I am officially a professional communicator. I’m one of the most interconnected, reachable people I know. If I want to communicate with someone, I have a wide selection of tools to choose from, and the essence of my job is finding the right words.
And yet, three times in the last couple of weeks, I have found myself presented with a situation that has left me completely at a loss as to what to say, and how to say it.
What do you say, and how do you say it, when you find out someone you care about is terminally ill?
Or when a friend’s loved one passes on?
How on earth do you condense and translate the culmination of the six most tumultuous, enriching, incredible years of your life into “a concise testimony”?
Unfortunately, I am not prepared to deal with these situations.
I have tried to convey love and support in the first two situations, and essentially deferred to a later date on the last one.
We don’t live in a world of “dropping by” anymore. And cell phones, email and other means of communication seem too sterile for some communication. Tears, and hugs, and knowing silences don’t translate well into these new forms.
I will do my best, and hope that the people to whom I need to express sympathy, affection and care are willing and able to accept what I’m able to give, and that it blesses them in some way regardless.