Wednesday, May 22, 2013

People and their loads

"He had learned that it was the smallness of people that filled him with wonder and tenderness, and the loneliness of that, too. The world was made up of people putting one foot in front of the other, and a life might appear ordinary simply because the person living it had been doing so for a long time. Harold could no longer pass a stranger without acknowledging the truth that everyone was the same, and also unique; and that this was the dilemma of being human." -Rachel Joyce, The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry

I woke up and was tying my shoes (black Dansko oxfords) and thought of my dad, and how he helped people in the Social Security office. And how it is enough to care about others and do the best you can and share your smile and your heart with everyone. 

And so today I've finished my approximately two weeks of almost full time work. I accidentally showed up thirty minutes early to work today. And I'd already almost done this once last week. My brain is definitely adversely affected by near normal work weeks. Wait until I have kids. I will be completely lost wandering around town, not knowing my name or address. I am not kidding. 

I've been thinking a lot lately about life, and the shortness of it and all that we have to be thankful for. A video I watched about Zach, an eighteen year old from Minnesota who died of cancer, keeps running through my head. He said something like, "It's a good day when you can make another person smile." He was so beautiful in the documentary. I really think he is right. 

Today, one of my patients told me her husband just got diagnosed with liver cancer. They gave him one year to live. I wanted to cry for her. Instead I just listened and asked more questions. We talked about different things. Sometimes (actually often) being an eye doctor is first about caring for people's souls and secondly about their eyes. 

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