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Questions before dark


Day 26


Questions Before Dark – Jeanne Lohmann

Day ends, and before sleep when the sky dies down, consider your altered state:

1. Has this day changed you?

On a morning 25 days ago everything changed for me. Since then, I am aware of how every day for the past 25 days has been different from the day prior.

2. Are the corners sharper or rounded off?

Sharper, in the sense of closure. Today I attended my last scheduled medical appointment in a process that began in early November and has included meeting a literal host of talented and kind medical professionals.

3. Did you live with death?

As my surgeon gently ran his fingers down each side of my chest scar testing its ability to hold together I thought about how these hands held my heart 26 days ago. He also shared what could have happened if they had delayed the decision to go back into my chest. Yes, I lived with death today.

4. Make decisions that quieted?

Several medications were discontinued and I will be looking forward to not having their annoying side effects any longer. Goals were set about how I might find my way back into my role as pastor.

5. Find one clear word that fit?

“Thank you.” As my surgeon got up to leave our appointment we smiled and shook hands and as our eyes met I just said, “Thank you.” To the members of his staff who stayed in the room to wrap up things I explained that ‘thank you’ seemed to small a thing to say to someone who basically saved your life and gave you decades more to live. Then I started crying.

6. At the sun’s midpoint did you notice a pitch of absence, bewilderment that invites the possible?

Strangely – I agreed to be a taste tester of various kinds and flavors of dried bugs (mostly full size grasshoppers and crickets). The bewilderment of munching such a non-traditional snack gave way later in the day to a surge of creative ideas and feelings, that I have missed while under the influence of pain and medicine designed to mitigate it.

7. What did you learn from things you dropped and picked up and dropped again?

I have a very short and simple to do list these days and still I find that I seldom accomplish my list. At the end of the day I may rue my lack of productivity but I am amazed that there was enough grace in the day and the little things that happened to me were important and enough.

Did you set a straw parallel to the river, let the flow carry you downstream?

Questions Before Dark – Jeanne Lohmann

Day ends, and before sleep when the sky dies down, consider your altered state: has this day changed you? Are the corners sharper or rounded off? Did you live with death? Make decisions that quieted? Find one clear word that fit? At the sun’s midpoint did you notice a pitch of absence, bewilderment that invites the possible? What did you learn from things you dropped and picked up and dropped again? Did you set a straw parallel to the river, let the flow carry you downstream?

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