15 comments on “The Other Shoe

  1. Yes, I too have felt a ‘marked’ man at times. However, what keeps me going is being here, at th e moment, with my family. Another Christmas with them, being here for them. We all have to find what works best for each of us, but at times not easy. Best wishes to you and your family.

    • That’s a good approach. We have no kids and at least this Xmas no extended family with us. I’m not sure me being around offers that much anyway.

      I know my wife loves me and wants me to be around as long as possible, but there’s a part of me that thinks it would be better for her if this were to all come to a close and she could get on with getting over it and make a new life while she’s still relatively young.

        • Not at all! I very much appreciate your comments. I just was particularly down when I responded to your comment. I’m sure you understand the ups and downs this disease brings. I’ve thought a lot about your comment. On XMas day my wife I drove for over 8 hours to pick up a new puppy! Gave me lots of time to think. You’re right, there’s a lot of value in being here for them and spending the time with them. It does make a difference, thanks.

  2. thank you for sharing your process. a big stumbling block for me has been the wondering about how people come to accept death. especially when they’re young. my aunt had fully accepted death in the weeks before she died, and i just don’t understand how people do it. very mysterious. that said, i’m so happy to hear you have seen another birthday and christmas! best wishes in the new year.

    • I don’t really know what I’m talking about, but I have the feeling the Buddhists have figured out how to at least think about death. I’ve starting some reading along those lines. I’ll post if anything interesting turns up.

      In western civilization with people who die young of crippling diseases, I think in most cases they come to terms with death very late in the game, if at all. I believe the combination of experiencing greatly reduced physical/mental ability (knowing it will only get worse) along with pain plus pain killers causes profound changes in brain chemistry. I feel it preps us for death and the most obvious sign is we become ready to accept death.

      Regardless, I will continue to document my process as long as I can. Thanks for letting me know you appreciate the effort. It helps confirm I’m making the kind of contribution I want with this blog.

  3. Feel free to tell me to go f*ck off, but I have an idea. Speaking of Buddhist principles, my favorite is that of a leaf floating on the water. What about that idea? You’re a leaf, floating along – it matters not where you’ve come from, or where you’re headed. All that matters is the height of waves around you, the sky above, the beautiful shoreline.

    • I like it. It’s about staying in the present extended to include putting holidays (or any specific day) in a less important role. Regardless, I’m glad XMas has past. That’s not the end of it, though. I’ve also decided that I decide how I react to holidays and my birthday. I’ve also decided that next year I’m going to have a good time, a really good time, period.

      • Regardless of how you feel when your birthday or other holidays arrive, I am glad to hear you say you’re considering how to approach them, how you’d like to conceptualize them. This is the basis of CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy), that the way we choose to believe or the way we choose to approach certain information/events directly influences the way we feel about them.

  4. I appreciate your brutally honest writings about this. Very glad you are still here. As you know, I have lost three family members this year, my 57 year old sister to advanced lung cancer and it has also made me look at my own mortality. It’s very uncomfortable to do so, no matter how many peak experiences one may have, or how many AHA! moments, when it comes right down to it, we are so frightened of the unknown.

    I have three children and years ago one of them was diagnosed with a brain tumor and given a 25 to 40 % chance of survival after five years. He was one year old at the time. I was terrorized by the statistics and predictions and finally told myself “He is either 100% dead or 100% alive and for today he is 100% alive and that is what I am going to focus on. It helped a great deal in living one day at a time. That was 16 years ago and he is doing well, thank goodness.

    Happy Birthday, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and all the rest. Best wishes to you.

  5. The best shoes are the worn out ones, so put them on, both, and walk as one piece with confidence, your blog shows a very strong honest personality, good luck for the year to come, thanks for sharing your thoughts

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