It starts to be a dilemma for me. Do I specifically thank people, or not? Logic would dictate, perhaps, asking each person how they feel about it. Well. It makes some sort of sense, I suppose.
Here is the thing, though, dealing with what I am dealing with is extraordinarily hard to manage, especially since I do it all myself. It takes time and energy and follow up time and energy to know things unknown.
It is not a an unwillingness to make the effort. It is not a lack of gratitude that has me refrain. It is the feeling of incredible overwhelm that I am dealing with that often is at least a part of the issue.
In general, I am extraordinarily grateful when someone does something for me with no expectations, and at first, my immediate thought is to want to thank them publicly. But I have learned to ask. Sometimes I get no answer, and forget to follow up. Other times I get the message that nothing is desired or necessary.
Ultimately I am doing what I can. There are times I may seem to falter or be ungrateful. The thing is, while this whole thing may come off as a marketing situation, or like a business that needs good PR, I am a person who is at times desperately trying to survive life dealing with an illness and/or treatment that could come to kill me.
I would appreciate it if those who choose to help me would remember that. When helping someone at the edge of a cliff, another does not help save them with a promise of publicity. They do it because they feel like it is the right thing to do.
I promise you I am doing the best I can. There are times I will forget things because that is how my brain works - doesn't work - now. It is awkward. It is uncomfortable. And, sadly, for those who are hurt or offended by it, unfathomable.
When we are used to things working a certain way, it is difficult to understand something never experienced. And with a lack of understanding can sometimes come a lack of compassion.
I say these things not to point fingers. Not to judge. Not to make excuses.
I say these things as a way to try to explain a part of what I go through on a regular basis in the hope that you may not only understand and appreciate me and my situation better, but that it also might be something you could consider in regard to another facing their own dilemmas.
Two things that can help are either giving with no strings or expectations and/or letting the other person know that you are happy for them to share about what you have done with others. They may do it, and they may not, but if you are giving from your heart, I promise you it will not matter what does or does not come next.
I realize some may be aghast at the second suggestion. But, here is the thing: everyone is different. Unless we learn to communicate with each other - especially if something is important - it is all too easy to find reasons to be unhappy with each other - especially if expectations are involved.
Please know with absolute certainty that every single $1 I have received these last 2+ years has been appreciated. Every act of kindness. Every discount received. Every supportive phone call. Every session offered.
There has been more than I would have ever fathomed possible. And there is no way for me to express my gratitude for what has been. Although I certainly do try; there are just no words to truly convey how extraordinary something is to many who think nothing of what they have done.
Having said that, I also feel the need to say that for as much as it has been, I am still standing in a fairly deep pit. I wish I could say "problem solved" a long time ago. I wish I could have retreated, and gone on my merry way without having to ask for another thing, and not having to have my business known so widely.
Dealing with many of these aspects is so much more exhausting than most people will ever realize.