Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Post #1000

January 30, 2012

There is no way to really describe how I feel sitting here writing post #1,000. This is so very far beyond anything I could have imagined. This is one of the posts that is difficult for me to write. I must have started it 6 or 7 times but could never seem to get it to be anything like what was in my heart, what I was trying to say. I appreciate the suggestions offered by a number of you my dear blogging friends and yes a list of the things I have learned will be going up shortly. Last evening I realized something that well I have known all along I am not a writer I am a rambler. That is how all of my other posts have gone up and that is how this one is going to be. I sat down said my prayer routine asking for guidance in finding the words that may help someone, anyone, here is the ramble.

Has my life been a perfect life free of stress and ISSUES? NO!! Have I lived my life in the perfect way? (that is a big LOL as I say) NO!!  Today, is my life perfect? NO!!   Am I living the perfect life today? (again big LOL as I say) NO!!! Have there been times of great joy, love and wonder in my life? YES!!!! Has my life been worth living? YES!!! Is my life now worth living? YES!!!!!! My life is no different than that of anyone else, it is what I/we make of it. There is live in this body of mine and I am so very grateful and appreciative.

Do I consider myself to be a blessed man, such a lucky man to have the life I do? YES!!!!

For the fact that I am sitting here and able to write this post, I AM STILL HERE!!!!!. I give thanks to God, my family and friends. I give a really big thank you to all of the wonderful people, internet friends that have contributed so much towards making this possible. Your prayers, supporting words of encouragement mean so much. You have helped me through some difficult times and I thank you so very much.

May God bless you each and every one.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Dead-lines phooey

January 23, 2012

I’ve been away from the computer for a few days working on my other project. I am not sure but I imagine that in my writings at some point I must have mentioned doing some home renovations.

We moved to Winnipeg 7 1/2 years ago so I could be closer to the various medical specialists. We found this house a good solid nice bungalow. It was about 50 years old, it was overall in good shape but in need of TLC and some updates. We could both see past what was in front of us and see the potential in the home. When it comes to doing that sort of thing I am a pretty handy guy to have around or at least I was. Even back then yes, my physical limitations had been noticably reduced. We discussed this and came up with a 2 year plan I would be able to get the job done. I mean 2 years is a long time, or is it? I suppose what I didn’t take in to account back then was that my physical limitations would continue to decline. Even back then good work day for me would have been maybe about 4 hours with that time being spread out in bits and pieces over the entire day. Now I am down to maybe 1 hour spread out over the entire morning and then I am shot for the entire day. My pillow is loudly calling my name for nap time. Nap for 2-3 hours and I am still drained of energy. I can’t give up on the project and bit by bit I am getting there. WITH A LOT OF HELP FROM BROTHER-IN-LAW HENRI. Yes, it is tiring and I do try to watch over doing it. It is just it is something I want to/feel an need somehow to get done. Everyday I work at it some days more than others. If I am really tired I may even only put in 2-3 minutes. Every little bit is one step closer to completion and I “AM” going to get it finished!!!!

All of my working career I was a banker. Now working in a bank you are constantly facing dead lines. There was always pressure to meet those deal lines. If you have a target time or deadline in place you have to meet it. with time I have come to realize that has carried over into my personal life. The difference being in the personal life those deadlines are self imposed. How much stress, pressure do we put on ourselves with really such foolishness. Now we have to keep this sort of thing within reason.

Now I know I have at times written about my struggle with my ever decreasing physical limitations. Doing this reno work is a constant reminder of that. My 2 year self imposed deadline has been revamped. Well as I have already missed it by 5 1/2 years what is a few more months going to matter. The biggest thing is the end is in sight,. See me doing my happy dance. Now I was going to say, I am going to get this thing finished if it kills me. OK, I stopped here and thought about that last sentence. There is that saying, “I am getting it done if it kills me”, we say it but no one takes the “kills me part literally”, hmmm.

I saw something on TV recently, can’t remember who said it or even what show it was on but one line stuck with me. “Life is not a race. There are no prizes or ribbons handed out to who ever gets to the finish line first. Life is the journey that we take on the way to that finish line. What we make of that journey is up to us.”

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Help Me Celebrate life

January 12, 2012

I remember back years ago my mother saying that when I had been vaccinated they must have used a gramophone needle. Why? because i always have so much to say about everything. I look at the blog here and realize she may have been right. Geesh, do I seem to like to ramble. Here we are this is post #998.I look at that number and just sort of shake my head in awe or wonder or something.

I am looking for ideas, thoughts, feed back.I would like to make #1,000 special. Now when i say special I don’t even really know what i mean by that. That is where I am looking for suggestions. Some how I would like to make it like a celebration of life. Your life, my life, the lives of everyone that has ever touched the blog in anyway. Celebrate life in general.

That post likely won’t come for about a week or so as I will be gone from the computer for the next 2 or 3 days. Please help me out here with you thoughts and ideas.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – HAPPY BIRTHDAY

January 11, 2012

Today is a very special day in the family. It is my daughter Shauna’s birthday, Happy birthday Shauna, I am so happy,  so proud to have you as a daughter, I love you very much. A gentleman will never disclose a ladies age but I hope you have a great day.

Because it is Shauna’s birthday it is obvioulsy recognized as a special day, so special in fact that it is the day Vi’s grandson Seth decided to enter the world. It is a double bithday. Happy birthday Sethie you are my buddy.

OK, everyone be glad you are not here to have to actually listen to this.

“Happy bithday to you, happy bithday to you, happy birthday dear Shauna and Sethie, happy birthday to you.”

I actually did sing it while I was typing and it was hard on the ears.

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – How I deal with loss

January 10, 2012

Often what I write on the blog are words I need to hear/read myself. I consider myself to have a strong belief system in place which is such a tremendous support for me. Yet there are times when I struggle. It seems for me that writing out these thoughts/beliefs it helps to re=enforce them in my mind.

I know I have shared these in the past but it is something I need to focus on right now.

I believe in God, an afterlife, Angels all of that, I have no doubt about it. I am not sure how to describe it but faith is based on almost mystical magical ideas. My mind believes but doesn’t understand. I take comfort if i can come up with a more human, physical comparable. Be that right or wrong it is what works for me. This is the thought process or idea that helped me deal with the loss of my mother. This is my earthly physical comparable.

My mother had a very bad heart and severe arthritis in her spine causing her a lot of pain. Yes she had pain medications but they caused such side affects she prefered not to take them and she suffered. Her quality of life was not good.

I loved my mother dearly but as terrible as this may sound, there was an element of relief when she passed. With my belief in the after life, I had no question what so ever in my mind as to where she had gone. I miss her a lot. As I had no doubt she was with God and His Angels, I can to realize what I was grieving was my own loss. The loss of no longer having her in my life. She was gone and my life was changed for ever. I knew she was in a better place but I was left behind to carry on with out her

This is the physical, human comparable I came up with. I tried to imagine that through a lottery or what ever, my mother had won a trip on a cruise ship. On this cruise ship she would be treated like royalty, she would want for nothing, be happier than she had ever been and PAIN FREE. It would be spectacular for her. Now the issue for me would be that this particular cruise would take her away from me for say 2 years. I wouldn’t see her or even hear from her. Now I could be comforted knowing she was living a wonderful pain free life but I would still miss her. Now I know this is a bit of a stretch but given that situation wouldn’t we, shouldn’t we be happy our loved one is on such a cruise.Wouldn’t it be rather selfish on our part if we tried to stop  them from going, trying to deny them these wonders just because we would miss them and be lonely.

My mother has been gone now for more than 20 years. Now when you just say 20 years, that can sound like a very long time. Then I just think, how long is eternity? Now that is a long time. Thinking that way just sort of makes that 20 years seem like a blink of the eye. I said we should be happy our loved one is on that cruise, well I can’t say I am happy but at peace

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Feeling guilt

January 9, 2012

The New Year hasn’t seem to start off all that well for Vi and I. It hasn’t been a lot of fun as we have both had the flu and a nasty one at that. In all of the time I have known Vi I have never know her to take a sick day from work. Well she did this past Saturday, speaks to how really bad she was feeling. As fo me, well we all know a “man cold” is so much worse than a lady cold and what more do I need to say about that. Feeling a lot better now it is just more a stuffy sinus thing.

Want to say hello to Drew. We had new doors installed recently and have been having a few problems with them. I dropped by the company office of the door company, spoke to Drew and within about 1 1/2 hours a gentleman man by the name of Bill is here fixing it. Now that is service.

With having this flu it gave me time to do more plain old thinking, not always a good thing. lol.

I have learned a lot in this past few months particularly, I have been on a real learning curve. Here on the blog I share my thoughts and feelings about this whole dying business. Each of us process this situation differently. Just as the families, loved ones and friends deal with a lose in their own way. I know I have said that dozens of times. When it comes right down to it how are we to know who and how a passing will hit another.

I am struggling to come to terms with a loss of my own. I lost, we all lost a blogging friend Meg. Meg had stage 4 cancer, her days were numbered. As a doctor she knew what her remaining days would be like and chose to end her life as opposed to going through the night mare she knew faced her. With her suicide I find myself carrying a element of guilt. In her messages to me, she so often spoke of the loneliness. She spoke of how wonderful it would be to check her email and find dozens of messages waiting there for her. As far as I know from what she said I well may have been the only person she really had any contact with. I could have filled her in box daily, with all the jokes and wise message and saying that I receive. 2 or 3 times a week I sent usually short personal messages. I am left wondering could I have done more? I know I could have. Would that have made any difference, that we will never know. My head tells me likely not but my heart is not so sure.

This is post #995

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Grieving a loss

January 7, 2012

I have written in the past of how grief is a personal and individual thing. We each deal with it in our own way. How do I deal with it? A dear friend Meg passed recently and I am dealing with it now. These feelings do take me back to when I lost my parents.

When I first receive the news it immediately has a physical effect. It is like I am hit in the stomach with a hammer. Instead of feeling the pain of such a blow, I immediately feel empty, hollow inside. I feel at a loss, unsure of what I think or what to do. I with draw inside. I need time to sort things out in my head.Outwardly I show very little if any emotion.I just carry on and do what ever has to be done. While doing this I am sort of in a detached robotic type state. for me I need a little bit of time before I am ready to even talk about it other than maybe in very general terms. Emotionally I suppose I have shut down. I am like there in body only. It seems I need that time period to really get my head wrapped around what has happened. It is then that I can, I suppose readjust my thinking and open up, talk about it and move on. I am not sure maybe for me it is a cooping mechanism. I loved my mother dearly but outwardly I showed no emotion. Funeral arrangements were made. It came and went and I showed nothing. The truth of the matter is I felt nothing except that empty hollow feeling inside. No, that is not quite correct, I did have feelings of being grateful the good Lord had called her home to end her suffering on this earth. She was in tremendous pain at the end. I just in my robotic state just plodded along getting through it. I can’t remember how long it took, a week maybe 2 before my own sense of loss or sadness began to set in. It was only when I reached that point that I could open up and talk about it all.

That is pretty much the same road map I have followed since the passing of Meg.

I suppose I have worked my way past my “shut down” and want to talk about all that I learned from Meg. I have been facing my own passing for a number of years now and have maybe grown a little cocky thinking I know what this part of life’s journey is like, all about. I write grief in individual, well so is dying. Meg opened my eyes to a whole new aspect of it. Really got me thinking about the loneliness that comes with it. Meg,  i thank you for that. I will be doing a number of posting of all that you taught me.

Well huh, this is certainly another example of how my rambling has like a mind of its own and just takes off leading me in directions other than I had in mind when I started. Before I start any post I always say a little prayer asking for guidance in helping me to find the words that will help someone, anyone today. This is where my rambling thoughts have taken me today

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – Very nice day.

January 4, 2012

I have often talked about how my blogging friends have become so very important to me. I value and cherish each and every friendship, the time others have shared with me here on the blog.

Yesterday was a very special day for both Vi and I. We were both so very please when a blogging friend Lydia actually stopped by the house and joined us for coffee. We must have chatted for close to 2 hours. We both had such a really nice time. Lydia, I thank you for taking the time and making the effort to come over and share some of your precious moments with us.

I would encourage all to check out Lydia’s blog. She writes of looking for God in our daily lives it is a great site and a wonderful read.

Thank you Lydia and I do hope  we can meet again

Dying Man’s Daily Journal – The New Year

January 2, 2012

It is the New Year, I hope everyone  through out this entire year is: healthy, happy, wealthy and wise.

I imagine there are a lot of people out there feeling sick, getting sober and feeling sorry for maybe having over done the celebrating last night. Believe me, there was a day when I would have been one of them. Party hardy until the wee hours was the way I did it back then. Have things ever changed. We went out for supper came home, watched a little TV, Vi was asleep by about 10:30. I out lasted here and hung in the until about 11:00. Some how the New Year managed to bring itself into being without us celebrating, because here we are.

I think we celebrate the end of one calendar year and the beginning of a new calendar year maybe seeing it as a new beginning a fresh start. I imagine many hope this “fresh start” will bring about changes in our lives maybe even improvements in our lives. I guess that is a good thing, for any new start we need a point to begin from. This is where all the resolutions come into play. Now I can only speak for myself but it seems if I set myself a specific date at which time I am going to make life altering changes, I seem to be setting myself up for failure. Now I know I have the will power of a marshmallow. I know there are people that can make these kind of changes and I tip my hat to them.

Do I make resolutions for myself though? I suppose I do. My big resolution is to LIVE through this year. Now by that I do mean physically surviving but far more than that. I want to LIVE my time not endure it. That I realize is totally up to me. God will decide how much time I have here, but I am the one that must decide how I am going to live/spend that time. I am just sitting here sort of in awe or surprised, don’t really know how to describe it. I think back, when I was first diagnosed with heart failure,I didn’t know what it was. Just the name alone, heart failure scared me. I didn’t know what it was or meant. That first doctor telling me that was the one and only that has ever given me any sort of prognosis or guestimate as to how long I had left. ….”now way to tell, it could be 3 days, 3 weeks, 3months, a year, maybe a year and a half or even 2 if your are lucky. Well guess what here we are and it is 7 or 8 years later and I am still going. OK, maybe not as strongly but I am still going. Geesh, I really am memory guy, I have my wonkie head going on and for the life of me I can’t figure out if it is 7 or 8 years. I guess that doesn’t matter, what does matter to me anyway is I AM STILL HERE!!!!!

2011 like any year had a few issues. Those I eagerly accept into my life as a part of living and living beats the alternative.

My blogging year was a wonderful year. I have come to realize more and more that for now anyway, this may be my purpose in life. At least by that I mean it gives me a reason to drag this lazy butt of mine out of bed in the mornings. Here I have met so many amazing people. Having this blog, having the people here in my life has changed me and I am so very grateful. I thank all for the many prayers said for me, my family and so many others that have visited the site.

Having a site like this is not always easy. There is a saying something to the effect: “no one ever said life would always be easy, just that it will be so worth it. That describes my experience here. I think back to just a couple of weeks ago and the passing of dear internet friend Meg. Emotions kind of got a hold of me there for a minute but I am back. Meg knew her time on this earth was short and I feel honored that she would choose to spend some of that time with me via email or even once on skype. I learned so much from her and am grateful for the time she did share with me.

Over the time of the blog I have had different people honor me by sharing some of their precious last moments with me. I have been touched by each. It is not always easy as while spending this time it does often bring into focus my own mortality.I do struggle and then move on finding I am a better and stronger person for the experience.

A thought just came to mind. Now I can’t remember if it was an email or a comment here, I was asked” “how do you know what to say to “these” people? “These” people meaning those with terminal illnesses. Well the answer to that is easy, I don’t. I have pointed out many times I am not a doctor, not a man of the clergy I am just me a regular guy and do my best. Do your best is really all anyone can do.

Wow, I really got off on a ramble here. I have often said I am not a writer but a rambler.I am finding it more and more difficult to “organize” my thoughts. I just say a little prayer asking for guidance in finding the words that may help someone, anyone. I then just sit and go with the flow. This is where it has taken us today.