I was able to enjoy a Guild meeting via Zoom today. It was incredibly uplifting to see smiling faces and all of the incredible projects they have been working on.
After my meeting I managed some time attempting to sandwich a quilt on my dining table. It took ever so much longer, but since it is snowing again I didn’t feel like going to the Guild.
Today was a day to think and reminisce as I was pinning the quilt sandwich. Then while I had dinner in the oven I was playing catch up with emails and blogs I follow.
I’ve been thinking a lot about Covid-19 and the experiences we have had; having the virus or having loved ones stricken with it, the loss of family and friends. I have been thinking of the vaccine being distributed and how, if we all remain calm (wearing masks and following proper protocols) that next Thanksgiving and Christmas we should be able to have “normal Holidays” whatever that will be.
I came across these words on a blog and am sharing them with the permission of the blogger:
“All the training,
All of the classes,
All of the tests and exams
Couldn’t have prepared me
For the honor I didn’t ask for.
When someone looks you in the eye and asks if they are going to die, what are you supposed to say to that?
What are you supposed to say when you know they will?
The medications weren’t working.
The heart rate was too high,
the blood pressure too low, nothing I did was helping.
Nothing was right. Everything felt out of place,
Who thought I was qualified for this?
If God works through me, where is he now?
It can’t be his plan that after 72 years it all leads up to this moment.
Monitors. Alarms. Chaos. Tubes. Wires. Fear.
An honor I didn’t ask for: I’m the only one by his side. 72 years and I’m it. Where are his friends? His family? Why is it me?
A stranger before 36 hours ago. And now his only friend.
Who thought I was qualified for this?
An honor I didn’t ask for: Bearing witness to his final breaths, lungs that have breathed life and laughter for 72 years finally rest, a virus destroying any chance of recovery.
An honor I didn’t ask for:Holding a cold hand through nitrile gloves,
hands that have held grandchildren,
hands that have created masterpieces,
hands that have held his wife of 50 years,
hands with scars and callouses and stories now rest in my unworthy gloved hand.
An honor I didn’t ask for. Just because I didn’t ask for it doesn’t mean I’m not honored.
For God to have placed me here in this hospital on this shift at this moment by his side. Too many fates had to have collided for it to be anything but where I’m supposed to be.
Dozens of others are more qualified to witness this sacred passing between life and death:
People who have held these hands before they were cold and mottled and edematous.
People who have heard his laugh before the ventilator took it away.
People who have looked into his blue eyes that he’s handed down to his children’s children before his pupils were fixed and dilated.
They should be here. But it’s me.
An honor I didn’t ask for:
I’m the only one there as his heart stops.
We did all we could. I mean that with all sincerity.
I did all I could. I need to quickly convince myself of that before I move onto the next patient.
I did all I could.
I’ll forever wonder if it was enough.
After all, nothing can prepare you for the honor you didn’t ask for………”
These words were written by Kalissa Friedman, a young Mom, Wife, Nurse and the daughter of Jo Kramer, who I have followed for several years. Kalissa blogs at The Pink Shoelaces. Her words touched me deeply. We have all seen or read stories of the front line workers, many of whom contracted this horrid disease while trying to be there for our loved ones. These poignant words made me realize how terrible it is to be with someone at their end of life and not be able to just sit and grieve for the patient they had come to know. Instead they have to continue on to try their best to help the other patients.
This lead me to think of all of the front line workers and how so many of them work for minimum wages. How can people making minimum wage or being undocumented immigrants, afford to have the life saving treatment they need in America? Why does a friend have to take a friend of hers to another State in order for her to have affordable life saving treatment?
Do you remember how in May/June the satellite pictures showed how much less pollution we were dealing with? Do you remember how brightly the stars shone at night? Did your gardens grow differently this year with cleaner air?
I’m hoping we can learn some lessons from this Pandemic and take them with us in to the next year and the next year.
Another email I received today shared a beautiful YouTube video that I’m sharing with all of you. This was posted by the Phoenix Chamber Choir from Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.
Just click on the photo above to listen to this group and enjoy their faces and actions while you are watching.
I enjoy your comments and really do try to reply in a timely manner. Thank you for visiting with me. Please stay well, stay safe and enjoy your holiday preparation time, even if this will be a different Hanukah or Christmas or whichever holiday you celebrate. 😄 Carol