Suffering is a path to learning and empowerment. I embrace the theory, however the practice is more problematic.
I had a tooth that felt a little achy and funny for bit, but thought, if there is no visible sign of problems, it will work itself out. Let’s just say, it did not. I dealt with shooting pain separated by periods of significant aching, and eventually succumbed and called the dentist at 8:00 a.m. and wound up with an appointment for 11:30 a.m.
I was told not to be late…I was. I had a lot of anticipation that I was going to be scolded for being late. Yet, the receptionist did not blink an eye. She just smiled and took me to the back to be seen. Only a quick diagnosis and up a couple flights of stairs to a dental specialist followed. At 3:30 I had the dreaded root canal and by 5:30 I was out of pain.
Before I went to the dentist, my wife (who is extremely empathetic) kept telling me how sorry she was that I was in pain. I might have gone to the dentist sooner, but I often forget that we have insurance and we have access to doctors who will see me the same day. When I think of these luxuries, I am reminded of my wife’s family. As a second generation Filipino, she has family in the Philippines where some don’t have houses, food or even water. Some don’t know where their loved ones are and if they are alright. And in comparison, a tooth ache is not so bad.
Truth is, I am thankful.
Which leads me to wonder, can I give back as much as I have received? It is a lot but I try to remember to be humble and to be grateful and that it is time to start paying some back.