Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Some Guys Will do Anything to Lay Around a Bit

I’m in the hospital.

Don’t fret. I’m not dying.

Well, perhaps I am, we all are. But I don’t expect that I’ll be shuffling off this mortal coil any time soon.

So... they let me bring my computer in and I thought I’d do a little writing rather than watch one of the three Law and Orders or two Crime Scene Investigations that are on TV.

I was mowing the lawn yesterday and after a half hour or so I felt a little funny. I thought I was just dehydrated.

But my left arm tingled, and the muscle in the upper arm felt... odd. I woke up this morning and the tingling was still there. And it was still there when I was in a meeting at the end of the day. So I went to the doctor, they did some checks, and now I’m back from chest x-rays and a cat scan.

Interesting place...

The RN, Sally, is really sweet, kindly...

Bits of conversation drift in from the hall...

“...are you feeling any better?”

“...We’ll be back to see you in the morning...”

“...is my butt hanging out?...”

-----------------------------

A few friends just dropped by. My “moon howlin” buddies. We laughed a bit, they threatened to take my laptop away because I’m still working (got to type up some lesson plans!).

-----------------------------

It’s almost 9:00 p.m. I have a promise to keep...


-----------------------------

Dear Lord...

Thank you for my family. Bless them tonight.

Protect my son Jeremiah. Keep all forces of darkness, all things that are not of You, far away from him. bless his sleep tonight. May he sleep well. I cannot place my hand on him tonight, so I ask that You touch him for me.

Be with Isaac tonight. I know he is afraid for me. Most people do not see how sensitive he is, but I know his fears, Lord, and I ask You to please give him a sense of peace, a calmness, a serenity that all is all right and that his daddy is fine. Bless my beautiful child, bless my son.

Comfort my wife tonight, Lord...

--phone rings--

It was my family! They were praying for me while I was praying for them. The great thing was I was able to pray for them with them.

I really have no idea where this post is going. It certainly isn’t going to be the polished type of writing I like to do. But it is a weB LOG... my online journal... so since I have some time on my hands... I’m going to ramble on... But, if you are looking for something pithy, perhaps you should move on to the next blog you like to read, or check on one of the blogs I have listed over there to the right.

-----------------------------

A local hospital is an interesting place. Full of memories. Here is where brought Jeremiah a few months ago when his bloody nose didn’t stop for so long. Here is where I was brought 12 years ago when I was hit by a car while riding a motorcycle. Here is where I saw my first child lying dead on a metal table.

This is the place where neighbors and friends and chuirch family come when they need help (there is a man from my church in a room across the hall). Births and deaths. Small owies and life-threatening injuries are dealt with here.

My pastor visited me here last night, a few hours after being here for the man across the hall.

What a blessing to have such a place...

-----------------------------

Good morning! I usually wake up at 5:00 and here I am still in bed at 7:30. No coffee either.

It’s hard to fall asleep in this place. It was after 11:30 when I finally did. The rounds of tests, EKG, blood, weight, blood pressure began promptly at 5:00. It would have been better if it included a massage.

They’ve been great here.

My boss called me this morning. He’s a great guy. I’m really looking forward to working for him next year. Our school is dividing. It has gotten too big and we are building a new one. I am staying at the old school and the staff that is going to be there with me is a fantastic group of educators. We have some great ideas on how we will reinvent ourselves.

I could say a lot about pedagogy and education and programs and curricula that will help so many kids... but I keep thinking about the people who work there.

Many are believers. Protestant and Catholic. Every morning at 7:30 up to a dozen of us gather in a conference room or an office, shut the door, and say the Lord’s Prayer. One of that regular group isn’t a believer. So, at this very moment while I write they are praying, and I am sure they said an extra little prayer for me.

Many are not believers. They have their own philosophies and beliefs which are important to who they are. Artists and golfers, vegetarians and “slaughter it, dip it in boiling fat and put gravy on it meat eaters”. They are democrats and republicans, new teachers and nearing retirement veterans of decades of teaching.

Believers or not, they are wonderful people. They love kids so much. They do not work just eight hours a day. They get there early, they leave late. They come in on weekends and they grade papers, write lessons and tests and quizzes. They take summer graduate courses and workshops on how to deal with ELL, NCLB, CIM/CAM, IEPs, 504s, TAG, and a host of other alphabet soup pedagogical entrees.

I love them. They are such good people. It is a privilege to do anything I can for them. I want to serve them as I serve my students. As I serve my Lord.


-----------------------------

I wasn’t afraid last night. Perhaps I really don’t think that I am in any sort of danger from a heart attack. I think I have stopped thinking of myself as mortal. It has been a long process, but I have an eternal perspective of who I am and the idea of dying really doesn’t seem to frighten.

I am concerned about my family... that they would be able to make ends meet should I no longer be here...

I have gotten into the habit of thinking in terms of greater spans of time than a human life. The intellectual part of me, the curious scientist, has contemplated millennia, and eons, and the billions of years since He made all things for such a long time that I am comfortable in imagining the spinning of galaxies, sparkling with the regular beats of birthing and dying stars.

I have also gotten into the habit of thinking in terms of greater spans of future time. The spiritual part of me, the Curious Servant sees an eternity of joy lying ahead. I see those spinning galaxies cooling and darkening in some distant future while I view them from an eternity which runs parallel to this time, this place. I picture time as a two-dimensional plane which will permit me to walk beside the universe, watching all of it unfolding to reveal mysteries that a human mind cannot begin to behold. That will be mine. I believe this two dimensional time will allow me to move to any point in creation and view it for as long as I wish. I am certain that the crucifixion of my Master is the most visited event of all time. Some day my heart will fill beyond the emotions a mortal can bear while I watch those nails driven into those wrists. That is where I am headed. I am already immortal.

So, what if I do have heart disease today? It means I will have to change some things. I’ll probably forgo the burgers, and the sausage, and onion rings. Sigh... I’ll probably stop having the huge plate of biscuits and gravy when I’m returning from the coast at Camp 18 on Hwy 26. I might let my wife talk me into riding a bike to school. I’m not talking about a motorcycle. I can’t pictue me in spandex, but a reclining bike could be cool.

I need to finish raising these kids, and Jeremiah may always be needing me. Isaac is slowly turning into a young man and I need to see him off and running his own race.

So I need to stick around.


-----------------------------

Well this post is long enough. It is a rambling one... a wandering journey through rolling thoughts in this weird mind of mine while I lay in this hospital bed. Which is getting tiresome. I’ve said enough here for now. I can provide updates in the comment section.

God bless!


46 comments:

Jim said...

Hi C.S. I really am sorry to hear where you are and what for. You are a little young for these things, you know.

I know you have good doctors. I'm not sure what hospital you are in or how it does with cardiac things. It seems to be a local one. If you needed a bypass or stent, would they do it there or would you go to another larger one?

My comment is rambling. Besides praying for you and your family and the doctors and health care people (almost to the puppies and kittens aren't I?), I was praying along with you for the family. You are a blessing to God, blessed by Him, and I think he still wants your ministry to continue.

Yes, I was there for 22 years doing the teaching thing. I actually did more work outside my regular hours than during.

Teaching isn't the most stressful job though. If you mess up, you will get a new crop of students to tend next year. My 17 years at NASA were very stressful. If we messed up there, lives could lost or launches scrubbed, i.e. postponed until later.

I'm glad your friends (“moon howlin’” buddies) came to visit you. They are true friends. Of course, so were (or were they, you're the expert) Job's friends. They certainly didn't cheer him up, did they.

Oh yes, your school prayer group is praying for you too. When is school out for you? Soon, I think. It is out here now.

Will let someone else post. Oh yes,watch your diet, sort of like they tell you. Your wife will help, but you can overrule her. Don't do that. Mrs. Jim acts like my conscience and I appreciate that.
..

curious servant said...

I'm home again. Taking the next couple of days off so I can take some tests. Treadmill test today. will see a neurologist on Wednesday.

My left arm still feeling pins & needles. I would feel better if they knew what was going on.

Fred said...

Hope you get out of there soon with a clean bill of health, CS. As we get older, we begin to have more of these thoughts, which is natural, I guess.

Keep us posted.

Tamara said...

Oh C.S., only you could make a hospital visit into a fabulous blog post and a wonderful chance to reflect and share time with the Lord. I sure hope you are feeling better soon. Ya got a lot of livin' to do!

Jada's Gigi said...

Hope you're feeling better....that eternity thing can wait til the kids are raised...:)

bjk said...

Thanks for this.....He IS in everything...thanks for showing us, sharing with us this part of your journey....God bless you!

~m2~ said...

(((cs))) take good care of yourself and be sure to rest in between tests - these are the kind of tests you can't really study for, you just take them and pray :) (sounds sort of like my high school life, actually....)

keep us posted and i'll keep you in my prayers, as always.

curious servant said...

Frankly I am a little more nervous now than when I thought I was having a heart attack.

I don't fear dying. I am sure that this isn't going to happen any time soon, anyway. It is going to be wonderful... I don't believe we will get all the answers when we die... I believe that we will continue to learn, continue to grow... and I am CURIOUS more than anything else.

But I do wonder how my children will do... And I want my wife taken care of... This is sounding morbid. I want all of you to know that I am laughing and praying and enjoying. While in the hospital bed I was raising my hands and praying and rejoicing in our Lord.

Still... I felt calmer when I thought I was having a heart attack. But when the doctors shrug their shoulders and say they do not know what is going on... that is... unsettling.

I went and prayed today, and it made me tired. I am doing a new prayer painting, which I will share in an upcoming post. (I'm very excited about where it is going!)

Now... replies:

Fred: Yeah... I turned 50 and suddenly stuff starts going wrong. Perfect example of what happens when the warranty runs out!

Tamara: Thanks for the nice, kind, sweet, perspective! Perhaps I have a lot more mortal living to do... but regardless, I have an eternity of living ahead of me and whatever He wants of me I am willing. I am at His (and yours) service.

Jada's Gigi: Raising the kids is my heart's desire. I'm sure that it will all work out.

M2: You're probably right. And if so, then I am guessing that the results of the treadmill test will be exactly the same as the guy's next to me! HA!

Later all! Thakn you for your prayers and kind words!

Coco said...

So glad to read that you are home...
At home with your loved ones : )

I hope that it's nothing serious-
my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Please keep us posted.

Blessings.

Judas Hate said...

By the time I read this, you were already home.

I'm glad you are out of there and back with your family.

I hated being stuck in the hospital away from my family.

That's the only thing that has ever kept me from them over night.

My thoughts and prayers continue to be with you and your family.

curious servant said...

Treadmill test indicates that my heart looks good. I'm not sure what that means as far as what is really going on.

Probably neurological or some circulatory problem in the arm itself I guess.

I do need to start taking better care of myself. Diet and exercise... same old song, new voice in the choir.

Next Wednesday is the appointment with the neurologist. Then the following Friday will be the doctor's visit.

Tomorrow is our church's 24 hour hour of prayer we do each month. I am working on a painting of The Lord's Prayer. I might take pictures.

So... apparently I have a good heart... and I haven't had a stroke, so I still have a brain... maybe I've just got a lotta nerve!

Replies:

Coco: Thanks for your prayers! I appreciate them and your kind words. I will keep my blog family posted.

Justin: I appreciate your prayers, my friend! Thank you!

Paula said...

Dear Brother,

Glad you're home and resting now. So glad to hear you have a good heart! Please take care of yourself.

Your Sister In Christ,

Judas Hate said...

:-)

I like your comment on my post better than my post:-)

Be well brother!

poopie said...

Glad to hear that all is well. Maybe it's carpal tunnel symdrome? You're lucky they let you sleep 'til 5. At my hospital the morning vampire rounds begin at 4!

curious servant said...

Paula: Thanks

Justin: Glad you liked it!

Poopie: Perhaps... it is beginning to look neurological. I suppose it could be any of the nerves from my fingers to between my ears...

I'm feeling much more at ease about it. We shall see.

Like I said... "Some Guys Will do Anything to Lay Around a Bit"

Now... I wonder where I can buy a good hammock?

Suzanne said...

I was thinking pinched nerve or something? Are you tired and worn out feeling..I mean did that go along with it, or just this weird tingling thing, etc. ??? Weird. Anyway, glad you're home.

Seeker said...

Will you be getting any new parts?

curious servant said...

Suzanne: Perhaps it is a pinched nerve. Probably a lot of fuss over nothing. I am tired, but since I normally only get 6 hours of sleep a night and work between 10 & 12 hours a day, and have a half dozen projects I work on besides being a hubby and dad, I can't be certain that my weariness is tied to this tingling feeling.

Seeker: If I was to ask the wizard for a new part, what should it be?


Perhaps I should ask for a new sense of humor. Folks tell me that the one I have is a little odd!

Ame said...

Glad you're home and progressing through the search. I always find it intriguing that God already knows what's up yet He allows us to go thru the process anyway ... when it comes to body things, I'm not very patient with the process ;)

David said...

Gosh man, hope you are doing okay on this Friday morning. There is NOTHING interesting about hospitals. I have spent too much time in them this year alone and my life-time in total with both of my parents. While I ADMIRE the nurses who care for the ill, I do not find it interesting in the least.

Hope you are out of there and home now.

Kitty Cheng said...

CS, shouldn't you be resting now hehe? Why are you on the computer again brother? Take care, will keep you in prayers.

Cinder said...

CS, I'm glad to hear that you are back home and I hope you are doing okay today. I hope you do take pictures of your painting...they are always good to see.

I will continue to lift you up in prayer as you prepare for doctor's appointments next week.

Blessings to you!

curious servant said...

Hi there!

I'm being lazy...

I think my body is just saying that it is time for the school year to end (we would normally be out about now but our new schedule has us working until the 23rd!).

So I have the day off again (though I went in this morning and prepped my substitute).

I am feeling a little weird, but I think all is ok. The left arms doesn't want to work real well, and it tingles... but it isn't painful or anything.

I have a neurologist appointment on Wednesday, and we'll see what he has to say.

AME: I think that is the whole point of a mortal existence... that we figure it out.

David: I suppose it is interesting to me because it is a relatively novel experience. The last time I was there was about 12 years ago after being hit while riding my motorcycle. But I was very happy to leave after just one day.

Kitty Cheng: You caught me!

Cinder: I appreciate the prayers. I will definately do a few posts on this painting. I am toying with the idea of getting lithographs of it done and sell them as a way to raise money for the rebuilding of our church. But even if I don't, I thought it would be interesting to share the process with my readers. I have already started writing the post for it (probably put it up on Sunday).

Later!

Ame said...

"AME: I think that is the whole point of a mortal existence... that we figure it out."

Yeah . . . and I'm wining some here, but I'm tired of figuring things out right now . . . I'm ready for life to calm some . . . just a little bit further, I think . . . nice to know I don't have to make it, I just need to fall into God and allow Him to make it for me.

Ryan S. said...

Get well soon.

curious servant said...

Ame:

I can understand that feeling. There have been times when I think: "All right Already!"

I think it is OK to get frustrated, even angry. Sometimes life simply sucks. He made us with emotions, and they are natural. Frustration, weariness, anger, depression... even those emotions which are not of God are still part of who we are and He understands.

As long as we stay true.

When things have gotten really bad, when the world swirls around me and it makes me dizzy... all I need do is simply stay true. That may mean that we no longer move forward. That we con no longer move forward is sometimes understandable.

But as we wade through stiff currents, it is OK to simply pause and stand in the stream... stand true.

There has been some pretty hard times in my life. SImply stand. That is enough.

AME... please let me know if you need prayer...

--Will

Christopher said...

get better, stronger. prayers to you and yours.

Anonymous said...

Get well, CS.

byHisgracealone said...

Greetings CS.....rest, please rest and get well...my prayers are with you..I have been so out of touch these past few months...Bless you!
Donna

Jim said...

I saw a hammock with a sun shade at the head end tonight in front of the grocery store.
We will pray that the neurologist can find the problem and figure out how to get you fixed back up.
Thanks for keeping us posted.
..

Corry said...

We are keeping you in our prayers!

God's Grace.

curious servant said...

Thanks all! The symptoms persist... Shoulder, & arm are numb, the hand and fingers tingle... Neurologist is Wednesday.

Thank you for your prayers and kind words of encouragement.

Ame said...

Thank you . . . I sent you an email

Fox's Mom said...

CS, you have prayers coming for you and yours from Metro Atlanta. I was really worried until I saw the updates you've posted here.

Let us know, please, as soon as you can, how Weds. goes. Maybe it's a 'simple' pinched nerve...

eija said...

Get well soon. God bless you :)

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Vicki said...

I had missed you and came here tonight to catch up--oh my! I'm concerned for you, though you sound well. Will keep the prayers going for you, sons, wife--family. Keep us posted, please.

Mark D said...

I don't think you were rambling at all. Nice thoughts in there - thoughts common to all of us at some point. Glad you were able use a computer. Hospitals can be boring.

Lorna said...

hang in there brother :)

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