Thank you for visiting. I am a First Nations, US Marine, Father, Survivor, trying to be the best citizen I can be on the giant rock hurling through space. I hope to encourage others as I have been encouraged.
Rattle Rattle, “spare change?” , “help a brother out”?
Pan handling, it’s not so bad. You never have to worry about making eye contact with anybody. Although the concrete IS hot in the summer and sucks the life’s blood out of you in the winter. My knees ache, and butt gets numb at times. Don’t have to worry about feet getting cold since I left those back in Afghanistan.
Hard concrete flashback: snapping in honing our marksmanship skills in the Marine Corps. The circle was asphalt, the rifle sling was tourniquet tight. We knelt facing a target, not firing, just developing muscle memory. Bam!! I saw stars as the DI slapped the rifle against my face, “tighten it up maggot”.
Bam!! Back to reality, a car backfires.
A long legged fur coat wearing high society type approaches the entrance to the high rise apartments with her fru-fru K9. She stops momentarily, takes out a tissue and wipes the dog’s arse.
What’s wrong with this picture?
Rattle Rattle, “spare change?” , “help a brother out”?
As Chaman sat on the patio, I would hear him talking to his petalled friends, encouraging them to grow, thanking them for their beauty. As a new tenant, with the patio immediately outside my front door, it was hard not to hear Chaman my landlord’s peculiar activity through my single paned sliding window.
Leaving for work the next morning, the proprietor was already at his “post”. Awkwardly, I blurted out “Good morning Chaman, what is your secret to such a beautiful floral display”? “Oh how very kind of you, but I cannot take all the credit, the other tenants contribute as well”. “You might contribute as well if you are ever late on rent.” Stunned I headed out.
That evening in the laundry room, I met one of my neighbors. “Pleased to meet you” she said. Shaking hands, I noticed she was missing two fingers. I jerked back. “I am sorry, that was rude of me”. Dear girl, what….” before I could complete my question, tearfully she cried, “Two months late”.
Note: Chaman (means flowering garden in Bengali (East Indian))
Deep somewhere in my grey matter, a Bing Crosby movie Dr. Cook’s Garden deserves credit for a similar gardening tip.
Shackled to a 4×4 beam. Shoulders ached. 12 hours earlier, The Pharisees had returned a verdict of guilty. Guilty of not following doctrine. For daring to question ritualistic antiquited practices. Immediately, they strapped the timber behind my neck and across my shoulders sent me off into the desert. Feet raw, and head throbbing, I approached what seemed a porthole, I could see a green valley on the other side. You could hear the bubbling sound of a stream. Just to the left of the entryway, a prominent hieroglyph was etched. “With burdens of the world, no man shall pass and enter… “.
There was no way the large timber would pass through the porthole. Digging deep, I proceeded to bang the beam against the granite walls. Skin rubbed raw, freshly burst blisters stinging from salty sweat and blood. One final thrust and I was free. Finding my balance, I reapproached the portal and dusted away the remaining portion of the hieroglyph. “With burdens of the world, no man shall pass and enter into the valley of the shadow of death. “
Written for Sue Vincent’s Photo prompt #writephoto Special thanks to Sue for Hosting!
So thankful for modern medicine. I feel 90% of my facial/blinking has returned to “normal”. I did want to share and a shift in a few things physically and emotionally after after a 10 day regiment using oral steroids(Prednisolone). All was well until 3 days after stopping taking them. If you are familiar with the comedy skit team, The Kids in The Hall, you will likely be familiar with one, Mr. Heavyfoot.
This is a great depiction of how both my arms and legs feel. The sensation is one of pumping iron to the point of feeling like my arms are going to burst but at the same time, weighing me down like sandbags.
Emotionally, I am so thankful to have my family around me. A few stresses left me finding it hard to focus and wanting to distance myself and regroup.
I have a new found respect for those that require steroid treatments such as those with Lupus, and other conditions. Big thanks again to good friends and family for sharing not only best wishes but especially their experiences with Bell’s palsy and Prednisolone.
Original post start here
For those who know me, they have learned to wince when they sensed a bad pun or play on words. My intention is always to entertain and perhaps brighten ones day. A few days ago I was diagnosed with Bell’s palsy which I had never heard of and is pretty much as I understand a temporary condition (4-6 weeks). For more information Click Here
From Web MD:”Bell’s palsy is a paralysis or weakness of the muscles on one side of your face. Damage to the facial nerve that controls muscles on one side of the face causes that side of your face to droop camera.The nerve damage may also affect your sense of taste and how you make tears and saliva. This condition comes on suddenly, often overnight, and usually gets better on its own within a few weeks.”
Bell’s palsy is NOT the result of a stroke or a transient ischemic attack (TIA). While stroke and TIA can cause facial paralysis, there is no link between Bell’s palsy and either of these conditions. But sudden weakness that occurs on one side of your face should be checked by a doctor right away to rule out these more serious causes.”
Although I initially felt numbness on my face, I thought it was from our recent trip to the water park where the side of my face was being pummeled by high velocity highly chlorinated water and was simply a reaction to the chemicals.
It was when I was eating the next day that my lips felt swollen and numb, and I kept dribbling liquid out of the left side(right side below) of my mouth when drinking.
As you can imagine, I thought I’d had a stroke. This is when the “me caveman!””me strong” mentality set in. My Dr. confirmed the Bells palsy with a few physical tests to rule out a stroke. Obviously I was relieved am optimistic of a full recovery. With my blogs intention of “breaking chains” I felt it important to share the reality of how men tend to “live in denial” when it comes to their health but unfortunately too many”die in denial” thinking things will just go away. Good advice from my older brother Danny years ago. “Take care of yourself so you can care for those you love.”
On a lighter note, the pun side of my grey matter can’t help but with literally a “stiff upper lip”, appreciate a new found ability to do a impersonation E.G. Robinsons ” Little Caesar“. Edward G Robinson of Ya see,it’s curtains for you! Curtains, ya hear me!”
To Little Caesar, Curtains for me? not quite yet, not yet!
Take care of yourselves.
Blinking: it was like my eye had memory loss, forgetting to do what you take for granted (wipe clean lubricate/protect the eye). Intitially I set an hourly timer, and used artificial tears. I wore and eye patch at night to keep the old guy from drying out. After a few days I used Mineral oil eye ointment which although at times clouded vision a little, lasted longer and was more comfortable.
You take your smile for granted and it was an emotional challenge getting in public, talking to people and noticing that the content of the conversation was secondary to the look you received as they noticed half your face wasn’t moving.
Thanks to the support of my family and friends. The daily “How’s your face” inquiry from my life partner kept it light, to the wonderful Guardian Angel out there sharing of personal experiences with Bell’s palsy helped me keep my spirits up! I am honored to have you in my life.
36 years ago I started my journey to earn the title of US Marine. No doubt the yellow footprints come to mind but today, I remember a time through all the the chaos of Marine bootcamp that I found even more surreal than the days that started at 0530 with reville blasting and two minutes to be dressed and on the road to chow. It was Firewatch.
For civilian types, firewatch is basically patrolling the squadbay for an hour while the rest of the platoon sleeps. This was a time of self reflection as in “what the hell did I get myself into?” Walking the squadbay, you could hear the sound of your steps on the the always pristine floors blend in with multiple breathing/snores of your platoon brothers. Approaching the lone mirror at the front of the squadbay aka “the classroom”, you didn’t recognize your own reflection as your physical transformation didn’t take place standing in front of a mirror. Your body felt stronger everyday and at this late hour, it longed for sleep.
Five minutes before your watch was up, you woke up your relief. The last five minutes of duty always felt like an hour.
Whether consciously designed as a time for a Marine recruit to be self aware or not, it was an hour in time that I did just that.
Firewatch: Sleep well America, Marines have been on Firewatch since 1775.