Wednesday, September 24, 2008
The Importance of Taking Time
I have a client with lumbar disc troubles. She sees a physical therapist once a week, has a therapeutic massage every other week, dutifully goes to yoga and also dutifully goes to work every day in spite of the incredible pain she's in.
When her little dog developed disc problems, the vet said "Restrict his movement, let him rest until it heals." My client said, "Why does my dog get to rest but I have to keep working?"
She makes a good point. Once upon a time, taking time to recover from illness and injury was emphasized. Folks who had money would take months to rest and recover, but not any more. These days the only thing that matters is how fast we can get back to our routines. I find this so bizarre. And we wonder why there are so many immune system problems in our population. For heaven's sake.
Speaking of systemic disfunctions, I have awakened from my Alice in Wonderland cold to the news that our financial system has collapsed. The Washington Post headline this morning says Congress "balks" in the face of a $700 billion bailout that Paulson and GW Bush say is urgent.
Balks? From what I've seen on the news, members of Congress are asking a lot of questions, trying to understand what's going on and what needs to be done. I remember how quick they were to send the U.S. to war after 9/11, a Very Big Mistake. I'm so glad they're taking a little bit of time to think about this before going ahead. It's a crisis like nothing that has ever happened. It's important to take time to ask questions and consider carefully before moving ahead.
The client with the disc problems works for Congress. No chance she'll have any time this week (and for many weeks) for physical therapy, massage, or yoga. She, like many hundreds of others, will be working day and night, trying to figure out how best to address what's happening. Her lumbar spine will come out the worse for it all, needless to say.
I wish my client and all her colleagues the best of luck in navigating their way through this. May the force be with them!
THANKS to my sister Deborah for pointing me towards NPR's Fresh Air interview from Tuesday. Thank God for my sister and for Terri Gross! It's the Financial Crisis for Dummies, a.k.a. privatizing gains, socializing loss! YIKES!