It is not an enjoyable experience, but it is interesting when you come in contact with an adult bully.  When you were a kid, bullies were plentiful.  The insecurity most teenagers feel times poor social skills times narcissistic behavior nearly always produces a bully.  But they usually grow up and they learn better ways to express themselves.  They begin to achieve so their insecurities lessen.  And hopefully, they develop more respect and empathy toward others.

Adult bullies are very tragic figures.  They think they are successful, well liked and respected.  They don’t realize that their success is an ill-gotten gain.  They don’t even notice the people they step on while they collect their “rewards.”  The respect and being liked are shallow and short-lived.  Human beings can usually tell when someone is authentic.  They soon recognized when they are being used or lied to.  Eventually, the full aspects of the bully are revealed.  They betray you.  They insult you.  And they will dispose of you if you don’t abandon them first.

I had an interesting experience with a bully recently.  A co-worker, a team-mate decided to unleash her life’s frustrations on me in the form of two insults.  This was not the first time she has revealed her ugly side.  But this time it really hurt and I just wanted to return fire in the same infantile way.  But I managed to temper my emotions and take the high road.  My responses have been completely benign.  I’m 54 years old.  I can act like an adult. Oh i wanted to go Full Godfather on her and leave a horse’s head in her bed.  Or set her up like Senator Geary in GFII  and turn the arrogant POS into a puppet under my control.  Delicious.

I suppose we’ll probably see more and more ABs (Adult Bullies) now that Donald Trump is the poster child for thugs and goons.  To all you hooligans out there I say “Grow Up.”  To everyone else I say “Avoid them like the plague.  Avoid them like the dead rotting corpse of a plague victon

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Wise men say, only fools rush in.

But I, can’t help, falling in love with you.

Shall I stay, would it be a sin.  I, can’t help

Falling in love with you.

 

I had no choice.  You dug the world out from under me.

I had no choice.  Falling was inevitable, the law of gravity demands it.

Or was the law of love, demanding my fall.

 

Did you know what you were doing?  No.  I think you were as helpless as me.

 

 

Because it was Real.

The real thing.  Don’t be fooled by passing whims and futile wishes.  The real thing has a life of its own.  It chooses who and when… and for how long.

And when it becomes surreal it hurts so much for so long.  You wonder why you ever wanted it in the first place.

The joy and elation at the beginning til the pain and sorrow at the end.

I want it again.  Will it ever be real again?

The Greatest Gift – A New Life

What you are about to read is going to require a belief in the afterlife.  So if you’re not confident that life beyond death exists, you should stop reading now.  This is for believers only.

I wish I could take credit for the following ideas and thoughts because they are really gifts from God.  I have had fortunate experiences that left me open to God’s mysterious methods of communication.  These blessings were only made possible by painful losses that seemed like curses at the time.

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.  … is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?  The Prophet  Gibran

Part 1

I led a bible study some years ago on what heaven is like.  Most people have read the scriptures that describe heaven:  A mansion with many rooms, streets of gold with the river of life flowing through the middle, a peace that passes all understanding and much more.  I presented to the group a quote from the Lord of the Rings trilogy by Tolkien.  The wise wizard Gandalf is comforting Pippin, one of the little Hobbits, because they are under attack and Pippin thinks that it is the end:

Pippin: I didn’t think it would end this way.
Gandalf: End? No, the journey doesn’t end here. Death is just another path… One that we all must take. The grey rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass… And then you see it.
Pippin: What? Gandalf?… See what?
Gandalf: White shores… and beyond, a far green country under a swift sunrise.
Pippin: [smiling] Well, that isn’t so bad.
Gandalf: [softly] No… No it isn’t.

Heaven is a difficult concept for human beings to grasp.  We can only imagine it using metaphors taken from the life we know here on Earth.  We use phrases like “no more pain”, “everlasting joy” and “eternal peace.”

I asked the class to close their eyes for a moment and try to imagine what it might feel like to be in heaven.  For about sixty silent seconds the room felt peaceful and serene.  I asked people to share what they saw or felt.  Someone said “Perfection.”  Another said “Pure joy.”  I then brought them back down to Earth by telling them they were WRONG!  The shocked look on their faces showed their disappointment but I only let it last for a moment.  I repeated their descriptions but added what I believe God would say in response:  “Pure joy?  It’s better than that!”  “No more pain?  It’s better than that!”  “Everlasting Peace?  It’s better than that!”  And finally, “Perfection?  It’s better than that!”

How could heaven be better than perfection?  Isn’t perfection an absolute?  Isn’t it “the unsurpassable degree of supreme excellence?” The dictionary definition.

Someone in the group said “Our brains are too small to understand what heaven is like.”  I think that’s a great observation.

Try to combine all the most joyous moments from your own life and all others you’ve even heard or dreamed of;  It’s better than that.

So, how many non-believers, who’ve read this far, now really want to believe in an afterlife?  Sounds pretty good doesn’t it?

“We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.  We are spiritual beings having a human experience.”  Chardin

Part 2

Pippen said “I didn’t think it would end this way.”  That very same thought passed through my mind the night my wife Denise died.  This was not the way we would be separated.

We had been together 4,925 days and married for 3,860 days.  We had just celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary.  We had two boys born out of our love.

I have been in agony ever since she slipped away.

Denise died suddenly, without warning, so we were spared the physical and emotional suffering of anticipation.  But if I had known, what could I have done?  If she were suffering physically, what limit would there be on what I would have done to ease her pain?  If it were possible I would have gladly taken on all the pain onto myself.  To protect her, I would give everything including my own life.

What if I could have saved her somehow?  What would I have been willing to do?

If I couldn’t save her, what would I have done to make her last days on earth as wonderful as possible?  If we could have shared nothing but joy, love and happiness in those last days, I would have done anything to make it possible.  I would have made her last days “perfect.”  I would have made them “even better than that.”

Yet, I was powerless to do anything.  I couldn’t save her and there was no gift I could give that would come anywhere close to what I wanted her to have in those last moments.

But something has happened in the years since Denise passed away.  She’s in heaven.  She now has everything I wanted to give her.  And it’s even better than that!!

I wanted her to feel no pain.  I wanted to give her joy.  I wanted to give her peace.  And now, she has all these things beyond perfection.  Way passed anything I could have managed on earth.

God gave her a new life.  In heaven.  “A far green country, under a swift sunrise.”

And God has given me a great gift.  I have the knowledge that Denise is in his presence and is beyond perfection.  I did say I would do anything, give everything including my life for this to happen.  Now my deep sorrow is her unsurpassable and infinite joy.  My new life has grief interwoven through it.

So ask me now, if my suffering is the price to be paid for her unspeakable happiness, is it too much?  Is the price so high that I won’t gladly pay it?  I’d pay it ten thousand times over.

You pay that price for someone you love that much.  And how long will I make these grief payments?  The rest of my life.  Maybe 40 or 50 years.  That’s quite a bargain when you’re talking about everlasting joy.

The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.

Her joy, my sorrow.  The same.  And some day, the grey rain-curtain of this world will roll back for me and then I’ll see her again.  That’s the way I thought it would end.

A Doctor’s Visit

You are alone and afraid, like a small child fearing the uncertain future.  The knock on the door startles you and brings more anxiety.

“May I come in?” is warmly spoken and a man you’ve never seen before steps into the room.  He seems to know you though, and he quietly sits down in the chair beside you.  The man’s face has a slight smile but his eyes are what you notice.  They glisten and sparkle and he looks straight at you.

“How are you feeling?” the gentleman inquires.  “Are you afraid?”

A lump in your throat silences your voice and you can only nod.

The man leans in toward you and says “I know you don’t recognize me and that’s okay.  But, I want you to know that I’ve have always been with you.  Even now, when you feel so alone and frightened, I am here beside you.”

Still puzzled by this person’s appearance you stare into his face trying to uncover his identity.  And for a few moments no words are spoken.

You look down at your hands in your lap and the cruel anxiety grips your heart with icy fingers.

Finally, your words are found; “I am so scared.”

You look up into the man’s face again as he says “I know.”  Instantly the cold fear in your heart is thawed and you feel a warmness spread throughout your entire body.  Suddenly, your feelings of loneliness and terror are forgotten.

The man stays with you through the afternoon and into the twilight.  Nothing is said.  No hunger or thirst requires you to leave your seat.  You don’t remember falling asleep.

The next morning when you wake up in your chair you notice your body doesn’t feel stiff like you expected it would.  You realize how refreshed you feel after the deep sleep you experienced.

And your visitor has disappeared.  And so has your fear.

We buried our wonderful dog Elsie this evening.  She died early Saturday morning when she was hit by a car.  Elsie was a rescue dog from a puppy mill and was easily frightened and timid.  But, she was my wife Julie’s baby.  Elsie was her shadow and could never seem to get close enough to her momma.  God bless our sweet girl.

I’d give my right arm if I could be ambidextrous.

Mood

Woke up. Picture taken. Feel better now.

Time to vent.  Reading about the lives of others on Facebook  has gotten toxic lately.  Everyone is having a great time.  New jobs, babies, baby’s first word, step, smile, speeding ticket, etc…  New house, new car, kid’s great at sports, school, singing, acting, proofreading, etc…  Where are the real people?  The one’s with old cars, a sick child, leaky roof, tired feet, bad breath, etc…

I know people find it easier to write about pleasant things.  I’m just tired of it.

Here’s my list of Facebook entries:  Mother very sick, child on college waiting list (Don’t call us, we’ll probably never call you), Show Me The Money, I hit someone in the head with my elbow and cause a concussion I’d probably go to jail for 30 days and never be able to get a decent job again.  But Numerous Body Assaults thinks a $100 fine is enough.  Ouch, I’ll never do that again.

Justice.  It’s just 32 degree water.

A Maiden’s Voyage Sadly Ends

Too cold and too fast,

Too ordinary to notice.

The king rises at sunset,

To give light to the blind.

Too late to act,

No time to turn.

A spine of ice,

Just melts down and gone.

Regular journeys,

Now long and afraid.

Dying brings new life,

Living brings old death.

Every day.

 

July 14, 2011  XV

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