Sunday, February 27, 2011

Feeling "Gifted"

Before I start anything... Though that was kind of "starting" so I guess it's really after starting "anything"... Please note the Relay for Life link to the right side. It'll lead you to a page where you can make a pledge to my (and by "my" I mean the team Kristin put together that I am on) Relay for Life team. Rest assured that if I'm "Rest"ing in peace by the time the Relay comes around, your money will still go to the fight against cancer via the American Cancer Society. You can also join the team here.

This week I celebrated my birthday. I really celebrated my birthday. Part of it was a very small birthday dinner with a few dear friends. Part of that was Kristin's surprise of my old friend David (the one we always see and stay with when we're down in southern California) flying in to Portland, driving down to Eugene and showing up table-side without warning! I just turned around and he was there. The next day he was able to spend the morning and most of the afternoon with us before driving north to see his Mom and Dad for a couple days and then flying home.

How could I not celebrate my birthday? It's one we never expected to have... again! This birthday was special in a lot of ways. Other than just being able to have another one... I'm feeling extraordinarily great for someone currently dying of cancer. ...for someone who thought, just a week or so ago, that his liver was finally giving up. I still don't know if it is. But we start the process of hospice tomorrow. (I'm writing this on Sunday night. Just explaining to ease the few who may confused when they read this on Thursday and think I'm speaking of Friday.) A nurse will come in for her first visit, get a list of my meds, ask how I'm feeling, etc.

But I feel full of joy! It's not just a matter, right now, of "choosing joy". It's a matter of feeling so much joy in my heart that it presses at the heart's seams like my butt in a size two wet suit. (I was going to draw a picture of that but... Let's face it. No one wants/needs to see me in a size two wet suit. Not even in cartoon form.) The joy I feel is unreal. You'll excuse the one sentence poem. It seems that almost every day I'm drawn to new adventures. I feel God calling me toward something. It could just be the call to Heaven. Or it could be something more. I don't know. But I plan to find out.

While we can't afford an MRI or CT Scan to do an in depth search on my liver, I do plan an appointment with my oncologist that should include a blood test. That blood test will give me, us, an idea of the level of cancer going on. I have the hopeless hope that just maybe my numbers have gone down. If not, then at least I'm feeling great while the cancer continues to make itself at home.

But more on my birthday... I never get tired of talking about me. (He said with a wink and the sideways grin that drives his wife wild and makes my Mom get a little misty when she looks at old pictures.)

While I had asked for no gifts, at the same time offering up a quick link to my Amazon wish list, gifts did in fact arrive. There are a few that were intensely important to me, though I'm thankful for everything.

Thank you to whomever anonymously purchased the PASS-A-FIST CD off my wish-list. It's an old favorite that I'm very happy to have back in my collection. If you didn't intend to be anonymous, I'd love to know who did it.

My "little brother", Tim, created a card for me that almost created immediate tears. Which would have been horrible... frying my circuit boards and my hard drive. Simply click on the image below to read/enjoy it.

Tims Card

There was of course the amazing instantly and surprising David. A gift from both David, who had to pay for his own flight, and my beautiful wife Kristin. But David brought along another surprise. David and I have known each other for a long time. We worked together, along with Mike (our manager and friend), Bill, Dave, Laura and a slew of friends... family really. It was the kind of workplace that I don't think any of us will every find again. Heck, half of us met for a Bible Study after the placed closed on Sunday nights.

Click on "Jimminy Aaron" below to link to and/or read the PDF file. (You'll need Adobe Acrobat Reader. If you don't have Acrobat Reader, you'll need more help than I can give you. Conveiniently you can get that help from a professional by clicking on the ad for A2Z Techsource on the right.) Still, if you have it, click on the "Jimminy Aaron" to read the PDF:
Read the PDF Letter
David wrote a beautiful letter of sorts. It talks about memories and qualities he thinks I have. I don't agree with him on every count, or even most. But it's the kindest thing any one's ever "said" about me. So, with his permission, I thought I'd share it with you:
I am a very blessed man. Usually I'd say, "lucky." But, to be truthful, I don't believe in luck. (I always try to be truthful, for the record.) Friends, family and church family shower me with love and prayers. I include you, regular readers, in that group. You are friends. No, not in the traditional sense. But I've never been one for tradition. Also, traditions are currently being thrown aside faster than beer cans at the Larry the Cable Guy after-party.

Thank you all for being part of the blessing. I pray for you nightly, Not by name. I mean, I've got a lot of free time but not that much free time. But collectively I thank God for you, your prayers, and your support.

Blog Changes:

On the blog, I've made some updates lately. Just in case you didn't notice. There are some links on the side to local businesses that have been really supportive of us. Please check them out.

I've also set myself up with Amazon so, if you need to shop Amazon feel free to get there by the ads on my page and I'll get a little bit of what you spend. (Example: You spend $40, I get $1.58 ... But it's something.) Except for the link to my old CD on the side. You can go there to just buy a copy of the best of my last piece of studio work. It's not very good. But I like the writing. I used to write some pretty decent songs... I think.

I guess I did some design work recently for a friend, and am currently working on a logo for my church, which made me wanna play with a little more design. Thus the updates. Put up with me for a while. I'm having fun.

Rambling again... Nighty-night.


Ivy said...

A very happy belated birthday! We have birthday weeks here, but someone wishes us happy birthday after our week it gets extended! SO HAPPY EXTENDED BIRTHDAY WEEK!

Thanks for the Amazon link. I don't have anything to buy right now, but when I do -- it's all you friend! I'll be sure to share it with my friends and family so we can all help out some.

Many blessings!!!

smadronia said...

I thought I read somewhere that your birthday is the 24th. If that's the case, then happy birthday from another person born on the same day!
If not, happy birthday from someone who was also born in February.
I'm glad to hear you had a good birthday, I actually spent part of mine hoping you did, and wondering what you were up to.