The Consolation Prize

When someone is in grief, there are many levels of consolation:

There are some people who are fantastic consolers.

And there are people who are really bad consolers.

There’s Sheldon Cooper

And then there’s me.

I’ve never been good at consoling. I just kind of stare at the cry-er as she pours her heart out. I have all these things I want to say to make her feel better but the only thing that comes out is, “There, there”, “It’s going to be okay”, “Shhhh” and occasionally “Jesus knows”.

I mostly keep quiet because I feel anything I say sounds stupid in my head and would only make her feel worse once it was out of my mouth.

Recently I’ve been seeing a lot of people cry. I’ve been stumped on what to do because for some reason even more so now I have no clue how to  make the boo-boos go away. Especially with situations I don’t relate or emphatize with. Should I pretend to understand? If it was physical hurt I would know what to do, there’s a clear cut solution; Panadol, Band-Aid, inhaler, etc.

But when it’s matters of the heart, sometimes tissues and the awkward silence is better than saying, “Well, look on the bright side, at least the girl he cheated on you with is uglier and fatter than you.”

Not everyone laughs at that.

I’ve always had sagacious consolers who know what to do and what to say at the appropriate time whenever I needed a shoulder.

How come I still haven’t gotten the hang of comforting?

Maybe I just need more practice.

Sorrow is better than laughter, for by sadness of face the heart is made glad.

Ecclesiastes 7:3

Interesting fact: Eversince I got this ugly pink watch as a consolation prize in a colouring contest when I was 9, I hated losing at competitions. I hated consolation prizes. Might as well put a hat on our heads marked, “Le-hu-ze-hers.”

It’s not an ego thing. It’s a consolation prize thing.

Thinking of: The Oylmpics Tattoo, Tina Fey, Missing Sun withdrawal and going to the movies alone.

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