This is for you Pk’s out there.
Never underestimate the power of friends. They can share a load just by listening, they can raise your spirits with just a few words, and they can make everything go away even if just for a few hours.
I think as Pk’s we end up secluding ourselves unintentionally. Instead of sharing burdens, we look for other ways to deal with the stress. Some act out, some have breakdowns, some just don’t care, some take it to the extreme of leaving it all behind. I dealt by internalizing it all. It’s hard to have friends, especially in your Dad’s church. We know too much and you always feel like you have to be on guard, or a perfect shining example of the Christian life.
I lived about 4 years without anyone. Big mistake! I ended up feeling so secluded and trapped. I will never let that happen again. The difference this last year since I have had a friend nearby, and then moving back to where so many old friends live has been eye-opening to what I had become. By internalizing everything that had happened, I had become almost unfeeling. Feeling hurt too much. However, by closing myself off, I also missed the joy of sharing the good things with people. You know what they say, “life is better shared”. It’s true! Even the bad things get better and easier to deal with when someone else helps carry the load.
So, reach out. Find someone to share with. Renew old friendships, and then do everything in your power to maintain them. You never know when they might just save your sanity!
Can I also add a bit about finding other Pk’s to befriend? NO ONE will understand you better. (Other than God, of course) Friends and parents will try to, but unless they have been there, they won’t. Find one that’s been a Pk longer than you. They have walked in your shoes; they alone know the exact thing you need in a trial. And when you are on the listening end of the relationship, listen, and then don’t pass it on. Agree right up front that what you say stays between the two of you. It has always been the unwritten, unspoken agreement, but I fear people are forgetting that these days. Don’t judge right away, sometimes we just need to vent. Admit it! You’ve needed to before!
I recently got to spend time with another Pk. I came away so refreshed, so encouraged, and not feeling so alone anymore! Someone else had gone thru what I was going thru! I was not crazy!
Finally, pray for your friends! When they share a burden, pick it up and pray for them. Don’t expect them to pray for you when you aren’t returning the favor. Can I say especially, PRAY FOR YOUR PK FRIENDS! You know better than anyone what to pray for. Even if it’s just a stress-free day. Send a note or a small gift unexpectedly, you have no idea how much that can change a day, week, or month. Just to know someone cares, and is praying.
God, thank you for my friends. Thank you for their listening ears and for their prayers on my behalf. Thank you for the encouragement they bring every time I see or talk to them. Help me to remember to keep them in my prayers every day, and to do my part to be a good friend. I pray for my Pk friends especially that you will give them wisdom as they tackle this life you have laid out for them. Guard their mouths, and give them patience. Send someone to encourage them when I can’t. Thank you for the gift of friendships!