What is the answer?

Vainglory hope is the answer. How many people have been puzzled by life, hoping desperately to find an answer to the meaning of it all, but die before they find it? I think most, like 99.9 percent.

“Oh, Tim’s full of doom and gloom tonight!”. I may be. But you know, I’m 57 now (2016). 7 years ago, were it not for modern medicine, I’d be 7 years dead. What’s that all mean? That “God” has some plan for me, which is why I’m still alive today? I doubt it. If he has, I haven’t figured it out yet, 7 years later. I’d like to hope that God had some sort of special plan for me, but you know, at this stage of life and living, I’ve learned a lot, and am ok being a bit skeptical now.

The fact is, as I said above, most people die before they figure life out, before they have their epiphany, before they have the “Damascas Road” experience. That’s just the way it is. Why? I dunno.

What can we make of these dismal statistics? Nothing. Absolutely nothing. I don’t think we were created for “something special”, folks. Yes, we are each unique and wonderful human beings, but that’s as far as it goes, I think. Whatever we can give or do through to the end of today is itself a huge blessing. I know.

As the bible says, “For today we live and tomorrow we die”. Maybe that’s really it! If we can keep that in mind each day that we awaken, then we might make a difference in the lives of the people around us for that next day’s grace. If we don’t, well…no one will really notice. Oh well.

Today is all we have, folks. Tomorrow is a crap-shoot, a blessing if given…another day to make another day count for those around us. Let’s do at least that.

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Summer Heat

Fir tree paintingHardly a lovely, cool evening like I last described. Today it’s really hot. Every summer we usually get a few weeks of hot, hot weather. Ok, hot for us here on the West Coast; high 70’s to upper 80’s. But we’re not used to the heat. My spoiled bag of bones finds it unpleasant. I can’t imagine other countries where the heat soars easily into the 90’s or above 100 even, for months.

I had the luxury of going for a run earlier, before the heat set right in. I hit the wooded trails not far from here, in the University of British Columbia endowment lands. Simply glorious. Cooler in the forest, protected by the tree tops. I ran with a special joy today — really seeing, smelling and feeling the beauty around me. Reflecting on my ability, at 55 years of age, a major health scare behind me, to still be able to go out to run, to pound my way throughout the welcoming trails, to fully, completely breath in the pine scents and sweet soil — has to be a miracle. I started running when I was about 8! Oh, gratitude! Life — God — has truly blessed me with these leg’s that can still run, with these these lungs that continue to breath, with this heart that knows and feels and appreciates my real fortune. Indeed, I am a fortunate man. May you find and realize the same…

No recurrences here!

My lung-scan results just came back “all clear”. There is no evidence of present or past clots! What a relief. Life can continue again…

They still don’t know what caused them in the first place. When that happens they suspect undetected cancer. Investigation for that continues, but so far so good.

What is life without fear? Is it possible? Krishnamuriti, whose writings I have studied for years, suggests that it is possible to live without fear. But very, very few people achieve that state of freedom. Even HE was frustrated by that sad fact.

What is fear? We’ll investigate that later.

T.

sunflowers

Recurrence?

Today, I’ve had some recurrence of the same symptoms I had which led up to my September hospitalization for Pulmonary Emboli (Lung blood-clots). Coincidentally, and thankfully, I have been scheduled for the last 2 months for my 6 month follow up with the specialist tomorrow. They will be doing another lung-scan and an echo-cardiogram. Hopefully those will show that all is well, although I cannot dismiss the way I have felt today, so I will most certainly tell the specialist about that.

I am feeling better this evening, but today’s experience certainly brought back the stark reality of it all, brought back my awareness of how much the entire colour of my life changed when faced with the possibility of suddenly dying. It could still happen from this condition. Pulmonary Embolisms can re-occur, even while on the medication—“Warfarin”, a blood-thinner, or as many seem to enjoy telling me it is called, “Rat Poison” because it really used to be used for rat-bait.

On Friday, I successfully completed an hour long work-out at the gym: 20 minutes on the Elliptical machine, with minute and a half “sprints” on it every five minutes. That was followed by a half hour of aerobic circuit weight training, using lighter weights with higher repetitions, which also elevates the heart rate. Then I finished up with ten minutes of running on the treadmill. 2 months ago, I could only do 5 minutes on the elliptical machine and about 15 minutes of weights! I’ve been feeling incredibly healthy for the past couple of months, going with that routine ever few days. My resting heart-rate is around 60, my blood-pressure around 130 over 83 (including today). But today frightened me, jolting me back to the September horror. So, I rested for the whole day. Hopefully tomorrows tests will show no “new developments”. I do hope.

All those who I love have been uppermost in my mind today…I don’t want to leave them, not YET!

But the point that I want to make tonight is how significant and impactful it was having that sort-of near death experience, back in September. It coloured and completely changed the entire perspective and course of my life. Knowing that I could—bam—suddenly die was a very sobering (I’m still working on that too!) and frightening experience. However, on the day that it happened in September, when the doctors were talking to me as if I was not going to walk out of the hospital, I was completely resigned and even open to it. I was strangely peaceful inside. I wasn’t afraid to die—but I WAS terrified to leave the lives of my loved ones. This was not a selfish rumination. Rather, I was thinking about them, because I wanted to stay on as an active part of their lives for what I believed I could give to them, and which I still believe, yet.

That is my dream tonight. God willing, that as I recovered in September, so tomorrow I will continue to be free to pursue the most important things in my life…to fully love my loved ones and to continue this amazing and wonderful journey that I began back in September to completely discover who and what I am, so that I can BE that person and in turn bless not only the lives of those closet to me, but also if God so grants, a lot more people around me in this refreshing, warm sea of humanity.

Indeed this is my calling. A hope, to be fulfilled.

Thank YOU, dear readers for being a part of my dream.

Blessings to you all,

Tim

trilliam 
The Trilliam, a native flower of Ontario.
As a very young child, I discovered them flourishing in the forest behind our home.
My delight in their beauty spawned a life-long love and appreciate for them and all flowers.
Each human, each individual, is just as beautiful as these.

So far, so good!

On this, Canada’s Thanksgiving day, I have a lot to be thankful for.

Today, Rashin and I went out for a RUN. Well, not exactly a run, but it was a quick walk with four 1-minute jogs in between. I felt great! Ok, a little light-headed afterwards, with a WEE-bit of pain in my chest, but otherwise it was fine. Even I am finding this a bit hard to believe that less than a month ago I was on deaths door-step from multiple clots (AKA Pulmonary Embolism’s) in my lungs.

Well, whatever happened today was good. We will celebrate tomorrow with our Thanksgiving dinner, with dear friends—including my longest and dearest “Friend of all-time”, Dan Fairweather. He attended his own families Thanksgiving dinner today, but was warned before it, that he should control himself and not, “Pig-out like last time”. I suggested that today he temper his pig-like tendencies and save them for tomorrow at my place. He seemed to like that idea. Very good.

In fact, all is “Very-good” today here at my home and with my life, with few exceptions. I am looking forward to welcoming Dan and the rest of our invites for the day tomorrow, celebrating this Thanksgiving. AND, there is one joining us tomorrow someone who we must all be especially thankful to be here, seeing yet another Thanksgiving dinners—our friend “Mitra” who has been battling cancer for the past few years, and thus far winning the war!

So, yes indeed I am very, very thankful this Thanksgiving…for my own health, for my friends health and prosperity and for the Universe blessing all of us with yet another Thanksgiving day to enjoy. I wish YOU, my dear readers, the very same.

Take care.
Tim

Pulmonary Embolism Shmembolism!

I’m sorry, I haven’t had the energy to write lately. Guess I had a delayed reaction to my illness. Today’s news has added to that. I saw my Family doctor for a follow-up appointment. She has received all of the test results from the hospital. Turns out both of my lungs were completely covered with multiple clots, encompassing the entire surface of both. They have NO IDEA what caused this. Apparently it does happen to some people sort of spontaneously, like mine, without any explanation. The hospital specialists and my family GP are all scratching their heads. When I went into the hosptital, they thought I was a goner! 5 days later I walked out, feeling pretty good, all things considered. Everyone is amazed, including me!

The next step in cases like mine is to continue the search for the cause. Their first suspicion is CANCER. Oh great. In fact, the Ultrasound they did while I was in the hospital did reveal a growth of some sort on my liver…(not related to alcohol consumption) which they THINK is a cyst, which of course is harmless…IF that’s what it turns out to be. I have another Ultrasound scheduled, along with a CT scan, for the near future to take a closer look.

Other than that, each day I feel better and better. My lung capacity feels only slightly impaired. But I certainly can’t move very quickly or exert myself for more than 30 seconds without getting winded. For sure, assuming I don’t have cancer, my recovery will be fairly long-coming, but at least certain.

My birth grand-father (I’m adopted) died at 66 from Colon Cancer. He was first diagnosed at age 42. My birth-mother (his daughter) died at 66 from Pancreatic cancer. So the history is there. I just hope that that is not MY history to be as well!

Anyway, looking at things positively, this experience has certainly helped me to focus on what is important to me. I think my years and years of procrastination are finally over! My sense of urgency has multipied exponentially! So what’s next? First, to be declared cancer-free. I’m holding my breath for that one! Until then? Until then it’s just live each day to the fullest. I’ll do my best to document these travels here, for those of you who care.

Cheers for now.

Just another Saturday in Vancouver, Iran, and the rest of the WORLD!

It’s 12:41pm, Saturday August 29th, 2009. Off in the distance a car alarm is sounding. The sun is shining on the Maple tree leaves just outside my window. Fresh (as fresh as city air can be) cool air is wafting through the open window above my desk (bringing city dust in along with it).

My two-day’s-ago-turned-19-year’s-old daughter, with whom I have been texting back and forth this morning, has just arrived in Nanaimo with her friend to do some shopping.

My office is a bit of a mess. I have things to do around the building in which I live and manage. Things I should do, probably, but it’s my day off so I don’t really have to. I’m thinking about that. My sister-in-law is angry with me. My brother doesn’t talk to me. They both think they have good reasons for that. My brother has high blood-pressure. I worry about him. I’m the worlds worst Uncle to his children. My children and his children never did get along, so they aren’t on each others “Facebook” pages as “Friends”. Nor am I, being the worlds worst Uncle.

My dear friend Bill, who is 82 (whose wife recently died), disappeared this week. I thought he was “gone”. Rather, a “goner”; maybe had done himself in. I had terrible images of that. He lives an hour and a half’s drive from here. Had he not finally answered his phone last night around 7, I would have immediately driven out to see if he was there, dead or alive. I cried—tears of relief—without his hearing or anyone else’s seeing (I was at the Pub), when I heard his voice. He called me his “Son” during the conversation, as he excitedly described his visit to a wonderful medical clinic down in Portland, Oregon. They think he should be open to getting married again.

I’m 50 years old. My Mom and Dad’s magic number for me, but I won’t explain why. I feel like a loser, given the sad state of my life and affairs after all these years, although my therapist assures me that I am not, that I have some GOOD REASONS for being a loser! (I mean this facetiously, no disrespect intended) She’s beginning to convince me, thank God.

Someone is watering the plants with a garden hose at the apartment complex next door. It sounds cool and refreshing, even though it isn’t hot here today.

Iran’s political leader, President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced on Friday that he wants the guy’s who ran against him in their so-called Democratic political election, ARRESTED because they incited opposition towards him and the Holy Clerics during the election. Now THAT’s what I call a good incentive for future political leader aspirants to NOT run for public office in Iran!!! I’ll bet you a hundred dollars that Mr. Ahmadinejad is losing votes right now for the next election…!?

The sky is blue right now. I’m hungry.

The Swine Flu (H1N1) has mutated to a more virulent form as feared and predicted, going straight to the lungs, causing severe respiratory failure, requiring those afflicted to be hooked up to respirators. Children, people with Diabetes, Asthma (that includes me), or are Obese are especially at risk. That’s a LOT of people! Hospitals are not equipped to handle that. There simply are not enough respirators to go around. A lot of people are going to die. Not those who have AIDSs, however. For some strange reason people infected with the AIDS virus are resistant…!? What an ironic twist that is.

Everything that I have been writing about today is, put very simply, “What Is”—what is happening right here around me in my home, in my thoughts and around the world. There is a LOT more happening, a lot more of “what is” going on around me, in my thoughts and the world than I have just described, of course. A lot of Philosophy, Eastern philosophy and religions in particular, focus on this concept of “What Is”. If we can simply stay focused on “What Is”, then we won’t be WORRYING about what REALLY IS… what is actually happening around us. Less worry, less stress. Nirvana! Ostrich head stuck in the sand. Truck coming around the corner?! Maybe, maybe not.

I think I will get myself something to eat and then call my friend Bill. After that I will probably do that work around the building that I can’t seem to let-be, let-is, what-have-you!

Cheers and thanks for visiting. If fate landed you here, on the first day of this Blog’s posting here on WordPress….bless you.  Please pass my site on to your friends and I WILL reward you! Send me email to ask me how.

Tim