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Hepatitis C: Weathering Stormy Times

Hepatitis C: Weathering Stormy Times

Even with hepatitis C, we can find beauty.

Let the beauty we love be what we do. There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground. ~ Rumi

Hepatitis C was the furthest thing from my mind this past week. Ten days ago, my parents were cruising on a luxury liner down the eastern seaboard, when a storm changed their lives. It is a long story, and one that will have a happy ending after my stepmother’s fractured hip, and my father’s pneumonia and fragile hold on life heals.

When hard times hit, I look for the good. This time with them has been sacred. I was lucky that I could fly to Florida to help. It is fortunate that I am a nurse. Both of them are getting better. They have insurance. And as my father pointed out, at least they weren’t on the cruise ship that crashed in that same storm that smashed my stepmother’s hip.

This is how I dealt with having hepatitis C. I could focus on the virus and how it made me feel, or I could give my attention to something else. I like this Rumi quote, because it reminds me to pay attention to beauty. It is hard to find beauty in hospitals, but easy to find it in people. We are meeting a great many new people – nurse, doctors, and assorted staff. Each is as colorful, fragrant, and wondrous as all the fall color I left back home, or in Miami’s subtropical lushness. Many people are helping us, and I am kissing the ground with deep reverence for life.

Focusing on beauty steers my attention away from pain and fear, of hepatitis C’s possible life-shortening outcome.  If I think of disability or death, I miss the beauty that is mine to have now. Embracing the splendor surrounding me lengthens this moment, and this life.

Where is the beauty in your life? What moves you so deeply that you feel like you could kiss the ground?

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