Ask Alicia: A Column by Alicia Lamb

Dear Readers,

A very dear friend wrote to me this week regarding his relationship. For anonymity’s sake, I’m going to refer to them as “Jack & Jill.” Jack’s fiancée, Jill, has had serious, chronic health issues her entire life. During the past couple of weeks, Jill has been suffering from seizures and blackouts. After four trips to the ER this week and still no answers, Jill said to Jack, “I’m going to die soon. I just feel it.” Jack was heartbroken. He wrote to me and asked how to keep a positive attitude in order to build her up while still preparing himself for the possibility that she may not make it through this time.
When someone deals with a chronic health condition, sometimes it is so difficult and stressful that you just want to give up fighting. I’ve been there and know how it feels to have so much pain and believe death would be a relief. Remembering the good things in your life that are worth living for can help you rebuild that strength and keep fighting. That is one thing Jack can do to help Jill – remind her that she is loved and has a purpose here. Encourage her to keep the faith and not give up on herself, because others aren’t giving up on her.
There are also times when someone just knows that their time is near. When my dad passed away two years ago, he knew it was his time. He said his good-byes and died very shortly thereafter. Jack said he can’t even think about that possibility. Remember, this is a young couple in their mid 20’s – death isn’t something they think about or prepare for. There is no easy answer that I can give about that situation. The best thing to do is to keep a positive attitude and radiate positive energy whenever he is with her. Make as many memories as possible and live each day as if it is her last. At best, she will pull through this and they will have some wonderful experiences to share with their children; at worst, they made the most of the time they were given together and they will have no regrets when that time arrives for Jill to pass on.
There is a saying that I’ve seen on Facebook many times. “Crying doesn’t mean you’re weak, it means you’ve been strong for too long.” No matter how emotionally strong you think you are, everyone needs a little help sometimes. Jill needs to know that it’s okay to lean on someone else and let them help rebuild your energy. Jack needs to know that it’s okay to cry sometimes. Crying is cleansing and therapeutic. It cleanses your soul and helps ground you and restore your positive energy.
Jill, it’s easy to believe that life is over because you are just too weak to fight anymore. However, it’s just as easy to allow your loved ones to help you through your own personal valley. And Jack, it’s okay to take a break to rebuild yourself during this journey. Jill needs you and you need her. So take care of yourselves and make the most out of the time that has been given to you. At the same time, don’t stop dreaming about a future together; and NEVER GIVE UP HOPE!
So, I’ll leave you all with this quote to ponder for the week ahead. “The energy of the mind is the essence of life” (Aristotle). If you hold positive thoughts and energy in your mind, that’s where life will take you. The same goes for negative energy. It’s your choice.

Bright blessing, Peace and Happiness,
Alicia

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