still sick, but trying to listen instead of whine

“My ears had heard about you,
    but now my eyes have seen you.
 Therefore, I relent and find comfort
    on dust and ashes.”

– Job (to God) 42:5-6
– the clip-art people nailed it!

It is hard to work when you are sick! What I want to do is to write about the experience but then that tends to come off as whining. And I don’t want to be like one of those people whose newsfeed is always dominated by their latest medical condition!

But here I am, unmotivated to do any work and even less interested in blogging. Sunday afternoon I tried to watch a few hours of sports on television but I was bored out of my mind in 90-minutes.

The good news is that my fever is down. The bad news is my throat still feels like it’s being sliced by razor blades every time I swallow. But every few minutes you have to swallow, there’s no getting out of it!

Unfortunately the “analgesic” throat lozenges require – you’ve guessed it – swallowing, consequently causing more pain than offering potential relief.

The more astute among you will have noted how easily I tend to write about subjects such as Rebekah’s Job study (you can catch the concluding episode this evening at 7:00) and then have very little to say when the suffering is my own. Fair enough; I’m working on it.

A Voldemort inspired Curse!

Then I remembered this writing class I took at the University of West Florida. It was me and six forty-something women, all recently and bitterly divorced. I was thirty-eight, happily married with two beautiful children, and also a fairly decent writer; they resented me immediately.

One day during a peer review conversation, one of them looked at me scathingly, pointed a weaponized finger in my direction and said, “You will never know how to write because your life is too easy. Your writing is thin and vanilla because you have never suffered!

And right there, sitting in the circle of folding chairs, I believed she would very much like to have made me suffer, and if it had been in her power she would have thrown a Voldemort inspired Cruciatus Curse and happily watched me writhe on the ground – for the sake of my art, of course!

– Derek Maul lives and writes in Wake Forest, NC

God teaches me in and through everything. This morning I may not be in a good place to receive what God has for me, but I am open to understanding.

That is my prayer for you too, that you will be open, and active in seeking to see and to receive God at work in your day. Today, tomorrow, and for evermore. – DEREK

commentary life writing life

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Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.

Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.

Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.

10 Comments Leave a comment

  1. Gargling with warm salt water is very soothing! https://www.webmd.com/cold-and-flu/features/does-gargling-wlth-salt-water-ease-a-sore-throat#1
    I hope you will tell us your test results. Prayers for negative results as well as diminished symptoms very soon. Your writing companions sound understandably bitter. You don’t have to suffer to be a good writer. YOU are very sensitive & observant to the human condition. Having a sense of humor also makes your reading fun at times. Gargle (2x/day) and rest, rest, rest.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As an oral health professional, I agree with Colleen to use a saltwater gargle.
    Recipe
    Saltwater gargles are easy and cheap to make. The ADA recommend adding half of a teaspoon (tsp) of salt to 8 ounces of warm water, then mixing until they are combined

    Like

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