Note: This is a part of a series of posts about DrG’s parents, who both suffered from and ultimately passed away from serious health conditions – his mom from multiple myeloma, and his dad from complications from a severe stroke. Over the course of their illnesses, he put up these posts. DrG thought about removing them, but ultimately decided to leave them up in the hopes that they would help other people.
Yesterday my mom asked me to take her and my dad to get pedicures.
At first I was really taken aback. Pedicures? Really? Don’t you have a ton of hospital bills that are going to come due? Is this the best use of your money?
Both my mom and my dad are pretty significantly disabled by health problems. And when you have paralysis, and neuropathy (nerve problems / nerve pain), and significant mobility problems getting to your feet is easier said than done. So there’s the practical, grooming side of things that many of us take for granted as able-bodied people.
And then there’s the social, human side of things. My mom is battling metastatic cancer (cancer that’s spread all over her body) and a lot of her time over the past couple of years has been spent at doctor’s offices and in the hospital.
And while, in general, I can’t complain about the care she’s gotten, it hasn’t been particularly warm, friendly, or human. Everyone is focused on doing their job and trying to save your life, and sometimes we get so caught up in that (it happens to me sometimes too) that we forget about the person in front of us and their needs (which may be entirely different from what their body needs, or what medically needs to be done).
And this pedicure, which lasted about an hour, was a chance to forget all that medical stuff and all that cancer cr*p. To be pampered, to have someone touch you. And for an hour not to be a patient, but just a person.
Never underestimate the power of human connection. Things that humanize us – that transform us from patients into people. Things that feed our well-being.
In the end, small acts like rubbing someone’s feet may do them more good than a $10,000 shot of Avastin.
So I say, rock on, and get your pedicures mom!
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Photo attribution – https://bit.ly/2Ju6vqn
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