Ebb and Flow

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 15, 1999

DEBORAH CORRAO / L’Observateur / November 15, 1999

One of the blessings of recovering from my surgery is that the world can fall down around me but I don’t feel compelled to pick it up like I used to. And I’mnot sure I could pick it up if I tried. It’s been five weeks. The doctor said I canstart lifting again after six weeks, but I just don’t know what I’m going to lift with.

The little pre-surgery abdominal muscles I had seemed to have disappeared. Thefirst time I tried to put a little laundry in the washer, I tripped over the vacuum, clutched my abdomen in fear with my right hand and gripped the top of the washer with my left. The washer lid came crashing down hitting one of myfingers, which made me immediately forget about any abdominal pain I thought might arise.

When I told one of my friends about it she reminded me that the shots I had stubbornly argued against during my hospital stay wouldn’t have hurt nearly so bad. She’s right. Pain is relative.Now, that doesn’t necessarily mean I will be willing to get a shot the next time one is offered, but it does make me pause to consider how fortunate most of us are.

There’s an old story about a person who complained so much about his lot in life that he was given the opportunity to trade places with anyone else he wished.

After a little investigating, though, he realized he’d just as soon keep his own life.

We’ve all heard the saying that everyone has his own burden to bear. Theblessing is in the gift to rise above those burdens to achieve a fulfilling life and make a contribution to the lives of the people we know and humanity as a whole.

When my husband and I found it we would both have surgery at the same time, it seemed like it might be a little overwhelming. But the blessing has been that wehave both been home to take care of each other and ourselves. And we’ll both begoing back to work about the time our college student children will be spending more time at home.

We’ll let them do the laundry.

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