Good Night, Margaret

What do you look for in a relationship? Love and special care of  ‘the one’?

Hospital for Special Care  is not an ordinary hospital. It’s a long-term acute care hospital where critically ill patients, sometimes unresponsive or in comas, receive special care and treatment for months or years while being sustained by respirators and feeding tubes. Some recover and eventually leave, but many stay for good.

It’s a seemingly hopeless place where you count off days until you die with all the tubes attached to your body.  And yet, it’s always in the least likely places that hope for love appears. Chris Plum and Margaret Lavigne, both patients with muscular dystrophy, recently got married in the hospital’s courtyard.

“Everybody wants ‘the One,’ ” said Margaret Lavigne. “I did not expect to find him here, of all places.”

We all want someone that we can show off to the world. Someone who looks good, has some economic standing, accomplished in many aspects, and the list goes on. It’s important to have standards in looking for the right one but when standards become compounded into a list of seeming perfection, we’re headed for a dangerous dive down the road. These things we often pursue in exclusive relationships are so meaningless in comparison to true love.

When you enter a relationship, ask yourself, “What am I pursuing in this relationship?” “What is it that I complain about?” Chris and Margaret can have a lot to complain about with their condition and yet Chris says, “All the suffering in the hospital led me up to her.” It was all worth it.