I have it. In spades. Remember my friend in the city who had a stroke last year? She was improving greatly, to the point that I took her out to lunch, she was able to text me, carry on a reasonable conversation. She needed daily caretakers to help her make lunch and run errands but with lots of therapy, she was making great verbal strides. Yes, she had to retire from her fabulous career but she was comfortable financially , her daughter was out of college and she was contemplating retiring anyway.
However, for the last month plus, closer to two months, I have been unable to reach her. Her home phone still rings but there’s no answering message. I’ve texted her. No response. I’ve called her cell phone but only a pre-recorded message, not her voice. My email to her spit back because it was her @ work address and I guess that got deleted. All these millions of years of emailing, I’ve only ever used her work email address.
I resorted to sending a snail mail letter, asking S to reach out. On the back of the note, I asked her daughter to contact me, if S was unable to read or respond to the letter.
I have to assume this is bad news, that S did either have another stroke that debilitated her or god forbid, she died. I hate to say this but I did search her name for an obituary. Nothing.
I don’t know how to reach the daughter without being a detective (I could find her I suppose) but I do know how to contact her step-son. I don’t know him well tho so what do I say – hey, you don’t know me but I want to know how S is doing? What if they don’t want anyone to know S is not well? Then I put the step-son in an awkward position of having to either ignore me or lie to me?
I can’t help but think the scenario is bad. Really bad. I can’t in good conscience let it go. I have known S since the early 1970s. I get that some families don’t like to talk about illnesses and deal with setbacks differently, but heavens, to leave an old friend worried, I don’t get that.
The question is: what do I do about it? Any thoughts?