Making Friends the Hard Way

Yesterday Lily and I went for our daily walk, checking out our new neighborhood. Eventually we'll have about three miles of walking paths, but right now it's a bit of a mess. There's construction debris left and right.

So we were across the street from our house, and just about to cross the street, when out of the corner of my eye I saw our next door neighbor walking down the sidewalk, with her dog on a leash.

Our poor neighbor! Shortly after she moved here, just a few months ago, she had to have emergency surgery which kept her in the hospital for several weeks. Finally back home, she ended up having a blood clot and was hospitalized again. She's been having home visits since then, and was just released to her own care two days ago.

Our neighbor has been told to get out and walk to rebuild her strength, so that's what she and Missy were doing. Missy spied Lily, and pulled so hard on the leash that our neighbor had her feet knocked out from under her, and she hit the sidewalk with the side of her face and a wrist.

Oh my word! A construction worker saw her fall and came running, helping her up to her feet. I grabbed Lily under my arm, grabbed her dog by the leash, and we walked her back across the street, into her house. A quick glance told me she needed some first aid, so I left her - took Lily back to our house and grabbed our first aid bin.

Back next door at her house, I swabbed the scratches on her face with cotton balls doused in hydrogen peroxide, then grimaced as I applied to Neosporin to the gashes on her hand and wrist. Put a big bandaid around the biggest gash, and told her I'd feel better staying with her awhile, just to be sure she was alright.

So we sat at her kitchen counter and chatted. I found out she's a widow, her son lives an hour away, but she attends a large church near us and has a good support system through it.

So today when I checked in on her, she told me she has a pretty good shiner to show for it, and we agreed on a walking schedule for our dogs. We'll take mornings and she'll take afternoons and if we divert from that we'll let each other know. We'll also arrange for some get-to-know-each-other dates for our pooches so hopefully it'll be just the dogs running into each other, and nobody smacking into the sidewalk.

Her last text told me she's thankful to have neighbors who watch out for her, especially as a widow living alone. When I think about what could have happened, how seriously she could have been hurt it is horrifying to even consider. I'm so thankful God protected her from anything more serious, and thankful that sometimes he carves out friendships through the bumps and bruises of life. 


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