Monday, March 19, 2018

Speechless

This morning I’m with my Father at the HealthPartners Neuroscience Center. My Father is having therapy for his throat. So. Speech therapy department. His therapist is named Evan. I remember Evan from my days at Regions Hospital. Evan walked by me at least 5 times a day. And in 2 years, he never returned my hello. I don’t know why. Frankly, I didn’t care. He seemed affected in manner and deportment. I’ve never said a word beyond, “Hello” to him.  Oh wait, I may have thrown a “good morning” in the mix. We’ve only spatially interacted; he walked by me. I haven’t seen Evan in 11 years. Oh I’d see his avatar on Facebook. We have many mutual friends. But Evan plays no part in my life, so I don’t consider him.

This morning he walked by me while I scheduled my father’s next appointment. I glanced up from the calendar on my phone and caught his eyes. Because I’m a human being and he’s a human being, I said hello. He gave me the blank and walked by.

Now don’t skim by the fact. He’s a speech therapist.  Let’s just take the leap of faith here and assume he knows how to form the word, “hello.”
We live in a cold and lonesome world.

Now I’m neither self-regarding nor self-absorbed. I know others exist and I acknowledge their existence. I can’t comprehend not acknowledging a human being who breathes alongside me. For a moment, Evan and I shared space and breaths. For a moment we both existed in the same whirled. Look, anything medical (except maternity) is either painfilled, filled with anxiety, smothered in fear, or a time vampire. Where’s the happy?
You know, I forget my experiences with people. I’m pretty damn happy and so when I see a face I recognize, I acknowledge the communion. Even if the last encounter wasn’t pleasant, I always initially forget that circumstance. I just feel the joy of the reencounter.

I saw him; I recognized him; I said hello.
I will not live in a world where I won’t acknowledge any human being who breathes alongside me.

Evan makes the world more cold.

Speech therapist. Why?
Seriously, I’m thinking cryonics.