Gift or curse?

By Annette Francine

What if you suddenly discovered you had the ability to heal someone. Cancer. Chronic pain. Paralysis. Congenital defect. Blindness.

You’d use that power, right?

Would you charge people to help them? Or believing it was a gift, would you feel it was your obligation to share it selflessly?

Now the word gets out. And, let’s face it: the word will get out. You’re an instant celebrity. People clamor for your attention and ability: heal me. Heal my daughter. Give us an interview. Allow us to study you, to determine how this works.

All your time is caught up in managing the bombardment. Think about it. People would show up at your home. How desperate so many of them probably are. They visit your place of employment. Accost you on the street. If you didn’t accept money for helping someone, there would probably be people shoving money at you anyway, requesting priority treatment. And then, if they’re disrupting your workplace (wouldn’t you risk being jailed for trespassing if you could save the life or spare the suffering of a loved one?), perhaps you can’t keep your job because of it. Perhaps you can’t get another job, either.

Would you take money from them then, in order to support yourself?

But what if your power didn’t always work? What if, no matter what you tried or how hard you tried, sometimes all your efforts resulted in no change to the ‘patient’ at all?

Not everyone would sing your praises. Some would be out to prove you’re nothing but a fraud.

How would you convince them you’re not given a choice of whom you can heal and whom you cannot. Would you even attempt to convince them, or do you have more important tasks to address?

And what would all of this do to you? To your relationships? Would your ego swell? Would you feel the exchange of someone’s health/comfort was more important than the toll taken on your own life?

That’s the heroine’s conflict in one of my upcoming books (as yet untitled). What do you think?

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