In the course of our lives, we all face challenges that bring us to the realization that we’re not immune to difficulty. It’s in how we meet those challenges that tests our resolve, allows us to use our innovative skills and increases our capacity to adapt to change.
Recently, I was faced with some challenges when, two months ago, Leo (my partner of 28 years) fell and broke his upper arm in the dining area of our home. My first instinct was to make him comfortable, to observe him and not to rush to judgment of his condition. My greatest concern was that he would be treated in an ill-equipped country hospital 30 miles outside the city. Within 48 hours, when Leo’s arm was completely black and blue from shoulder to elbow, I had to call the ambulance and, as I expected, the driver refused to take him to the ER in a quality hospital in downtown Montréal. Leo’s upper arm was indeed broken and he needed to be admitted because of his age (90).
Immediately, I knew that we had to move out of our house, where multiple levels meant stairs everywhere that would put Leo at risk whenever he moved around. So, I immediately started to look online for a new place that would meet the criteria necessary to make Leo safe. I decided to look in Ontario, because it proved to be a reality on so many occasions that English people in Québec were treated with disdain, and I wanted to leave that area anyway. So I drove 300 miles to the west side of Toronto (Canada’s most populous city), and looked for a place in the Kitchener-Waterloo-Cambridge area that was all on one level, had underground parking, elevators and was light and bright, of course!
While my first trip into Ontario brought only a few choices that were not fulfilling all the criteria for safety, I had included the Niagara Peninsula in my online searches and, after my return to Montréal, a realtor called to tell me that there was a condo available that sounded ideal for our needs. So, I made another trip a week later, took a tour that evening and found the ‘perfect place’ for us that exceeded my list of must-haves.
After finding a suitable place to live, my challenges were seemingly just beginning. I returned to find Leo in a worsening condition at the country hospital. An MRI scan found that he had also suffered a pelvic fracture, the reason why he wasn’t able to stand up yet. Then, to make matters worse, members of the care staff were rushing him to eat and he ended up with pneumonia. So, if the effects of the morphine for the fractures weren’t enough, he was now on antibiotics for the infection. He was losing weight and wouldn’t eat even the food that I was bringing from home.
As a very high level healer, Leo is very sensitive to the energy around him, and he was immersed in the destructive energy of that care facility. On two occasions, when I walked in Leo’s room to visit with him as I did every day (except on the days of my trips to Ontario), I found him naked and shivering on his bed, with no care staff around. The second time, it happened to be December 25th and, while I don’t celebrate religious holidays, I found it to be clearly negligent to treat an elderly person with fractures that way. I was livid and couldn’t stand to see him remain there for one more day.
The next day, I went to the hospital and asked to have Leo’s doctor release him into my care, so that I could transfer him to one of the facilities downtown. After four hours of waiting for the doctor to arrive, he indignantly stated that he knew I wasn’t ‘satisfied’ (understatement!) that it would be too hard on Leo to move him to another hospital. I assured him that I was prepared to transfer him and would provide Leo’s power of attorney in the morning. (I wouldn’t have had the authority over the doctor if I didn’t have the p.o.a.; something of importance for spouses!)
The following day the forecast was for 18 inches of snow and, on my way to the country hospital, I drove past trucks that had driven off the road, small groups of cars that had stopped to clean the ice off their windshields and many abandoned cars. After Leo was released to my care, a medical transfer truck took him downtown while I drove very carefully through a blizzard that was sending the entire Island of Montréal into chaos. Leo was admitted to the downtown hospital with ‘weakness’ and treated for dehydration. I noted a definite difference in the energy level at this facility.
After 2 weeks, I arranged a meeting with the professional team of doctor, head nurse, physiotherapist and social worker to discuss what plan was needed for Leo to get back on his feet. The doctor explained that, after 6 weeks, Leo’s pelvic fracture was not interfering with his ability to walk; the physiotherapist explained that Leo quite possibly couldn’t stand up. My first reaction to this attitude was that I would be glad to be present at the physiotherapy sessions, if they would just tell me when they were going to work with him. When I visited with Leo afterward, I told him what the team had said, then I spent the night refusing the negativity and focusing on getting positive results.
The following day, I sat in on the physiotherapy ‘session’. The therapist had such a negative approach and I could see that Leo was refusing her and, thus, refusing to work with her. After the physiotherapist left, Leo kept trying to stand up on his own, so I called for someone to help. An orderly brought a walker and Leo headed out of the room and down the hall.
The doctor just happened to be standing outside the room with the head nurse and yelled out: “It’s a miracle! ” and many heads popped out of doorways to have a look. Everyone was quite amazed. The head nurse told me that it was incredible how I was able to elicit such a response from Leo and further noted that my energy was remarkable. From that day forward, Leo’s health and mobility have improved steadily. I only facilitated Leo’s determination to ‘get mobile’; the effort was his. From my point of view, much could be gained from integrating higher level healing into a medical environment to improve the wellbeing of both patients and staff.
For the duration of this entire episode, I have maintained my positive self. I never stopped working with my spirit and my higher self, as they gave me the inspiration and energy to get through it all. My ability to refuse the draining negativity that was hitting me mentally, emotionally and physically was certainly put to the test. However, as each new obstacle emerged, I was able to meet them with real solutions that brought positive results, because I envisioned those results and worked to achieve them.
After all the packing, moving and unpacking (still in progress), Leo and I are now settling in and enjoying our light bright place in Niagara Falls!
I welcome and value your input~Please feel free to comment!