A Shoulder To Cry On







A few months ago I met a lady on the beach who I had never met before.  She was sitting on  a wall and looked very sad.

I said “Hello” to her and we got chatting.

She told me that she was waiting for one of the luxury cruise ships to go past, her mum and brother were sailing out of Southampton and were due to go past Stokes Bay very shortly;  she was waiting to wave them off on their holiday.

She told me how much her mum was looking forward to the holiday as she had recently been widowed after nursing her husband (this lady’s father)  who  had died of cancer.

The lady then started to cry and her grief was so obvious to see.   She was clearly missing her father and was still grieving for him, which is natural of course.   I reassured her that it there was nothing to be embarrassed about and how we have to let grief out and not hold back, otherwise we can make ourselves ill.

It was then that she told me that she had, that day, been diagnosed with bowel cancer and how worried she was about it.  She had told her mum that afternoon just before she had left port and now she felt even more dreadful because she felt guilty about spoiling her mum’s much needed holiday.

The poor woman was so sad and distressed and my heart went out to her.

There were things that she couldn’t tell her mum at that point because she was aware how worried her mum was and she didn’t want to add to the burden, but she desperately needed someone to talk to.

She talked and I listened.

We hugged and she cried on my shoulder and although I couldn’t change the situation, I was able to give her the space and time to talk about her concerns and fears.

We sat for about 20 minutes  until we saw the ship come along The Solent and it was then that her mobile phone rang and it was her mum calling her from the ships deck.

I took my leave then because I knew that they had things that they needed to talk about.

I felt very sad but I know that those 20 minutes probably meant the world to that lady. She was so frightened  and worried as she didn’t know what the future held for her.

I will probably never see her again and I don’t even know her name, however I feel that I helped her just a little bit in her time of need.

I will never forget it and I hope that she makes a full recovery.

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