The summer phone-160430__180of 2013 was the worst time of my life. It started with a suicide, included a second unsuccessful suicide attempt, life-threatening surgeries of a close relative and life-long friend, and possible unemployment due to a lay off. I was numb for about two months, completely on autopilot. Somehow I had the presence of mind to make a wellness plan for myself. One of the coping strategies I used was to put my closest friends on a phone rotation. Many live out of state, and I didn’t want to burden them by calling them too often, so I made a list of my nearest and dearest. I called one every weekend. Some called me throughout the summer to check on me and lend support. But if no one called, I went to the next name on the list. I felt comfort knowing, as the week evolved, I would be talking to a friend on the weekend who loved me and supported me. These friends commiserated about whatever had occurred that week and shored me up for the week to come. They helped me get through a painful and stressful time, and I am forever grateful to each of them: Aaron, Grace, Jay, Jeff and Cherie, Pieter, Sheila, and special thanks to Candace and Dan.


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