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Lucky

Lucky

When would you consider yourself lucky? I have met people who say "I'm so lucky" for any number of reasons. People who win the lottery in some form or fashion say they are lucky, not knowing the number of financial vultures who will fly high above their carcasses, awaiting the right time to swoop down to take their money.

I heard a young girl tell me how lucky she was when her parents died. Her parents left her four million dollars, enough for her to do nothing with her life. She was in the throes of consumerism, floundering, searching for a purpose. She drove a very nice car.

I know an entrepreneurial Firefighter who had a side business installing high tech computer flooring. He was awarded the contract to install computer flooring for the FedEx technological center. He quit the Fire Department and never looked back. He told me he was just plain lucky.

I remember being in a Las Vegas Casino one evening, just walking around after attending a workshop on forensic anthropology. It appeared that there was some interesting action at one of the crap tables. I walked over and saw a tall, thin man in overalls, tee shirt and flip-flops throwing dice. Each time he threw the dice, he won money. Rumor around the table was that he started with one chip and the pile he had amassed was huge. He played on the crap table for another hour. I was mesmerized by his luck. He kept wining. He knew where to place his chips, threw the dice and won over and over again. As he walked away from the table with his winnings, two super-model looking women grabbed his arms out of nowhere and walked him to the cage of economic redemption. I could not decide whether he was lucky or just plain skilled.

But there are other types of luck. I remember one time when I was in seventh grade. While walking home from school, a young man pulled a knife on me, put it to my throat and told me to give him all of my money or he would kill me. I had a quarter and gave it to him. He told me to pull my pockets inside out. I did. He said, "This is your lucky day white boy" as he put the knife down and walked away. I thought it was just business as usual growing up in an impoverished dilapidated crime-ridden area of Highland Park, Michigan.

Was this luck? On my vacation two weeks ago, I was driving a rental car going to the airport to pick up my daughter, when a wheel barrel flipped off of the truck in front of me. A woman on her phone was driving her car to the right of me. She was not paying attention to the road whatsoever. At that moment, I thought I was going to be in a bad accident. However, the wheel barrel's handle shattered as it smashed to the ground and the wheel barrel just slid off the road to the right hand shoulder. I think angels were pushing it off the road. The woman to the right of me drove as if nothing had happened. It appears I was lucky.

I saw someone this week that I would call lucky in the greatest sense of the word. She was diagnosed with a rather large squamous cell cancer imbedded in her right inner jowl. She had to endure a complicated fifteen hour surgery to remove the cancer, dissect the lymph nodes in her neck and then reconstruct her cheek with tissue and blood vessels remote to the jaw. She had a psychotic reaction to the anesthesia and the pain medication post operatively. She could not eat prior to the surgery, so she had lost down to ninety pounds. She is perhaps normal height for a thirty-seven year-old woman with two kids and a husband. The surgeon performed a tracheostomy as precautionary measure to avoid post operative complications related to swelling. As she sat in my office, two weeks after the surgery, face swollen, wrist patched up with an ace bandage, she looked at me, smiled a crooked smile, "I was so lucky. My nodes were negative. No radiation therapy. YEESSS!" Her eyes were beaming with life and sparkled with hope of a great recovery. She had all of her molars removed since the surgeon felt that post operative radiation would most likely kill those teeth anyway. As a result she cannot chew anything. She can barely open her mouth to speak, much less take in calories that are meaningful and nourishing. Her spirit is the strongest I have witnessed in a long time. She is someone I would call, a fighter. Some people who know her would call her blessed.

I counseled her on not only what to eat but how to eat. Pureed food, squash soups, egg salads, chicken salads, ham salads, fish chowder, clam chowder and a whole host of home cooked meals. She will need vitamins, minerals, vitamin D3, and a number of supplements over the next few months as well as bone broth. The recipe varies from broth to broth, but there is no denying the benefits of bone broth while a person heals. Boost shakes cannot replace the power of food. Ever.

What is lucky? I certainly do not believe she is lucky. I believe she has survived a horrendous situation, only to embark on a long tiresome journey of healing. The good news, she is not alone. She has a loving husband, children who love her, a loving mother and a sister who would probably die for her. I think that is what lucky is, people who care about you deeply. It is their desire for her to heal and return to normalcy that drives the luck train. Not everyone has the psychosocial support that she has. Nor do people offer their heartfelt actions as a way of showing love. Words are spoken all the time, but loving actions are rare. Her mother said she would make sure that she gets the food she needs to heal and grow strong again as only a devoted mother could. And after she said that, her daughter, the one who has been victim of this catastrophic illness smiled and said, “just you wait."

What's lucky? That's Lucky. The power of Love and the healing it brings with it. How many of you have luck in your life? Seriously. I do. Do you?

Doc
Posted by Amanda Sanders at 9:19 AM
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