Showing posts with label Illness. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Illness. Show all posts

August 28, 2018

Upside Down Flower On Stairs

Thought this was an interesting picture to take. 

It's an upside-down pink flower bent over a concrete stair. 

And the stem is sticking straight up and out. 

The contrast of the live soft pink flower and the cold hard grey of the concrete stairs is astounding to me.

Life can so easily be bent over, squished out, and left for dead in the cold harsh realities of this world 

We are alive, but life can be hard. 

We fight to go on, but life is sometimes unforgiving.

The bright spark of life seeks to illuminate the hard grey block.

Breath, beat, live...good health is unbelievably precious.

Arise flower and once again stand tall in the glowing sunshine and the pouring rain. 

Nourish yourself in the soil of the Earth, give praise to the L-rd as only life can do. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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May 12, 2018

Beautiful Virus, Huh?

So this is an image of the Tobacco Mosaic Virus.

Yeah, I never heard of it either. 

It is a virus that attacks and destroys tobacco and other plants. 

Viruses are ugly and evil in that they hurt and kill other living things

Yet in looking at this molecular image, I seriously hate to say it, but it is also beautiful in a way. 

The shape, color, complexity--the design and wisdom embedded in it--what can I say, but even this too is a miracle. 

Sure, it would be better in a mortal sense if there were no viruses to make us suffer and literally eat away at us. 

Yet, surely G-d has a plan even for these nasty virus molecules.  

Do they help us gain immunity to even worse diseases?

Do they help us to use ingenuity to discover, fight, and evolve to withstand their attacks and progress our society in larger ways?

Do they help us learn however horribly to turn to G-d, strengthen ourselves, and somehow try to cope with suffering and loss in life and death.

All sickness is unbelievably horrible and the suffering it causes is truly impossible to understand, and G-d should please, please have mercy on us. 

Yet, looking at this molecular image of even this virus, there is something comforting in the supreme intelligent design and creation of it all.  ;-)

(Source Andy's photo of image by Visual Molecular Dynamics)
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May 4, 2018

Have a Heart: Leadership With Heart

So many of you already know my leadership mantra. 

It's all about:
Leadership With Heart

That means understanding that workers are human beings. 

Yes, they should act as professionals.

But also, they are people with imperfections and problems.

Whether they are fighting addiction, debt, illness, mental health issues, family problems, abuse, or personal loss. 

Life happens.

And it's not always pleasant. 

Unfortunately, it seems like we are tested all the time. 

Therefore, good leaders, real leaders...lead with heart. 

They focus on the mission, but also empower, develop, and have empathy for the people. 

Think of the people you know in leadership positions today. 

Are they leaders with heart or heartless sons of guns. 

Who do you want to follow into the future?  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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February 11, 2018

They Really Think They Deserve It

Sometimes I come across people with enormous wealth and power. 

Many wield it like they own it and deserve it. 

I wonder sometimes with billions of other people in the world without adequate food, water, plumbing, medicine, or a solid roof over the heads, how the mighty can think they are above it all. 

Do they look around--do they see anyone else but themselves?

They seem drunk with themselves and what they have--and very overconfident.

Worshipping self and all the honor and materialistic success--they forget where it comes from and what they are supposed to be doing with it to help others. 

Yet, G-d and His angels can strike in but a split second. 

Those that are high and mighty can be brought low and those that are in the depths of despair can be uplifted. 

But at the will of G-d Almighty.

At the top, people may erroneously think and come to believe that they are smarter or more deserving--and so what's theirs is theirs for the taking and keeping. 

They think "To hell" with everyone else--they are the little people. 

Perhaps, they even come to enjoy squashing them underfoot.

They really believe and savor the power and even think it's forever. 

Yet the wheel of life turns and often abruptly--illness, accidents, misfortune...it comes seemingly from nowhere when G-d breaths justice. 

How silly of the powerful and wealthy to think they are the untouchable and the forever mighty. 

G-d sees the good and the bad in the people--and ultimately, there is no escape from the King of Kings. 

Wealth and power are earthly and fleeting, but the will of G-d is all that endures. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 20, 2018

Fulfilling Dying Children's Wishes



I am just so impressed with this charity...the Make A Wish Foundation

They grant the wishes of children diagnosed with terminal illness--and in the U.S. alone, they grant a wish every 34 minutes!

What nobler and giving act can there be, especially when it comes to an innocent child who never even had the chance to live their lives and try to make their dreams come true. 

Whether it's letting the child meet a famous world wrestler and actor, John Cena (featured in the video above)--who has granted more wishes than any other celebrity in the history of the foundation--to taking a child to a special travel destination or helping them be that incredible superhero for a day. 

Seeing the joy on the faces of these children--despite the pain of their illnesses and their dire situations--seems like one of the holiest and most incredible things that we can do. 

I really want to acknowledge the famous people, like Cena and others, who take the time and effort to really give back--and with a loving and caring heart to these kids. 

Again, there are truly good people out there--who don't just live for themselves--but who think about and give generously to others. 

Life is not just about "I" but about all the people we can reach and uplift.

Cena isn't just a champion wrestler, but he has a champion heart. 

And the Make A Wish Foundation is an incredible organization composed of thousands of incredible people doing righteous work that I believe makes G-d smile down at us from the Heavens above. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 27, 2017

Longevity...85 Is The New 65

So I was speaking to one of our very nice elderly neighbors.

Last week he lost his dear wife of 60 years!

I had visited him during Shiva (the Jewish period of mourning) to wish him our best and let him know we are there if there is anything he needs. 

He told me how the night before she passed, they had gone out to eat and to the theatre (she loved the theatre)...and everything was fine!

And then the next day, he went to work--he still teaches medicine at the local hospital 2 days a month.

At midday, he called his wife and asked how she was and if she needed anything from the store (to eat etc.)

She told him she was fine and she didn't need anything. 

But by the time he got home just one hour later...she had fallen, hit her head, and died. 

He tried to do CPR by it was no use, she was gone. 

Both he and his wife were 84-years old. 

He mentioned that would tease her that he was 3 months older than her, and so she had to listen to him!

I felt so bad for him...it was obvious how much he loved her and missed her already. 

When he told me how old she was, I tried to say reassuringly:
"That's a good old age...at least she lived a full life!"

But then he answered:
"84--that's nothing! 85 is the new 65!!!"  
And went on to tell me how many of their friends are already in the 90's. 

It's funny how no matter what age you are...there is always a will to live!

He said how she had passed quickly and so maybe he could consider that a blessing. 

And we talked about how it truly is especially when some other people really suffer prolonged periods with terrible debilitating and painful illnesses. 

It was also strange that around the same time, I ran into yet another elderly neighbor, and he had tears in his eyes...and I asked how he is. 

He told me how he just learned 3 weeks ago that his wife has lung cancer. 

Seeing his expression how bad things were, I inquired what stage it was at. 

He said, "stage 3 cancer," and I told him as well how sorry I was for his pain. 

All this made me realize again, how very tenuous life is...and we all hang by a thread that G-d decides at any moment when to shear and when to cut--we need to live every moment to the fullest and as if it's our last. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 16, 2017

The Horrible C Word

Cancer is such an awful killer disease.

After heart disease, it is the #2 cause of death in the United States taking almost 592,000 lives a year or 22.5% of all deaths!

Usually, we don't even like to say the word and even tempt fate.

Instead we just refer to it as the horrible "C word."  

Today my daughter forwarded to me this poem written by a teenager with terminal cancer, and I thought this was worth sharing with you all...

SLOW DANCE
Have you ever watched kids on a merry-go-round?
Or listened to the rain slapping on the ground?
Ever followed a butterfly's erratic flight?
Or gazed at the sun into the fading night?

You better slow down.
Don't dance so fast.
Time is short.
The music won't last.

Do you run through each day on the fly?
When you ask, “How are you?”
Do you hear the reply?

When the day is done, do you lie in your bed,
with the next hundred chores running through your head?

You'd better slow down
Don't dance so fast.
Time is short
The music won't last.

Ever told your child, 
We'll do it tomorrow?
And in your haste,
Not see his sorrow?

Ever lost touch, let a good friendship die 
Cause you never had time 
To call and say,'Hi'

You'd better slow down.
Don't dance so fast.
Time is short.
The music won't last..

When you run so fast to get somewhere,
You miss half the fun of getting there.

When you worry and hurry through your day,
It is like an unopened gift....
Thrown away.

Life is not a race.
Do take it slower
Hear the music
Before the song is over.

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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October 8, 2017

@DC Design House For National Children's Hospital




















This wealthy couple built this amazing mansion in Potomac, Maryland.

But sadly before they could enjoy it, the wife developed a terminal illness. 

The husband allowed the house to showcased in a design talent competition with the various rooms decorated by all different interior designers.

...And the house to be shown for charity for National Children's Health System. 

Here are some photos from this wonderful fundraising event. 

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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August 26, 2017

Look Down To Feel Up

Listen, everyone has problems.

Whoever I talk to has something bad and fairly serious to complain about, and there seems to be new things coming all the time.

Just today, I heard from one person who went to the dentist with a tooth pain only to discover it had been silently infected for over a year, and was so serious that it literally could've killed him.

Another person told be about having a child with special needs and moving to an area with a school that could more effectively deal and help them. 

And a third person told me how they lost their husband many years ago at the age of just 39-years old and being left a widow. 

But people make the best of it!

They have to.

I remember my father saying when my mother got so sick with Parkinson's Disease:
"We are part of the survivors club."

It wasn't easy to see her endless suffering while he selflessly tried to help her day-in and -out and cope with the physical and emotional pain of it all. 

When I was younger my dad would teach me about not feeling bad whatever the situation, and to always be grateful for what you have, and he told the story:
"There was a poor man who had no shoes, and he felt very bad...that is, until he saw someone else who had no feet."

It doesn't take much for things to get really bad in life...sometimes it can seem like we're literally just holding on by a thin thread. 

But as G-d tests us and teaches us, we need to try to look on the bright side and be grateful that things aren't worse....and yes, they can even get better again. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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April 6, 2017

Rhymes With Venus

So these were some funny stories recently...

First, I came across an information system with a comical name. 

Let just say that it rhymes with venus and starts with the letter P. 

Well not exactly that word, but it very, very close. 

When I heard it, I could not help but say, "That's an unfortunate [system] name."

That's the thing about names and acronyms...you really have to think about what they stand for and what they sound like or you can get yourself into some pretty ridiculous situations and problems. 

Second story is when I was talking to this lady and I asked how she was feeling after going through some surgery and then having various complications from it. 

She told me the pain and problems she was having, and the tests and doctors she is continuing to have to see ,and that physical therapy didn't help much. 

I'm nodding and empathizing and then after this went on for a while, all I could say in dismay for all what she had been through was "Ay, yai, yai." 

Then she asked me about how I was doing after my hip surgeries and I told her how grateful I was for the modern medical procedures and G-d's blessing that enabled me to walk again. 

But what was really funny is that she then starts going, "Ay, yai, yai."

And as the conversation wore down, we were both looking at each other and practically saying in harmony, "Ay, yai, yai."

Anyway...sometimes there's nothing left to say but just that. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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March 28, 2017

People Literally Eating Garbage

So I saw another homeless person yesterday eating out of the garbage on the street. 

They had flipped open the top, reached in, pulled out a half-drunk cup of something awful looking, and in one shot, gulped it down. 

I was choking watching this--it was so upsetting that any human being has to live this way. 

Like so many of these poor folks living off the streets, their belly was sick and widely distended. 

And their pants were very worn, with holes, and wrapped ill-fittingly around their waist. 

They dragged a small suitcase behind them. 

When people say that things are bad in their life, perhaps we often don't stop to think about how bad things can really get (bli ayin hara).

G-d should have mercy on his children and bless us not to know any loss, sorrow, pain, suffering, sickness or hunger.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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March 24, 2017

Locked Inside Your Own Body

So being imprisoned in torturously tight spaces and uncomfortable positions is...physically, mentally, and emotionally harrowing. 

Of course, the criminal justice system centers around incarceration (and less so rehabilitation) and for most of history--from chains, cages, and dungeons--the most vile despots have placed people's bodies in desperate restraints. 

But I have learned that people can be not only physically incarcerated and shackled, but they can also literally be imprisoned within their own bodies. 

My own dear mother suffered terribly with Parkinson's Disease and I watched helplessly and in horror as the degenerative rigidity, contortion, and incredibly horrendous pain made her suffer so. No amount of pain medication could ease her unbelievable suffering...only death itself.

In another instance, a colleague's spouse got sick with ALS and as this horrible disease ran it's course, the person could not move, eat, speak, and eventually even breath on their own.  Their mind worked fine, but it was imprisoned within a body that continuously closed in on itself and could no longer function. 

In both these cases, the body itself was the prison of the mind and soul--no bars, no barbed wire, and no high walls necessary. 

Another case, I read and watched about his week, was of a husband and father who suddenly became a quadriplegic.  Kevin Breen was a healthy and active 44-year old, when suddenly he came down with a case of strep throat that traveled to his stomach and almost ended up killing him. He survived, but had to have his hands and feet amputated. Can you imagine the absolute horror of this?

There are so many good things that can happen in life, but also so many, G-d forbid, misfortunes--it is frightening to think about let alone confront. 

Locked up or imprisoned within our own failing bodies, leave mankind looking out into the darkest and deepest of the abyss, and that is when we need G-d's ultimate mercy and to answer us more than ever.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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February 16, 2017

That's One Scary Shot

Wow, this is one scary photo. 

Imagine coming downstairs and seeing this kids body laying on the floor like that. 

Looks like he's dead!

Would you freak out totally?

Call 911.

Get the emergency responders on the scene. 

Try to save his life. 

Thoughts race through your mind. 

Is he sick?  Was it an accident?  A crime scene?  Terrorism?  Is there an active shooter? 

Is he going to make it? 

Where is his family?

OMG, what if they lose him?

Well, it turns out this kids was just acting out and scaring his parents--and everyone else passing by.

Life is so full of surprises. 

You never know if it's the real thing or not.

But you have to be prepared for anything, anytime. 

This is a crazy world we live in. 

Thank G-d when it's just a false alarm and everything is okay. 

Unfortunately not every time is it all well that ends well. ;-)

(Source Photo: Michelle Blumenthal)
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February 6, 2017

Smell The Roses

I am a big proponent of stopping to smell the roses. 

These purple, yellow, red, and pink flowers were sitting on the counter in Whole Foods, and I had to stop, back up, and take this amazing photo.

They were absolutely gorgeous!

Sometimes, I can't believe the beautiful things and people that G-d has made. 

We're part of a most-amazing and perfect world. 

Of course, there are also hardships and suffering in this world - illness, disability, hunger, homelessness, violence, loneliness, and loss. 

Perhaps, these are the most difficult of things for us as human beings to reconcile with the beautiful world that G-d has set us in. 

While surrounded by beauty, people are also beset by life's many challenges. 

Maybe all the more reason to stop and smell the roses even for just a moment--to enjoy the spirit of life and of our amazing Creator, and the opportunity to make the most of it all. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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January 27, 2017

A Little Wear and Tear

Despite a generally longer life expectancy...people still have lots of aches and pains already by midlife. 

Danielle Ofri in the New York Times points out:
"Our bodies evolved to live about 40 years and then be finished off by a mammoth or a microbe. [However,] thanks to a century of staggering medical progress, now now live past 80, but evolution hasn't caught up; the cartilage in our joints still wears down in our 40s and we are more obese and more sedentary that we used to be, which doesn't help."
I hear from so many people in their 40s that they are already getting knee and hip replacements; they have high blood pressure, diabetes, and are having heart attacks, and many even are seeing their first bouts of cancer.

So in many ways, the 40s really sucks!  

Many of us would be dead many times over already, if not for G-d's grace and the miracles of medical science and technology these days. 

So life is prolonged, and we even often get pain relief, while we are able to continue forward with our families, communities, and careers.

As we read in Psalms 39:4
"Show me, LORD, my life's end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting my life is."
Perhaps that's what illness is...G-d showing us that we are just mortal and that life is short and we need to make the most of every minute. 

When everything is going just swell, how easy it is to become arrogant and forget how mortal we really are. 

My father used to say:
"G-d doesn't let any tree grow into the heavens."
By our 40s, when most of us are growing our families, careers, wealth, and stature--unfortunately, maybe we sort of need that kick in the pants from Above. 

G-d is our maker and our teacher, and he guides us to the end of our days, and hopefully they are reached with wisdom, meaningful contributions, piety, and love. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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December 16, 2016

Death With Dignity

It is amazing that still in the 21st century there is not widespread acceptance and legality of physician-assisted suicide. 

Even the term voluntary euthanasia (from the Greek meaning good death) is still considered taboo--similar to using the term radical Islamist.

People are afraid to call a spade a spade and deal with life's complexities and harsh realities. 

All through history, mankind had the code of conduct and honor that when someone (person or animal) was mortality wounded by nature or in battle, they would be "put out of their misery."

This is called COMPASSION!

Yet, in modern-day civilization, extremist PC-ness (politically correctness) dooms even such a basic fundamental act of decency toward one another. 

Like with radical Islam, the fear of saying it and admitting to a war against extremist and murderous religion ideology cannot be fathomed and so "leadership from behind" mandates that we close our eyes and pretend the boogeyman isn't really in the room--even if it means continuous losing in the global war on terror. 

Similarly, with euthanasia, poor excuses for leaders fear that once the genie is out of the bootle, people will just be committing arbitrary acts of suicide left and right. 

Unfortunately, these weak people in leadership positions are not leaders, but rather cowards who force others to suffer whether by the hands of terrorism and war or by the unnecessary and cruel suffering for people with the most horrible illness and disabilities in society. 

In 1988, "Dr. Death," Jack Kevorkian, provided assisted suicide to someone with the horrible, Lou Gehrig's Disease, and in turn, he had to spend 8 years in jail for second-degree murder.

Fortunately, there are now already 5 U.S. states where "physicians cannot prosecuted for prescribing medication to hasten death", where individuals that "have a terminal illness as well as a prognosis of six months or less to live." These include: Oregon, Vermont, Washington, California, and Montana (when mandated by a court ruling).  

Similarly, overseas in Switzerland, associations like DIGNITAS, provide services "accompanying dying patients at the end of their lives and assistance with suicide."

The person must have a: 

- "terminal illness" and/or an 
- "an "unendurable incapacitating disability" and/or 
- "unbearable and uncontrollable pain."

The end is made reasonable and humane by having a in-depth evaluation, followed by at least 2 face-to-face meetings with doctors, getting a prescription for the medicine, setting a mutually agreed date, having loved ones at their side, and self-administering the fatal dose of Sodium Pentobarbital (NaP), usually 15 mg by swallowing or administering by gastric tube or intravenously.

The medicine is "lethal, fast-acting, and completely painless"--after taking it, the patient falls asleep within a few minutes and passes peacefully. 

Having seen my own mother suffer horribly with Parkinson's Disease, I know that voluntary euthanasia would not only have been the merciful thing to do, but the right thing to do to help people. 

Political correctness and fear of doing what needs to be done is no excuse for prolonging the suffering of those that want to exercise their right to die and who deserve their final peace. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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September 19, 2016

Globs of Fat

So I went to get my flu shot today in the office. 

Yes, it's that time of year to start getting ready for Winter and all the germs that come with it. 

Anyway, while I was at the health center, they had this model of what body fat looks like. 

It was sort of just laying right on the table in the waiting room--yeah a big ick! 

It said:
"Globs of FatThis glob represents the look and feel of 5 pounds of body fat."

And this thing was enormous, bigger than someones hand, maybe even two hands. 

There was some text about another 1 pound piece of body fat, but I didn't see that lying around anywhere (and frankly the 5 pound glob was enough to get the point without comparison). 

This fat demonstration would make practically anyone want to chuck the carbohydrates and forever.

Pizza, pasta, bread, rice, potatoes, cereal, crackers, cookies, cakes--be gone!

Having recently done this myself, I can really appreciate how important this is and also how hard it can be. 

The food industry has us addicted to this crap and really it should be illegal. 

The high carb diet in America is truly of epidemic proportions and is potentially catastrophic to our health and longevity.

The only thing that glob of fat is good for is tossing it out the window and into the garbage dump. 

A high carb diet that makes people fat is death and we want to live! ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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September 12, 2016

Cough, Concussion, Coverup, Conspiracy


We never want anyone to be sick, and of course sincerely wish everyone well.

But we are at a critical juncture for America and 330 million people here as well as those in the rest of the world looking to us for global leadership: 

First it was needing help up the stairs.

Then it was exhaustion

Then it was threats to reporters for saying she was low on energy

Then it was a conspiracy

Then it was a cough.

Then it was allergies

Then it was overheated and dehydration

Then it was fainting

Then it was a belatedly-announced (from Friday) pneumonia.

Then she's "feeling great...and it's a wonderful day in New York."

Then it's time to cancel her campaign trip to California

When the story keeps changing for doctoring Hillary, and the campaign avoids the emergency room and transparency...is there something for America to be concerned about when it comes to our Presidency.

Are desperate times calling for some to commit to desperate national lies?  ;-)

(Source Photo: Dannielle Blumenthal)
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December 22, 2015

Mortality Unlimited

So this week, there seems to be a theme of human frailty and mortality and I wanted to share it. 

While it is the holidays and we are celebrating and happy to be with our family and loved ones, it is also a time to miss those that are gone, care and pray for those that are not well, and give thanks for our own blessings.

5 examples in one week (and trust me, I am holding back):

1) Death of family member - One wonderful lady in the office who recently lost her mother (her mom was in her very early 60s and just didn't wake up one morning) came to the holiday party, but looked sad. I asked about her well-being, and she said she is doing well, but is still remembering and dealing with the recent loss of her mom who she was so close with. We talked briefly how it takes time to mourn and heal, and frankly, we never really get over it. 

2) Death of friend - A women I know just lost a very good friend (early 40s) to Kidney failure. She is on vacation, but is sad mourning over the loss, and also recognizing her own mortality and that anything can happen at anytime. 

3) Very ill teenager - A teenager was at a recent Shabbat event with her peers celebrating G-d and her Jewishness, and at the event revealed that she has a brain disease and the doctors told her she only has a few months to live. She said that unfortunately she will never get to see her wedding day. It was heartbreaking. 

4) Sick children - A colleague at work took a few hours off to deliver holiday gifts to the local children's hospital. She helped start an organization to raise money and support children with cancer and other devastating illnesses. It was a very beautiful thing to give back to the innocent kids. 

5) Aging gracefully - A friend who recently hit the big 6-0 was a little depressed. When I asked him how he's dealing with it, he acknowledged that it's hard, but that he had all year to prepare (smile). But at the same time, he said that he can't help looking back on his life as well as thinking forward to what comes next. He's had his share of illness, but medical science (with G-d's help) saved his life so far. We talked about not knowing what happens but that he could have another 30 "good years" or that sometimes having a quick, peaceful end can be okay too--since quality of life matters as much or more than quantity. 

The point from all this is not to be sad, but to realize we are but "flesh and blood" and we are alive only because G-d sustains us. 

What we can do is take care of ourselves and our loved ones and make the most of each and every day. We are not guaranteed any number of years or anything else, so each moment is as precious and needs to be lived as if it could be the last. 

Savor your blessings, because that is what they are--as my mother-in-law says, you are entitled to and the world owes you nothing.  ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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November 22, 2015

I Am Doing

Today, a disabled man asked the lifeguard at the pool, "How are you doing?"

The lifeguard couldn't understand or fully hear the disabled man who had to repeat the question multiple times.

Then, the lifeguard responded, "I am doing well. How are you doing?"

The disabled man with a blank to sad look on his face says, "I am doing."

His response of just "doing" (not well, good, or fine) was like just going on day-to-day amidst very challenging life circumstances of illness and disability--just in a state of being, but certainly not feeling like he was thriving in his current life. 

It reminded me of my own parents, survivors of the Holocaust. 

After the horror and loss of the Holocaust everything, including coming to this country without a dime or a job was just a cakewalk in comparison. 

For 25-years, my dad would never even go to the doctor. 

He would say, "G-d is my doctor!"

Only later in life, when all his friends were sick or failing, and my mom was so sick with Parkinson's would my dad respond to people's questions of how he was, by saying simply, "Surviving!"

And then often adding, "We are part of the survivors' club."

When we're young, healthy, and vibrant, the world seems too small compared to what we think we can do and accomplish.

That's good--it gives us the thrusters in life to go as far as we can with accomplishments and progress. 

As we age though, the realities of life and health come into vision and we realize that we can't lift cars with one hand (anymore) or fly lightening speed with just our cape around the globe--we're mortal. 

This doesn't mean that we can't do great things for ourselves and the world at any age and with any (dis)ability, just that it many not be as simple or as easy any longer--we have to fight harder and be part of the survivor's club. ;-)

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)
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