Recently I had a time of reckoning in the form of a severe illness that put me in the hospital for 6 days. I could not breathe and it took 4 days to get things calmed down.
During my time between cat-naps in the middle of the night, I had a Moment – an epiphany.
I started counting up all the people that I saw in the course of the day there in the hospital.
The people who answered the buzzer; the nurse and the assistant nurse; the respiratory technician, the ones who came to wheel me to a test, the woman who cleaned my room everyday, the ones who answered the phone and took the order and the ones who brought my meals, plus the Doctors, technicians and others who I’d never see or speak with.
I counted 11 that I’d see daily, and added twice that for those who I never saw, or imagined, just to give myself a working number.
44. 44 women and men who had invested heavily of their time and money, many having gone in debt to learn the skills and information that they used 24/7 on my behalf, as well as the benefit of all the other patients.
For the first time maybe ever, I let myself receive all that loving kindness, all that gifted training and professionalism, all to my benefit, for my well-being and healing.
It is a very different experience to be on the receiving end of a lot of attention, and to really let it in, than not.
Talking this over with a friend later, she said that she had a similar experience when she received a life-saving operation a decade ago.
She pointed out that ever since then, whenever she goes to the Farmer’s Market, she is aware of how much her life is blessed and enriched by the facts of the farmer’s love, for gardening and their work, and by extension, her. Her life is sweetened by their doing work they find meaningful, important and valuable, and she agrees with them by paying their prices.
She spoke of the daily rounds of the mail man, whose profession is to bring the world to our door, and the lady at the market, and the man at the shops, and the UPS guy, and the waitress, plus the restaurant owner at the favorite cafe.
Even the guys at the cable company, and those people in the Customer Service Call centers that we so enjoy complaining about, are all spending their A-game in whatever profession, as we get the benefit.
Another friend included the guy who delivers the daily newspaper, and the accounting people at the Doctor’s office – people we hardly ever think of, and yet in the midst of all their daily life difficulties, pains and complaints, part of what they bring is their heart, their spirit, to the tasks they are hired for.
They’ve spent money, gone into debt, invested their time and resources in learning to do what they contribute to the world and whatever their mood or stresses on any give day, letting yourself fully receive and be conscious of their contribution to your life very simply validates, and makes real for your body, just how good life is, how much love there is in the world, even without any fanfare, and how blessed we all are to be here together at this time.
And to you, dear reader, may I add that your presence in the world is a powerful inspiration to me, and that your grace, courage, and unstoppable wonder-full-ness makes my life – and Life on Earth – so much more spectacular than when you’re on the other side of the vail.
I am so appreciative – an action step that includes Receiving – that you are here. And I am very delighted to be here, too!
I recommend you count up the people in support of you and your daily life, and take in just how much love there is in your life, and how people – strangers – doing what they do makes all the difference in your life, too.