Thursday, 1 May 2014

Thought Picnic: Meaning to live through it

An unspoken celebration
Though it was never mentioned, it was very much like an unannounced celebration of 30 years of friendship. The time had come again to feed the vampires and it was just 4 vials of life’s nectar for the labs.
The journey was easy but getting connected was fraught that it was almost impossible to communicate.
There were times my phone took the countryside for a different land and it went roaming to places nondescript and unknown, one was close to frustration but kept calm.
A forlorn drip
Then met my dear friend of 30 years before we made for the hospital, booked in and this time I was conscious enough to offer my left arm rather than confuse which arm I wanted punctured.
In just ahead of me lay a man on a bed attached to intravenous medication, blinking constantly his eyes slowly rolling from side to side probably in deep thought thinking about how and why he was where he was.
Chemotherapy is a very lonely business, I know. If you do not find ways to occupy yourself with company, companionship, reading or slumber, your mind drifts away to places of fortune, misfortune and sometimes regret.
I wanted to smile at him, as he looked it did not seem to be observing anything, just a soul in the battle to survive helpless against the onslaught that might incapacitate him for the next 72 hours – that is chemo at its worst.
We are alive to life
We all return to the hospital periodically for these checks; vulnerable, yet resolved; weak in the body, yet strong in the mind, bearing the sentence of death coursing through our veins or strangling some part of our flesh, yet unbowed, hopeful and exercising the amazing wonder of the will to live against all odds.
We have become the guinea pigs of medical enquiry and the miracles of modern medicine, each day we live, a blessing and the greatest fortune because we know many who succumb to much less than we have borne in our bodies, lives and experiences.
And afterwards
The testimony is, we have a second chance, maybe even a third chance and to have a friend beside you in those times is like goodness, mercy, love and care together, a thing to be grateful for, gladdening the heart and one for which I would be forever thankful.
The day continues, busy, demanding, interesting and infuriating, but that is what life is all about, the problem, the challenge, the process and the solutions.
When next I have chicken, I might also have corn on the cob, there is no telling, the chicken might have never been corn-fed, that, is the stuff of friendship too.


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