Friday, April 1, 2011


That wicked mule kicked me hard in the stomach again and again as the hours slowly turned towards dawn. It’s been 8 months of blissful freedom from the tyranny of Menieres Disease, but no matter where or when, that mule eventually finds me, no matter how carefully hidden I make myself.

The torture was relentless as hour after hour crept by. I heaved my guts inside out, while the bed spun out from under my sweating/shivering body. Tears slid down my cheeks. Puddles of bitter bile pooled in the hollow of my throat. Watery mucus dripped onto my pillow. The damp sheets tangled around my legs.

-Hold on. Keep your eyes closed, don’t move. This too will pass, I told myself.

I smile as I recall my Mother’s words of days gone by:

-I wished I would die, but was afraid I might!

For the past three months, word has spread that there is a Registered Nurse at Compass Cay. I have never used my skills as much on holiday as I have this winter. Falls, infections of bowel, skin and ears, scrapes, cuts, deep open wounds, gashes needing stitches,concussion, broken bones, and most recently high blood pressure with chest pains and irregular  heart beat. Boaters helping boaters, is the motto around here. We pull together and share the load, as per our gifts.

This week it was my turn to need a nurse. At six-thirty in the morning, Jenni came to my rescue. She dumped the vomit bucket, dosed me with new meds, ginger ale and electrolyte powder, held my hand, and checked with me every half hour until she decided I was definitely going to survive. What a sweet, loving friend, with a gentle bedside manner to boot.

When was the last time you had to depend on a friend? Don’t you wish we were always as supportive and kind to one another as we are when there is crisis to face and work through? Still, it is in the painful times that we learn who we can trust and rely upon. I am blessed to have good friends.

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