Tuesday, November 26, 2013


  I took mom to the doctor again today to get her blood levels checked to see if she can take the next dose of chemo, and if not, to get a shot to try and build her blood where she can. She races a clock and honestly, the finish line is distant. In short, I spent the morning at UT Cancer Center. The new building is nice, but a shame it had to be built. One would think this would be the darkest place on earth next to the morgue, but its not as much as it is.

  Everybody there has a story and despite what most say or think, everybody there wants to tell it, even if to just one. There are different reasons and excuses why one doesn't tell their story but the main one seems they don't want to be a burden. Some think others will not understand or can't understand, while some will remain silent in embarrassment. Embarrassed that it is a punishment or from lack of faith, when that is as far from the truth as it could ever be. Some will think they will be viewed as not looking at it right or acting right. Though I speak of cancer, the same applies to all diseases and defects.

  As we sat there I noticed a young man all alone. Nobody should have to face that alone, even for one appointment. Today my voice was crackling, hard to speak and painful and I think he may have noticed. The again, maybe he just wanted someone to notice him so he would not be alone, but he sat quietly. I seldom look into people's eyes, it seems that I gather what is inside them, but I looked into his without him noticing. In his 20s, he looked afraid, yet brave... like this wasn't his first round. In his eyes were innocence and kindness, like a child's eyes. I struck up a conversation with him, asking if he was here for himself or with someone else, but I already knew. One can hide many things in many ways, but one's eyes will not lie. Mom took notice of him as I asked what kind of cancer he had and where it was. I was hard to understand, course, slurred, and my speech pattern not well controlled... but he listened hard. When my vocal chords don't operate right I force sound to try and mimic the sounds of words. I told him I had throat cancer and mom had 2 cancers she was battling. Mom instantly engaged the conversation.

  After he was called back three ladies sat beside me, about the same age as my wife from their looks, not old but not young. I started a conversation with them. She had two family members or friends, I never asked, for this conversation was about her. Turns out this was her second battle, the cancer had returned, and it was the same place mom's was found. She was trying an experimental drug and if that failed... well, that was her hope. She laughed and joked and occasionally was serious, but always serious under the smiles and comments. Mom spoke to her, they talked a bit, but nothing like her and the young man did. Then we were all called back.

  We went into another waiting area after the doctor had seen her to get a shot that hopefully will bring her blood back in line to continue the chemo, the cancer isn't waiting. There we found the young man who was just leaving. Mom and he talked more, shook hands, then he shook my hand, and he was gone. In though walks the three ladies. Before it was over most of the room was smiling. I saw a lot of ladies there wearing Toboggans where they had lost their hair, and some guys too.

  So what is the point of all of this. We are here for the blink of an eye, thats all, just a blink. Those younger who are healthy reading this probably can't relate. Those who have been mostly healthy will have a hard time relating. But try, not mainly for those you care about but mainly for yourself. The Bible says that we may entertain Angels unaware, but that isn't the reason either. What I accomplished was simple, costs nothing yet was priceless. All I done was open the lines of communication between people and to let them know someone was interested in them and cared. In my case I let them know I've been there and am a part of a little club that forms in silence. We could have talked about bad things, those who know me also know I'm a conspiracy theorist, yet what good would that have done. Those who sat in those chairs have seen and heard too much bad stuff already.

  So this I think not only applies to cancer but to most things, especially those which we have no control of. When someone is living what seems like a Hell on earth, don't stoke the flames, they will rise and fall on their own or with help from others. As a Christian I believe that we are to comfort and lighten the load for others when we can, in fact, we are told to do just that. Even those with no faith or different faiths are told to do that. I believe that we as Human Beings are called to do that. No, it will not change the whole world, but it will, if only temporary, change that small corner of it. It nothing else then for a little while, at a cost of nothing yet priceless to the ones there. Read my writings elsewhere and they may get dark, read them with people who's world has crashed down and I lighten up what I say. Do no harm.

  Before I close, one other thing. It is not our commission to judge, preach, or highlight what a person living in Hell on earth has done. We are not to be the stokers of the flames but rather the candle lite to shine a brighter day. To ease anothers' burden. Jesus judges, not us, we are commissioned to love and feel compassion. We are all granted a great power, the power of love and the gift of smiling and laughter... we need to use it when someone is in need. Before one uses this negative power to judge and say one deserves it, remember this. By grace do we walk. One might do well to remember what happened to the ones who followed Christ. Did they deserve it? It may not be that God is punishing someone but testing us while He conditions them for a greater day. It isn't until we reach rock bottom that we look up and though we may not see who throws the rocks, God does. To point at the afflicted is the mark of a human but to reach a hand to help someone up is the mark of a Human Being, thus we rely on God's hand to reach and help us up one day. We will all see that day.