What I Learned After Two Weeks on Ice

Ice is an underrated miracle and it’s helped me survive the past two weeks. I had surgery on October 6 for a torn rotator cuff that also turned out to be a torn biceps and a couple other issues. One arthroscopic hole turned into ten, and – even so – all is well,

A couple things I learned while spending my days on painkillers and an ice machine:

  1. Inspiration is not just for people on the cusp of jumping off emotional cliffs. When you are on painkillers, your dreams are more interesting and your daily living may or may not be impacted. I heard that there was a plan to kidnap the Governor of Michigan and I first thought that was the Hydrocodone talking. But it wasn’t. I found much-needed inspiration in these tumultuous times in several movies and television series while on ice: The Last Dance, The 40 Year Old Version, and The Way I See It were all life-changing for different reasons. I cried watching all three (and that probably was the Hydrocodone talking.) People seem to be craving inspiration.  There is beauty and meaning out there and it brings meaning to share beauty with others.   
  2. It’s okay to take a break from regular life.  I took two weeks off of work for the first time in a long time and everybody survived/thrived.  Seriously, I took no work texts, read no work emails, and didn’t answer the phone.  Sabbath is a commandment and sometimes it takes a scalpel to make it happen.  (Don’t wait for a scalpel.)
  3. Sometimes we hurt ourselves without realizing it. When the doctor asked when my shoulder was injured, I couldn’t identify the moment. There was no accident, no memorable crash.  During Sitting-With-Ice Time, it occurred to me that when I moved back in February, it took more out of me than I’d realized.  I was only moving from the fifth floor to the fourth floor of our building.  Easy, right?  Apparently it took it’s toll in quiet ways – until it didn’t feel quiet anymore.  Sitting quietly to ponder the past can be very revealing.

Eugene O’Neill wrote his classic play The Iceman Cometh in 1946 and it speaks to what’s happening in 2020. Broken people. Disillusionment. Real hopes. False hopes. Political chaos. 

Relationships are crucial in these days and care for our neighbors is more important than ever.  Thanks to all of you who were such loving neighbors while I was out of commission.  I appreciate you.

How can we be better neighbors?  How can we support those who long for inspiration?  How are we encouraging Sabbath (before hospitalization is needed)?  How can we offer healing for those who are hurting?

This is the mission of the Church.  We have been called to serve others in the name of Jesus.  Let’s go.

2 responses to “What I Learned After Two Weeks on Ice

  1. Brian Tischendorf

    Welcome back Jan, I missed your insightful messages. Continue to heal well

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for the recommendation to read The Iceman Cometh. I read it in college, nearly 50 years ago, so think it’s time to reread.

    Liked by 1 person

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