do is retreat into metaphor. We stepped into a lift, endlessly falling. Suddenly, we were in a hushed side-world of hospitals and rage, trying desperately to find our way home. We woke one day with a new language, one that hurts my throat to speak.

A traumatic event can be firmly resolved with the help of friends who offer support.

The question is really kind. I know it is and I know my friend always means well, but I don’t have an easy answer. More often than not, when people ask me this question, I feel a sense of internal violence brewing inside myself.

“Can you take me back to two weeks ago?” You can go into your shed with a welding iron and invent two dystopic mechanisms of time travel which will allow us to move backwards rather than forwards. It will be like sitting on the beach with sky, water and trees, as if everything was all right.

Dawn can be changed. That would be ideal. Can you solve the evenings, the hours awake after four o’clock, the phases of suffocation and cyclic ideas that we attempt to dilute in dumb ways that continue to defy evidence? Can you speed up the dawn or slow down the night? Is it possible to turn sleep into water? Instead of this forest, this dismal trek in the dark, could you perhaps convert sleep into an off-season hotel pool where we may float emptily on a lilo the shape of a croissant?

When conversing with someone, you should do your best to be perfect and refrain from distractions.

I’m exhausted from trying to maintain perfect standards. I am not okay with just anything.

I am sensitive. I can’t handle much more than gossip and perfection. Any liquids will destroy me, and the wrong word will stick to my wrists and chest – I am that fragile. But don’t avoid me if you want to stay in my good graces. There must be a way for everyone to win, but we are here now, enmeshed in this complicated situation.

The internet is ever-expanding and sometimes in order to escape the past, it’s a good idea to scroll down without any distractions.In a crisis, time is non-linear. Will you be able to help? Once, I was in the hospital for my sickness and the clock would not tick for me. It would sweep its arms across to the correct position every two and three minutes like a person pulling themselves out of the water. Now, when you are at home and there is a crisis, one day will pass slowly but overnight it will seem like only one night has gone by. We may as well try to see time pass more fluidly while in hospital during our crises. Can you get me that cursed clock?

If not, a lasagna will suffice.

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