Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Days Of My Life

I had a delightful day yesterday. I got out of bed a little after 6:00 AM as I do every Monday morning. It was as difficult as ever but I was in a good mood because I was taking the day off from work and having a Michael day. I took my wife to work and jumped on Interstate 65 and headed for the home of my friend, Fr. Dennis. A mutual friend that neither of us had seen for a while was coming to the monastery to make a Holy Week retreat. This friend is named Fr. Tom and he is another teacher and mentor from my past. We all met for lunch at a Chinese restaurant in Bardstown, Kentucky. We had a very enjoyable meal with lots of good conversation and funny stories. After lunch we headed in separate directions. I still had some time before I needed to be back in Louisville so I wandered over to the monastery. I went into the book store but was able to resist the urge to buy anything since Fr Dennis have given me a book on Russian mystics and I have a stack of books at home that still need to be read. It was a beautiful day. I got a cup of coffee in the retreat house and went outside to sit in one of the monastery gardens. I found a comfortable chair and sat in silence bathing in a perfect balance of warm sunlight and cool breezes. Soon I was lost in the moment. After sitting for a while in the fullness of the moment, I was pulled back by the abbey bells alerting me that it was 3:15 PM and time to go home.

A lot has happened for me in the last few days. Last Thursday my father was taken off his respirator. I spent much of the evening with a brother and a sister watching over him since none of us were sure how he would react to this chance. He handled it fairly well and as of the moment is holding his own. He’s not getting any better but he doesn’t seem to be getting any worse either. It’s a waiting game at this point to see what is going to happen. I spent a little more time with him on Sunday. He was asleep so I just sat and quietly prayed for him. When I left I kissed him on the top of his head and hoped that he might somehow know I was there.

Last Friday I went to the doctor to get the results of my recent blood work. The good news is that I have no terminal illness. The bad news is that my diabetes is worse. My doctor is a woman from Eastern Europe and I like her very much. She has a very soft voice with a wonderful accent. I like her because she never acts rushed. She takes the time to talk with you and explain things. One of the things she said to me was “Your blood sugar is out of control”. Some of it is probably my own fault but she didn’t think I was totally to blame. She gave me an anatomy lesson on the pancreas before telling that I must now give myself insulin shots. I wasn’t too thrilled about this but accepted it. When I did it for the first time I was happy to realize that it was painless and wasn’t as bad as pricking my finger to test my blood. Once again I am humbled by the needs of my aging body.

Saturday night the usual gang of suspects and me attended a smoking bluegrass music concert. There was some incredible musicianship and humor from a group of very talented good old boys lead by guitarist Dan Tyminski. Dan is most famous for being the voice behind George Clooney’s singing of “A Man of Constant Sorrow” in the movie “O Brother, Where Are Thou”?

The other big news from the weekend is that Chloe has begun walking in her Pa Paw’s foot steps. Chloe is officially a rock and roll road warrior. She attended a live concert by the Doodlebops. She came to my house afterwards wearing “Dee Dee” hair. (See the attached picture) Dee Dee is the keyboard player in the Doodlebops. The Doodlebops are a regular feature on the Disney Channel as anyone with children knows. They’re like Led Zeppelin for children. One of the things her parents bought her, because of me, was a very bright tie dyed shirt with the Doodlebops tour dates and the cities where they are appearing listed on the back. I have a whole drawer full of such shirts.

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