An update for everyone...
I want to thank each of you for your responses, and I wanted you to know I've taken each to heart as I evaluated how I felt about
each choice. Everything from what Freya and Shelter suggest, to Warren's advice and all in between!
I have been evaluating connecting with each of these indivudals on a case by case basis. There were actually 3 e-mails in my in-box. One person's I deleted. The reason? This is someone who never calls, never e-mails, never regularly wants to get together unless I e-mail around a question or topic we used to have in common. And this is about
once a year. Then she wants to get together, but I have done it in the past but it only ended up hurting worse. She is a former colleague; she's still teaching, and I'm barely working. But she's not a regular support in my life, and when we've talked she asks briefy how I'm doing, then goes on to things in her life, things which are too painful to hear. So in this case, I leaned in the direction of Warren's advice.
One person's e-mail is still sitting, and I've not yet decided what to do.
The other was from the former high-school classmate and his wife, saying they'd be in town in early June. These people have always been good to me, even though we rarely see each other. So in this case I leaned toward Freya's and Shelter's advice, and thought I'd take the risk to e-mail back, explain about
my chronic pain and that from day to day I couldn't tell how I'd be doing but I'd like to try to get together. I was so glad I did! He wrote the kindest note back, and reminded me his brother (whom I also know) has suffered with chronic pain for decades, and so that he knows from dealing with his brother about
the "day to day" thing and he and his wife just want to get together, and will do anything that works for me. And he reminded me that even though we don't see eachother very often, they still consider me a friend, and to let them know if they can ever help. And you know in their case, I believe they mean it.
So I guess I'm giving you an update to let you know how much I appreciate your input, that I've used it (and I hope there will continue to be more as this is an issue we all face!) and that what I'm learning is that there's not a "one size fits all" answer to this. Maybe we need to give some people a chance, and take the risk, and maybe we also need to know when to stay out of harm's way.
Thanks...and keep writing!
Post Edited (PAlady) : 6/1/2008 1:12:47 PM (GMT-6)