The Mind is a Fragile Thing!

Imagine waking up one morning in the homeless shelter you've staying at for a few months. Imagine wandering across the street, like you usually do, to eat your breakfast and chat to all your friends you've made there. Everything's normal this morning, you're eating your grits, sipping your coffee and enjoying the company that surrounds you. You're ready for a new day of seeking employment and making appointments.

Imagine this particular morning, you've been chatting to the shelter's security guard, who's a relatively close friend. You express to him how frustrating it's been trying to get a security position yourself. You have a PERC card (document needed to be a licensed security guard), but you just can't get that job. You chat, vent and joke around with him before enjoying your morning meal.

Imagine finishing breakfast and it's time to leave the cafeteria. That same security guard approaches you and starts chatting to you again, but you don't know who he is. In frustration, you say "who are you?", he naturally thinks you're joking, so he responds "who are you, bro?" You go back and forth with this man, and he's starting to freak you out because this man's in uniform and you're wondering why he's questioning you. He says your name and you ask why he called you that. You don't know where you are, who are you and why this security guard has gently put his hand on your shoulder and is trying to direct you somewhere. You push him hard. You loudly tell him to leave you alone and get his hand off you.

Imagine an ambulance coming. More people in uniform come asking you questions, but you don't know who you are. You're frustrated. You're angry. You don't want to go in the back of this van occupied by lights and sirens. You think you're alright, so you protest. They're asking many questions to other people about you, and you don't like that! They find some of the answers they're looking for, and off you go in the back of this ambulance.

Imagine laying in a local hospital bed. They have to strap you in, because you want to get up and go. They push you around to draw blood, do tests, question you and wheel you back to your room. Upon arriving, you see someone waiting there, that someone is me! But again, you don't recognize who I am. I say "hi", but with a look of fear, despair, anger and frustration in your eyes, you say "who the hell are you?". I respond, "I'm Jeremy, I'm you're case-worker, I've known you for a long time." You want to make sure I'm not another security person making decisions for you. You tell me how you want to leave, want to sue the hospital and they can't be doing all this, but they've strapped you down and you show me the hep-lock in your left arm. You're mad, but you can't do anything. I keep saying your name and with fear and frustration in your eyes, you bark, "why do you keep calling me that?" I say, "coz that's your name". I could see that my mere presence and words were gravely annoying you and causing anger to quickly rise.

Imagine I leave your room and go to talk with the head physician. I explain to him that you are a very kind man, who I've never ever had any issues with. I explain to him that I've never seen you aggressive. I explain to him that you are not a man who struggles with drug or alcohol. I explain to him that you just got your PERC card and how you'd been actively looking for employment. I explain to him how this is something has never happened before and how it's very worrisome to me. I explain to him that you are normally a very logical and caring person. I left the hospital, leaving you in hands of the professionals, wondering whether your mind would ever return.

I left praying. That's all I could do!

Imagine having great knowledge of yourself, then within seconds, you barely know anything. Imagine being a sensible and responsible 50 year old man, and having workers at the hospital call someone else (me), because you've become incapable of answering simple questions. I know you fairly well. They asked me to come over and were trying to work out why this happened. They were trying to work out how they could help. The mind is a fragile thing! It's mysterious. Your moment of fragility helps us realize how weak and powerless we all are! In only a matter seconds, you completely lost all knowledge of who you are, where you are and who all the people are who care for you are. This morning's episode was a very sobering moment for me and all the one's who know you. It caused us all to look to the One who created our minds and realize we are all in His hands.

Please join me in praying for my friend as he tries to discover who he is and who we are again.....

UPDATE: I thank God and I'm pleased to announce that the gentleman I wrote about has now fully recovered. The hospital released him while he was still partly confused, but was beginning to resister who certain individuals were.  The doctors conclusion was that he accidentally took his prescribed medication twice; something we could all do, but it's even more likely when you're homeless, simply because of the hustle and bustle and instability of your life. This particular man has never been known to abuse illegal or legal drugs, or even alcohol. Obviously, the whole event terrified him, and he is talking with his doctors, so this sort of thing will never happen to him again.

*Just one more thing to clarify: his prescribed medications were not overtly heavy drugs; but regular ones people take for heart, blood thinners and depression.

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