The Weight of Not Checking In


It’s 4:19 am.

I didn’t call my Grandmother yesterday. I need to set a reminder to do that or something because the only time that I remember is when I can’t do it.

I also didn’t text my friend who is going through a divorce, a friend who I haven’t spoken to in weeks, or a friend whose husband is going through some stuff.

I meant to. I had good intentions but failed. Again.

A quick scroll through Facebook reminds me of all of the people that I need to touch base with. I mentally add them to my long list of people I need to reach out to. I know I will only remember when I am taking a shower or driving.

You know…the times I can’t do it and forget moments later.

And because I drop the ball on this so much, I quickly tell myself that I am a horrible friend. A better friend would check in more or even send cards or treats. Order a charcuterie board or send flowers. Invite them to lunch. Remember all of the important dates that they told you about and then follow up.

Not me.

I depend on Facebook to remind me of your birthday and your wedding anniversary. It’s who I am … what can I say? I can bet money that the next time that I see you, you will update me on all of the things that I should have remembered on my own and asked about way earlier. Internally I will kick myself and feel an immense amount of shame. You deserve a better friend than me. You know it and I know it.

A different Me would text you before a important appointment and then send you a text the next day just letting you know that I am thinking about you. A different Me would drop of a treat to your doorstep because I checked in and found out that you had had a hard day. A different Me would let you know how awesome you are right before a job interview and send you well-wishes afterwards. I would probably send flowers because, you know, I am a different Me. Those things are not typical of Me now.

You are stuck with the Me that I am now which is not really any of that. Take it or leave it.

Here is what I have to remind myself: Real Me also has A LOT going on. My life is not boring or without constant ups and downs. My phone stays silent most of the time. Not many are checking in on me, despite people knowing what is going on in my own life.

So why the need to add stress to that? Why be hard on myself even though I am not receiving what I would love to be able to give? Is it because I don’t want to be the reason that anyone feels like I do? Why does it have to be me that always reaches out?

Here is what I do know. I know that while I might drop the communication ball often and I might not be the first, or second, to reach out after a life-changing event, but I am still a good friend. You might not have a basket of banana bread and your favorite wine on your doorstep “just because”, but believe me when I say that I am your absolutely biggest, albeit silent, cheerleader.

Misty and her husband of 7 years live in Gonzales, LA with their 2 energetic and amazing children, Jax-7 and Elliot-4. She is native to Alexandria, LA and moved to the Baton Rouge area in 2005, where she now works for a large electrical contracting group. Her son Jax was diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis at 8 days old and Misty has made it her mission to fund raise and educate as many people as she can about CF. Misty and her family love to find local (and non-local) adventures on the weekends and playing board games together. She is an avid reader, make-up buyer, and coffee-drinker. She can be found on the sofa binge watching The Office on Netflix and on Instagram at @MISTYROUSSA.


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