Radical Loving Care™ Journal of Sacred Work : Weblogs


Are We Still Alive? - May 6, 2024

RMH EVENT JOANNE INGLEDUE 2    It has been three decades since I visited the stage at the place I once led, Riverside Methodist Hospital/OhioHealth in Columbus, still Ohio's largest hospital. When I was introduced as the featured speaker to a magical group of nurse-scholarship recipients there was a murmur during which I overheard someone whisper, "Erie Chapman...Is he still alive?" 

   The question makes sense. In important ways, we marry our job. Fellow staff members become family. No matter how long someone works anywhere, when they depart, they "vanish"...as if dead.

   We are three dimensional. Our personhood loses a dimension for those who remain. We slip from 3D to 2D pictures and memories.

   My return tossed me into "The Rip Van Winkle Syndrome" (the character who fell asleep for twenty years reawakening in a new world.) Faces have changed, parts of the buildings rearranged, added to, or subtracted. Technology? Wow! 

   Consciously, I knew that. Subconsciously, I may have thought the same cast would remain...and wish they had.

   Does that explain why at school reunions, former boy and girl friends reunite and sometimes marry? Do they see the lover they knew or the real being before them?

   It was deeply moving to return. Of all the places I worked before or since, none meant more than Riverside and the OhioHealth system I founded from that flagship in 1984. It was exceptionally affirming to see how well the place had thrived. And a big part of me wished I could have stayed for that ride.

-Erie Chapman

(Special thanks to Joanne Ingledue, R.N., for the photo of me taken at the event)



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Immediate past president of the Baptist Healing Trust (Healing Trust), Nashville. President & CEO, Erie Chapman Foundation, Chapman Health International, Inc, Dane Dakota Productions, LLC, author, Radical Loving Care, artist.
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Erie Chapman, Editor, Liz Wessel, R.N., M.S. Associate Editor
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