Last week, I crushed my left thumb in a compound metal door frame at a Boston Hotel. In an infinite second I watched my thumb turn white and lost all feeling in it before my synapses fired PAIN and I arrested the crushing. My bold, I can live through anything will, told me I could still make it to my business meeting in 10 minutes, not even late. But then the throbbing kicked in, and I started getting cold and realized I was going into a bit of shock. I could not power through and ignore the major pain just inflicted on my body. I had to take care of it. And help my body take care of it.
I called the Hotel and had them get a doctor. They brought up a silver champagne ice bucket filled with ice. (Oh the irony.) And pain even lashed out at my other fingers when submerged in icy cold water. I was all I could do to lay still on the bed, quietly meditating, keeping the pain at bay. I had never broken a bone, and the pain was intense, so I wondered if this would be my first time. The doctor arrived. He tested my joints which barely moved, but moved with my yelping in pain - no broken bone this time. The pain was caused from the pressure of the fluid (blood) trapped under my nail. To think that such pain radiated from something so trite, so simple. And the remedy, sounded gruesome, but promised immediate relief.
I watched as he held an unbent paper clip over a lighter. It was red hot. And then I turned away. He was pressing it through my nail. The pain of fire was added to the pain of pressure and then, the release. Cool, liquid flowed. I squirmed as the doctor pressed down on the nail to squeeze out the remaining fluid. Add yet another type of pain to the morning's tour. But when he was finished, I felt 500% better and all that was to show for my labors was a simple band-aid.
In the course of a week (and several more self-surgeries) I watched my thumb heal. It was painful for many days after the accident. And then yesterday I removed the band-aid for good. There is still the blood path (more like ocean), but the bruises on my tissue are almost gone. I have started using it. And I don't cringe in pain when it is accidentally bumped.
Such a dramatic different. In one second, my thumb was crushed and I lost the ability to use it. In the following week, my body has been healing it at a rapid rate. In that one moment, I wanted to die for the depth of the pain. And in the following week, I am at awe of my body. Fragile and resilient. Broken and healed.
And it's this, my body, the ability to fix my cells, to take care of my pain that is most awesome. Awesome, because it's something that is a natural activity for my body. And I don't have to do anything to reap the benefits, except take care of it. And it's going to happen, regardless of my awareness of it happening.