Thursday, July 23, 2015

Mick McKellar Update -- Day +1612

Our Bandaids were too small...
Seriously Unfunny

This might be funny, were it not so sad. I did something incredibly clumsy this afternoon. I was working at my computer when Dante began a barking frenzy, probably at some noise outside. I didn't hear anything. As requested by his owner, I jumped up to grab the spray bottle and dissuade him from his noisy alarm. My sudden move frightened him, and he ran under my feet, tripping me. My stability is poor, even on a good day, and he felled me on the spot.

I must have been an amazing sight, toppling north-by-west from my desk -- hands extended, leg caught up with my headphone cable, and bellowing in fear. When I hit the floor, the carpeting removed a sizable chunk of my skin just below my left knee and the corner of a nearby wall didn’t move out of the way of my left shoulder. My head and my right leg conspired to yank on the headphone hard enough to break the plug and nearly pull my PC off my desk.

My leg suffered rug burn and removal of flesh, my shoulder received bruising and scraping, and my headphones are ruined. Overall, it was an unpleasant experience.

I hobbled out to Marian, who was mowing the lawn, and showed her my knee. She was less than receptive and somewhat short on empathy. We covered the cut -- after treating it with hydrogen peroxide and Neosporin. What an afternoon!

I would like to report that there is a lesson to be learned here, but outside of trying not to be clumsy, there is little to share. Maybe I should consider NOT wearing shorts and relying on my jeans as portable armor for the hopelessly maladroit. As you can see from the photo, my knee will be uncomfortable for awhile.

My career with Riverdance is in great jeopardy, and I may have to withdraw from the competition on: "So You Think You Can Walk!"

Good night, and God bless.


Friday, July 10, 2015

Mick McKellar Update -- Day +1600

Another Mildstone Reached

No, it’s not a typographical error! I’ve started calling my small achievements “mildstones” because, although they are truly not Earth-shattering, they quake my life -- just a little. Every day, when I wake up, it is a minor miracle to me -- a precious gift of life. However, I have a special place in my heart for those days ending in two or more zeros.

For some reason, 1,600 sounds so much grander than 1,599…

Future Imperfect

What pleased me most during my last visit to Mayo Clinic, was talking to the doctors and nurses about my future. Until the last couple of visits, references to a future beyond my next scheduled visit in Rochester were few and far between, spoken of mostly in general terms. During the last visit, we talked about potential dates for stopping my anti-rejection medication and even my anti-leukemia medication. This is exciting stuff for someone who spent more than a year learning to live one-day-at-a-time, giving little or no attentions beyond getting out of bed tomorrow morning.

At various time Google has attributed to Cary Grant, Mickey Mantle, and George Burns this little quip: “If I’d known I was going to live this long, I’d have taken better care of myself.”  Ditto!

“Selfie” is the Right Word

For more than five years, my focus has been on me. It is necessary when battling leukemia, graft-versus-host disease, bronchiolitis obliterans, pancreatitis, a gallbladder attack, COPD, pneumonia, and more to look in toward God and myself for the strength to fight. I have been monumentally self-involved, posting my own “selfies” and talking about my experiences. During that time, I learned a simple, obvious lesson -- the kind I don’t like to think about, because it makes me seem greedy and needy.

While I am thinking only about me, I don’t have time to think about, or worry about, you. It is nothing less than the complete demise of humility.

As I read through the news, the postings on Facebook and other social media, and listen to the pundits punting on television and radio, I hear me -- thinking only about me. I see and hear politicians striving for office, not to serve the public, but to get hired for a job. Last I heard, elected public service was not a career, not a way to gain, but a way to give. Last I heard, getting a job was a privilege to be earned, not a right to be granted. Last I heard, greed was a deadly sin and the chief attribute of villains, not the primary job skill to get ahead in the world. Last I heard, spending hours taking pictures of yourself was a negative character trait, not a hobby practiced world wide. Last I heard, taking offense involved violations, trespass, or insults, not a way to justify personal prejudice.

Maybe we need to take our eyes away from our smartphones, tablets, and screens, take a look around and realize that other folks inhabit this planet, and maybe need some help. Maybe we need to try a little humility -- i.e., think about ourselves just a little less. It might help clarify what needs to be done, and who needs to do it.

Thanks for listening. Good night and God bless!