A friend has been visiting his mother in a hospital ICU. She's old and frail and may well be dying.
He wrote this to me:
I was thinking of your blog yesterday as I sat in her room waiting. A load of technology--wires, tubes, machines--being applied to her body by a pack of mortals. Not one magician or demigod in the crowd. Staff tripping over tubes as they add yet another medication and IV pump. Apply another mask and sticky crap to her beautiful face. Piles of discarded supplies. Top down control, nurses know what to do but can't until they obtain an "order" which requires tracking down the overloaded doctor.
It all feels so bumbling. Not that I see the people as incompetent. On the contrary, I experience them as skilled and caring. The bumbling and fumbling comes from trying to fix something that may not be "fixable." Maybe I just don't get it. It's painful to watch Mom suffer. It's hard not knowing where it ends or where it goes to next.
So he's suffering, too. If he asked for advice, what would you say?