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My Latest Teacher (A Kundo Short Story)....

KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

PAIN

On April 22, I fractured my left ankle playing in my (last ever) soccer game for my local club. It was a lovely sunny morning - my warm up had produced my best moves yet (I am was goalie) and straight off the bat I was executing some pretty awesome saves (for a 40-something). Then - it happened.

I had just saved a particularly devious shot and the girl who had kicked it just kept coming. So I planted my feet down and braced. She hit me, I fell pretty much 90 degrees to the left and my ankle let rip an almighty crack. Then I let rip the most bloodcurdling scream I’ve ever produced in my life. And I screamed, and I screamed. I couldnt’t do anything else. I have NEVER EVER EVER felt anything like it before (and I’ve broken 18 bones in my 40-something life). There were three other games playing and they all stopped and stared. So my fiance carried me off the field, the club’s management supplied ice, and other first aid items and I layed down on the ground and bawled my eyes out - not the dainty girly cries - the full on snot nosed, panda eyes (but I had no make up on), body convulsing cries that are inconsolable.

So long story short, the paramedics arrived, gave me the wonder drug pen with pethidine and I was pretty much stoned for the next 1.5hrs. Apparently I gave a comprehensive diagnosis of the injury to the ER doctor who was impressed with my thesis. After some too-ing and fro-ing about whether they were going to operate, they put me in a sexy cam boot

and discharged me with crutches and some very strong prescription painkillers. But not before the pethidine wore off and I was writhing about the bed in agony.

Over the course of the ensuing 6 weeks, I have learnt to listen pain and what it has to teach me (how to be patient). I was exceedingly lucky that, as a contractor and newbie at work (I’d been there 4 weeks when I did this), my boss allowed me to work from home until I could walk with no crutches. This is my second week back at work. But my CONSTANT companion has been a whiny little bitch called Pain. Pain really gives me the dirts. Popping up her ugly little head at the most inconvenient and awkward times. No waiting for the right time or place - she just yells “Hey! I want attention and I want it NOW”. The first three weeks were the WORST. EVER. Every two hours, I had to take in alternate times - ibuprofen and paracetamol and codeine. I didn’t sleep properly because I would wake up with Pain leaning over me with a smirk “Sup?”

But on the fourth week I thought, hang on, I have all this time that Pain actually buggers off and leaves me alone. I can’t always sleep so I think I’ll meditate. So I did. And by the end of the fourth week, I was making Pain wait her turn. When I was meditating and she’d show up, at first I was like “F$$k off bitch”, but then I thought she might be a bit quieter if I invited her to meditate with me. At first she was so OTT that it would never last long. But now three weeks later, I can get her to shut up for about 30 mins. Pain’s not so intense now either, she’s more chill, but still likes to poke me every so often “I’m still heeeeere” - but it’s ok. She still arrives at inconvenient times (like when I have a problem situation now I’m back at work), but I find I can handle her with more calm now. And now that I can walk sans crutches and walking stick (still in that sexy boot though), I’m not so grumpy when Pain turns up.

I expect Pain to stick around for the winter (3 months), but I’m pretty sure she’ll POQ when we rock up to the fracture clinic for the next x-ray and consultation. Doctors and nurses have a great way of shutting her up very quickly. But I hope to teach her more about meditation. I’ve already expanded on the Four Noble Truths and I’ll try to get her to wrap her head around the Eightfold Noble Path. We’ll see.

Given I’ve snapped the ligament in my ankle and it’s gone forever, I expect Pain might visit occasionally, and I’ll welcome her for a short time - most likely with a seat beside me on the meditation mat.

ShoshinlobsterScottPenfedericaKeromeHozanJeffreypegembaraBuddhadragonadamcrossley

Comments

  • genkakugenkaku Northampton, Mass. U.S.A. Veteran
    edited June 6

    @Kundo -- Tnx for the tale.

    When I once complained to my Zen teacher (abbot of a Japanese monastery) about leg pain when sitting in meditation (zazen), he said he knew what I was talking about: "For the first seventeen years, it was pretty painful for me too."

    Yes, that shut me up. :)

    KundoBunks
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator
    edited June 6

    @Kundo , The above 'photo is now my screensaver... just so serene, tranquil and meditative.... so you! ;)
    Love it, and thank you for your narrative.
    I may be undergoing all manner of different procedures soon, which will involve some minor to major surgical intervention... we shall see.... that picture will help to see me through, as will your story....
    <3

    HozanKundo
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    @Kundo . Awesome!!!! Good for you. Pain is NOT an easy one. Becoming patient with pain is a big achievement. Awesome work but I'm not surprised. You wear awesome well.
    Always knew you were a Jedi.

    lobsterKundo
  • HozanHozan Veteran

    @federica said:
    @Kundo , The above 'photo is now my screensaver... just so serene, tranquil and meditative.... so you! ;)
    Love it, and thank you for your narrative.
    I may be undergoing all manner of different procedures soon, which will involve some minor to major surgical intervention... we shall see.... that picture will help to see me through, as will your story....
    <3

    Best of luck if and when @federica . 💚💚💚

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    Thank you @Socair. I will keep my treasured sangha apprised....

    Hozan
  • JeffreyJeffrey Veteran

    I like the anthropomorphing of pain. It reminds me of intrusive voices being my constant companion for awhile some time ago.

    Kundo
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @Socair said:
    @Kundo . Awesome!!!! Good for you. Pain is NOT an easy one. Becoming patient with pain is a big achievement. Awesome work but I'm not surprised. You wear awesome well.
    Always knew you were a Jedi.

    🏵️🏵️❤️❤️ Thanks my friend

    Hozan
  • pegembarapegembara Veteran

    Pain isn't a friend but a necessary annoyance and a wonderful teacher.

    Ajahn Jumnien, one of my teaches from the jungles of the Malay Peninsula, brings this spirit when he comes to teach in America. An orange-robed ball of vitality, with endless good humor and a shining heart, he speaks only a few words of English. When he is without a translator his teachings are very simple. “Empty, empty!” he will say. “Happy, happy!” He opens his arms as if embracing all the world and says again, “Empty, empty! Happy, happy!” He knows all things arise and vanish like a dream, they change, they cannot be possessed. Accepting this truth, he moves through the world gracefully and is happy.

    J Kornfield

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran

    @federica said:
    @Kundo , The above 'photo is now my screensaver... just so serene, tranquil and meditative.... so you! ;)

    The stones or the moon boot photo? ;)

    Kundo
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @Bunks said:

    The stones or the moon boot photo? ;)

    Moonboot is still a better story than Carlton 🤣🤣🤣
    hobbles away

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @Bunks said:

    @federica said:
    @Kundo , The above 'photo is now my screensaver... just so serene, tranquil and meditative.... so you! ;)

    The stones or the moon boot photo? ;)

    Good question!

  • BunksBunks Australia Veteran
    edited June 7

    @Kundo said:

    @Bunks said:

    The stones or the moon boot photo? ;)

    Moonboot is still a better story than Carlton 🤣🤣🤣
    hobbles away

    Ouch!! You are cruel mate......give us 3 years.

    I've been saying that for the last 15 :)

    Kundo
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    Always knew you were a Jedi.

    @Jason in a recent thread, provides a very good quote on the fickle/f#ck-all nature of over whelming pain. It reminds me of a lame lama who was in a temporary state of Buddha Being due to excrutiating pain ...

    I believe the mantra/chant is
    OUR OUCH OUCH OUCH
    OW WOW
    OUT OUT OUT

    Pain has many forms, physical, emotional and psychological as @Jeffrey mentions ...

    Teachers. Some are wrathful.
    Metta your pain? <3

    Strong teacher. Strong practice is.

    Many of the truths that we cling to depend on our point of view. – Yoda
    http://morecoolquotes.com/famous-yoda-quotes/

    Kundo
  • kandokando northern Ireland Veteran

    Coolest moonboot! found your post very inspiring @Kundo - like @federica I'm awaiting medical tinkering at present. Really not good at hospitals! Good outcomes to all ❤

    KundoHozan
  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    I have an appointment today at our 'local' hospital (28 miles away.... such are the joys of NHS cutbacks!) to see my neurologist about my lower left leg.... Those in the know, will know I've had a few problems with it.... I'll report back, if anyone is interested.... @Kundo, it's decision time! :D

    KundoHozan
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran
    edited June 13

    @federica said: ... @Kundo, it's decision time! :D

    Kick em in the bollocks 💖💖👌👌

    federicaHozanlobsterShoshin
  • KundoKundo Sydney, Australia Veteran

    @kando said:
    Coolest moonboot! found your post very inspiring @Kundo - like @federica I'm awaiting medical tinkering at present. Really not good at hospitals! Good outcomes to all ❤

    Thank you @kando 🙏🙏

  • HozanHozan Veteran
    edited June 13

    .

  • HozanHozan Veteran
    edited June 13

    .

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    It was a she, I was lying down, and the experience was mildly frustrating....

  • kandokando northern Ireland Veteran

    Our hospital is twenty five miles away, that's if I don't have to go to Belfast! - good luck with it all @Federica ❤ do report back, we'll have to have a temple on site for prayers.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @federica said:
    It was a she, I was lying down, and the experience was mildly frustrating....

    No, I haven't totally lost the plot... This random comment was in fact a response to a previous comment by @Socair which, for some inexplicable reason (only known to himself!) he subsequently decided to delete, without warning... :D

    Which makes anyone commenting on said, now-disappeared comments, look utterly bonkers.

  • federicafederica seeker of the clear blue sky Its better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to speak out and remove all doubt Moderator

    @kando said:
    Our hospital is twenty five miles away, that's if I don't have to go to Belfast! - good luck with it all @Federica ❤ do report back, we'll have to have a temple on site for prayers.

    More referrals, and an almighty cock-up with who's responsible for what... still in the mill for grinding!

  • kandokando northern Ireland Veteran

    I hate people who make me look bonkers, it's just too easy! I am also getting passed around like a medicine ball at present, consultants, pre opp nurses, anaesthetists' all have their own totally contrary ideas about what is best for me! These are the times that try your meditation practice to the limit :p

    lobsterKundo
  • lobsterlobster Veteran

    These are the times that try your meditation practice to the limit :p

    Yep.
    Strangely hearing of @federicas and your real difficulties makes my present tension pale into insignificance ... I can solve mine with meditation and my new daily yoga and some tiger balm ...

    <3 I will be sending you both healing vibes from the Medicine Buddha today. Hope it offers comfort. <3

    TAYATA OM BHEKANDZE BHEKANDZE MAHA
    BHEKANDZE RANDZA SAMUNGATE SOHA

    Kundo
  • KeromeKerome Love, love is mystery The Continent Veteran

    I just wanted to add that I’m happy to be in good health, excepting a little sunburn. :3

    But I’m sending you both metta and good wishes.

    Kundo
  • kandokando northern Ireland Veteran

    <3 to you both @lobster and @Kerome - it all helps - some tiger balm sounds pretty good just now also - practiced hatha yoga since I was twelve and it is brilliant!

  • kandokando northern Ireland Veteran

    Don't have to worry about sunburn in Ireland, as afflictions go it's one of the best ;) I'd post a photo of one of Father Dougal's sunburn holiday snaps here if I could - remember Father Ted anyone?

    Kundo
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