November 11, 2020

Relaying the conversation to my husband later that night once we were both home from work, I wept. I didn’t know I would do so … it had just been a single moment in the midst of a rough and too-rushed day. But it had been the moment that marked itself on my soul in a way that was clearly more powerful than its apparent meaning lent it to...

I had been a fly on the wall, as so often I find myself these days: a “gopher” … a stand-with-my-hands-clasped-waiting-for-the-next-request-secretary-of-sorts. 

The conversation taking place was a recap of the morning office happenings, revolving around a troublesome patient who had provoked a fair bit of dramatic complaints. As one of them relayed the patient’s words and actions, with a significant amount of mockery, a response was given that “Yes but she’s still a human being -and deserves being treated like one.”

I thought to myself “Thank you!,” grateful for the bold words, and thankful that they had come from someone with authority in this place, and so, hopefully, would have an impact on the too-often-catty speech environment.

The one who had been somewhat reprimanded began to try justifying herself, though she was clearly also aware of the truth. But suddenly, to my shock, the supervisor added, “I’m just kidding.”

The one who had been complaining stopped in mid-sentence, laughed a bit, hesitantly, and continued on with the topic at hand.

I was stunned. Lord have mercy on a world in which promoting dignity and humanity is not worthy of standing strong, of speaking up. Lord have mercy on a world in which a child of God is turned away … and, quite literally, thrown out the door in disregard of a plea for help. Lord have mercy on us all.

*photo is from a walk I took to, literally, catch my breath from the drama of the day (and from the constraints of mask+face shield+lab coat+gloves that barricade me for 8 hours of each day). The street is one that I found surprisingly lovely, considering the surrounding area…and that I found particularly refreshing, with my [unmasked] cheery greetings of porch-sitters as I passed. I think I amused a number of folks with my yellow sunhat and rolled up-pant leg-scrubs.

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