Saturday, February 09, 2008

the cut

I sliced into my thumb on Wednesday while cutting onions and found it a bit challenging trying to stop the bleeding, disinfect it with hydrogen peroxide and wrap it up tightly enough to keep the flap of loose skin in place all with only one hand to work with. Nevertheless I got it taken care of and it is healing nicely, though gross to look at (which can be useful in its own way).

In my French class on Thursday we were taking a unit on health and a nurse in the class mentioned that hydrogen peroxide is no longer recommended for treating cuts. Huh? When did this change take place? I held up my bandaged thumb in class and said that I had used it the previous day to clean my wound. She informed us that the solution, while being an excellent germ killer, has been found to also be damaging to fragile, healing skin. Needless to say, I have left the lid on the peroxide and am only cleaning it with a gentle water bath when needed. Mostly I just keep it covered and protected. And the cut is closing quite quickly, I think.

Sometimes we get so obsessed with germs and their effects that we end up ravaging the tenuous healing process as well. I do the same thing with people at times. I see someone who obviously has issues and I just want them to deal with stuff, I want to point out the things that need addressing, I want to scrub those filthy things out of their lives so that we can all move on. I have much less of a desire to protect and nurture their soft and wounded spirits which God has drawn to this place by his own kindness. Protecting new growth and watching stuff heal is so much less impressive than seeing the frothy white bleaching action that accompanies hardcore cleansing measures.

A gentle wash of cool water. A protecting arm. A place to find shelter. Let me offer these to the imperfect and wounded people that cross my path. I know I appreciate them when they come my way.

This is a cool stream in Piedmont, an hour north of Montreal.

1 comment:

steven hamilton said...

that is truly insightful and touching

great observation about life and the healing touch of warmth that we can be to each other on the healing journey...