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Posted By Opening the Heart

Earlier this year I accompanied a friend out of the country for a medical treatment that had not previously been done for someone with her illness.
The flight alone was a big logistical challenge. One particular airplane had to be tracked at the corporate level so that my friend could use it.  We had to carry her oxygen tank and other medical equipment on board. Our day was fraught with the possibility that I would have to have the pilot  halt the airplane on the tarmac or have the airplane diverted for an early landing if a medical emergency developed.

These logistical challenges turned out to be minor compared to the public relations challenges awaiting us on arrival in the country delivering my friend’s treatment.

Essentially, the staff at the medical clinic was afraid to treat my friend. The cutting edge medical work done there relies on a delicate relationship with the country’s government.  They had never treated her illness before and if anything were to go wrong they feared a lawsuit that might shut their program down.

As my friend was unable, the relationships with the clinic fell to my care.  This included renegotiating her custom-designed medical protocol on a daily basis along with a price tag numbering in tens of thousands of dollars.  And it had to be done while navigating cultural differences in another language.

One of the lessons I have had the opportunity to practice at the Opening the Heart Workshop is to (as Clarissa Pinkola-Estes puts it) “learn deep love over time.”  That is to say, I have tried to learn how to anchor myself in an intention of love and to not be swayed by other people’s fear. Perhaps because of this practicing I was able to find that place of love inside my heart and anchor myself there in this situation.

In any event, many things came my way while interfacing with the  clinic’s receptionist, office manager, physicians, lab technicians, hospital staff and even the anesthesiologist.

Despite the many difficult behaviors - essentially expressions of fear - I kept saying over and over again inside my head, “Friend.”  While I had to be an assertive medical advocate, I also tried to treat each person with genuine respect, friendliness and love.

In the end, love won the day.  My friend got her custom protocol at a fair price, and we left the country with the medical staff considering us to be their newly-found friends.

The Opening the Heart work is one tool that can help us to learn deep love over time.   When we are able to embody that love we can bring its power to bear in our everyday lives.

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