23 March 2010

Getting well

I had an operation this week and I don't mind admitting I was scared as I was wheeled down the corridor with the lights passing overhead. It went well but it isn't something I'd want to make a habit of. Nevertheless I'm wierdly grateful for the suffering because on waking up, I was overwhelmed with empathy and concern for all the people who would be put through the same proceedure in the course of their lives. This was a genuine and surprising upwelling and yet it's also a disagreeable one since I hate the fact that charity begins at home. Surely we should be overwhelmed with empathy and concern for all people undergoing all proceedures regardless of whether we experience them ourselves. We should fight for everyone's rights because your rights are my rights and so in the same way, your suffering is also my suffering. As I shuffled out in my hospital slippers I truly understood this.

Being unwell connected me and I had a brief hotline to insight. I wish I could know these things every day. The nurses were amazing and each of them took time to see past the lump of meat that I undeniably was or at least they didn't mind that I had no distinctive identity - they simply understood that it hurt. In those brief moments the depth of their human beingness was breathtaking. The entire operation in a sense was an act of great compassion, one that we have simply institutionalised. It is a great thing that this is a norm for us humans - helping each other. Connecting. Responding to needs.

Flowers arrived.

Thoughtful people sent me objects to keep me entertained and cooked me food.

My living room is now filled with the smell of Narcissi. My fridge is full. Texts are checking up on me.
And I am grateful.
As soon as I was alone I unconsciously found myself reaching down the bottom of my languishing to do list and signed up to some new charities. I'd been meaning to do that for how long?
I hadn't realised it till now, but having operations can make you nicer.
It can get you well.
Suffering sucks, but I had it coming. And you know what? the good news is that really, when you get right down to it, we're all in it together right up to our necks xxx
Here's what I chose
Oh and I finally joined freecycle http://www.uk.freecycle.org/

No comments:

Post a Comment