Sunday, March 23, 2014

To the beret-wearing gentleman...

I started this post with something as trivial as me wanting to inform you that I am in the process of applying for a new job and that I am quite nervous etc, etc. I then thought about what picture to post and in searching for an image for this post on my imminent job interview, I came across this one...


Upon seeing this image (of the central nervous system (CNS) which includes the brain and extension of the brain, the spinal cord and all its extending nerves) thoughts immediately took me to the corridors of my university's School of Anatomy and my anatomy practicals there. One interesting fact I remember learning about the CNS was that the brain has its grey tissue (or grey matter) on the outside with the yellow central fibres on the inside, but the spinal cord is the reverse. If you were to slice the cord transversly (right across) what you will see is a butterfly-like shape, made of the grey tissue with the light yellow colour surrounding it. Just perfect. The last 10 or 15 centimetres is called the cauda equina or horse tail, as that is exactly what it looks like.

One day, whilst putting on my white lab coat, before entering the cool, aluminium lined anatomy lab, I was approached by an elderly gentleman wearing a woollen houndstooth beret. He asked me to direct him to the place where he could sign up to 'give his body to research' . I was completely taken aback. Bringing my thoughts back to his smiling, wrinkly face I walked with him to the school's office where he was greeted with a cup of tea and a wad of papers to fill in. He thanked me with a nod of his head as I walked away.

These days, I still remember the smell of the cholorform, my eyes stinging from its fumes , the leathery touch of human tissue long since detached from its soulful owner but labelled to be reunited and eventually buried with the rest of the body. Out of respect to its owner I have posted this image, in all its perfect beauty. Thank you to this person who so kindly and so generously gave their body to be studied by students and teachers. And, thank you to so many others like this human being for their unselfish and considerate act. Most of all, thank you to the beret-wearing gentleman, as in my mind you are the face of all those years I studied anatomy and my love of research.

I died last night.

I was driving in the left lane on an Australian road, minding my own business, when a car came screaming at me from the opposite lane. I swerved, missed it and felt very fortunate that it did not hit me. I then approached the object that was causing the oncoming traffic to drive into my lane. Just ahead of me I saw a small trophy. I could not believe it was this trophy, so insignificant, that was reaping so much havoc. And then as I passed the trophy, car after car unknowingly crashed into me. I saw the drivers’ faces, aghast and in disbelief. I realised then the inevitability of the moment: that I was going to die. And when the cars crashed into me, one after the other, after the other, I expected to hear a deafening crush, but there was none. I expected pain, but there was none. Looking up I felt myself floating above my vehicle and ahead of me were those who had died just before me, but by other means. I saw them moving forward and upward with their beautiful multicoloured gowns trailing behind them. I momentarily thought of my family whom I had just left behind. And I though to myself, it’s okay. It’s okay. They’ll be fine. My heart leaped and I moved forward to join the colourful angels. I felt so content.

Interpreting this, I know that this dream is not about me dying, per se. It is about some part of my behaviour that is dying. And that is a good thing. I am changing the behaviour that ties me down, that makes me beholden to others. I realise that there are things I can let go of, things that are as insignificant as that trophy. I can cut back on these insignificances. It's okay. I don't have to always be running everything so tightly and on schedule. It's okay. I can trust my family to do things for themselves sometimes. They'll be fine. I need to trust in myself and follow that which makes me happy, makes me content. And then I will join the happy angels, in all their glory, that have come before me. I know I will.


Until next time,
Mervat

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Amazing memories...














And yet, these memories are missing a picture, which I am yet to take...

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

U2's Sometimes You Can't Make It On Your Own

More lyrics, words I have heard before, but this time their meaning is even more poignant, more touching and there is a new truthfulness to them.  These lyrics speak what is unspeakable sometimes...and the music is pretty fabulous too. Here's the link to U2's song which my dear friend sent to me. I hope it brings you joy this Wednesday morning :)

And here are those brilliant lyrics by U2 (the best band in the world, hands down!):

Tough, you think you've got the stuff
You're telling me and anyone
You're hard enough

You don't have to put up a fight
You don't have to always be right
Let me take some of the punches
For you tonight

Listen to me now
I need to let you know
You don't have to go it alone

And it's you when I look in the mirror
And it's you when I don't pick up the phone
Sometimes you can't make it on your own

We fight all the time
You and I...that's alright
We're the same soul
I don't need...I don't need to hear you say
That if we weren't so alike
You'd like me a whole lot more

Listen to me now
I need to let you know
You don't have to go it alone

And it's you when I look in the mirror
And it's you when I don't pick up the phone
Sometimes you can't make it on your own

I know that we don't talk
I'm sick of it all
Can - you - hear - me - when - I -
Sing, you're the reason I sing
You're the reason why the opera is in me...

Where are we now?
I've still got to let you know
A house still doesn't make a home
Don't leave me here alone...

And it's you when I look in the mirror
And it's you that makes it hard to let go
Sometimes you can't make it on your own
Sometimes you can't make it
The best you can do is to fake it
Sometimes you can't make it on your own

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Beautiful Things by Andain

This song was gifted to me by a woman whose friendship I cherish implicitly. I thought I'd share the song's lyrics which I connected with on so many levels (hence the song is on constant repeat in my car).

Andain - Beautiful things Lyrics

Got up early, found something’s missing
My only name
No one else sees, but I got stuck
And soon forever came
Stopped pushing on for just a second
Then nothing’s changed
Who am I this time, where's my name?
Guess it crept away

No one's calling for me at the door
And unpredictable won't bother anymore
And silently gets harder to ignore

Look straight ahead, there’s nothing left to see
What’s done is done, this life has got its hold on me
Just let it go, what now can never be

I forgot that I might see
So many beautiful things
I forgot that I might need
To find out what life could bring

Beautiful things

Take this happy ending away
It's all the same
God won't waste this simplicity
On possibility
Get me up, wake me up, dreams are filling
This trace of blame
Frozen still I thought I could stop
Now who's gonna wait?

No one's calling for me at the door
And unpredictable won't bother anymore
And silently gets harder to ignore

Look straight ahead, there’s nothing left to see
What’s done is done, this life has got its hold on me
Just let it go, what now can never be

So many beautiful things
So many beautiful things

Now what do I do?
Can I change my mind?
Did I think things through?
It was once my life
It was my life at one time

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