Brain Tumor

Did Someone Order a Chaplain?

hospital signLet’s see. So far today I have:

  • Filled out paperwork for the allergist’s office
  • Emptied the dishwasher
  • Cooked macaroni and cheese
  • Paid some bills
  • Written a few thank you notes

It might not seem like much. In fact, compared to my pre-cancer lifestyle, it doesn’t seem like much. But I’m doing what I can, trying to take more steps without my mobility devices, and looking for ways to take some of the domestic burden off of Dan. (Dude’s got his own chronic illness to contend with.)

We’re a real pair.

So, while taking a breather in my new recliner this morning, I recalled a vivid memory of my days at Barnes-Jewish Hospital back in February.

Not sure what brought it to mind, other than that I have a lot of time to contemplate and reflect these days. Weird stuff pops into my brain, typically unsolicited. (And the stuff I actually want to remember? Nowhere to be found.)

Anyway. Several times during my visit, I was asked by hospital staff if I wanted the hospital to address any religious or spiritual concerns on my behalf. Each time I was asked, I told them no. So I was surprised to awake one day from a drug-induced nap to find a hospital chaplain standing at the foot of my bed.

He smiled and offered an introduction. Immediately, I recoiled. I told them no, I thought to myself. Do not want. I don’t need last rites. I am not dying. YOU’VE GOT THE WRONG HOSPITAL BED, MOTHERFUCKER.

My defiance is genuine, and thankfully well-contained. He was just letting me know who he was, and had no intention of being pushy or nosy. When he finished, he stepped over to my roomie’s bed and asked her if she would like him to pray with her.

She said yes.

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