Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Test of Patience

He's lying on his back, leg in traction, wounds slowly healing, holding his abdomen at the slightest cough and he tells the doctor, "I feel like I'm recovering." He later says to his friend, "I'm having trouble being patient; I'm ready to get back to things." I think to myself, "He's only three days into his recovery." I hope he can maintain. He has the ability to be in such good spirits despite circumstances and injuries that would devastate most of us. I wonder if I have that "survivor spirit" that he has. I realize that I have survivor something and that's survivor guilt. The theme of the day seems to be "make sure to take care of yourself." I want to take care of myself and usually I'm really good at it. At work I often risk seeming undedicated because I make sure to practice is so important to me. But then I land here in this tiny hotel suite with my parents and my boyfriend, trying to recover from serious trauma, without yoga, without space, without privacy, across the way from the hospital and completely inundated with the daily tasks of managing everyone and everything and I have trouble figuring out what I need. I feel guilty enjoying my life with my brother in the hospital. Then I realized today that I might go crazy (literally). I realized that my brother and I might have the same chance of going crazy in the next couple of months, given that we are both in ridiculous situations. Matthew is a special breed, though and he has the ability to resist the urge to dwell on negative energy. He is seriously an inspiration! I went on a hard run tonight in the drizzling rain and I feel better. I'm starting to resist entertaining guilt when I care for myself because crazy Erin is not exactly the most productive form of my identity. Thank God, I know my brother is happy to see me doing the things I enjoy in life. I know that his positive energy, hope for his future, and happiness in seeing others' joy will move his healing forward tenfold. The doctors are shocked and amazed at the progress he has made already. It is no coincidence that he is held in high regard by so many individuals. The nurse said as we left tonight, "We are so happy to see him like this. He is very special to us too." Matthew makes an impact on everyone he meets. He tries his hardest to give all he has and in return, individuals who have never met him are noticing his kind spirit, his compassionate nature, and his enormous heart. I am so honored to watch my brother heal and to learn from him, every moment I am here.


  1. Matt is the toughest guy I know. It seems to run in the family. I'm so glad to hear he's doing well and I really hope that I can come visit him soon. Thank you for these posts and keeping us updated.

  2. Erin, you are a valuable person, not just to your brother but to your parents, James and all your friends and family. We so appreciate this blog but if any day it's too much for you, we don't want you to do it. Take well earned time for yourself.

  3. I am one of those people that have never met your brother, but am inspired by the difficult times he and your family are going through and by the spirit you are showing to make it through that tough times. It's truly inspiring and heartwarming, worth keeping in my thoughts till the heartship ends.

    Regards from the Netherlands,