Everyone feels like a shadow of themselves
when they’re not themselves
when your sick
m i s e r a b l e. . .
I hadn’t been able to go to the bathroom all night
I tried everything:
Taking a Shower
Taking a Bath
Taking an additional pill that had been prescribed
Not a DROP
. . .and what made it worse was I had a huge event day; a funeral I was conducting of a friend of Thirty plus years on behalf of her family and an afternoon wedding for a young couple who already couldn’t get the first two ministers they asked to marry them because both were out of town;
I COULDN’T BE SICK
I called my family doctor and he urged me to go to the Emergency Department and when I told him of my time schedule he said I had no choice.
I arrived at the hospital and immediately began singing my song of woe and how I literally needed to be treated and released within an hour so I could make it to the funeral and they assured me that I would be able to make that commitment.
When I was back in the room a nurse came in and began taking my information and asked me what I did for a living.
When I told here that I was a hospice chaplain, she asked me if it was for Hospice of the Western Reserve and when I confirmed that, without looking at me, still typing in information she said, “My daughter just died with Hospice of the Western Reserve a couple of months ago.
She went and got a catheter kit to relieve the “URINARY RETENTION” problem, I readied myself for the procedure and she began asking me about the team members that took care of her daughter and I realized at that very moment, I was no longer a patient and she was no longer a nurse, she was a grieving mother who was re-telling the story of her daughter and I was her chaplain, her counselor. I don’t remember the procedure, as quick as it was because of our conversation.
She stated that we were done as if the instant relief I felt of not being able to go to the bathroom for nearly 10 hours didn’t let me know WE ARE DONE. She told me she would be back with instructions and my discharge papers and I was dressed in my suit/tie and ready to go when she came back to go over instructions and to have me sign my discharge papers. Before she reached the curtain to leave, she turned around and told me that this was her first day back following her daughter’s death and that I was her first patient. She asked me, with welled tears in her eyes:
“HOW DID YOU KNOW TO COME IN THIS MORNING?”
I wanted to say, truthfully, “I HAD TO PEE!”
It was a much deeper question with an even deeper answer:
“BECAUSE WE NEEDED EACH OTHER”
We gave each other a hug
and now, even a couple of weeks later,
it’s so much more than a memory
and certainly a blog post. . .
When I was taking a Clinical Pastoral Education (CPE) class in Seminary over 40 years ago, I remember our instructor once telling us that we need to remember, often when one that we serve goes into the Emergency Department it signifies an event that has been EMERGING.
Doing hospice work for 25 years now and hospital chaplaincy for thirty-two years I’ve been enlightened to KNOW that there are no accidents. No chance meetings. No coincidences.
If you dare yourself to believe we all are actually connected and that one’s pain is another’s and one’s happiness is as well. . .
WHAT IS EMERGING FROM YOU. . .
WHAT IS IT YOU CAN GIVE WHEN YOU CAME TO GET. . .
WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO ANOTHER PLACE THAN THE ONE YOU THOUGHT YOU ARRIVED. . .
Why would WE ever not
or more. . .
IT MAKES ME WONDER
Can it be that when you are truly
Are having that very sacred
S P A C E
being HELD for YOU as well. . .
IT MAKES ME WONDER
(maybe that’s the
g l o r i o u s
E M E R G I N G