Tikkun Olam

“Tikkun Olam. It means that the world is broken and that it’s our job to put it back together again.”

I’ve seen more death this week than I have in my entire life.

Unintended death.

Intended death.

Unexplainable death.

But still at the end of the day, death.

When I was little a picture was painted in my head of a god that loves everyone, that forgives us of our sins, and welcomes us back into his arms when it’s our time to go. I was told of a place that took away all pain and suffering, and replaced it with eternal happiness. I was told of a place that washed me of my sins.

But what even are sins anymore? And what makes one persons worse than the other?

What if the person that robbed the bank was doing so because their children at home were starving?

What if the girl that lashed out came from an abusive home and knew no different?

What if the alcoholic that caused the car crash was merely drinking as the only coping mechanism left after losing everyone he ever loved?

So how are we supposed to know who gets to go where, whether we evened out our bad with our good. Wether we get the golden ticket or not.

I don’t believe in the picture that was painted in my head as a little girl, because I’m not the little girl anymore.

I am not naive to the awful in this world, but I am also not blind to the greatness in this world.

I do believe though that from the time we are born to the time we die, we are given an unknown number of days on earth, and what we choose to do with those days is entirely up to us.

I know that whether I like it or not, society will continue on for quite some time after I’m gone. Time does not stop, once my time stops.

So I’m going to believe in Tikkun Olam. I’m going to try to help as best as I can to put the broken back together.

How I’m going to do that I’m not entirely sure, but if it finds me in the back of my ambulance with someone on the verge of death then I’m going to do my best.

This week challenged my strength in more ways than I thought possible. Emotionally I’m feeling slightly numb. Slightly drained of my normal overflowing pot of comfort I usually have to give. But I feel comfort in knowing where it all went.

So when I found myself in the one, two, three, four, five different occasions of death this week it was okay. Because I was doing my best at piecing the broken back together, in the best ways I know how.

I don’t sing, I’ve told you this before, but yet I still continue to find myself in the back of my ambulance using my best singing voice I can muster up as I hold my patients hand and we sing together their favorite songs.

I don’t usually hug people, I’m not much of a hugger, or really a touchy person in general, but yet I found myself hugging my patients loved ones, as their tears left tiny spots on my shoulders.

I don’t pray, but when she said “I’ll pray for you Merideth”, before I even realized it I told her back “I’ll be praying for you too”.

This world stretches me thin some days, and when I don’t think I can manage to put anymore pieces back together they still continue to find me.

I know I will never know why I was put here, but I also know I am going to do my best damn job to piece together as many of the pieces that make their way into my life.

Healing isn’t my job, but helping is, and I will always be there to help, until I can’t possibly help anymore.

Tikkun Olam.

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