The Velvet Hammer of Uncertainty; A Violent Hope, and Imaginary Theology
Blackness reaches its long arms toward me, as the sun slips behind the mountains. Reaching me, it wraps it's cloak around me and attempts to smoother me with the velvet hammer of uncertainty. Arriving at the hospital, I am very aware that I am entering in a place with many uncontrollable variables. This is a place where physical life and death are daily occurrences. It is a place where pain precedes healing, and loss often leads to scars.
Reluctantly, I shuffle towards the receptionist, like a child being sent to the principal's office, I'm not sure what the outcome of this current visit will be. Not being a stranger to this facility, all my electronics automatically find their signals; security guards give me the head yank in recognition; and in an instant, I am swept back into the inner belly of the emergency room.
There is an odd sense of relief that washes over me. I am no longer in charge. I have come to a place where the only thing I have to offer is a violent, relentless hope and trust in those that, once again, are holding the life of someone that my heartstrings are woven around.
My imaginary theology surfaces and tells me that elaborate prayers are best. It screams that He will hear me best if I use eloquent words. It tries to persuade me to plead my case. Attempting to believe this pseudo theology, I reach for words....but there are none. Minutes slide by, like a slug moving from one rock to another, leaving a trails of slime. My words are pointless, and fake. They leave an offending odor. I give up and simply whisper, "Help". Nothing else. "Help".
If you think an ER waiting room is a comfortable place to spend the night, you are six shades of wrong. Fear has reached it's unwelcome tentacles up my throat and taken hold of my heart. Like an octopus turning it's prey around in anticipation of a delicious meal, fear is preparing to consume me. Hot salty tears spill over and silently slide down my checks. Glancing around, no kleenex is available. Exhaustion is consuming my physical body. I perch on my solid wooden chair and wonder if any of the rest of these people in the waiting room are standing on the precipice of life and death with a loved one. If so, how many times have they stood here? I have stood here too many times to count with different family members.
Suddenly, a nurse slides onto a chair next to me. Handing me several extra soft tissues from her pocket, she says nothing. Moments slip by. Offers of water and nourishment are made. This angel is a familiar nurse who is on her "lunch" break at 2:30 am and has chosen to "be" with me. Departing, I find the strength to push the words, "thank you" out from between my lips. It is a "thank you" both to the nurse and my Creator who heard my plea for "Help"!
It is now 6:00 am. Tonight time has stood still in the ER, but for the rest of people in the place I reside on this planet, sleep was their companion and they are awakening ready for a new day. Time has not stood still for them.
Hospitals are places where time is irrelevant for those inside the walls. It is like another dimension and ONLY those that are inside are aware that all else is striped away and only physical life and death remain. Often times, in order to be able to continue living, sacrifices and loss must be accepted. Scars are the reminders of the loss and that the gift of this physical life has been extended. Why do I keep forgetting all of this AND that life is temporary at best?
Shuffling into the house, the safety of my bed beckons to me. I crawl into the welcoming layers of my private nest and allow my lids to slid shut. My eyes are closed, and I am wrapped in His presence. However, unfortunately, someone forgot to tell my mind that it was done and the crisis was over. So....my mind proceeds and is turning over the similarities between hospitals and churches (the body of Christ). Both deal with life and death. Both should be safe havens for those who are in need. Both should be equipped with staff that are willing and trained to assist the sick and injured. Both are places where pain precedes healing and surrender must occur in order to live. Both are places where those visiting often have a high level of uncertainty, fear, and exhaustion. Maybe just like the "Silent Angel" that sat with me, we as the body of Christ, need to slid in next to someone in need and hand them a tissue?
Until We Chat Again,
The Plank-Eyed Girl