As many of you may know by now I have been through some very painful and difficult circumstances in my life, and I am sure many of you have been through your own struggles and journey. However, what I have learnt from these hard times is that for one, the human spirit is incredibly resilient and two, although there is a lot of suffering and darkness in the world at the moment there is also inspiring displays of love, kindness and compassion. When I reflect on my own journey I am reminded of a time I was around 28 years old, in hospital and was slowly bleeding to death, literally. At the time, I was diagnosed with large fibroids in my uterus that were causing very heavy bleeding to the point where I was hospitalised for days and received six blood transfusions to keep me alive. The doctors were baffled as to how to stop the bleeding, I remember laying in hospital terrified and vulnerable. The most frightening part of the entire ordeal was the look of uncertainty and panic in all my doctors’ eyes. For days I lay in pain, not knowing whether the doctors’ had come up with a plan to treat me, and I was getting so weak I could barely lift my head. Then only to receive another round of painful and invasive tests and more blood transfusions. By the end of the week a team of doctors had come up with one final solution, they had to operate and perform a procedure that would temporarily stop the bleeding but it would eventually come back and when it did they broke the news that the only foreseeable option was for me to have a hysterectomy. I remember the day when one of the senior doctor’s came to my bedside and told me the horrifying news. I was on my own that day and the doctor was a complete stranger, but there was one incredible nurse, named Rebecca she was in her early 20’s, and was in her first year of nursing. She was bubbly, friendly and genuine. She would spend most of her shift coming over to chat to me and we got to know each other really well. When the doctor came in to speak to me she asked to sit with me and held my hand throughout the consultation. I remember hearing the words hysterectomy and feel my entire body tremble, my eyes welled up and the emotion poured out of me in a flood of sadness and fear. My dreams of becoming a mother seemed to be shattered in those few minutes. But I also remember feeling comforted having Rebecca by my side. I was alone that entire day, my partner and my family were all at work yet I had someone whom I had just met a few hours ago by my side, holding my hand and comforting me. After the doctor left we spoke about the news I had received. I could see she genuinely felt the pain I was in, and I could feel her compassion for my situation. I was overcome with a sense of peace in that moment, and this healing energy of connection between two relative strangers, what connected us was my pain. She empathised with the suffering I was feeling as a young woman who would wanted children. She felt my pain as if it were her own. I was so grateful for the compassion she gave me, and I could feel my strength begin to return. I will never forget Rebecca and what she did for me, that day she taught me the power of compassion. It is what connects us as people. When you witness another persons pain and suffering, and offer your compassion you are basically opening your heart and practicing the most fundamental aspect of love, for all, because we are all part of the one family, the Earth Family, and another person’s pain is no different to your own.