Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Prayer partner

When I'm here in the Northwest, I have a room at St. Mary-on-the-Lake, well stocked with my fall-winter-spring clothes and a lot of books and pictures. In the mornings I pray, looking out at my prayer partner, a beautiful western red cedar that sits just outside my room's big window. There's something about the red cedar's combination of strength and gracefulness that makes me rejoice.

I think my prayer partner was watching out for me yesterday. I've been having some tests to figure out the cause for shortness of breath and wheezing I've been experiencing over the past few months, beyond my ordinary level of asthma. Yesterday I was in Swedish Hospital in Seattle for a bronchoscopy under general anesthesia. Came home about 1 pm, had a good afternoon nap, got up still a bit wobbly, and managed to trip, probably over my own feet, and hit my head on the edge of the sink counter, tearing a triangular flap on the top of my head. Like all head wounds it bled dramatically. Luckily Sister Eleanor was just down the hall, and took me down to the ER of Overlake Hospital in Bellevue - where I managed a twofer, getting my head stitched up and a breathing treatment at the same time (lungs feeling tormented, I don't doubt). Could have been much worse. But 10 hours in two hospitals - more than enough for one day!

So this morning I looked out again at my tree waving its gentle green branches in my direction. And I said to the tree, primero Dios, God first. And the tree whispered primero Dios back to me. Glad to have breath and to give breath back.

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