Blessed with Pats
One day my daughter said to me, “Mom you have so many friends named Pat!” And I realized she was right. I truly do have a lot of friends both present and past named Pat and each has been a blessing.
My first Pat was a cousin born six weeks before me and we grew up more like sisters. When we were little I called her Patsy Lou (for Patricia Lucille), but later as a preteen, she became Pat. We both became nurses and we argued, agreed and mostly were just always there for each other until she died of leukemia.
Currently, there are Pats in my life who are more varied than their names might suggest. One is a brilliant writer, one a talented artist, another is a good neighbor and cat sitter, one lives several states away and still stays in touch. There are and have been others too numerous to count as they sometime say in lab results.
A Pat from the Past
During part of the 1960s and 1970s, we lived in a small neighborhood in the suburbs. It was a great place to raise our two daughters. It was also an innocent time. Kids ran and played and rode bikes and stayed out after dark playing hide and seek. They knew they had parental eyes on them, but still, it was a time of freedom. Each child trusted their friends’ parents as they trusted their own.
There was a neighbor named Pat who was not a great deal older than me, but she taught me so much, mostly by example. She was an RN and although not consciously I followed her into the nursing profession. It wasn’t that she talked about her job, but I knew she was good at it and I wanted to be like her.
One Sunday while my family was at church I stayed home to make chili for a neighbor who was injured in a wreck. The chili was really hot. It burned up our kitchen. The remarkable thing though was that Pat showed up after the firetruck had departed and began to help. Long after the insurance was settled and new appliances were installed Pat came back with her cleaning tools to help me rid the house of stains and odors. That is a real neighbor.
When one of our daughters had an accident on Halloween night requiring a trip to the hospital, Pat took our other daughter trick-or-treating with her children.
When I went into labor with our third pregnancy and subsequently miscarried, it was Pat who comforted me, instructed my husband and again took care of our daughters while we went to the hospital.
There are few people like this woman and I wish you had known her too. I do not know how I became so fortunate to have Pat G. and so many other Pats in my life.
“Walking with a friend in the dark is better than walking alone in the light.” Helen Keller
NOTE: There are many friends in my life today and I would not want to face life without any of them, no matter their names. You surely know who you are and I love you.