NO ONE TO PHONE
One afternoon after the death of her grandfather, Carol lay huddled on
her bed, sobbing forlornly. Her mother sat beside her and asked,
"What's the matter, honey?"
"I miss my grandpa, and I miss talking to him about my problems," the
"I know, dear," sympathized her mother. "I miss him too. But can't you
talk to me?" Carol shook her head vehemently.
"Why not?" her mother persisted.
"Because you're what we talked about," sobbed Carol.
Children may not always confide in their parents. And adults may
choose not to confide in many of their friends and family. But it is
important to have someone with whom we can be emotionally intimate.
Tragically, it has been estimated that the majority of men, and many
women, have nobody they could phone at 2:00 in the morning if their
lives fall apart. They believe there is nobody who really wants to
hear from them in a crisis. Too many of us are utterly without close
and intimate friends.
The philosopher Goethe once observed, "The world is so empty if one
thinks only of mountains, rivers and cities; but to know someone here
and there who thinks and feels with us, and who, though distant, is
close to us in spirit, this makes the earth an inhabited garden."
Who can you be vulnerable with? Is the earth, for you, more like a
lonely desert or an inhabited garden? The difference may simply be in
whom you feel free to call at your most wounded moments. Do you have
such a person? And are you such a person for someone else?
As it has been said, "A friend is someone who knows the song in your
heart and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words."
If we are to find the kind of friend who knows the song in our hearts,
we must also BE that kind of friend. And since good friends take time
to grow, today is a good day to work on those friendships.