Friday, August 16, 2013

The Case of the Carbuncle

I can remember my younger self longingly looking forward to the end of all school so, in my case, I could finally have a classroom of my own, a place of my own, and this grown-up life of my own.  Then reality sets in . . .

As I age,  I am now introduced to death, disease, and hardship- items I hadn't anticipated in my youth.  My grandparents . . . gone.  My father . . . gone.  My best friend's father hospitalized for blood clots, a dear friend's father-in-law . . .  cancer.  Then, I hear from more . . . Alzheimer's, ALS, alcoholism . . .  It's like being a child and learning an entirely new alphabet minus the eagerness and innocence.  For me, a language I could do without. 

A middle-aged woman, I am now familiar with once unfamiliar terms such as carbuncles, Bartholin gland cysts, Somogyi Effect, ER+, and the like.  In my mind, I have earned nearly enough credits through personal experience to graduate medical school while keeping my dear friend, woman blessing and nurse practitioner extraordinaire Christin on her toes.

Case in point, my left eyelid was tender one morning.  The next morning it was swollen.  On the third morning, the day I was scheduled to meet women blessings Galusha and her niece at a baseball game, I was unable to open my left eye entirely -a hard, round, growth approximately the size of a marble was front and center on the lid.  Sexy!  

Fearful of this mass on my eye, I called my friend and told her I wouldn't be able to make the game.  Assuring me I'd be fine, she insisted I meet them.  Wearing my prescription glasses since contacts were out of the question, I sat in the bleacher seats with the sun beating down upon my carbuncle.   

As the bleachers cleared towards the end of the game, we noticed a disposable camera sitting solo to our right.  Together we thought, "What a great idea to take pictures of the carbuncle!"  So, a photo shoot of this growth ensued- tilting my head from side to side- and we laughed until we cried.  Then, we returned the camera to its original location.  Are we immature, or what?

When I think of that day or look at that scar on my eyelid, I can't help but smile a huge goofy grin.  If it weren't for that carbuncle, we may not have shed tears of joy that day, laughed great belly laughs, or revisited our youthful, immature selves (okay, we probably would have, but bear with me here).  In fact, just saying the term carbuncle aloud (my own perceived onomatopoeia) makes me giggle.

So, this, in turn, makes me think of Proverbs 17:22, "A joyful heart is good medicine . . . ."

Courtney Winkler

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