Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Facing Life

Facing Life

I’m facing life.  In less than a month I will have quadruple heart bypass surgery. 

I’m scared – and optimistic.  I have a top-notch surgeon, I have a highly skilled cardio doctor, and a terrific primary care physician.  So, I’m surrounded with an A-team of physicians. 

And this is how I am currently facing life.  I
have all the confidence in my team.  My cardio doctor says he can give me another twenty years.  I want to face that.  I think I can make something of the next twenty years of my life.  I just have to get through surgery and recovery.

My Step-daughter, Paula, is a counselor/therapist.  She said something to me last week that I think about a lot.  She said, “What a gift you are being given in knowing your surgery is a month away and you have all this time to think about it, prepare for it, and explore your own heart and mind in preparation.”

My first thoughts are – I don’t like this gift very much.  I don’t want this kind of gift.  Can I exchange it for a new pair of shoes?

Yet I face it.  It is now a part of my life.  I can’t run, hide, ignore it, sleep through it or avoid it. 

And so, I face my life. 

I don’t have any solutions to offer to anyone, much less to myself.  I’m doing everything my doctor says.  I’m exercising in the ranges he wants, I take my meds on time every time, I’m eating the right amounts of food with a good balance of protein, fat grams, sodium, calories, sugar, etc.  I’m a “poster child”, as Carolyn calls me, for someone who is facing what I face.

I pray, I meditate, I have ample alone time, I send out a weekly email to our family as to what is going on and reports on doctor’s appointments, how I’m feeling, etc.  Carolyn and I have numerous conversations about this dilemma and how it is impacting both of our lives, for it affects her too.  And she allows for those moments when she needs space and time alone.

And so, we face life. 

Carolyn keeps saying how this experience will change and deepen my writing.  Perhaps she is right.  I doubt that I have even scratched the surface on processing all that.  And the future remains to be written. 

In the middle of my fears, I have to say I’m finding a center of calm.  It comes and goes, but it is there.  That is the God-part of my story.  I am trusting, I am living in His embrace, and taking everything as it comes along.  It is a daily experience.  I’m trying to live in each moment, seize each moment for what it brings. 


This is my morning reflection.



Words of Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Creativity Is Letting Go

I’ve been watching bits and pieces of the Lord of the Rings movies lately.  Those movies and  books are some of the finest examples of a creative person letting go that I have ever seen.  The characters Mr. Tolkien creates, the animals he imagines, are beyond belief, yet his books and the movie makers make them come to life.  They let their creativity get loose.  And we are the better for it.

I’m also reading The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis and the same can be said of these stories and characters.  Who ever heard of a talking horse, or a wardrobe that magically leads to the land of promise and a lion named Aslan?

The closest I’ve possibly come to letting myself go was after reading the book Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain by Betty Edwards.  She encourages her readers to sit in front of a mirror and then draw their face as they see it reflected in the mirror.  As surely as I sit and type I drew an exact replication of my own face.  I could not believe that, for I am a self-confessed non-art-drawing person.  My art lies in music and writing and such. 

As I reflect back on that experience, I
remember talking to myself and my sub-conscious self all during that exercise.  “Let go.  Draw what you see.  Note the shades, the light and the dark, note the texture of your hair”, etc.

I was letting myself go. 

I’ve done that a few times in my writing, and then there are times when I have been afraid of certain posts, certain subjects.  I feared what my siblings may say, or my close friends, even how Carolyn might interpret an idea.

Perhaps this begs the question – do we sometimes fear creativity?  Creativity, by its very nature spins off a nice list of some incredible words:

  Imagination
    Inspiration
      Ingenuity
        Inventiveness
          Resourcefulness
            Creativeness
              Vision
                Innovation

I’ve been resourceful before.  To me that means taking something that exists already and putting it to other uses.  I do that with words all the time.  I’ll give an idea three or four different treatments for the different blogs sites I have.  And it is creativity.

I’ve come to this conclusion as I write this piece.  Letting go is hard.  Letting go sometimes means losing control for a moment or two. 

It’s hard to let go.  Perhaps we sometimes fear it will become epidemic and that the rest of our lives will spiral sideways and fall off the proverbial cliff.

I know when I started my blog A Time for Rhyme, I feared that some would not get it.  I started out attempting to write like Shel Silverstein.  I adore his brand of creativity, and I wrote some pretty crazy stuff in the beginning. 

And then, magically perhaps, I evolved into a poem/prose style of short phrased poems that do not rhyme.  I feared ridicule from the Poem Cops, which thankfully never came.  I finally reached a comfortable spot with that and decided I liked what I was producing, and I was comfortable in my own skin.  Good enough.  Perhaps that was a form of letting go. 

I don’t know if any of this is helping you or not, but I sometimes think about this stuff, for I consider myself a creative type and I seek to explore the new, the different way of saying the tried and true.  I seek new insights, new avenues of expression. 

I hope you find some measure of creativity and letting go in your own life.  I hope you find the guts to launch whatever it is you need to launch – a new business, write and sing your own songs, write your own essays … and at the end of the day, I really hope your press “PUBLISH”.

That is where our creativity needs to go.  It needs to breathe the free air of expression.  We want to see your juicy moments of creativity.

This is my morning reflection.



Words of Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time
-->

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Trusting the Smart Ones

I’m waiting. 

And watching.

And trusting some people who are smarter than I. 

I have to trust them, for they are the trained
ones, the skilled ones, the studied ones. 

Last week my doctor told me to quit work, for it was interfering with my preparation time for surgery in December.  That was a tough order for someone like me who has worked at some job since age 12 when I mowed lawns.

Instead, my job now is to “work” on myself, take care of myself, so I can be in the best shape possible for my surgery in December.

And so, I trust these wise ones.  I believe in my cardio doctor.  He has studied … he knows the right treatment, and he has a whole team of smart people around me who want me to get better.

My cardio doc trusts my exercise specialist, Peggy, who has worked out a routine for me to follow every day, and I trust her, and I follow it.

And I trust my wife who plays a major role in my meal prep, and my love and support team.  I am feasting like a king – and my diet does not include bacon and nachos, fatty foods and high sodium ingredients.  I am well-fed, well-medicated, and well-loved.

They are getting me ready for the ‘big’ event. 

And I trust myself to their care, knowing they are the smart ones.

Oh yes, I trust God also. He is with me at all times, awake and asleep. 

This is my morning reflection.



Words of Hope
Encouragement Inspiration
One Word at a Time
-->