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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 450 - Gotta Laugh And Have High Hopes {FMF}

Gotta Laugh and have High Hopes

I've been thinking about songs that made me laugh in the 60s and 70s.  Roger Miller's songs (You Can't Go Rollerskating in a Buffalo Herd, I'm a Nut,  Do Wacka Do, Dang Me,  Robin Hood and Little John, and more),  John Denver's song (Thank God I'm a Country Boy), Statler Brothers (Hello Mary Lou, Do We Remember These) just to  name a few.

Some would say those days were more innocent times.   I beg to differ.   Quite the contrary.  People knew the need for laughter, valued wholesome humor. Most either had a family member that had served in WWI, WWII,  Korea, or Vietnam. Loss, fear of loss, PTSD (otherwise better known then as shell-shocked) weren't innocent realities. Yet,  the wisdom of the people was clear.  Life must have joy, laughter, childlike recognition of the unexpected. So funny historical, animated films like Disney's Robin Hood and Little John were popular.

Holy Thursday is a week away.  I ponder of a Jesus that lived a full life,  full of family life, with close exclusive friends, full of normal daily activity both challenging & productive either as a carpenter or as a Rabbi, with exposure to children & their joy, of everyday people moving thru life some happy & others miserable.   Why is this important, some may ask?

God created us in His image.   Giving us traits reflective of His Own. Who can be around children and frown for very long? Be too serious for very long?  Remember Jesus wanted the children brought to Him.   I bet time with the children was a joyous stress relief for Jesus.  We all know children love to entertain a person they like and gain the approval through laughter and happiness.

It was recorded that Jesus wept and He got angry.   Scripture really doesn't recorded that He laughed, why?  I think it's because Jesus rarely expressed negative emotion.  Jesus' negative reactions were more exclamation points of a normal human experience.  Jesus' personality (charisma), which had to include smiling and laughter, was one reason why people were drawn to Him.

I long for the day to hear Jesus laugh, see Him smile.  What a cool moment that will be.

Music from Frank Sinatra, with High Hopes.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 449 - I Finally Learned What's Important

Andrew here, for the first time in quite a while.

Please forgive my absence; things have changed for me, for the worse, and writing is much more difficult. I spend a lot of the time kneeling on the floor, having the dry heaves and worse, and my diet, such as I can eat, is now dead-simple white rice with a little salt and pepper and butter.

But I learned something. I finally learned, not too late, the most important thing in life.


No, just kidding. That's #2.

When your body lets you down and you can barely do anything, much less pursue the dreams and hopes that animated your old life, there's still something left.

You can do the very best with what you've got. If you can just wash a few dishes, make them shine. If you can barely manage to take the dog for a walk, do it with intention; be there on the walk, for the dog and yourself.

If you can only watch a DVD (that's me now, most of the time), then really watch it. Don't drift and dream.

What you do doesn't matter at all. It's how you do it that's vital.

If Christianity is true, if Jesus really did take our sins through His Agony, then we're left facing an awesome reality.

We're important.

Intrinsically, yes, but also for how we live our lives, because that's the arbiter of our identity.

Not what we do. God can do anything better than us. But He can't place intention and care in our hearts. That's our choice.

So, please, live every moment. Even if your life is a predictable routine (the Five Minute Friday prompt), it's still worth living, because...

No matter how trivial it may seem, each moment's a gift from God.

And the way you receive it, and cherish it, that's your gift to God.

Music is from John Fogerty, with the buoyant and delightful Centerfield.

Please pardon my slow response to comments. I do my best, and your comments are really precious to me.

I'm not sure when or if I'll be back. I'm so glad Barbara's stepped in. I'm really not doing well at all.

Thanks to Carol Ashby, Blessed Are The Pure Of Heart is back on Kindle, and will be available in paperback in a few days!

Friends are everything. I couldn't have done it.

Marley update... been moved to a sanctuary, and Bay County will revise their 'dangerous dog' codes.


And marley has a Facebook page! Please drop by to see how happy he is today.

If you can, please do leave a comment. I am trying to answer all, and I am failing, but please know this - I read and treasure each one.

Below are my recent releases on Kindle -please excuse their presence in the body of the blog. I haven't the energy to get them up as 'buttons' in the sidebar. You can click on the covers to go to the Amazon links.

Thursday, March 15, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 448 - Destination Known Or Unknown {FMF}

Destination known or unknown

I wanted a perfect ending. Now I've learned, the hard way, that some poems don't rhyme, and some stories don't have a clear beginning, middle, and end. Life is not about knowing, having to change, taking the moment and making the best of it, without knowing what's going to happen next. - Gilda Radner

Most of my generation knows the battle Gilda Rainer forged through and her body surrendered to at death (see below).   Gene Wilder's battle with Gilda's suffering was his own as well.   Neither knew the complete journey story, nor did Gene know how long he would live beyond Gilda. He loved her only to his last days.

Good Friday is swiftly approaching.   I have contemplated most my life, how much did Jesus knew,  comprehended about the suffering he would shoulder on humanity's behalf.   If He had to gain full knowledge and understanding of the human experience,  was the actual physical, mental,  and emotional process a surprise?  For knowledge is only one aspect of existence, experience is a completely different experience.

We live each day as is develops, everyone of us. We have hopes for an end result, but technically the result is unknown.

So live each moment of every day, in faith, with hope,  acting in love, knowing Our Savior and God already see the result.

(For our younger readers...Gilda Radner was a talented actress and comedienne, and one of the original Saturday Night Live cast members. She was married to the great comedic actor Gene Wilder, and died of ovarian cancer in 1989, at the age of 43. She was not shy about her illness, and her legacy is increased awareness of the importance of the early detection of ovarian cancer.)

Music from Amy Grant, with Not Giving Up.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 447 - Barbara's Gratitude {FMF}

This week I'd like to share a profound excerpt teaching from My Dearest Brother in Christ on Gratitude.   Without his wise counsel the last 20 of my life would have been less enlightened. 

“As disciples of Christ, we are commanded to...“sing unto the Lord with thanksgiving,”...

I have often wondered how we can be thankful in all things.  What do we have to be grateful for when we feel, for whatever reason, that our world is falling apart?  I have frequently struggled to “[give] thanks always for all things unto God” partly because understanding what it means to be grateful in all circumstances is an ongoing process.
“Perhaps focusing on what we are grateful for is the wrong approach. It is difficult to develop a spirit of gratitude if our thankfulness is only proportional to the number of blessings we can count.”  While it is important to frequently “count [our] many blessings,” the Lord expects us to be just as thankful in our times of trial as in our times of ease.  Most of the scriptural references do not speak of being grateful for things but rather suggest an overall spirit of gratitude.

Quoting an sister of faith:

"....We need to look at gratitude as a disposition, a way of life that stands independent of our current situation.  Instead of being grateful for things, we should focus on being grateful in our circumstances – whatever they may be.

Gratitude isn’t a way to ignore our problems or a quick fix for deep sorrow. Gratitude comes from actively remembering God and His goodness. It’s having eyes to see how He has worked in my life. It doesn’t come in the absence of pain; rather, pain can bring my need for the Savior into focus, and gratitude flows from remembering His grace and mercy to me in my hour of need.

It helps me to think of the phrase “I’m grateful for trials” as only part of the sentence—the full sentence is “I’m grateful for the opportunities for growth that have come through my trials. I’m grateful for the ways I’ve seen God at work in my life because of those circumstances.”

I don’t think that anyone would say, “Yes, I would like to lose ___________ [fill in the blank with job, loved ones, home, health, security, relationships, and anything else that has value in life].” I don’t think the people who lost everything in natural disasters this year were grateful when they saw the hurricane, fire, or earthquake coming toward them."

That's what our trials are meant to be: continual refining influences in our lives that help shape us into the people that God wants us to be.

In speaking of the Lord's covenant people, Isaiah quotes the Lord as saying:
Behold, I have refined thee, but not with silver; I have chosen thee in the furnace of affliction.

Zechariah says it thus:
And I will bring the third part through the fire, and will refine them as silver is refined, and will try them as gold is tried: they shall call on my name, and I will hear them: I will say, It is my people: and they shall say, The Lord is my God.

As we approach the Easter season this month.   Maybe it is a good time to place a new refined attitude of Gratitude in daily or weekly life.   I know, I need to be more disciplined in doing so. 

Music is courtesy Dierks Bentley, with Hold The Light from the soundtrack of the film Only The Brave.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 446 - It Gets Overwhelming (Barbara) {FMF}


Everyone has days,  weeks,  or months that life becomes more then our human capacity can handle.   I realize the Bible says that God won't give us more than we can handle.   But there are times I honestly thinks He's out of His mind.  Anyone else been there?  Be honest!

I accept but don't understand God's   Sovereignty, His special rules for the balance of life and the universe.   As a long-term caregiver,  I'm at the point of thinking even God's gotta be willing to make an expectation.  What in God's creation are we doing wrong that would keep Him from making this situation better or give the sufferer ultimate relief.

It was overwhelming a very long time ago to watch Andrew slowly lose abilities, joys,  and life satisfaction.  Yes it happened incrementally,  but what is the point now?  The increments are smaller fractions of lose,  but lose feels greater to Andrew.   The frustrations higher,  the emotions unstable.
I realize we haven't even hit the additional worst for a homebound person.   God help me even more then! 

For those who have additional family, freinds, or community service support to elevate the stress, I hope you value the blessings.  As many of you know,  I'm sole caregiver and provider with no feasible possibility of assistance.   So life easily becomes beyond overwhelming, not incapacitating.  Although concern lives in the recesses of my mind that I may not be able to physically handle all the demands someday.   After all, I'm only one human with limitations too.

Once again, I have no real answers to a dilemma.   But I do again ask for each of us to consider how can you better prepare yourself, your lifestyle, etc. so life could be easily adjusted?  Adjust for your needs yes,  but more for the caregiver(s).  Daily life needs a simplicity for those who provide the essentials of your life one day.

Music for today is from Mercy Me, with Even If.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 445 - The Beauty Of Contentment (Barbara) {FMF}


Greek..."a habit or permanent state of mind" (https://www.biblestudytools.com)

In life I've been accused of being false. False in my happiness,  false in my peace, false in my contentment.   Truth is no one is 100% any emotion.  Even if the world sees the best of you, does that make you false? Of course not.  

There are moments in everyday,  I'm grateful for the veil God has placed between me and the world.   The veil allows me to do the necessary things of life without speaking much frustration,  anger,  discontent,  disdain,  or falsehood into the immediate environment.   The veil also keeps me from knowing these emotions immediately.

Yet the truth is,  all in all,  I've practiced contentment most my life.   It was ingrained as a child.   Mom taught appreciation of expensive and beautiful things.  Enjoying the essence of something without having to possess it.  Even later recalling it and enjoying the memory.  She was teaching me contentment, how to create the state of mind that would become permanent.

Contentment once learned is easily applied to daily life,  almost effortlessly. Truely I don't even make a conscious effort,  contentment is part of my character, personal attribute.

So to some of the world I'm false,  so be it. 

At home I tend to be more serious,  contemplative but rest assured,  I'm content amongst the chaos. It would appear impossible,  yet what allows the contentment.

My contentment comes from Knowing Who I Am.   Not my talents,  not my profession at this moment in life,  not the amount of money I make or don't make, or who really knows me,  etc.
It's my Character, that has been built on an unwavering Cornerstone. I may slip,  I may tilt,  I am bend and nearly break; but Jesus is strong & unflawed providing My Home,  My Refuge,  My Safe Shelter, the Shadow of His Wings keeps me grounded.

My Contentment is His Glory inside me holding me steadfast. 

The musical accompaniment is You Are My Hiding Place...

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 444 - Caregiver's Shame (Barbara) {FMF}

Caregiver's Shame, the Chronically Ill can reduce the shame

Folks, it is Real.   Long term caregivers experience more shame then they allow the outside world to see.   The outside world is divided into categories: public and private.   Public is any Tom,  Jane,  or child that could judge the Caregiver's home condition without enough information.  Public isn't just church,  work, or neighbor, it can include family and friends. Private is under the Caregiver's own roof.   Private includes the long-term person, kids, anyone living in the household. Private also may include the caregiver(s).

Each situation of caregiving is different,  but one fear is true regardless,  when life gets out of control, the fear of judgement creeps into the caregivers mind.

Chances are the caregiver saw months before or years before what future living accommodations would need changing,  what finance decision would need to be take care to protect assets,  what legal documentation would need to be put into place and safely kept, what lifestyle adjustments would need to occur so daily life would be easier for both the long-term person and all living in the household,  etc.

However,  the long-term person doesn't look at life through the same lens.   The focus is what they want now, the future is too far away.   And the focus of both parties is conflicting.  Neither is wrong but as with all conflict there is neutral ground.

I recognize both parties are losing much due to the illness.   I need to be straight forward here,  the long-term ill person needs the audacity to get through each day.   However, cooperation with the caregiver must be a focus as well.  If the ill person stands in the way of the Caregiver's preparation either the caregiver will stop preparing and future life will be difficult to handle,  or eventually the caregiver will move on with life and the ill  person will be left behind.

The caregiver that sticks it out, that is making due and daily life is spinning out of control, will harbor many statements of could have,  would have,  should have.   The one statement of fear is: under my current situation I can't get help,  I'll be judged for the living conditions or legally required to get them changed.   This then spirals more shame and fear thoughts.

I have to say, I have no profound fix for a caregiver faced with the shame dilemma.  I do ask that each of us consider that as we mature there may come a day when circumstances places us as the ill person, acute or chronic.   Someone will be deemed your caregiver,  how will you handle the relationship?

Jesus told us that we can do greater things than what He had done, what does that mean? If we look with His heart with His eyes with His understanding, do we see more than the angels see?

Music from Amy Grant, If I Could See (What The Angels See):

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 443 - Barbara on Caregiver Guilt {FMF}

More from Barbara...and here's a picture of her, with her BFF, Bray...

Sick caregiver, guilt is part of the duty.

It's been a difficult week.   We live on 1 1/3 acres and a corner lot. One of our neighbors is a prominent employee of the police department with a military background.   I say this because he's typically doesn't get alarmed about much. But Sunday Andrew collapsed at the drive-in gate.   Our neighbor was on the roof and heard moaning and immediately ran to Andrew's aid.  He was not prepared for Andrew bring up blood & his legs were paralyzed, a daily occurrence we've become accustomed.  (With the high levels of pain,  the nervous system shuts down stops function to non-vital body parts and places the energy to vital body function,  this includes certain brain function.) The neighbor called 911 and got immediate response because of his position.

I was grocery shopping and received a call from the wife,  luckily I was on my way and about 6 miles to the house. Once I arrived,  education of all present commenced.   The neighbor left everything in my capable hands. Thankfully,  I have POA and DNR (power of attorney and do not resuscitate) for situations like this, of course I had to prove it. EMTs helped get Andrew into my truck using a sheet as a sling.  Through the processes Andrew kept passing out for 1-2 minutes,  something I'm accustomed.   Each time I had to win his confidence to know he was safe (PTSD).   I finalized all the necessary paperwork for the EMTs liability,  while they tried to thoughtfully console me.   At this point,  actually it is my job to console them,  they feel helpless since there is nothing they can do.   Transporting Andrew will kill him or leave his body in a state of shock that once at the hospital the health professionals would try to counteract.   Those efforts would only increase Andrew's issues and potentially he would not leave the hospital alive or in a state that I,  his only caregiver, could not handle.

So after 3 hours Andrew could slowly walk on his own with a cane, minimally helping with dog duties.  

The remainder of the week, I had to work long hours arrive home an hour before bedtime duties for Andrew.  Needlessly say,  I did not eat as healthy as my body is accustomed.  So now I have the upper respiratory virus again.  Needless to say caregiving had not been my forte,  and thankfully must things Andrew can still do on his own.

No, the guilt of not caring for his needs never goes away, ever. And Andrew's preferred living conditions makes it impossible for extended family and friends to assist. So how do I now keep guilt at a minimum?   Honestly years & years of practice and I've grieved so much all the way through these almost 16 years that part of me is numb.

I've learned how King David felt for seven days (2 Samuel 12:16-23), except mine has been extended and a harsher reality has been endured. And of course,  why Andrew's condition exists is not an action of our own but another (a botched surgery).   Nonetheless,  the grief have occurred mostly, and deliberate action of survival moves each day to the next. That's not to say,  I still get stressed,  mentally overwhelmed,  and physically exhausted. I do!

Arriving to this point is a gradual process, emotionally painful process, and a faith trying process. The key,  is to allow the depth of grief occur,  don't let others, even health care providers, tell you to buck it up or stop being a martyr.   The loss is real and the weight of duty immense.   In your grief,  you have to ask God all the doubt questions on your heart and mind,  the key is to ask and NOT  dwell.   If you must dwell,  then dwell in the shadow of His Wings and be ministered to by His angels of comfort and peace and quiet and stillness of mind. I'm very blessed that God gave me such refreshment in my sleep. 

Music from Amy Grand and James Taylor, Don't Try So Hard.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 442 - From Barbara {FMF}

The secret of being a long term caregiver...

I am a guest on Andrew's behalf today.  An author, I am not.  A wife,  friend,  confidante, caregiver, and provider I am. There is that phrase again,  "I am".  Why is it important that self definition is one of the first anyone gives to a group, or a new person, other than people who are proving general daily services at the grocery,  restaurant, gas station / convenience store,  etc.   In daily services we accept our behavior is enough to define us.  Yes, how we interact is our definition. Only after we are a known introduced element,  do we justify our existence.   Looky here, see me, I exist, I am real.   There's that statement again. 

In a world, a universe were the smallest element, particle, and electrical current make a daily contribution without needing recognition,  we who are made up of many of these find it necessary.  As though the definition is what justifies our existence. 

Does definition justify our existence?  Or is it how we exist that justifies our imprint on the invisible legacy we leave everyday?

I believe it is the latter. Most people,  only influence the small space around them.   Few people have immense visible global impact.  In either case,  the first step of impact starts with the small space around us. 

Funny, matter does that all day and all night long.  Depending on what matter touches a favorable or unfavorable reaction is created. Oh,  lesson 1, even positive energy can collide with positive energy causing friction and distance. This distance creates space for other interaction. Then on the other hand,  positive and negative energy can meld together and create a favorable or unfavorable new influence. Even the melding action at first has counteractive responses at first. 

We are called to be Light in this world.  Small i am reflects of the I AM. To be a positive influence in the small space around us.  To be present, and only defined by our actions. Not our stereotype.

So,  my true and first i am statement is: I Am Be Loved of God,  I accept and acknowledge His Providence in my life and No one can take that from me. 

This is the secret of being a long term caregiver. Without the Truth of our existence peace in care-giving doesn't exist. I'm not saying it is easy,  it's not.   Your peace comes from a loving response inside yourself first. Love begets love. 

Our musical selection is Ferde Grofe's Grand Canyon Suite; do know that it's about 32 minutes long, but well worth it!

Andrew is is poor shape, and would be grateful for your prayers.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 441 - The Last Lesson {FMF}

Kind of doing bad, and having to recycle a comment I made on a recent Books and Such Literary Agency blog post, I Didn't Sign Up For This. I'm not sure how long I can even keep this up.

"I don’t know what I have to offer here, and am tempted not to try. But still, in what may only be a bow to ego, here goes.
* Yeah, I didn’t sign up for this. I didn’t sign up for an illness that would destroy everything I worked for, leaving me a bloody passenger in life, unable to give my wife more than prayers. I didn’t sign up for depending on the kindness of strangers to carry me back to the house when I pass out in the yard. I didn’t sign up for incontinence, or for nights of terror that seem to last forever but pass too quickly, bringing a dawn of exhaustion. I didn’t sign up for the blood or the bile or things far worse than these.
* But I’m here, and I have to believe that my faith in God means something, that when I say “I’m OK” that I am REALLY OK. I have to believe that if the only thing I have left to offer is love, that it’s a love worth giving, and receiving.
* So I will keep going, in faith and hope and love, for I have learned a thing. My dreams of success in writing and other things meant nothing; they are as dust on the winds of emotion. The only thing that ever mattered was saving lives, and love, and gentleness in the Scylla and Charybdis of madness and wrath. Love was the only thing I ever had in me that was worthwhile, through violent action and hugs and encouragement and, yes, through writing.
* So, yeah. I DID sign up for this. And I’d do it again, no hesitation. Here am I; send me."

I loved Randy Pausch's The Last Lecture, but he got it wrong. Life isn't about fulfilling your dreams. It isn't about living well.

It's about loving with all your heart.

I want to go home, it hurts too much to go on; but there is love yet to give, and no room for surrender. (Surrender is the FMF prompt this week.)

I am trying to work through replies to your comments last week; my body is fighting me now. Please know that we treasure your comments, and read them all (or they are read to me).

For no reason that I can discern, the music this week is from Steve Winwood, with Valerie. Maybe it's just for fun, as some things should be. I hope you enjoy it!

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 440 - Hope At Midnight {FMF}

I can only give you this, a comment I made on a Books And Such Literary Agency blog post...

"For what it may be worth, to be filed under ‘keeping hope alive’, I am finding that as my situation grows more hopeless, hope itself burns all the brighter to warm and illuminate my days.
* Yeah, that sounds really stupid. A mentally lethal overdose on The Power Of Positive Thinking.
* But there may be something deeper and true at work; it’s hard to breathe, and I’m grateful for every breath. It’s hard to move, and every step is a small miracle. It’s hard to write, and the rationed effort means every word has to have meaning.
* What if all these together, the gratitude and the wonder and the exacting need discovered accidentally and at painful cost, are the soil and the water and the sunlight of hope’s nurturing?
* What if it means that hope is not what we have, but what we become?"

- left as a comment on the Books and Such blog post, "There's Still Hope For New Writers!"

I guess it means that hope has to be intentional, which is the Five Minute Friday prompt this week.

Please know that I treasure your comments. I read (or have read to me) all of them, and this week I was able to answer most. I will keep trying, but please have patience.

And here is the best scene from Lord Of The Rings: The Return Of The King. I take great comfort in it; I hope you will, too.

The journey doesn't end here.

And music, from the same source...Into The West. Barbara will probably have this played at my funeral. Don't know if she'll be able to sing it (she has a lovely voice, and sang Amazing Grace at our wedding).

Still, I don't want to die. Please help me to be brave?

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, January 11, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 439 - Final Thoughts, Maybe {FMF}

I sure don't want this to be the end. But now every word has to count. I'm choking on every breath, and it's ugly.

Coming to the end of my strength, barring a remission, and have to cannibalize another blog comment I made. Please pardon my inability to respond to comments at the moment; I treasure them all, please know this!

You guys have brought meaning to the end of my life.

This is my version of Emily Dickinson's "The Chariot", perhaps her most famous poem. I hope that she'll forgive me (and that you poetic types will, too).

Because I could not stop for Death,

he kindly stopped for me;
and then drove on with intaken breath
on facing my Glock 23.
He wanted to offer the boon of rest
my labours now complete;
but my blood I shed, merely a test
to show that I won’t retreat
The mission ahead, now blinding-clear
to attend to tasks undone,
to face hell’s fire with no fear
and outrace the setting sun.
The heavenly multitudes wish I’d quit,
they ache at cheering the dying.
But work remains and I’m still fit
to kill myself in the trying.

This originally appeared on a Books and Such blog post, as a comment.

In fairness, here's the original poem from the Belle of Amherst:

Because I could not stop for Death
He kindly stopped for me
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality

We slowly drove, he knew no haste
And I had put away
My labor, and my leisure too
For his civility
We passed the school where children playedTheir lessons scarcely doneWe passed the fields of gazing grainWe passed the setting sun

We paused before a house that seemed
A swelling of the ground
The roof was scarcely visible
The cornice but a mound

Since then 'tis centuries; but each
Feels shorter than the day
I first surmised the horses' heads
Were toward eternity

Music from Mike And The Mechanics, with All I Need Is A Miracle.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 438 - No Hope But This {FMF}

There's no hope now, but there is this (and I'm too trashed to do more than lift a comment I left on another blog, sorry). It's the best I have, and all I have.

"I’m finding that for me, success equates to discipline, because that’s what keeps hope alive in one’s darker hours. Getting pneumonia over the Christmas holidays, on top of everything else, I’m in no little danger, and things are so unpleasant (putting it mildly) that it’s easy to feel abandoned by God, and to metaphorically fold my arms and just stop…stop writing, stop caring, stop nurturing the hope that there may yet be hope.
"That way leads down a path from which, eventually, there’s no return, because it leads to a magnetically false God, one whose promises are cherry-picked and whose fell warnings are cast aside, and in whose inevitable failure is the seed of faith’s destruction, hope’s abnegation, and the withering of love.
"So success is holding tight to where I am, writing when I don’t want to write (like right now), forcing myself to keep caring because I cared once, and choosing faith, not because it ‘works’ but because it’s only truly defined by the chiaroscuro of pain’s deep shadow." (This originally appeared as a comment on the Steve Laube Agency blog, For The New Year: Define Success)

I'm sorry that I have been unresponsive to comments, both on the blog and on Facebook. I'll try to do better, but just writing a few sentences is exhausting now.

The Impossible Dream and the final scene from Man Of La Mancha are the accompaniment. Hope you don't think it kind of self-serving; I just like the song.

If you're interested, you can find Andrew's books on Amazon.

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

Your Dying Spouse 437 - Almost Gone

Almost died today. Couldn't breathe, and as the world dimmed around me I could see The Light.

Didn't go. Still too much to do, and besides, service dogs Ladron and Sylvia were beating the crap out of me.

So I am still here. Pretty shook up, and in too much pain to write more, let alone select music.