To Befriend the Places of Pain
When different places within us are in pain, we should extend the care of deep friendship towards them.
We should not leave them isolated under siege in pain. A friend of mine whent to hospital to have a
hysterectomy. A priest friend came to visit her on the evening before her operation. She was anxious
and vulnerable. He sat down and they began to talk. He suggested to her that she have a conversation
with her womb. To talk to her womb as a friend. She could thank her womb for making her a mother.
To thank it for all her different children who had begun there. The body, mind and spirit of each
child had been tenderly formed in that kind darkness.
She did this ritual of intimate leave-taking with tenderness and warmth of heart. The power was
not with the doctors or the hospital, or the disease. The experience did not have the
clinical, short-circuit edge of so much mechanical and anonymous hospital efficiency.
When a part of your body is ill, it must be a lonely experience for it. If we integrate its
experience and embrace it in the circle of recognition and care, it alters the presence
of the illness and pain. Externally, we should endeavour to remain alert to others and
their distress at our condition. How often do we see how sick people comfort their comforters?
The dark visitation of illness needs to be carefully encountered.
John O'Donohue [1956-2008], Eternal Echoes, p249-250
May you know tender shelter and healing
blessing when you are called to stand
in the place of pain.
May the places of darkness within you be
surprised by light.
May you be granted the wisdom to avoid
false resistance and when suffering
knocks on the door of your life, may
you be able to glimpse its hidden git.
May you know that even though the storm
might rage not a hair on your chinny chin chin
will be harmed.
DX April 2015, @ 54
35mm poorly diff. tumour, incidental finding following emergency r. hemicolectomy
for ileo-colic intussusception.
Lymph nodes: 0/22
T3 N0 MX
July 2019 : pending liver U/S, colonoscopy rut roh