I’ll get to the jello-pit part later.
I’ve been really stressed out lately. Clinic owners have a million and a half things to think about all of the time, but for several reasons this has been amped up for me and today, my heart blasted open because of it all. I don’t think this will last forever or anything, so I figure I better write about it before I turn back into a badass.
This made me think about cards and candles, specifically, the amazingly beautiful deck of cards my astrology teacher Corina Dross created, Portable Fortitude. So many kinds of Protection, who knew? Protection from Dangers only Dogs Sense, Protection from City Planning, Protection from Comfortable Delusions, Protection from Feeling left out when your friends haven’t called..but you haven’t called them either.
And this one, the first one I ever saw on a candle: Protection from Heartbreak. Sounds good, I thought, let’s try that. The first candle I burned definitely didn’t work. Big heartbreak with that one. So painful. Kind of insane. The kind you don’t want to ever happen again, necessarily. Except then you go and do it again.
So, like I said, my heart was blasted open today, and then I went to work. Really looking forward to seeing all the people I knew I would see, the people I see every day or every week, the people at the cafe downstairs, the people on the street, the front desk person I love, all of the patients, whoever they were. My first patient, a really good friend, came in telling me that he was really really frustrated because he couldn’t exercise anymore, that’s how sick he was. Better than he had been, but still. Having just been through the jackhammer of the heart, I told him it might help if he could cry. I can’t, he said, I had to go on antidepressants because it was that bad. Maybe go to a tearjerker movie? Yes.
Every patient I sat down with today was total meltsville. I don’t, unfortunately, do that every day. Most days, my heart is a little more guarded than that, I’m a little tougher, a little older, more tired or something. But today I remember seeing a lot of eyes. Another regular patient came in and told me about driving five hours each way to visit her brother in prison yesterday. He had been in for nine years and had a 25 year sentence on his head for something he didn’t do. She hadn’t seen him in two years. She told me the story of how he, a black man, had been targeted because he was already in the system, because three women all somehow pointed him out as the one, because the lawyer sucked and there was no more money for an appeal. I asked her if they were allowed to be close to each other, there in the prison while she was visiting her brother, and she told me that they weren’t even allowed to touch each other, even though she was his sister and not some other woman. She told me about what a sweetheart he had been as a child, and about what a sweetheart he still was. This all took a lot longer than the 10 minutes alloted, as we sat there both of us crying and holding hands. My heart broke.
So unprofessional, really. Someone’s probably gonna comment that I’m violating HIPAA right now. As my 5 year-old daughter would say: I. don’t. care. And if this is what heartbreak is like, I don’t want any protection from it. I want this. I love this job so much. And I can’t fucking wait for the day when we’re the normal ones, the ones who break the rules and work in our socks and cry with our patients and look for the heartbreak.
So… on to the jello-pit (coming soon to a CANference near you…)
It’s not about fortitude either, apparently. I just happen to love it when jello-pits fit the theme. Winning and losing is not considered as important as having fun.
And, what I want to know is:
Who are you wrestling and why?