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Monday, October 21, 2013

October 21 2013 Three year Appointment

I am writing this entry while  sitting on a DRL bus enroute to St. John's.
 My wife is already" in there", Elissa, our second daughter who is "great with Child" is also visiting with Karen, shopping for the baby, and I hope, relaxing. We are scheduled to meet this Grandchild on November 12.

I am partly through a marathon in the parish. Over the past few days  we have had youth events, parent meetings, regular worship, a parish fundraiser, two funerals and  wedding. Top that off with the regular parish demands, Vestry meeting and an invite to speak at a Cancer survivor service in Wesleyville.

I am on the bus doing some reading and writing.  It's a bus..swaying back and forth, dark and in the background a family movie is playing...just a little too loud for my liking.

Tomorrow morning I will be visiting the Cancer Clinic at Bliss Murphy  again. Last week I had a chest x-ray and MRI. in Gander .

 I'll soon hear about what they see there.  Not worried at all.

Some time ago I promised to return to this blog and continue to share. At that time I wasn't sure  where I was headed. Now, I am three years past the conclusion of my treatment - enough time I think, to have developed a well rounded perspective on just how I have done.
There are some things to share.

I am amazed at how the Emotional, Physical, and Spiritual fallout is strikingly similar  to so many other life situations folks experience that have nothing to do with cancer.
Cancer can be like a searchlight-- blinding in its illuminating power. Might take some more time for my eyes to adjust to the light...but I wonder......
         Is it possible that I can be thankful for this gift..Is it possible to find God in all this?

 I Will try to let you know the way I have dealt with the question of what do  when the people who we hands on in providing the treatments say :" You are finished !  Good Bye and Good Luck!"
that's tougher than you might think. You have trusted these folks enough to believe they really were NOT trying to Euthanize you,  and were really doing all they could to save your life.

Hold me close as you let me go.......real close.

I will try and let you know about the side effects

I will try and let you know about how the side effects of Cancer can be much much  more, than a physical challenge.

I will try to be honest

I will try to help.

  This week I will be taking a spiritual journey.  This journey will be symbolically  travelled through a real and tangible event. (sounds like a Sacrament doesn't it?)  I remember crying when I settled on the title of this blog "Sightings of Grace in the Valley of the Shadow.". It meant a lot to me, because I was certain that I would encounter God there. It meant a lot to me.
The walk?

It is called "Walking out of the Valley of the Shadow." Going from Gander to Glenwood - my home town. Tell you though, Gander sure is home. That's the place where my Church family loved me through.

I cried when I wrote the first description of the walk, because as I was writing I realized how powerful this symbol was for me. Move on....Do what needs to be done..You can do it!

I love to ride my Motorcycles. Yes I have two..a little sport bike and a vintage cruiser. When you are riding a bike on a cold day it can be ...miserable. Cold air, gusts of wind, rain can make the ride a challenge.  But you ride because you love it. You love getting warm after you reach your destination.
Bikers in Newfoundland often share a saying: " If you don't ride in bad weather in Newfoundland..You don't ride." True. 

There is another part of riding that should be described. First off, let me remind you that you don't drive a Bike. You ride it. You are on your cycle.. part of the machine.  Because your thinking, body and physical response becomes essential to a safe and enjoyable ride, something special happens.

So here you are...riding on a sunny but cool autumn day.   You descend a hill. There is cold air flowing that you never feel when in a car...but waits for a biker. It wraps around you suddenly as the Sun hides behind the trees. Accompanied by the sudden chill is the smell of the fall leaves and wet grass .The cold air suddenly reminds you of what God has been trying to say to you.
The engine, slowing  as you climb the hill  reminds you that you are losing speed. That can be a spiritual reminder too...when you are in tune. Then suddenly the sun is on your face again and you feel  warm air; comfort contentment...peace. The shoulders relax, you stretch and are thankful for the ride.
 You roll on the throttle until the engine returns to the harmonic vibration you know so well. Back up to speed.  A sacred moment.

We all need sacred moments to get on with the business of life.
I am slowing rolling on the throttle.. slowly.....because believe me...after Cancer, I am riding a very different bike.

I'll let you know how it goes.

But in the meantime
Coming out of the Valley of the Shadow... Sure feels good.  I am looking forward to the walk to Glenwood.  It is going to be Sacramental.
Can't say I won't cry when I get there. Don't care if I do.  I am already feeling the power of God's Grace because of this walk
I am being healed, amazed and overwhelmed when I realize the number of people who have decided they didn't want me to walk alone .   A lot of people are walking with me on Saturday coming.

Some are physically walking along the route. Another shorter  route is planned in Gander .

Many are walking by making a donation.

Others  are walking that didn't make it  through  ... "Those whom we love but see no longer."

 Some are walking that are still trying to get through. They are with us because they being carried along in our hearts.  Different people, different motivations ,but the same love that binds us together.

 I am beyond thankful.
May all of our lives get back up to speed after whatever cold valley we have been forced to walk through.

I wish you peace

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