Dying man’s Daily Journal – Living to die

April 30, 2010

It is kind of a special time for me. It is like a humbling time of gratitude. Sometime today the blog will hit a quarter of a million hits. I am in awe wondering how in the world my ramblings have attracted such attention.

With this humble feeling comes almost a feeling of guilt. I know many research, write and edit their posts before putting them up. They put real effort into what they write, I just sit down and type what ever comes to mind, spell check is the only tool or checking I do of anything. That lack of effort compared to what so many others put in just somehow doesn’t seem fair. I am a very blessed an lucky guy.

I had a very nice chat with Kathryn a nice lady and I may post more about that in the future. Our conversation really got me thinking about this whole bogging concept of mine. By the very name of the blog I am writing about my final journey on this earth. It is about dying yet mostly I write about living life. What is up with that?

Every single person on this planet has at least one thing in common. We are all going to die at some point in time. It is inevitable, we can not escape that reality. This fills most if not all with an over whelming feeling of dread and even fear. The thought of our own mortality is something we just don’t want to even think about much less talk about. To many it is like a taboo subject. Is it like an ostrich putting its head in the sand. If I can’t see it around me and if I don’t think about it maybe it won’t happen to me. Well guess what it is going to happen to you to me and in time to everyone. Can we not bring this taboo subject out of the dark at least enough to be able to talk about it and help others as they deal with it. Am I suggesting that the topic of death and dying be brought so much to the fore front that we become a society so focused on death we just run around daily contemplating our own demise. Of course not that would be ridiculous, so what am I trying to say.

Live our lives to the fullest on a daily basis. So often we endure life rather than live it. For many myself included for many years measured the quality of my life by material possessions and where I saw my life in relation to where I envisioned it being in the future. I was so busy envisioning how my live would be in the future I forgot about living in the day, enjoying the day. It was always my life will be better when: I finish school, I get a job, I have a family……..

As I reached or acheived one milestone another had already taken its place, leaving me still unsatisfied “knowing” it will be better WHEN.

My constant focus on that elusive future “when”, kept me feeling lacking in what I had at the time, a good life.

Hearing those words come out of your doctor’s mouth: you are dying can surprisingly have a very positive impact on your life, if you allow yourself to have that mindset. It can be a real eye opener. Opening your eyes to really see the world for what it is a truly wonderful place. A wonderful place that, yes, is filled with nagging little annoyances. Nagging little annoyances that if we allow enough of them to latch on to us can drag us down to a point we are no longer able to see the forest for the trees.

It is only now that I can look back on my life that I can see I allowed myself to see just how much time I wasted. What at the time seemed like a major crisis, was in the big picture of things nothing but a nagging little annoyance that I blew way out of proportion., really sad when I think of it. A moment of negativity caused by really nothing but a nagging little annoyance deprived me of so much and it is only now I can see it. A moment spent in negativity is a moment of happiness gone forever. Can we or better put will we allow ourselves to learn from the mistakes of others. I see life differently now by sharing as I am will others learn from my mistakes, I don’t know.

Living a “good life” takes effort. What do I mean by a good life? Living a life that will allow you to ultimately face your end with no regrets over things said or unsaid, done or undone.. living life is the way to prepare for a good death.

Living through out our entire lives there are always 2 ways we can look at everything. This applies right up to and including the time when we face our own demise. I have some time left on this earth, how much I don’t know. I love this life of mine so I can either live it to the fullest. Not give up on living it until it is taken from me. Or, I could just give up on it now, curl up in a ball on the floor and become an angry, nasty person to be around, poor me. Why would I give up on living life before it is taken from me.

Along that thought line, this came to mind. I can’t change my future,I have no control over that. What I can control is the final lasting memories I leave behind.

To all my family and dear blogging friends, on this milestone post. I thank you for the prayers and loving support.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Turn a negative to a positive.

April 27, 2010

Feeling much better today. During this past while it hasn’t really been a whole lot of fun living in this body of mine. Breathing is something we just take for granted, well that would be less so for those that suffer for asthma or some other such condition. Most don’t even think about it our body just does it automatically. Believe me though when you struggle to get your breath, suddenly you really appreciate it and no longer take such a simple thing for granted. I wonder if anyone when counting their blessing in this life even considers breathing to be one of them. Well everyone really should!!!

I reached the point where even just walking across the room left me huffing, puffing and wheezing. Sort of like I couldn’t get enough air in. Computer is in the basement, now who ever invented stairs that go down had a wonderful idea, but stairs that go up much harder. lol. 

A big thank you to sister-in-law Karen. She came over yesterday and gave the house a good cleaning, top to bottom.  A second thank you to Karen, she heard my breathing,could see the difficulties I was having and suggested I smear my chest with camphorated oil, put a hot cloth on top of it before sleeping. Huh, I did that and my breathing is much easier. Sometimes home remedies are the best. Thanks Karen.

For me to really realize how much I have changed, or of how my outlook on life has changed, it seems I need some event or something to happen and I can see my change based on my reaction to this event. I deleted a comment this morning as on reading it I felt it was just intended to be mean spirited. After deleting it though I was almost sorry I did.
There was a time when such a comment would have had me jumping up and down mad now I just chuckle.  So then why did I delete it. I want this to be a safe place, a loving place people can consider a safe haven to come to. Mean spirited, disrespectful comments have no place in that. I came up with this “policy” a month or so ago after another comment was left with I did leave in place, but no more. Mean spirited comments reflect more on the writer than anyone else and I can honestly say I feel sorry for them. They must be in a truly bad place in their lives to have such an attitude or outlook. You are in my prayers.

This comment inspite of the content was good for me to read. It actually made me feel a little good within myself as I could feel or see the change within myself based on my reaction. So to the writer that didn’t even sign the comment, leaving their name, I actually thank you.

The essence of the message was: Demanding to know what sort of a scam I am running here. Demanding I produce some sort of proof of all the medical ailments, I “claim” to have, as no one with all the conditions I “claim” to have would consider themselves to be lucky as I have.

I am sitting here chuckling even as I write that. To be able to actually see and feel how much I have changed is a wonderful thing for me. There was a time when my reaction and response would have been instant anger causing me to respond with something like: Go to hell you f#%king  a##hole.now i just smile, chuckle and offer up prayers for the writer.

I realize I have become more understanding, accepting of the fact we are all on the journey of life. Someone elses path may be different than mine. That different path may have created a different mindset, how am I to know. Everyone is fighting their own battles, dealing with things in their own way the best way they can at the time.

When I hear something or read something that is not the way I see things,  I listen and give it thought trying to understand where the other is coming from, learn what I can and discard the rest.

As I think of it though I do realize there are a lot of internet scams going on. I suppose I can see that if someone is of the suspicious mindset and just quickly passes through the blog they may question,why is this guy doing this? Surely he must have some sort of a scam going on “claiming to be this poor dying man,he must be after people to send him money or something”. Or, at least that is what I imagine must be the writers thought, though I am not actually sure.

I have to laugh, I have never asked for nor received and cash or gifts from anyone. I have even declined such when offered. I have even declined numerous blogging awards. I am not promoting the sale of a book or anything else. Geesh, if this is a scam, it is a pretty crappy one. I am not gaining anything financially or materially.

Produce proof of my various ailments. Now in fairness when I think of it some may scoff, thinking come on no one has that much stuff going on. And, well I do have quite the list. Heart Failure, 5 heart attacks, 3 angioplasty with stents, brain tumor, diabetes, epilepsy, sleep apnea, edema, carpal tunnel, neuropathy AND I am to short for my weight.lol. Well  what can I say I do have each of those. What can I say, the chose is yours believe me or not.Now if anyone ever wants to meet me,give me a call we can arrange for you to drop by the house. If you ask nicely I can show you medical records galore.

THere are always 2 ways to look at everything. An intended negative can be taken as a positive. It is all in how you look at it.

PS. I finished the post and went and checked the stats. i just can not believe the number of hits. I have to do something to mark a quarter of a million hits, that is really special to me. Any suggestions.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Vi’s Surgery

April 21, 2010

Vi had her wrist surgery yesterday. It was quite the procedure taking 2 1/2 hours. It involved rebreaking the wrist, cutting out some of the bone and replacing it with synthetic bone???

As of last evening she was doing well. They now have something the equivalent of an epidural for the arm which deadens all feeling in the arm taking away any pain. Her blood pressure was a concern being 174 over something I can’t remember.

Depending on the amount of pain she is having when the epidural is removed and her blood pressure she may be home today.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Power of Prayer

April 16, 2010

Well I am up and at it with a little more clarity in the head and zip in my step. Doctors are continually telling me I am a complicated and confusing patient. The heart failure, the brain tumor and even the sleep apnea have many over lapping, similar symptoms. This makes it difficult for them to accurately determine what may be causing any particular symptoms I may have. In this recent bout increasing the air pressure on my CPAP machine replacing the face mask seems to have done wonders. Geesh, this stopping breathing thing while I am sleeping is a nasty habit I am going to have to work on. lol.

I haven’t been getting to the computer as much as usual or as much as I would like. I have checked in at times to read the wonderful comments left by so many of my wonderful blogging friends and family members. I have read and so appreciate everyone. I thank all that took the time to do so. I often get so far behind in responding to individual comments and emails that it is impossible for me to catch up. This is one big thank you to all.

It is a busy time around here right now. Vi is going at things like a whirlwind be it a whirlwind with a gimpy arm. This is her favorite time of the year. She has a real green thumb and loves planting flowers in the yard. She does do a wonderful job and the yard is beautiful when all her flowers come into bloom. With her wrist surgery coming up next Tuesday she is trying to get as much done now. It is just to early in our Manitoba growing season to really be able  to get much done. I can see where this is heading. Vi leisurely sitting in a lounge chair directing an old goat down on his hands and knees planting the flowers which undoubtedly he will get in the wrong place or plant to deeply or something. lol. and then will come the watering, ohhhhhh.

Now just because I have been away from the blog doesn’t mean I haven’t been thinking of it. I very often think of it and all my wonderful blogging friends. It got me thinking back to the very beginning of how it all started. Only once has a doctor ever given me a guesstimate of my longevity, “two years if I was lucky.” I was about a year or maybe a year and a half into that time frame and really convinced I didn’t have much time left. The brain tumor had been just discovered which was triggering epileptic seizures and I had to give up working going onto long term disability. Having had 4 heart attacks at that point my mind set wasn’t maybe the best, poor me. I went to bed every night wondering if I was going to wake up in the morning. In the morning I wondered if this would be my last day.

I “knew” I was dying and decided I should be preparing myself  to meet my Maker.  I prayed longer and harder than I ever had before. I read all sorts of books on death, dying and the afterlife. In all that reading, much of it discussed the reaction of family and friends to hearing the news a loved one was dying or had died. Many wanted to rush to the patients side and seemed to be grieving more if the death had been sudden and they were unable to say their good byes. Others though seemed to not even want to think about it and seemed to avoid all contact at any cost. That second reaction really  puzzled me. I mean, I am dying why would anyone want to avoid seeing me. I am exactly the same person I was yesterday. The only difference is a doctor gave a guesstimate of my time on this earth?????

During my prayer sessions, I prayed that God’s will be done with my life. I prayed for guidance as to how I could prepare myself and help my family prepare for what was to come. I have always been a great believer in Angels, Guardian Angels and Spirit Guides. Just looked for the book  but can’t find it. One of the books I read was by  Doreen Virtue.i was so very impressed as many of her thoughts reflected my own,she was just taking them to a much higher level and I learned much. In her book she spoke of Angel cards through which you can connect with Angels. I bought the cards and gave it a try. I played around with them asking some mundane questions and geesh the answers from the cards actually made sense to my situation. It was like I was afraid to ask the burning question on my mind.How much time do I have left on this earth. Ultimately I worked up my nerve and did ask that very question. I should explain there are I am not sure as I never counted them, but there must be 30 or 40 different cards each containing a different message as a response to your particular question with each one being very different. Not the sort of generic reply that really could be applied to fit any situation.

OK,question: how long do I have on this earth. Answer wording to the effect, “you have much you can teach from personal experience”.  Me: huh?

Try this again. Mix up the cards very thoroughly. Same question, same card came up as the answer. don’t understand this, really really shuffle, mixing the cards,  same card comes up as the answer.

Change question, what can I do to prepare myself for what lies ahead.Now I have mixed the cards, so much there is no way but up comes that same card. Whoa, this is like unreal.

Another question,  what can I do to help  prepare my family. Yup, up came that same card. THe odds of this card repeatedly coming up  like this must be astronomical. But, what could I teach, I have been a banker all of my life and how would i do it?

This is early in the morning. I get a cup of coffee and sit down to read the newspaper. The front page of the Winnipeg Free press covers the headlines of the stories within. It cites an article on blogging, its popularity and the uses of it, which can include teaching.  I don’t at that point even know what blogging is. I read the article and decide to head for the computer to check it out. Hey, it isn’t that hard to set up a blog, so why not  give it a try and see what happens. I said what has become my customary prayer asking for guidance in finding the words that may help someone, anyone.

Huh, here we are. What an amazing adventure this has been. I just checked the numbers. This is post #801, almost 6,000 wonderful comments and in the next week and a half or so we will reach a quarter of a million hits.

I am so grateful for all the loving support I have received, for all the prayers that have been said for me. The power of prayer is an awesome thing,  without which I doubt I would be here today. I thank God and I thank you

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Prayer Request

April 15, 2010

I am starting to feel better, less  of the wonkie head and the extreme feeling of fatigue. Now go figure, it seems like it all ties in to my sleep apnea. What is sleep apnea? A condition where by you stop breathing while sleeping. Not breathing obviously deprives the brain of oxygen without which it just doesn’t function as sharply as it should or could. Pretty much my norm according to some. LOL.

I have 2 personal prayer requests.

I wrote last March of how Vi slipped on ice fell and broke her wrist. Well it never healed properly. Just looking at it you can see it is noticeably crooked and causes her considerable discomfort  limiting her activities.Our health care system is wonderful but not always that speedy. It was decided that her wrist must be rebroken with synthetic bone being implanted to correct it. Well after this long wait her surgery is scheduled for next Tuesday. If this synthetic bone doesn’t work her wrist in time will again have to be broken this time taking a piece of bone from her hip to graft into her wrist. I have had that done myself and can tell you it is no fun. Prayers would be so appreciated.

The second is for Vi’s mother, Nellie. Nellie  would have more than 80 candles on her birthday cake, sadly her health  is not the best. She visited the doctor a couple  of days ago because of abdominal pain and nausea. On checking her he feels there is some sort of blockage in the abdominal area, Cat scan is being scheduled. He also added though that because of her age and overall health it is unlikely any thing can be done. Prayers please.

I am poking away at 2 other posts and hope  to have more up later

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Lucky man

April 8, 2010

Feeling pretty good today. Yesterday, I had one of my longer naps, can you still call it a nap if it is almost 8 hours long? Well I do.

Had a really wonderful Easter Weekend. Family visiting, great comradary, lots of great food and participated in the cribbage tournament that was for the Championship of the World. Now how fantastic is that? Seeking that elusive championship, this year I pulled out all the spots. At one point I even sought the sympathy of my brutal opponents. Imagine me in my whiniest voice: “Had you remembered I am an orphan (parents passed when I was in my 30’s and 40’s so technically I am an  orphan). Response: NONE!!!! Try again: with whinie voice,  “I am an orphan and have lost most of my hair and don’t know where to find it.” Response: NONE, except I think playing a 24 hand against me!!!! Not being a quitter I gave it one more try.” I am an orphan who has lost his hair and doesn’t know where to find it, Plus, I have a sore big toe. (OK, I was desperate and lied about the big toe part). Response I am sure was likely another 24 hand against me. Geesh!!!!

I have said it dozens if not hundreds of times. I am such a lucky man.

Off to see the sleep specialists this morning. Hoping they can help me deal with this wonkie head.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Weekend Cribbage update

April 5, 2010


This is mostly for family that may be interested or really any of my friends out there. The world championship cribbage tounament is in full swing. I am very happy to announce my cousin Shirley and myself have claimed the pairs title beating Auntie Isabel and Garry. The cards we are showing is the 28 hand I had TO  WIN THE GAME.  Singles competion on in full swing, Updates to follow.

Woe is me, for the 4th year in a row the singles cribbage championship is going back to Swan River with Auntie Isabel. Shirley and I both but up the good fight but were ultimately no match for the horseshoes. lol

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Live Life Be Happy

April 1, 2010

One of my recent posts has come back to haunt me. I think it was in my St Patrick’s Day post I posed a few questions, thoughts that just occasionally rattle around in this empty head of mine.

One of the questions was to the effect, if you somehow knew you only had 5 minutes to live and could leave behind but one recorded message, what would it be, and to whom would you leave it? I was looking for thoughts or ideas from readers. Now I find I have received 3 different emails asking me how in fact I would answer that very question. Now that is actually something I have given thought to over the past couple of years. I”d know what I would want my message to  be, it is just how to find the words to express it. I have actually tried to write it out a couple of times but find myself getting lost and going in circles. I am not a writer and have never tried to pretend I am. I am a rambler, I just start typing and what comes out is what it is, so here goes.

First to my family I want to express my undying love. Tell each individually how proud I am of them, how proud, blessed and lucky I am to have them in my family, in my life. i would want to thank all of my friends for honoring me by spending some of their precious time on this earth with me. To any that may chose to read this,may God bless you.

Live Life, be happy. Seek to enjoy every  moment of our precious time on this earth. The ability to live life, enjoy life and be happy is right there in front of each of us. We just have to recognize it, reach out and grab it. Every day, every moment we are faced with a decision. As our lives unfold before us, circumstance, situations will develope around us, many of which we have no control over.Life just happens and we are there for the ride. Life or at least any individual part of it may not be the ride we had hoped for but it is what we have at that moment. There are no constants in life, this to shall change. If you are in a bad patch, live the best way you can,knowing this too shall change. If you are in a high spot live it to the max. remembering this too shall change, this is life something will come along to give your ride even a little bump.

There are always 2 ways to look at everything. We make the choise to look at events with a positive mindset or a negative mindset. As hard as it may seem at times that choice is indeed ours to make. As we make that choice we affect no one but ourselves,  the quality of the life we live, the enjoyment we get out of it.

Don’t take things in life personally. If someone say lashes out at you in an unkind, rude or nasty manner. Try to remember, their action is prompted by where they are in their heads at the time, the type of mindset they are carrying. Just because they in their mind are in a bad place doesn’t mean we have to allow them to drag us in our thinking to a similar place. We are only responsible for our own lives, our own thoughts and actions. as we are responsible for our own lives, it is up to us to ensure we care for ourselves by not allowing others to drag us down.

There is another conscious choise we make regularly. Is it better to be “right” or is it better to be happy. I chose happy. Every single person we meet in our journey through life is travelling their own path, which may not be the same as that i have chosen for myself. With this thoughts and feelings on virtually every topic you can imagine may vary. This applies to family,  friends,everyone you are going to meet. As I have followed my path, based on my own experiences,  my thought on any individual issue my well differ from yours. There is always more than one path any where, always more than one way to do most things in life. What could make me think my way is the only right way? Suppose I was in a conflict with anyone, a spouse, in-laws, coworkers. Suppose in this conflict, I “KNOW” I am right. At the very same time based on their lives, they also “know” they are right. I am faced with a choise, 2 ways to look at everything. Do I  want to push on to “make” everyone else see that I am indeed right or do I want to be happy. I choose happy. In my own mind I am comfortable knowing for me and my thoughts I am indeed right and as I do want happiness more than being recognized as being right I just let it go. Don’t take things personally, be happy.

I likely have more but 5 minutes might be up, don’t know and I am tired.