Home > Reflection > Meditation – ‘It all slowly fades’

Meditation – ‘It all slowly fades’

It’s just two years since I had a serious accident. During a sunny summer’s day out, I slipped into a lock from a canal boat on the River Wey near Guildford and broke my arm. More drastically, I had badly damaged the radial nerve which left me with no left hand or finger movement for a good while. It took a lot of skill and knowledge on the part of the medics and particularly the physios to restore things back to some kind of normality.   

'Little did we know that this was the spot where it would all end in tears'?

 

I rarely think about using my arm and fingers now – mostly it all works OK – and I’ve begun to take it a bit for granted. Sometimes when the air is damp I know it’s still not quite back to rights – not just yet anyway. I can vividly remember the time when I seriously wondered if I’d ever be able to use my arm again properly. It didn’t seem to me that it would be possible and yet my surgeon almost called it to the day in terms of the time that would be required for the healing!   

I had a lot of faith in him and, I think, even more in God. I knew that in some way or other, something good would come from this. That something for me may have been to develop a better perspective on life. I was/am guilty of rushing on, always onto the next thing – having a full diary etc. This ‘shock’ taught me to treasure each moment and to reflect with ‘awe’ on the wonder of each minute that we are each given.   

This morning, as I thought about the events of two years ago, I picked up Brennan Manning’s ‘Reflection for Ragamuffins’ (SPCK) and read this;   

Following surgery for prostate cancer, I walked (catheterized) every morning for an hour through our Old Algiers neighbourhood in New Orleans with a new pair of glasses. One vital aspect of the post-mortem life, it seems, is that everything gets piercingly important. You get stabbed by things, by flowers and babies, by the mighty Mississippi and the inner beauty of your wife, by the loveliness of a plethora of things. And, of course, it all slowly fades …… (p163)   

I was captivated by this passage and I experienced those same feelings all over again. I don’t want the joy of living and of being alive, of being able to pick things up and move my arm around to ever ‘slowly fade away’. I remain truly grateful and impressed with the body’s ability to heal itself. It’s all so amazing – the miracle for me is that it seems incredible that any of it works at all! We are truly ‘fearfully and wonderfully made’.   

And I thank God.

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  1. Pete Slee
    June 29, 2010 at 9:44 pm

    Thanks for this Eddie!

  2. June 29, 2010 at 10:06 pm

    Wow! May that sense of wonder never fade… though I know from my own experiences that somehow it does, and we too easily take our bodies — and our minds — for granted.

    Didn’t know you were a boater. Sue and I will be off on our boat soon (45ft narrowboat, if anyone’s interested) for our summer holiday. After this timely reminder, I shall take extra care around the locks! Thank you — and may your recovery soon be full and complete.

  3. Jill Bald
    June 30, 2010 at 9:53 am

    I can also relate to this after my Guillain Barre Syndrome experience 6 years ago. I can remember thinking to myself that I would never flick through another “Home” magazine again – far too trivial. But as the writer says it does slowly fade although life will never be the same again. Thank you Eddie. Love to you both.

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