it's lovely to have you back here blogging again, you have been missed whilst you've been away taking care of your shoulder!
I think it's true that in difficult times we find out who our true friends are, and that can be quite emotional - I can remember not that long ago, during a difficult time, getting a message from someone who I knew was a friend, but I had never classed as a close/true friend... and the message said "I admire you so much, I love you and I'm here for you - now, tell me, what exactly do you need from me, tell me, what do you need me to do that will help?" and I was very blown away, that not only did she show her support, but she outrightly asked me what it was that she could do to help - I suppose the difference was that what she offered was "active support" rather than "passive support".
I've realised in the last few years since I started therapy, and started to let people in, let them see my flaws and my weaknesses, and stopped trying to project an image of being someone who is always fine, always there for others but never needs help herself, that I am very lucky - I am someone who makes friends very easily, but I tend to let the majority of them slide - I don't have enough time to maintain friendships just for the sake of having a huge circle of friends, but the handful that I do maintain, it seems have in the main, been the right ones to maintain, and I am very grateful for that.
Tracy, I noticed what you said about struggling to ask people for help, I used to be like that too - overly strong, independent, scared of being burdensome, scared of rejection, but I have learned that asking for help sometimes makes people see your warmth and that you're human just like everyone else, and I've found it has very much created and strengthened the bonds of my friendships, they have become truly reciprocal two-way things, and much closer and warmer. By sharing my own difficulties and letting people help, I'm now aware of how fond people are of me, how much they care, how much worth and value I have to others, and them to me - it was hard at first, it was alien to me, but it has been so rewarding, and a big contribution to my feeling "whole".