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About Me

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I am a bereaved mother and wife. I began this blog to help me look for the "good things" in life after my daughter, "Babybear", died in July 2005. Three years later, her daddy, my husband, "Bear", died in November 2008. (You'll find a link to their stories on my blog) And now, as difficult as it is, I continue to look for the good things in my life as I learn my new normal with my pup, "Furrybear", at my side. And the angels on my shoulder...

Monday, March 10, 2008

Who Ordered This Truckload of Dung? - Ajahn Brahm


My aunt gave me this book recently.

The subtitle is "Inspiring Stories for Welcoming Life's Difficulties". While I did not necessarily find the stories 'inspiring', many of them gave me a chuckle or got me thinking or nodding my head in agreement. Here is a passage from the book that I thought I would share:


'How many of us say, "How are you feeling today?" when visiting a loved one in hospital?

For a start, what a stupid thing to say! Of course they're feeling rotten, otherwise they wouldn't be in hospital, would they? Furthermore, the common greeting puts the patient in profound psychological stress. They feel it would be an act of rudeness to upset their visitors by telling the truth that they feel terrible. How can they disappoint someone who has taken the time and trouble to come and visit them in hospital by honestly replying that they feel awful, as drained as a used teabag? So instead, they may feel compelled to lie, saying, "I think I feel a little better today," meanwhile feeling guilty that they aren't' doing enough to get better. Unfortunately, too many hospital visitors make the patients feel more ill!'
This passage made me think of how people continued to ask me how I felt in the weeks and months after my daughter passed away. "Are you feeling any better today?" No! Of course not! I found that when people expected me to feel better, that I instead felt worse and could not hold my emotions around them, often crying. When people allowed me to feel whatever I felt, and did not judge me, I found that I could have a "normal" conversation and I could even laugh and daresay enjoy myself.


The author of this book has been a monk for over 30 years and he writes with a sense of humor and I was able to read through this book relatively quickly. Most of the stories in this book are from the author's own life and experiences.

When my aunt gave me this book, I was not sure I would be too interested in reading it, but the title peeked my interest and so I'm glad I took the time to read it. Would I recommend it? I think each person would have to decide for themselves whether this is a book they would like to read. But I must wonder... How could anyone resist the urge to read this book in the bathroom?!

3 comments:

Amber said...

That looks like a great book

Totallyscrappy said...

And who doesn't love a good bathroom read? :)
When I was reading the passage there I thought about when you are first pregnant and people ask how you are. It is almost like they want to hear, "Barfing my guts out and tired enough to fall over, but thank you for asking!"

DanaDew said...

It does sound like good bathroom reading and not because of the title....It sounds like it is a bunch of different stories so would be quick to read one story during each, uh, visit.

The thought I have in regard to the passage you posted is:

Why don't people expect the truth when they ask "How are you feeling?" What does this say about our culture?