Come & Go

One Lovely Blog Award Border

Come & Go, I see it often

Sometimes I think about is it them or me

If it is me than I cannot be soften

One Lovely Blog Award BorderI am me & they are them

And we cannot all agree

But is it me, her or him

One Lovely Blog Award Border& I try my best to be for all

Though I know this is beyond my control

I do my best to make the call

One Lovely Blog Award BorderCome & Go, I see it more and more

But that is ok, because I myself sometimes

Will take advantage and even the score

One Lovely Blog Award Border

find the humor

Who knows Brian from Bonnywood Manor?

If you have not visited his blog, please do so – you will not be disappointed.

So, why am I mentioning Brian and his blog in this post?  Well you see, I leave comments on other’s blog posts and I truly appreciate the communication that takes place with these comments and the comments left on my blog posts.  I do not always leave a comment, but many times I do.  There was a post Brian published titled ’10 More Signs That Your Body Just Isn’t What It Used To Be’.

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I read this post and could relate to it, so I left the following comment –

LOL, so very funny & true. I can relate to many of these Brian.

Brian responded with this comment –

Terry, I honestly hesitated before posting this, wondering if you might find it a bit offensive that I would be whining about such things when you have a much more challenging situation, but I knew in the end you would be fine with it. We’re both here to help others get through the bigs and the smalls by trying to find the humor and the shared humanity in both. Hope you’re doing well…

I responded with the following comment –

You are a good man, and please don’t ever hesitate on posting because of what I or others might think. I always find humor and laughter here on your blog – it helps me a great deal. Yes, we are here to help others – thanks friend – Happy Friday.

When visiting Brian’s blog, I laugh a lot, I mean where I am holding my belly and laughing.  I have to hold my belly right now because I continue to be a little sore from surgery.  But the laughing is good for me and is great medicine for recovery.

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My friends, I am not offended by much and I appreciate we have a platform here to express our thoughts.

Brian’s sensitivity toward me and my struggles shows what a good man he is.  Thank you Brian and others for writing, posting and publishing your thoughts.  As Brian indicated in his response comment ‘We’re both here to help others get through the bigs and the smalls by trying to find the humor and the shared humanity in both.

I read many posts by other bloggers and find many different emotions from them.

And many of them I find the humor.

United We Stand

In many of my posts I mention that I currently live on the Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola, Florida.  I would like to think I bring a unique perspective when writing about my experiences and feelings while living here.  In my post ‘Reveille‘, I wrote about the pounding of my heart when I hear on the loud speakers the National Anthem after reveille.  In my post ‘Moment of Silence‘, I wrote about taking a moment of silence to observe and honor the death of one of the Blue Angels pilots.

These events and experiences have changed me and I see some things differently.

Do I have a different perspective today than I once had?

Yes, I do have a different perspective today about many things because of where I am living and my health and what I am living with and without.

Living on a military base can change perspective.

Living with cancer can change perspective.

Living with less possessions can change perspective.

On the Naval Air Station, I see young women and men training, working and serving this country.  They stand tall and proud and I see sincerity in them and this has me thinking about the importance of this country to me and those around me.

Last year I had minor surgeries, chemotherapy and most recently a major surgery.  At this point in time parts of my future are unknown with regards to what comes next with my cancer journey.

I stand tall and proud and I think about the importance of others in my life that are helping me through a difficult time.

Today I live with much less as last year the downsizing was completed and living minimal is taking place.  What a relief to have less and realize the importance of it.

The military enlisted, those serving I salute you and honor you and say ‘Thank you’.

Those around me helping me through a difficult time, I appreciate you and want to say ‘Thank you’.

And to my husband, the one who is always beside me, you are amazing and to you I say ‘Thank you’.

Some lyrics from the song ‘United We Stand’ –

There’s no where in the world that I would rather be

Then with you my love

And there’s nothing in the world that I would rather see

Than you smile my love

For united we stand. Divided we fall

And if our backs should ever be against the wall

We’ll be together, Together, you and I

My Purpose in Life?

20160810_182204-2At times I will write a post and not finish it and leave it alone until a later date.  This post I wrote almost a year ago, but because of changes in my life it seemed no longer relevant.  Lives can change dramatically in a short period of time and along with the changes so too can our thinking, our believes and attitudes.

A year ago, I had a minor surgery to remove a tumor from my bladder.  At that time, it seemed harmless and nothing significant would come from it.  I was wrong and this past year’s events I never imagined would take place.

The following words I wrote almost a year ago, when my life was healthier and I was looking forward to a future filled with adventure and fun –

Many times I have asked myself ‘What is my purpose in life?’

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If you have been reading about me for quite a while, you know about my early struggles in life with major depression to the point of attempted suicide.  It took over a decade to overcome this depression that wanted to kill me.  My purpose at that time was to overcome it and that I did.

I continue with struggles today, but certainly not to the extent when I was a much younger man – but I am far from perfect and not the man I want to be – I still struggle – I am a work in progress.

Again today I ask the question ‘What is my purpose in life?’

A little more than a year ago, Gary and I were in Mexico exploring a possible location to live.  While there an event took place that upon our return home, I documented.

These are the words I documented –

How can I be responsible for supporting and helping someone when I have my own struggles?  Several weeks ago in Mexico, Gary and I were with expats.  I watched Gary as he told a story – and I see his mannerisms, his facial expressions and the words he used to tell the story – I saw his mom.  It reminded me that maybe he will be like his mom, telling the same old stories, having the same struggles every day.  He may exhibit the same emotions his mom goes through – anger, frustration, nice, rude, impatient, not understanding.  It has been difficult for me spending time with his mom due to my lack of patience.  I have learned some patience as a result of being around her and that is a good thing.  I have more to learn, I want to be there for Gary, I want to be caring, compassionate and understanding.  These are areas I fall short in, but feel I can I gain more of these traits.  Maybe this is my purpose in life to learn these traits: understanding, listening and being there for Gary.  I believe my life is about struggling and learning and being the best person I can be. 

image2Gary’s mom has dementia and she struggles daily and sometimes I see her personality in Gary.

Back to today, both Gary and my life has changed a great deal this past year.  I no longer think about what my purpose is in life.  I do believe part of Gary’s purpose may be to help me during my difficult time.  And who knows, maybe someday when I am better it will be my turn to help Gary during his difficult time.

blessed our roads have crossed

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When I started this blog almost 2 years ago, I never imagined I would be writing about my journey with cancer and events that would lead me here today.  But, here I am today with those events and experiences and sharing them with you.  I just write and share and put it out there for those that want to read it.  This blog is about my life; nothing really special, many others are leading more interesting lives.  When I write a post, sometimes it affects others and sometimes I receive a comment that affects me.

From my post ‘I remain grateful (Reader Discretion Is Advised)‘, I received the following comment.

Comment from Hungry Breton (Franck)

Hey man… I know that I have read your post a few days ago. It touched me; to a point that the other night, I dreamt about you and Garry, you had a hat on, kinda cowboy like, but not as extreme as Texas Rangers. You were in good humor, as you walked inside the hospital, we met as we were leaving. 5 years ago, my wife got a big “Mother” of a cancer; a stage 3, grade 4, a 10x10cm tumor on her kidney… Nephrectomy…. She survived, but our couple was never the same after, even if I think I was a good carer. She was never the same after, kissing Death on the lips would leave you like that. I admire her, I admire you, even if I have made my peace if – God forbid- it would happen to me.

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My Mother died of Cancer when I was 25, she was 49, cervical cancer, and a love for bad wine to drown bad memories. Destructive… I am not really sure where I want to go with this, apart from the fact that I feel blessed that our roads have crossed. You are a very brave man in so many ways, I respect people like you. If you guys fancy visiting our crazy Island one day, give me a shout. You rock like hell, Garry the helicopter guy rocks like hell, when I cannot even jump on a plane. Spread your arms, look at the sunset and scream: ” Freedom ya Mothers!!!” ‘cos you know what it feels like to be free… Fair play to you my friend… Fair play!!!

My response –

Franck, I read your comment yesterday early morning and several times yesterday and again this morning. It has taken me a day to respond because your comment had me feeling many emotions. I had to take my emotions and think about where they were coming from and why. First of all, I am sorry to hear about the loss of your mother and the experience both you and your wife went though. Life throws situations at us we are not always prepared for and we just do the best we can each day.

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For you to write you feel blessed our roads have crossed is the best compliment anyone could give. This blog is me writing down my experiences and feelings and emotions and for others to feel something and get something out of it – I am humbled and honored. Thank you for being a friend and being honest and sincere. I hope to one day take a trip to your island and meet you – what a privilege that would be. Have a happy day my friend, I truly appreciate you.

To Franck and each one of you – I am blessed our roads have crossed.

oh, why not?

From theguardian.com article ‘How selfies became a global phenomenon’ –

It starts with a certain angle: a smartphone tilted at 45 degrees just above your eyeline is generally deemed the most forgiving. Then a light source: the flattering beam of a backlit window or a bursting supernova of flash reflected in a bathroom mirror, as preparations are under way for a night out.

The pose is important. Knowing self-awareness is conveyed by the slight raise of an eyebrow, the sideways smile that says you’re not taking it too seriously. A doe-eyed stare and mussed-up hair denotes natural beauty, as if you’ve just woken up and can’t help looking like this. Sexiness is suggested by sucked-in cheeks, pouting lips, a nonchalant cock of the head and a hint of bare flesh just below the clavicle. Snap!

There was a time, I never took selfies, why would I?  I do not participate much in Social Media except my blog here on WordPress.  My posts are then sent out via a tweet on Twitter.  I find I have no time for other Social Media platforms and honestly soon will most likely shutdown my Twitter account.  However, I will keep my WordPress blog going as long as I enjoy it and feel up to it.  What does this have to do with selfies?

There was a time, I never took selfies, why would I?  My blog began with me anonymous.  As the months came and went I became less intimated with expressing myself in words and as fellow bloggers began to read and comment, I felt a sense of comfort.  So, I exposed myself; some of you may remember my posts that slowly exposed me; and now I am totally exposed for all to see.

Now because I am exposed, I take selfies, lot of selfies.  How many is too many?  Most of the time my selfies do not come out the way I would hope for, so another is usually taken.  I now take lots of selfies; most of them of me alone, still many more includes Gary and sometimes Roxy.

Google “selfies meaning” and you receive the following –

sel·fie

ˈselfē/

nouninformal

plural noun: selfies

a photograph that one has taken of oneself, typically one taken with a smartphone or webcam and shared via social media.

“occasional selfies are acceptable, but posting a new picture of yourself everyday isn’t necessary”

I do not usually post a picture of myself every day, it depends on the topic of the post I am publishing.

This past Saturday in my post ‘what comes next…‘, included a picture of me.  When my post is about me and my health, I usually end it with a picture of me.  That post last Saturday, I used an older picture with no intentions.  That post indicated I had lost 22 lbs. of weight since my surgery; this is true, but the picture included is an older picture, therefore I may have misled some readers thinking the photo is the current me.

There was a time, I never took selfies, why would I?  But now, oh, why not?

This post is filled with a collection of selfies.  This last photo is the current me – me with 22 lbs. less weight.

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virtual spoons

The Saturday prior to my Monday surgery I published a video log post ‘Big Day Monday‘.  I received many wonderful comments including one that stands out because of my response back.  Fellow blogger and friend leggypeggy has been sending me virtual spoons ever since that post.

From that post, Peggy wrote the following comment –

A big thank you to you for sharing your journey with us. Also nice to see the landscape you will enjoy during your recovery. Sending virtual hugs and lots of love for smooth surgery and speedy recovery. And yes, be a good patient and the nurses will love you.

I responded with the following –

LOL, yes I know I need to be a good patient – I certainly need nurses loving me. When I feel bad and grumpy, I will think of you and the spoon on your forehead – that will remind me to be good. Thanks Peggy, yours and others support here is important to me. Have a great day!

Her response –

Oh yeah, remember the spoon! It must be a lucky charm. Should I send you one?

My response –

You can send a virtual spoon everyday next week!

Her response –

Consider it done.

So, Peggy sent me a virtual spoon every day the week of my surgery.

In my post ‘my struggle with cancer‘, again Peggy commented about the virtual spoon –

Glad they were able to explain ‘the knot’, but still strange that it happened. This improves the chances of being relatively pain-free as you more fully recover. Sending virtual spoons and hugs for your mental strength.

My response –

Thank you Peggy, physically I feel much better with still weeks of recovery ahead of me. I appreciate the virtual spoons and hugs for the mental strength because I will be honest, at times I am struggling. Thank you for your support and friendship.

Her response –

I figure that right now your body is stronger than the mind, so the spoons and hugs will keep coming.

Peggy continues to send virtual spoons today; a way for her to bring a smile to my face and remind myself that I can and will get through this and everything eventually will be good again.

I continue to heal and recover and have up and down days and adjusting to the new me.  I post every day and just like many of you, Peggy has a comment for me.  Many times, she lets me know she is sending me virtual spoons.  A little joke between her and I, but a reminder the spoon is a lucky charm – and she sends them to me.

She has indicated I should take a picture with a spoon on my forehead – so, here you go Peggy, this is for you.

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Touching your comments

It was January 16th when my 10 ½ hour surgery took place.

I wrote about strength I found within myself in my post ‘strength’.

In that post, I voice recorded thoughts the immediate days’ home after the hospital stay.

Here is another voice recorded thoughts now documented for you and about you –

Write a post about that first night after surgery I was still feeling lots of the anesthesia and under lots of pain medication.  And I remember feeling like I was in your comments.  I was in your comments; almost like I am walking around in your comments, the words you have left me.  Not just the recent comments, but the past weeks and months comments; the encouraging words and the supportive words; the words of love and the words of support and the words of encouragement.  It was as almost as I was walking through these comments from all of you, I was touching them and it was helping me with my strength; it was helping me say you are going to get through this because there are so many other people there – there are so many other people out there who are encouraging you and supporting you and praying for you and thinking about you.  And who are touching you in a way that you are going to succeed and you are going to be strong.  And that is what I was doing; I was walking through your comments; almost like a stage and all your comments are sitting there on this stage in big letters.  And I am walking by and I am actually touching them, touching your actual words and feeling them and experiencing them.  That is the only way I can explain it, that is the only way I can explain this dream or hallucination or whatever it is I was experiencing at the time.  But I really truly felt that, that my friends helped me so much – I really, really do believe that.  I know it took a lot for me to deal with my surgery and the feelings afterwards, but I really truly feel that experience, that hallucination or dream or whatever was a big part that started helping me on a good start, on a good note to start my recovery. 

Thank you for always supporting me and encouraging me through your words and comments.

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It was no accident

His name is mentioned here in many of my posts, and there are many words to describe him.

His name of course is Gary.

His role is friend, spouse, and most recently caregiver.

Several months ago, a fellow blogger and friend Laurel, published a post about caregivers.  In that post titled ‘For Gary ’, she ended with these words –

Gary and other people in the same role are “unsung heroes.”  That’s a phrase that most of the time represents a person who doesn’t get recognition or notoriety but plays an important, supportive role…”behind the scenes.”

They should be remembered.

Thank you again Laurel for the touching post; reading it again brings tears to my eyes.  Please if you have not read Laurel’s post, please do so – there is an important message there.

As many of you know, a little over 3 weeks ago, I had a major surgery.  Before being wheeled off to the operating room, Gary was holding my hand and we kissed.  He assured me everything would go well and he would be waiting for me.

I woke after surgery feeling I had been hit by a truck and there he was waiting.

I am grateful for Gary my caregiver and my unsung hero; who is strong, supportive, kind, understanding and extremely patient.  The past couple of weeks have been an adjustment for me and Gary.  My body has changed, both inside and outside.

He is still here today, waiting on me hand and foot and I at times feel I do not deserve him.  I am fortunate in that someone else thinks I do deserve him – I am grateful.

I believe everything happens for a reason both good and bad.  Gary and I met for a reason; our relationship developed for a reason; we became married for a reason.

Yep, everything happens for a reason, and Gary is in my life for a reason – one reason is certainly as caregiver and unsung hero.

There is a country song I like by Tracy Bird titled ‘The Keeper of the Stars’, with the song beginning with these lyrics –

It was no accident me finding you

Someone had a hand in it

Long before we ever knew

Now I just can’t believe you’re in my life

Heaven’s smilin’ down on me

Yes, everything happens for a reason; it was no accident me finding you.

Thank you Gary for being in my life, for taking care of me and for loving me.

I do not deserve you, not at all, but I am thankful and grateful you are in my life.

Love you,

Terry

strength

Only 3 weeks ago, I had a 10 ½ hour surgery and was in the hospital for 11 days.  During those hospital days, I had very little physical strength and spent most of my time doing nothing except resting and recovering.  Once home in those first few days I felt I needed to document some thoughts that were swirling through my head; they were important to me.  Those first few days back home I spent little time on the computer and so I voice recorded my thoughts.

The following are words I spoke and recorded one of those first few days back home –

So this is a post about strength – strength that I did not know that I had.  I made my 11 day hospital stay; I made it through being positive, being optimistic.  For those first two nights after a very long surgery, for the first night I was awake for a little while, and thinking to myself; I don’t know how I am going to get through this, but then I fell back into a deep sleep.  And the next night, same room and still in the same position because I have not moved I then thought to myself again; I don’t know how I am going to get through this.  But I kept telling myself, I will, I have the strength within me, I have the perseverance and the positiveness that I am going to get through this and I am going to do well during my recovery.  And during the whole recovery for those nights and more after I did that – I did that.  Certainly I had my aches and pains I had to deal with; and pain medications were there and other medications were there to help me along the way and I did what was asked of me and I found the strength in me that I never, ever thought that I had.  Seriously I never thought I had that strength in me.  But it was there, it was waiting to be used during a time when I needed it the most.  So, my post is about strength; I think that it is probably in all of us, it is in all of us somewhere.  And when we need it the most, I think we all can reach deep down and grab it and use it and get through any difficult situations we may be going through. 

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