Today I suspect my thoughts will frequently turn to hunger. The Sisters of St. Joseph, Albany Province, have been focusing on “food as a human right” for some time, being mindful of those who have little or no food and working at both systemic and local solutions to this problem. In my life there is never a problem in finding food; if I don’t have it, I have the means to purchase it – both availability in nearby grocery stores and the money and transportation needed to access it. I am preparing, however, for a routine colonoscopy tomorrow – not a pleasant thought, but an experience I have come to value for several reasons that allows me to put a positive spin on what lies ahead in the next 36 hours – a retreat of sorts…My reflections are listed below:
- I live in a place where “the miracle of modern medicine” is a constant and access to healthcare a privilege I enjoy.
- I consider it a responsibility to keep my body as healthy as I can and welcome the opportunity to eliminate toxins and be reminded to begin again to eat in a healthy and mindful way.
- I live with Sisters whose support includes the willingness to see to my needs (and I to theirs), particularly tomorrow for one of them in accompanying me and spending several hours in the hospital with me.
- The reality of physical hunger which I may only assuage with liquids or (happily!) jello leads me to reflect and join in solidarity with those who regularly experience a lack of food.
- Moving to the spiritual level of interpretation, I will need to trust my physician (as I have for many years and still do) to perform the procedure flawlessly and my body to cooperate.
- Lastly, I hope to remain conscious of and pray for all those who hunger for a better life both physically and spiritually, for belonging, for love and/or for a sense of God in their lives. All of this, then, becomes an opportunity for gratitude.