First of all, I feel a lot better than I did a few days ago, although I can tell that certain parts of my lungs are probably shot from whatever kind of infection I had. I don’t know which parts, but I’m sure I’ll miss them. Today I went too long between breathing treatments. I was watching a ball game and just forgot, and when I got up to go to the bathroom, I didn’t make it very far until I realized that I was in trouble. So, one treatment later, I was ok. The gizmo I have to use is a nebulizer, filled with a mixture of albuterol and ipatropium. In addition to that, I use a BiPap, which is a contraption that forces oxygen-enriched air down your lungs. That one can be a little uncomfortable, but it sure works for when you’re breathing shallow, and can’t exhale properly. At that point, your lungs are probably filling up with CO2 instead of O2. Anyway, that’s besides the point, right? The question of this post is, what would you do?
Picture this: You’re walking through an enchanted forest, not far from Hogwarts. All of a sudden you come across a really beautiful tree. Under and around the tree are various dead creatures. One of them is still barely alive, and she tells you that the fruit of this beautiful tree is poisonous. Soon after, she breathes her last breath, and with that last breath, she begs you to cut down the tree and burn it, to preclude any further misery.
So how did you get stuck with being the CEO of The Poisonous Tree Corporation? All you have to do is just walk away and continue on with your journey, and no one will know any different. Except the poor creatures who continue to eat the poisonous fruit. Damn your integrity and damn your compassion! Oh well, how long can it take to chop down and burn a tree? But it is a very beautiful tree. Maybe you can just build a fence around it, and put up a sign warning everyone not to eat the fruit. Yeah, that’s the ticket. That’s what you’ll do. So you build the fence, hang the sign, and then you continue on your journey.
A week or so later, word has spread about this strange tree. Some guy shows up with a bag, puts on some gloves, and collects some of the fruit. After many lab tests, they make a discovery. Turns out there’s some sort of substance in the fruit that can cure disease. Not just one disease, but a number of diseases. Big Pharma being what it is, this discovery will be worth billions of dollars! Not to mention cure millions of people!
So. What would you do? You can turn this around in your mind to portray the tree as a life-changing moment, a personal crisis, or whatever you choose. I know I’ve come across many of these “trees”. I’ve confronted some differently than others. I even ate some of the fruit. I guess there are even more choices than presented here. You can ignore them, confront them, use them, abuse them, build a house, whatever you think works for you.
But the next time, what would you do?