goodbyes or Thank You

I have in the past had dreams where I woke up and voice recorded what I remember about the dream.  A couple of months ago, I had one of those dreams and though I did not remember a great deal of detail about the dream, I went ahead and voice recorded what I did remember.  It was an important dream, because it involved all of my family and I felt it had significance.

Image1

Provided by: Inception Radio Network

What was is about and what is its significance?

I was in a large room and all my family were there, everyone.  There were my sons and my parents and my siblings.  There also were my aunts, uncles and cousins, nieces and nephews.  And one other person was there; no longer considered family, but she was there – my ex-wife.

I am approaching each one of them and grasping their hands and hugging them and having a brief chat.  I have no recall what these discussions were about, but I felt it was the last time I was going to see them.  This whole event appeared to everyone including me as not a big deal, it was not exciting nor somber; there was no laughter and there were no tears – it just was the family being together.

Amongst all the family members in line, also standing there is my oldest son, and I bypassed him; I felt I had nothing to say to him.

Image2

Image Provided by: Kyrene Foundation

You may remember back in March I wrote a post ‘ESTRANGED‘, and I concluded with the following –

One of my sons calls on a regular basis – thank you son.  The other two sons do not call me and in the past I would call them, but now no longer do I call. 

These 2 sons I saw at Thanksgiving and they were aware of my surgery.  These 2 sons I have not heard from since my surgery.  These 2 sons I have not spoken with since Thanksgiving.

Are we estranged?

Again, I just do not understand why?

In the past, I had asked myself, what did I do or not do to deserve the absence from my life; the no communication and the appearance of not caring?

Again, I refuse to blame myself any longer. 

Again, I refuse to cry anymore tears.

In today’s post, I conclude with the following –

Since this dream took place, I have spoken with both of these sons and will write about in a future post.  But in this dream, why did I not acknowledge the oldest son?  And what was this dream about?

Is the dream about me saying my goodbyes before I die?

Is the dream about me saying “Thank You” for your thoughts and prayers that have now brought me to being healthy once again?

Image3

Image Provided by: mcolaw.wordpress.com

I decided to not put more thought into interpreting this dream; I do not think there is a need to.

Perhaps at the time of this dream, I was still blaming myself and angry, especially at my oldest son.  My relationship is different with him than the other two and our differences and similarities go back a long way.

I do believe my sons truly care about me.  It maybe they just do not know how to display it.

the PANIC visit

In my post ‘quality of life…. (or lack of it)‘, I wrote the following –

With the recent move to Tampa, Florida and change in healthcare, comes more doctor visits, appointments and more medications.

The transition to this area is a struggle with regards to finding new doctors and scheduling the appointments.

In today’s post, I write the following –

Image1

Image Provided by: ateachingmommy.com

One of the previous mentioned appointments was with a new dentist.  I was fortunate to see a new dentist within the first week because once my chemotherapy begins I should not be having any dental work.  There is always the possibility of an infection and during chemotherapy my white blood count is low and therefore more prone to infections.  So, my first visit with the new dentist was an examination that included the usual x-rays that resulted in me having a cavity.  I very seldom have cavities and was surprised to learn I had one.

Okay, two days later and another dentist appointment to take care of the cavity.  Before I write about this appointment, let’s go back about 14 hours –

It is the night before and I am experiencing a great deal of back pain.  I take pain pills and go to bed extremely early – around 7:00 PM.  I am unable to rest or sleep, so around 11:00 PM I am taking additional pills for pain and sleep.  I do finally receive some sleep, but the next morning, I am tired.

Early morning Gary and I depart for the dental appointment and I am excited about using a new smartphone app that I can use for street parking near the dentist office.

Image2

Image Provided by: Christian Science Monitor

I set the time and pay for two hours the maximum amount allowed.  Gary is also having a dental appointment the same time so, two hours should be enough time.  The dentist is running behind and I become a little nervous about the time, but I know I can extend it from my smartphone.  It is the first time I have used it, so I am a little nervous that maybe it will not work and I will receive a ticket.

Now I am sitting in a chair and receive my injection to numb my mouth.  Oh, did I mention I do not like to go to dentists?  I have Cancer and deal with appointments, procedures, IVs and blood tests – but going to the dentist makes me nervous.

Now I am at another dentist appointment to take care of the cavity – it is time – but the mouth does not feel numb.  The dentist decides to give me another shot.

Image3

Image Provided by: Holistic Health & Living

Within minutes, half my throat goes numb as does part of my vocal cords.  I am having trouble swallowing and breathing.  I request the staff to get Gary in the room – I need him.  The dentist thinks I may be having an allergic reaction to the lidocaine.  I am not allergic to anything – I receive an Epipen injection.

911 is called just in case there is an allergic reaction – but they are not needed.

I am having a panic attack as the throat is swollen, I am unable to swallow and breath and having difficulty speaking – I am also crying.

After some time to relax, I go through with getting the cavity fix because chemotherapy starts in 2 days.

I am glad I do not have to see the dentist again for another 6 months.

Cloud Dreaming

“Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.”

– Rabindranath Tagore

Image1

“The sun always shines above the clouds.”

– Paul F. Davis

Image2

“Nature is a mutable cloud, which is always and never the same.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Image3

“A cloudy day is no match for a sunny disposition.”

– William Arthur Ward

Image4

Round Two

This past Monday’s post ‘This Friday – The Next Stage‘, I wrote the following –

Dr. L. is honest and upfront with respect to my cancer.  There is no cure for my cancer; this next round of chemotherapy treatment is to hopefully stop the cancer from spreading or slow down the progression of it.  Once this chemotherapy is over, there are other treatment options available and at that time we will discuss the next steps to be taken.

This Friday, I will begin my next round of chemotherapy, the next stage in my journey with cancer.

Image1

Image Provided by: note.taable.com

In today’s post, I write the following –

Round Two –

Today I start my chemotherapy.

I have been through this before and I know the process.

Round one of chemotherapy was 1 treatment for 2 weeks and then 1 week off.  There were 4 cycles that resulted in 12 weeks.

Round two of chemotherapy is 1 treatment for 1 week and then 2 weeks off.  There will be 4 cycles that results in 10 weeks.

I have been through this before and I know the process.  What I do not know are the results.

For now, I do not know the results of the chemotherapy treatment once it is completed.  These results will be revealed many weeks from now.

For now, I do not know the results of how this chemotherapy treatment will affect me.  These results will be revealed in the next many days from now.

Round one of chemotherapy I was tired a lot, but was never nauseated and did not lose my hair.

Round two of chemotherapy I expect to be tired a lot and I hope not to be nauseated or lose my hair.

I have positive expectations of this chemotherapy treatment for both long term and short term.

image13

The Phantom of the Pee

Most of us are familiar with ‘The Phantom of the Opera’; a musical with music by Andrew Lloyd Webber.

Image1

Image1 Provided by: CMUSE

I bet you are not familiar with ‘The Phantom of the Pee’; not a musical with no music.

Merriam-Webster has the following definition for ‘phantom’ –

1

a :  something apparent to sense but with no substantial existence :  apparition

b :  something elusive or visionary

c :  an object of continual dread or abhorrence the phantom of disease and want

2

:  something existing in appearance only

3

:  a representation of something abstract, ideal, or incorporeal

she was a phantom of delight — William Wordsworth

Google ‘Phantom’ and first on the list of results is ‘DJI Phantom Drone’, with the following descriptions –

The Phantom is a series of unmanned aerial vehicles developed by Chinese technology company DJI. It is widely regarded as the company’s flagship UAV line, as it is the most widely used and known product DJI has released currently.

Google ‘Phantom Pain’ and first on the list or results is the following –

Phantom pain is pain that feels like it’s coming from a body part that’s no longer there. Doctors once believed this post-amputation phenomenon was a psychological problem, but experts now recognize that these real sensations originate in the spinal cord and brain.

I current do not experience phantom pain, but I do experience phantom pee.  Have you heard of phantom pee?

Phantom pee is a real thing, very strange real thing and I do experience it on a regular basis.  I mentioned this to my Urologist Dr. P. and yes, this is a real thing.

As you know my surgery in January removed my bladder and prostate and other male related organs.  My urine is now removed from my body via a stoma into a urostomy bag on the outside of my body.  I no longer have control of my urination.

But I still have the feeling of needing to pee, but I can’t.

Anyway, very strange feeling when you have ‘that urge’ and you no longer can ‘relieve’ yourself.

So, although ‘The Phantom of the Pee’ is not a musical with no music, it is a real occurrence.

Dying Before You

I only write for myself here on my blog.  Based on comments, some readers understand me and others do not.  But then again, some readers are learning, while others are just reading.

My posts make perfect sense to me, but to others may be just a collection of ramblings.

Gary and I have conversations about the future.  These conversations are more about the immediate future; but the further out future is sometimes discussed as well.  You see, we discuss the immediate future; the coming months – because there are some unknowns and there are some plans.

20161212_155659

Sometimes our conversations discuss the further out future that may or may not include me.  I have an appointment tomorrow to discuss what is next regarding my battle with cancer.  The appointment will determine the immediate future and the further out future.

But before tomorrow’s appointment, sometimes our conversations discuss the further out future.  Gary and I do not deny what could happen and what will happen.  We all are going to die someday, that is a given – will I die soon, in the immediate future or the further out future?

Gary and I discuss the possibility of me dying before him.  During these discussions, he tells me that if he is left alone, he would do nothing and be nothing.  I want him to live his life to the fullest and not sit alone and not enjoy life.

One evening we had this discussion and later I went to bed for the night.  As I laid there with these thoughts in my head, I became angry.  Why was I angry?

I was angry for several reasons.  Besides our discussion that particular evening, I also watched one of my weekly television program series.  This episode centered around a young woman who had Stage 4 Cancer and was terminal.  She made friends with an unlikely person and the episode ended with this new friend telling her to keep fighting the battle each day, be strong and never give up; fight each and every day.

image13

When I am feeling weak, I want to give up and then there are days I fight.

I want to be around to take care of Gary in the future.  And I remind myself, he needs me just as much as I need him.

But we all are going to die anyway, someday, right?

I feel pain every day and I continue to be physically weak and slow.  My body most times dictates my mind and I become emotionally weak, down and angry.

I am angry that I might not be around to take care of Gary.  He talks about being by himself and being alone and not doing anything, once I am gone.

I don’t want him to do that

Maybe I am angry because I am going to die sooner than him and not be able to take care of him.

I am not doing well at taking care of myself – maybe that is why I am angry

I know – be strong every single day.

Be strong and keep fighting.

But, we are all going to die anyway, someday, right?

There is a mirror

There is a mirror you see

Right in front of me

And as I look at the current me

I am reminded of what I use to be

Image1_1

The daily shower to clean the body

Now the body seems so shoddy

There once stood a man who some thought a hottie

But now that changed man he considers himself a nobody

 

The shower stands in front of that mirror

The doors open I am not far but nearer

I have changed much it is so much clearer

And times I see myself as inferior

Image3

You see that mirror it sees the truth

It tells me my reflection is so much different from my youth

As I open the doors, that shower that booth

You see that mirror it sees the truth

 

But it only reflects the outside of me

There is much more to me, than one can see

My mind will wrestle with the reflection of me

But I remind myself, that, that I can still see

Image2

The body is unimportant, because I have changed

Yes, the inside is a little rearranged

But the personality that cannot be exchanged

It remains positive and it remains unchanged

 

There is a mirror you see

Right in front of me

And as I look at the current me

I am reminded of what I can be

image13

Stop & Listen

Back in December of last year, in my post ‘Reveille‘, I wrote the following words –

In the mornings after reveille, the National Anthem is played.  In the United States, we play the National Anthem before sporting events and sometimes other types of activities where large amounts of people are gathered.  I would acknowledge the song and maybe sing along with it or, maybe not.  Since living at NAS, that has changed; I feel differently when I hear this song now.  The song has more meaning for me.  Why?

No matter where on the base one is – when the National Anthem is played in the morning or evening, everyone stops what they are doing and gives their attention.  Military personal both active and retired salute and civilians with their hand on their heart.  My heart pounds as I am stopped in my tracks and begin singing the National Anthem – what an honor.

In today’s post, I write the following –

From Wikipedia –

The Star-Spangled Banner” is the national anthem of the United States of America. The lyrics come from “Defence of Fort M’Henry”, a poem written on September 14, 1814, by the 35-year-old lawyer and amateur poet Francis Scott Key after witnessing the bombardment of Fort McHenry by British ships of the Royal Navy in Baltimore Harbor during the Battle of Baltimore in the War of 1812. Key was inspired by the large American flag, the Star-Spangled Banner, flying triumphantly above the fort during the American victory.

My friend and fellow blogger Jennie over at A Teacher’s Reflections published a wonderful post back in November of last year about the significance of this song with children.  I did not realize there is a book The Star Spangled Banner by Peter Spier that depicts the words to this song in full color illustrations.  Please stop over to Jennie’s blog and check out her wonderful post Children and “The Star Spangled Banner”.

Having lived on the Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola, Florida – I heard this song every morning.  We sing it many times in our lives without much thought into the words and the meaning of the song.  I realize the following video is rather long (11:38 minutes), but if you have time to watch it, please do.  I hope you listen to the words and watch the video today, and learn something you may have not known and maybe just maybe, it brings to you a new significance; and the next time you hear it, a since of honor and pride will fill your heart.

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

It’s 2:16 in the morning

I have had a restless night, not much sleep because I have thoughts swirling in my head.

It is a while now since I really have had one of these nights.  Since surgery, I am taking medications to help me sleep because I continue to have pains associated with my surgery and recovery.  I also have pains not associated to my surgery and recovery that make it difficult at times to find a comfortable position to sleep.

Image1

Image Provided by: YourStory.com

But on this particular night, it is those thoughts swirling in my head.

I am unsure how long it will be by the time I publish this post.  I may have upset someone and I may have upset you and I may have upset myself.  I make no apologies to no one, including myself.

This blog has always and will always be about me and my life and for that I make no apologies.  I am who I am and have changed for the better in many ways over the years.  I continue to change for the better, though at times the changes come slow; to me at times slower than what my life will provide me here on this earth.

When I die, I will not be a perfect person; I hope to be a person that at least tried to be a better person.  I strive every single day to be a better person.  Some days I succeed and many days I fail; some days I fail miserably.

My point is I try and I do it my way, because I know me better than anyone else knows me.

I have been told at times by people that they do not understand me.  I at times do not understand me either, but I still know me better than anyone else.

When creating this blog, it was a way for me to write about me and my life.

Image2

Image Provided by: We Heart It

My life in words for I hope one day those important to me would read.  I have no idea if they will read it or not – I don’t know.

This brings me to those thoughts swirling in my head tonight, this restless night and me writing this post at 2:16 in the morning.

I don’t really like to be rude; I can be though, and have been times in my life.  I can be rude and have been rude to people I know and to strangers alike.  My personality is complex and at times people do not understand me.  This has already been identified.

When writing and publishing posts, I attempt to write in a way where I do not come across as rude and I try to consider other’s feelings.  So please do not take this the wrong way – I am being honest here.

Image2

Image Provided by: http://www.timorahilly.co.uk

When I write posts about me, the true very personal me, I ask for no advise.  I write the true personal me because it is important for me to do so.  I have come to appreciate support and encouragement here and the friendships I have made are invaluable.

Now, again at 2:16 in the morning, I am writing the true personal me.  It was a little while ago; and that week was tough and that ‘I don’t know’ was tough and therefore I was rude because I did not ask for advice.  I was writing the true personal me because it is important for me to do so.