Recession has hit my treatment.
Baxter – they who are in the business of Brendans - is to cut loose almost 200 of its workers from one of its Irish factories.
This particular Baxter factory is local to my house. It was one of those brand names that popped up in my vocabulary when I was a child, and stuck there by virtue of its omnipresence in the life of the village, the town, the county.
Half the kids in school had a parent who worked there; everyone had an older sibling who got a summer job there at one point or another.
With sickness, and my starting on dialysis, I took some vague comfort from the economic symmetry I could see in my plight.
The factory that had provided employment in abundance for the community into which I was born was now supplying me with a lifeline to prevent me from dying.
Supporting local industry.
Now the factory is in trouble, itself on a life support of sorts, a good wallop of its workers preparing for unemployment.
As I have driven past Baxter over the last two years, I have often seen them coming and going from their shifts and I have wondered how much they ever consider the work they do, how aware they are of the difference their product has on the lives of people like me.
Now, after years and possibly decades of that work, they are facing their own problem in the shape of a different type of uncertainty to the uncertainty that lies before dialysis patients.
They may have children and health problems of their own and little hope of alternative employment on this side of the country that does economic depression better than others.
I wish them all well. My future lies in the hands of some soon-to-be bereaved family and surgeons; theirs lie in the hands of economic forces and the government.
One would have to say that optimism lies more realistically and comfortably with the former.
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