Monday, November 30, 2009

Matter of Perspective

Today's Saying

We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today.
~Stacia Tauscher

How we view the world and what we do depends on our perspective, our life at that moment.
I was reminded of that on Friday when I got this comment:
“Glad you are doing better and I hope you continue to exercise, if only a little. “
This was in response to my statement that I was walking seven minutes a day on the treadmill.
The commentator saw this as a “ little exercise”.
I saw it as a mountain to be climbed and I had climbed it.
Now from the perspective of somebody who can run, jump, and climb mountains seven minutes on a treadmill at the slowest speed is very little exercise.
But from my perspective since I hadn’t walked except from one room to another in over a year it was a mountain to be climbed. It was hard work. It hurt.
As of today I have reached my first goal of ten minutes.
From your perspective just a little bit more exercise but for me higher up the mountain.
To climb that mountain has taken lots of preparation.
I needed an oxygen hose from the concentrator to the computer room so I could take in two liters of oxygen all the while I’m walking.
I needed a chair nearby to drop into when I finished so I could let the pain pass.
For me a mountain top. For somebody else an ant hill.
The real problem is I don’t know if it is strengthening the stomach and chest muscles I need for breathing.
I certainly hope it is.
My next goal is fifteen minutes but that mountain is really high.
It does have some side effects though.
I’m having less stomach trouble and I’m sleeping better.
Sometimes a little bit is a long way up the mountain.
It’s all in the perspective.
When I came out of my coma my legs had forgotten how to walk.
My therapist worked with me every day. It was painful. It was impossible.
When I finally walked two feet he was so happy.
It’s all in the perspective.
I guess that’s true of most of life.
I hope you climb your mountains as you see them.

Petrovich , his wife and daughters are in Green Bay at her mother’s house where they went for Thanksgiving. They are planning on staying the week so that the grandparents can have some time with the girls and they can do some Christmas shopping. This makes people in Pigeon Falls rest easier because as long as Petrovich is gone there will be none of those horrible driblets.
Bonnie McGregor is getting ready for the first Christmas where her twins can open gifts. She knows their brother and sisters will give them far too much but she has to shop anyway. These were the twins that were once thought to be part of driblet 172 but it doesn’t seem now like they were. In any case Bonnie loves them and so does their daddy.
For the most part life is back to normal in Pigeon Falls. The dragons fly over once a day, the ghost piano plays, Nancy’s poltergeist continues to surprise, the train come through mostly on time, and the town seems to have recovered from its trip to 1890.
The residents are making Christmas lists and planning shopping trips. Dr. Fortress has set up a special train to Marquette and a bus or buses to take people shopping when they get there. They will have access to Target, Wal-Mart, Menards and a number of other big stores. He already has had to add an extra car the demand is so great.
Of course those with relatives in Iron Mountain can take the milk train in the morning ( it’s cheaper) to Iron Mountain and find some of the same stores. The relatives provide the transportation in the city.
All of Pigeon Falls is looking forward to Christmas.


Blogger Bill ~ {The Old Fart} said...

Have sent prayers that God and his Angels will help you up that Mountain.

Blessings Dr John.

2:05 AM  
Blogger rhymeswithplague said...

I don't mean to sound flippant, but after you Climb Every Mountain you get to Ford Every Stream and eventually Follow Every Rainbow Till You Find Your Dream.

What I'm trying to say is, our Heavenly Father knows what He is doing.

3:57 AM  
Blogger Melli said...

Well... you know... people who have not met you do not realize. They hear you talk about your issues - but it doesn't really sink in. I was turning cartwheels when you said you were up to 7 minutes -- and I'm doing FLIPS knowing that you've achieved 10 minutes!!! I AM SOOOO PROUD OF YOU! And I am certain that your body is gaining MUCH from your exercise - and I'm pretty sure that your chest muscles are involved in that! Because I'm pretty sure you are breathing a lot deeper when you exercise than you normally do - and that in itself is exercising your chest and stomach muscles! You are AMAZING Dr. John! I LOVE YOU and I LOVE that you are doing this! It means a world of difference to keeping you in MY life a bit longer ... and that's very selfish of me... but it also means keeping you here for your family - and in the long run I HOPE it means a little easier breathing for you! More oxygen WHILE exercising just might equal less while living! I am CHEERING you up that mountain! Indeed I am! And you might even convince me to start climbing my own mountain again....

I wish I could say I'm as excited about Christmas as all of Pigeon Falls is. I'm dreading decorating... and I've just got to get it done. I'm dreading shopping... and I've just got to get it done. The only part I'm not dreading is the services, and the praise... I can't WAIT for the Cantata and the caroling! And the skit that I'm in! But on the rest I feel like a great big HUMBUG this year... I don't know why...

6:30 AM  
Blogger PS (PSanafter-thought) said...

We should all be blessed with more of a sense of perspective and less of a spirit of judging, in any area. But so few of us have walked a mile in any shoes but our own. I sure got a lesson regarding poverty and hard work, as well as regarding generosity, when I visited Uganda, where we visited rural people in real situations. Never again will I think that poverty is a result of being lazy, although it may be for a few people, and never again will I think that if somebody wanted to do better, he should just work harder.

There are so many aspects of our health that are not the result of bad choices when we were young. A lot if is is just as I read on a baby bib yesterday: Spit Happens. (ha ha) For me it is my knees. Now one of them has gotten crooked and so my leg is getting shorter, 3 cm in the last 6 months.

So may God bless your every effort at breathing and walking. May you have less distress and more comfort. You bless your readers, that's for sure.

7:58 AM  
Blogger aims said...

Having watched many people climb their mountains over at physical therapy at the local hospital - I know what you have done is momentous. Proud of you Dr. John. Proud that you took that first step and got on that machine. Rhymeswithplague says it all - there is more to come and I'm thinking ribbons - like first second and third would be good to have around!

I wish Pigeon Falls had stayed for Christmas in 1890. That would have given them a far better idea of what Christmas really means instead of Target and Walmart.

8:44 AM  
Blogger aims said...

btw - You've made Rachel Green a happy gal.

8:44 AM  
Blogger Mama Zen said...

I hope that it's helping the necessary muscles, Dr. John. I really do.

10:42 AM  
Blogger Diana said...

Dr. John,
Sometimes baby steps are better than no steps at all.
Love Di

11:15 AM  
Blogger Akelamalu said...

I know it's not the same but after I had my knee replacement every step was a milestone and they all add up Dr. John. You should be proud of yourself, you will reach your goal and it doesn't matter how long it takes. x

11:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Baby steps are so important. They become adult steps later. I'm very proud of you my friend. Any mountain can be climbed and it doesn't matter how long it takes you to climb it. You did the first one now on to the second one Way To Go!!!! :)

12:01 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

Wow! My doctor said walk a couple of miles every day, you are up to seven!!!!!!! Congratulations.

I am glad that those twins don't seem to be following out on Driblet 172. That would be bad news for one.

Lastly, Dr. Fortress is a good guy, I can tell.

1:00 PM  
Anonymous Alice Audrey said...

Yep. Most of life is a matter of perspective.

Congrats on reaching your first mountain top!

2:38 PM  
Blogger secret agent woman said...

Congratulations on reaching your goal and pushing ahead to the next.

(And I have to suspect that comment was meant as support. I get comments all the time that I believe are well-intended even if they don't fit me.)

3:32 PM  
Blogger Cherie said...

I think that your progress is marvelous! And I'm very glad that it's resulted in your sleeping better and your stomach feeling better. :)

4:39 PM  
Blogger Melissa B. said...

Your quote is so true! I especially notice this in the high school where I teach. I get a genuinely sincere response when I treat my cherubs like human beings!

6:33 PM  
Anonymous quilly said...

Dr. John -- I offered a prayer in your behalf that God help you become an excellent mountain climber.

I knew when you said you were walking 7 minutes a day that the "little" amount had to hard won for you. Reclaiming something is so much harder than losing it. We should all take a lesson from you and get out of our chairs!

9:28 PM  
Blogger Gattina said...

these are really good news. A little bit every day, don't force it and with the time it will get better and better. I think it's already wonderful what you have accomplished.
Today on my travel blog I show the coptic church in Egypt, a place where the holy family stayed (the church of course was built later)

11:38 PM  
Blogger Louisiana said...

dr. john and betty there is a new post up on my blog...pls go and read...xo hope u are all

11:39 PM  
Blogger anthonynorth said...

I completely understand this. With CFS I often have bodily breakdown and I'm back to square one, beginning with the hills and moving on to the mountain. Life is a series of graded exercise regimes.

12:52 AM  
Blogger Jeni said...

True enough that seven minutes of exercise sounds like a very little amount of time but it isn't just the time element involved in this that makes that seven minutes of exercise an accomplishment to be heralded as a big thing! One must also consider how much effort was involved in getting the system up to that seven minutes in the first place. I can relate totally to your thoughts on how difficult it can be to achieve that milestone. Over the past 6 plus years, my joints (legs, back, etc) have taken various fits which necessitated lots of physical therapy to get me standing up straight, taking some very slow, small steps too and there were times when a mere two minutes seemed more like two hours or more of pure agony! Just keep working at it at your own pace as the important thing is not really HOW long you do the exercise right now, but rather that you are doing it at all and persevering in your efforts! Just keep on doing what you're doing and you'll keep up with the progress as your system allows it.

6:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

We all have our mountains. You are so very right: perspective is everything here!
I'm thrilled you are already benefiting from your hard work!

5:47 PM  

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