In remembering Adam Crosthwaite, I am reminded spiritual growth is in part a process of self-knowledge. There is solitary exploration required but no one can go it totally alone. The danger is getting caught in a closed loop of stagnation. Assistance is needed from those who have gone before. Dialog is required with a teacher, mentor or spiritual leader to provide guidance and challenge. Fellow travelers along the path are also helpful. They can point out pitfalls they have encountered and lend a hand when there is a miss step.
One such traveler for me was Adam Crosthwaite. Over the 15 or so years I knew him, Adam lived life large. Those who knew him will likely take exception to that statement in the usual sense of it. Living like a very wealthy and successful person spending money in an extravagant or self-indulgent manner. This is not what I am meaning. Adam was not a wealthy man financially. He had accumulated substantial debt, mainly from predatory student loans. The memory of Adam just gave me a nudge, I suppose I should acknowledge the obvious pun. Adam was a massive human being. This too Adam, is not the sense in which I believe you lived life large.
In remembering Adam, his wealth was sourced from the vault of his soul, his heart. His vault was filled with joy and pain but most of all love.
Life is a collection of experiences. Lessons learned and missed, preserved in memory, conscious and subconscious. As stewards of these memories it is the responsibility of each to use those experiences to make sense of the world, grow spiritually and then weave that growth into all realms of daily life. A further charge to share those treasures like exhibits in a museum for others to apprehend, appreciate and learn from. The sharer may never be aware of how far reaching and consequential the sharing might be, who finds meaning or inspiration in the experiences shared.
I am remembering Adam was a good steward of his experiences. After a youth that was troubled, he studied Criminal Justice Administration and Psychology. He worked as a classroom aid at Children’s Center for Neurodevelopmental Studies a school for special needs children. Where he gave freely of his experience and love to help special needs children with sensory integration to help them cope with a world many of them found overwhelming.
In remembering Adam, he also worked at Arizona’s Children Association that provides support to troubled children and their families through difficult and trying circumstances. Where he gave abundantly of his experiences. Adam drew on the memories of his own childhood and adult life to fuel his love and caring to help provide support for children in broken families.
I knew him as a fellow student of Rev./Dr. Strickler in the study of Qabalah. After classes we would have a chance to talk outside by his car. We would talk about what was presented in class or about things that happened at our jobs and life in general. We could talk things out together as peers in a safe environment, say things out loud that had been rattling around in our heads. I frequently was surprised as how different things sounded by putting them outside my skull and having a dialog about them. He had a wonderful sense humor and the amazing (to me) ability to turn it within. When he would stumble on the path or in some manner miss the mark he could laugh at his folly, make adjustments with humility and carry on. That was a talent I am remembering Adam had, a talent that I admired in Adam; one that I struggle with and aspire to still.
Periodically we would all get together for a round table discussion, “Table Talk”. We talk about our lives spiritual, magical and physical with Dr./Rev. Strickler. We talk about how the three intermingle. We share the experience of how we are perceiving the world and discuss how we might do it better.
His experiences and encompassing love comprised his real wealth. He spent them extravagantly, shared them lavishly. He spent them in a self-indulgent manner, not in the physical sense, rather a spiritual sense that I call soul-indulgent. He shared with others to help them along the way while advancing his own spiritual growth in the sharing. This is the sense in which Adam lived large.
It is over two years since his passing. In remembering Adam, I get a sense of his spirit near me on occasion.
People, Places & Things: Social / Spiritual Commentaries
SPIRITUAL CLIMATE NEWSLETTER
by Rev. Dr. David Strickler, Tuesday, December 3, 2019.Last Updated AZ time 1:28 AM; 12-04-2019
Adam Crosthwaitewas born on December 17th, 1979. Adam wouldn’t be introduced to me by Christine Ford, the Executive Editor of Spiritual Climate Newsletter, until the spring of the year 2002. Christine was, at that time, teaching children with autism. She told me she met an interesting young man who she selected to be an aid for her in her large classroom of children with autism. Christine also mentioned Adam was also seeking some assistance in his quest for understanding about himself, his life, and his notion of spirituality.
It seemed the possibility of providence had stepped in for me, because I was seeking help in moving from one apartment to another within the same apartment complex. So, I asked Christine to arrange a meeting with Adam. If he chose to assist in my move, it would give me some time to evaluate the fabric of his character and the degree of intent in Adam’s seeking. That is the beginning of a part of the relationship that Adam Crosthwaite and I began, at that juncture of our individual inflection points in life.
With painful reflection, I have retrospectively thought long and hard for the past couple of years about authoring this article about Adam Crosthwaite. As the primary instigator behind the Spiritual Climate Newsletter, I belayed its production into the public after Adam Crosthwaite’s death, his untimely passing, and transition into the next phase of his life, unburdened by the gravity of a physical body. Adam was such an integral and contributing aspect of our lives with his intellect, expressive emotions, sharp wit, and contagious laugh. His passing was a unexpected shock, caving way to a heaviness of contemplation in our hearts.
The Spiritual Climate Newsletter of Social Commentaries is usually published quarterly with contributions from each member of the Spiritual Climate Templein Arizona. I temporarily halted its publication because Adam’s passing was an unexpected event leaving a profound demarcation in our lives.
Adam’s death, left those of us in the Temple, deeply circumspect and demanding of us, some form of closure inside ourselves, in the participation of his life, spiritual unfoldment, and his progress and failures, his joys and sorrows. His life showed signs of spiritual light emerging from the friction of his soul within the conflict of flesh in his human experience. He continued his sojourn within the dark energy that many, if not all of humanity, travel through, whether aware or asleep at the wheels of self-consciousness.
Adam Crosthwaite was kind, generous to a fault, a man with a quick mind using its curiosity toward understanding the process of his life and its intertwining within earth’s oceans of souls in the less seen metaphysical level. He was capable of generous, sensitive, and intelligible dialogue about his travels in life experience with an unabashed sense of humility in his quest for knowledge and understanding of the intimate encounter within the dress of his personality and the Life Power ItSelf.
Adam had a natural skill in using his mind in objective analysis. He could clearly define and speak of various aspects inside himself that we each embrace of what we cite as our ‘self.’ He could concomitantly see effects generated by choices colored with his behaviors. His self-description included clear explications of emotional aspects of feelings affecting his overall sensibility, about the interaction of himself, and how his choice of actions might likely affect others and himself in his environment. Adam developed his ability to see where he was ‘at-effect’ with the consequences of his orderly or disorderliness including his behavioral traits inherited in his personality.
Adam was also growing in skillful witnessing of the harrowing awareness derived from evaluating his filters. This opened his eyes to whatever bias, bigotry, and/or learned prejudices he found toward himself and others. Adam shared his insights freely amidst those who provided him a safe haven of acceptance while sharing a dialogue of diversity. He explained how this insight led him to the ability to recognize the freedom of choosing, either dominion over himself or default to selecting the receipt of slavery to the senses.
Adam celebrated personal achievements and acceptance of shortcomings, from proper reckoning of comprehension he honed and expanded within himself. He became better and better in utilizing his spiritual tools in uncovering a wiser use of his talents on this hospital ship for souls known as Earth. He learned the use retrospect tempered by the severe fires of self-honesty, even the recognition of having the occasion of banging his head upside a wall and the eventual acceptance of the need to strengthen a personality weakness through proper use of self-derision.
It was the honest encounter of himself through ‘other-selves’ that he prized to eagerly discover any emission of light into the dark sea of energy humanity finds itself swimming. In my private conversations with Adam, he came to see darkness as a creation borne by humankind’s hiding from the transparency of truths about themselves and humanity’s spiritual delusion about the source and origin of Will. He sometimes voiced a struggle with the knowledge that our light is derived from the earnest subordination of carnality in the material flesh unto the Spirit residing in Humanity.
Adam also sought to wake himself from the dreadful sleep of the senses emerging from senseless drive of materialism and the illusion of separation from spirit generated by overzealous, selfish, trance created by capitalism and its tentacles of consumerism; producing the rot of Zombies being fed off of by the sadistic traits of soulless banshees such as Trump and his support group of “Evangullible” sociopaths who disdain the higher purpose of humanity’s light with contempt.
Adam also had a heart that would attempt to give more than it was capable of flowing. And he suffered the downside of the human experience replete with its depressions, attempts which fell short in producing change within his life in which he sometimes experienced as a powerlessness.
When he spoke about his two children, Adam would reveal his big heart and the pain he underwent in giving his children up for adoption. He sought better environment for the welfare of his children, in order to protect them from the heated clash often imposed by egocentric men and women in positions of power. Adam witnessed firsthand, how these in the upper echelon in corporate governance create unfair circumstances for working parents. He watched the upper echelons executing their sociopathic narcissism of heartless, cruel capitalism, avalanching on hard-working parents trying to best raise their families, free from the discord and ilk used by elite socialism and their corporate henchmen to control their lives.
Adam’s objective to protect his children, in placing their needs above his need to have his children in his life, toward the possibilities of better starts and clearer pathways for their lives, proved to be one of his better chess moves and ultimate success against the vile ethical depravity and political evils created by members of humanity in the USA and elsewhere seeking to make life unfair for everybody but themselves.
Adam died in a coma while inside a hospitals intensive care unit after somehow, somewhere, coming into contact with an infectious agent and highly dangerous bacteria resulting in pneumonia turning into sepsis and then multi-organ failure. Adam took leave of his physical body on July 17, 2017. Adam leaves behind a daughter and a son in the care of adoptive parents. There is also a long line of numerous friends, family members, coworkers, and readers who followed his articles in Spiritual Climate Newsletter, many whose lives’ have been touched by an inimitable fashion of humanness unique to Adam’s expression.
This page of tribute is not done lightly by us here at SPIRITUAL CLIMATE NEWSLETTER. In speaking for all of us here at the Institute Of Spiritual Climate and its Temple: I speak for all of us here who have had the privilege to know of Adam. He traveled alongside us, with the shared experiences along the Path of Return.
We will retain our memory of his life among us, the presence of his spirit, the ardor of his quest, his joy of dialogue, his gentle friendship, and his laughter in our lives.
So, for now, we continue our spiritual travel to the ‘Second star to the right and straight on ’til morning,’ and await his greetings, when it comes our time.
Rev. Dr. David Strickler; Advising Director, Institute Of Spiritual Climate.
Winter is a magnificence and solitude that soothes the soul. The Winter Solstice inspires, no matter what the climate; arctic or tropical, desert or rain forest. The stillness and somberness, with the anticipation of the coming Light, fills the air and blankets the world in a hush of splendor. As if a pause has been proclaimed from on High, a split second cease and desist transcends the insane hustle-bustle of our normal mundane activity as a profound quiet falls over the small whirling planet we call Earth. If the choice is consciously made in the winter to be receptive to the influence and down pouring of this sacred vibration we are filled with reverence, awe and inspiration once again, if only for a brief moment.
This miracle of winter solstice is manifest throughout all races and religions, often touching the non-believer as deeply as the believer, when acknowledged, accepted, and allowed to enter. This transition from the desolation of darkness in the longest night of the year in winter, to the dawning of a bright new day, as the radiance of the Sun breaks and we move once more forward into the light is the phenomenon of renewal and promise of life after life. This signifies the journey of the Eternal One as It expresses through the densely limited fabric of our manifest physical existence to be perceived through our senses. This primal power of the cycles of the Sun, of death and rebirth, darkness and light, has been experienced by mankind since the Ancients walked upon terra firma.
This power is embedded within the many cycles of the universe that surrounds us as well as that vast spiritual universe within us. We live in a densely physical dimension which is constantly vibrating with the dynamic equilibration of darkness and light, death and rebirth. On a personal purely physical level, your heart beats, contracts, and then relaxes to move the blood through your body. You breathe in air, only to then do the reverse and exhale. We put food and drink in these meat puppets we souls use called bodies, and then excrete what is not useful to us. People come and go in our lives. We are happy, and then we are sad. For every up there is a down, and so goes the whole process of mundane existence.
Consider for a moment, however, that instant of transition, the tipping point where the dark suddenly shifts to light, the millisecond between life and death. There is a holy reverence to be gained by contemplating that deepest point of darkness just before it shifts into light. Much can be gleaned from the stillness and emptiness of the rich, profound blackness. With sensory stimulation at a minimum, the perfect moment is presented to examine what has been, what is, and what is to be. Reflection upon how we got to this point and what may be done to alter the course of possible outcomes is best contemplated in the solitude of this darkest time; so that when the Sun rises again, we will awaken with previously unrealized morsels of knowledge that can only be discovered when we allow ourselves to enter into the darkness, allow the darkness to enter into us and surrender to its inspiration of wisdom and strength.
Throughout history the patterns of darkness and light can be traced on a broader spectrum as civilizations grow, prosper, reach their pinnacle of power and then fade away or die out suddenly. The cycles seem to repeat without question; the ebb and flow of new discoveries and modern regimes replacing the outmoded dinosaurs that stick with the old rather than welcoming the new. Times change, and if societies do not keep pace with spiritual evolution, their constituents are doomed to devolution and perhaps extinction. To some it would seem that the United States of America has, in the blink of an eye, found itself and all that it represents teetering upon this very precipice of doom.
We are a nation divided; those who chose and support Trump, those who supported a different choice, whether it be Hillary or a third party candidate. With the majority of the popular vote going to Hillary, one can only perceive a glimmer of hope for humanity in knowing that more than half of the voters of the United States are not morally depraved, insane nor led by hallucinations generated by consumerism of baited-market driven lies. We are not grieving over Hillary’s loss, the election is over: we are grieving at our nation’s ignorance in choosing to be led by a narcissistic personality President Elect Trump, who is a Putin business puppet with a cabinet of degenerate plutocrats and a congress ready to privatize the USA into austerity, while looting our public riches, handing our democracy over to Russia something inferred by Nikita Khrushchev, in his Speech given in Yugoslavia, August 24, 1963, “I once said, ‘We will bury you,’ and I got into trouble with it. Of course we will not bury you with a shovel. Your own working class will bury you.” The fact remains, however, that on January 20, 2017, Trump will become the President of the United States of America, and we, as a nation, will enter into a deeply profound darkness that accompanies the Winter Solstice prior to Christmas.
What is this darkness that threatens to overtake the United States of America? Plain and simple, the Dominionists in the Christian sect are seeking to turn the United States into a Theocratic nation1, thus depriving anyone to worship in the religion of their choice and depriving those who choose Not to worship in any form of religion or spiritual belief; adopting instead a Dominionist consensus of state-sponsored Christianity. By favoring their dominion to create law to favor their religious ideology, your dominion is trumped by their desire to win at all cost in gaining Authoritarian political power thus regulating your freedom of religious expression and secular life.
Then, there is the upcoming Trump administration’s deal which has created the first State sponsored U.S.A. Politburo Bureau in striking a deal with Sinclair Broadcasting Corporation. Sinclair Broadcasting Corporation will likely create sensible sounding propaganda from half facts, incorporated into its political media ‘entertainment’ then executed into market sizzle in order to behaviorally seize the mob mentality of the Trump supporters in order to contract the US economy. Sinclair Broadcasting Corporation will then saute supporters internal dialogues to follow Trump, their Anti-Christ savior. This will support the voice inside the republican mob-mentality heads, seeking to drown out any facts challenging and questioning tactics of bait-n-switch or outright lies of Trump and his plutocratic administration.
Congress appears, so far to be missing in action. Whereas, the new invocation to the congressional god Mammon, who is deeply caressed and worshiped by austerity republicans, the whited sepulchers2 will seize any opportunities to enslave the American citizens with a blend of corporate communism3, disguised as finance capitalism, to slowly replace the U.S. Constitution, modified by inserting pieces of the Confederate Constitution. Under-informed citizens bound by their current hallucinations of President-Elect Trump will be suckered in through this act of GOP ‘marketing’ (brain washing under the rubric of American Exceptionalism) of the mob mentality to suit their needs, similar to the manner in which the Trump administration capitalizes on the fear, anger and insufficient literacy of the middle class Joe (labor) who has been disconsidered and intentionally shunned for so long.
Will we, the people in this winter of 2016, silently succumb to the hallucination created and nourished by the Republican E-van-gullible Christian Dominionists and Putin groomed Authoritarian Trump allowing them to create more darkness as they usher in crushing eugenic austerity at the expense of the middle class and poor? Privatized economies are the creators of real economic contraction all the while violating, plundering and transferring the riches and freedom of the Public Domain into private sector hands. This privatization setts economic entropy into motion by transferring public money from anything up to and including Education, Social Security and Medicare creating instead, a complex ‘Rube Goldberg‘ type toll booth economy of confusion for citizens while fattening the wallets of whiny-ass business persons, who will in all likelihood continue to whine. Can we stand by and condone the hijacking of the under informed citizens of our nation? The fact of the matter is that, just as the Death Cult of Isis hijacked the religion of Islam, the eisegesis4 of Dominionists have hijacked Christianity seeded by the Great Rabbi, Jesus — a Jew.
During this winter, We, the citizens of the United States are faced with a choice, to either allow disturbed individuals to create darkness or form light of equality for all instead of the few (the fearful business baby souls); this may be perhaps the most crucial and profound decision we have yet to encounter. We can choose not listen to the darkness and just ignore it; to pretend Trump does not exist and keep on going assuming there is nothing we can do about it. Or we can listen, feel, immerse ourselves in and see this darkness so we better understand who and what the enemies are created by insecure, powerful business men and business women who are the fools supporting life, liberty and the pursuit of property; creating a series of consequences so complex and ambiguous that the forgotten Americans who are hallucinating for lack of water, truly cannot see what is at stake. Much food for thought this winter.
And NO, a strong word to you hallucinating E-van-gullibles who despise reasoning and treat imagination as faith, while creating phantasmagoric darkness from profuse use of imagination rendering end of the world fantasies making God and Jesus a Jack in the box! Even if you create the environs for world ending scenarios, it is NOT the end of the world.
Those of us who are students of Rev. Dr. Strickler have been reminded with increasing frequency of his citations of Matthew 24:36 “But of that day and hour knoweth no one, not even the angels of heaven, neither the Son, but the Father only.” Apparently many Christians do not know how to read. This Biblical reference has an especially urgent message for those of us being called to speak the Truth; the time for action is now.
So, the United States of America needs your support, your wisdom, your voice and your power. Harness and direct your anger, disappointment and dismay generated by the seemingly improbable and absolutely unthinkable soon to be Presidency of a dangerously ego-maniacal personality disordered, celebrity business man named Trump. Direct that energy! Channel it into a positive force of resistance in order to increase light back to this great country of ours. Let your voice be heard, take action, challenge the darkness whenever and where ever you encounter it. Do not allow yourself to fall back to sleep, for the nightmare that you will find there stoked by indifference could mean the end of democracy and Dictator Trump could well be our last President!
The United States of America needs exactly what you have to say! Find like minded individuals and stand up against the insanity. Join groups, sign petitions, start petitions, write to your Congressmen, seek out the news, the REAL News, not the fake news that is being Trump-eted and take action. Only then will we be able to maintain our poise, balance and equilibrium and employ our resources and power to present a united force strong enough to take this country back into the light.
May God Bless the people of America with the conscience, intelligence and strength to make the dawning of light break once again over this great nation of ours. This winter, may we find and harness our inner strength to unite together and save our country from impending disaster.
Picture provided by Rev. Strickler’s friend/composer/musician: Scott Haskin
So, for 2017, this may be great prescience to invigorate a new crispness of a foreboding expression, which appears to have been originated as a Latin proverb attributed to Praemonitus, “forewarned is forearmed.” Forwarned and forearmed about what? The warnings issued by the waxing and waning moon of Christmas. What warnings, you might then ask? We couldn’t put it more succintly than the recent commentary on Twitter From Rev. Strickler’s twitter page, from independent scholar Dan Kervick5,
“Brilliant super-moon in some strange configuration or whatnot. This is the dawning of theAge of Jackass.“
Thank you Dan Kervick. We couldn’t have said it better.
The Institute of Spiritual Climate LLC, warmly welcomes you to the climate of the 2016 Winter Solstice, the dawning of Christmas Day and the forthcoming New Year of 2017. This Introduction will be the only commentary that Spiritual Climate Newsletter has for now, as we have given our contributors the time off to journey inward during the winter and do their own self examination of darkness and the dawning of light this most critical year. We invite you to relax, put your feet up, pour yourself a chilled glass of bubbly, or a hot rum and cider, perhaps a strong mug of coffee with Bailey’s; whatever your choice of holiday cheer you associate with the Season. Join us as we explore the latest happenings as we ponder the deep darkness of the Solstice and the emerging light of the rebirth on this whirling, crazy planet we call Earth. Hold on to your hats and buckle your seat belts! The upcoming ride (and upcoming year) may get a little bumpy!!!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from all of us here at Spiritual Climate Newsletter
“Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye are like unto whited sepulchres, which outwardly appear beautiful, but inwardly are full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness.” Matthew 23:27, American Standard Version (ASV)[↩]
”In eisegesis, we read stuff into Scripture. For instance, the idea of the United States as a “Christian Nation” is the creation of egos who gloat over being powerful. It has no basis in history or fact, but more important, it has no basis in the Bible. Thus it arises from eisegesis. Yet some leading US politicians and pastors interpret the Bible through this notion.” Longman, Robert. “What Are Exegesis, Eisegesis, and Hermeneutics?” Religion. Accessed December 23, 2016. http://www.spirithome.com/bible_exegesis.html.[↩]
Dan Kervick. Twitter handle @DanMKervick at 9:04pm on December 16, 2016: “Brilliant super-moon in some strange configuration or what-not. This is the dawning of the Age of Jackass.”[↩]
Is Proud to Present Its Social & Spiritual Commentaries:
SPIRITUAL CLIMATE NEWSLETTER
Updated on Sunday, 10-23-2016
Welcome to the Editors’ introduction to Spiritual Climate Newsletter, October 2016.Can’t you just feel the change in the air? Autumn, Fall, the Autumnal Equinox. That time of year when we take a deep breath of slightly cooler air, watch as the days grow shorter and nights grow longer, and begin to anticipate the approaching holiday season in all its glory; from Halloween to Thanksgiving to Christmas to New Year’s! Those lucky enough to live in an area where the trees put on their amazing display of vibrant colors brace for a treat!
Takes one back to the days of burning leaves, bonfires and family gatherings replete with clambakes, hot dogs and s’mores. Ah, the good old days! Memory is quite an astounding faculty! With just a few words, one can be transported to a different place and time, and reinvent the details to better suit the fabric of the personality. To most, our memories are thought to be an accurate picture of what happened in the past, but as anyone who has had the advantage of having therapy knows, our memories are often fabrications of what we, as a younger version of ourselves, perceived the situation to be; that which we created with our then limited understanding of the event and continued to carry on into adulthood as a reality. Quite a feat; quite a talent! Absolutely lethal, however, when manipulated by charlatans seeking to gain power.
The longing for nostalgia, the “good old days.” For some, that is merely five years ago; for others it may be fifty! It seems to be a universal trait we all share to varying degrees as we muse about times past, using the memories tinged by what we truly think happened, to smile and recall what was. Trump appears to have mesmerized an entire segment of the population of the United States and manipulated them to believe that they need to move back in to a time when America was great, playing upon the very real personality trait of nostalgia and the comfort of the memory of the past. Remember? No Federal Debt cliff or economic ‘Grand Bargain’ stupidity created by the insufficiently literate Erskine Bowles, et. al. No Trade deals. Good union pay scales.
But of course the overpaid, mono-syllabic, economically ignorant bought and paid for Faux Conservative & Liberal Political Media ABC, CBS, CNN, CSPAN, FOX, MSNBC, NBC and not to forget the economic faerie dust from the dolts on CNBC, has another outcome intended for American citizens — more Neoliberal policy agendas which support plutocrats, lowers wages, slows GDP growth with no counter-voices who know better on the corporate lobby news boutiques from above. This outcome is being assisted by monetary ignoramus billionaire? Donald Trump and to a much smaller extent from Hillary Clinton, by helping to support Budget and Public Debt fear mongering echo chamber agenda.
How is the intended outcome by the Political Media1 being accomplished? Why with the built in continual, echo-chambered drone of serious economic ignorant Neoliberal policies that have decimated the middle class in this nation from upward redistribution. Haven’t you noticed the well-deserved, substantial ire and anger against the Political Media in response to the forgery of economic opine on Networks? This anger and ire from a portion of the populace is what feeds some of the Trump phenomena2 and part of the Hillary-Hatred Derangement Syndrome.3
By censoring any rational, economic heterodox counter-dialogue, the Political Media reinforces their shove-it-down-the-throats-of-Americans to their agenda to dismantle the public sector and drain the public’s money. The front part of this powerful lobby can be heard in various opines, but Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s (PGPF) Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB) wins the booby prize. CRFB’s President Maya MacGuineas is a fine contribution to toxic information and a wasteland of profound fiscal irresponsibility of resistance to facts, who shrewdly cherry picks economic facts to support CRFB’s insanely irrational call for balanced budgets because the national debt with ANY deficit spending is going to starve you, your children and kill jobs for your children’s children; it’s psycho econo-babble4. Note how well the marketing hypnotism works in the last presidential debate as misinformed journalist Chris Wallace promptly invoked the ‘Grand Bargain’ on Social Security and National Debt! Look at the incredible, superb efficacy of post-hypnotic suggestion plays out plainly and visibly as a testament to the prowess of hypnotism marketing of CRFB’s commercial induction-that’s great power and influence.
Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB) is an economically bigoted, biased and insufficiently literate, bipartisan public policy organization filled with economic incompetents who want to pocket and drain your Social Security and ANY of your money with your earned, paid for benefits outsource it to salivating Wallstreet handlers in a NAFTA-like policy that trumps out government protecting your benefits in favor of financial sector losing you money.
CRFB is a pseudo think-tank based in Washington, D.C. By preying on the fact of our insufficiently informed citizenry, CRFB talks a one-sided federal balance sheet paranoia designed to assist the Private Financial Sector (with Rants-alot-Trump’s help and as Progressive’s rightfully fear Hillary might help) in stealing the power of the federal monetary system of the USA in a can’t see it coming type coup d’etat. This would effectively hand over USA monetary sovereignty to the financial sector bankers by getting people to believe in a fiction called Balanced Budget nonsense or National Debt apocalypse — THERE ISN’T ONE. Then what is going on?
So, plain and simply put, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget and everyone who supports this economic den of thieves are LYING to American public to get what they want. Why? Because they want your money and will stop at almost nothing to get it. They use the Political Media to promote their ALEC-like lobby and its austerity legislation agenda against the American people on ABC, CBS, CNN, CSPAN, FOX, MSNBC, NBC and not to forget the economic faerie dust from the dolts on CNBC has another outcome intended for American citizens — more Neoliberal policy to to further the reach of the private Financial Sector’s tentacles by playing on the American public’s lack of full knowledge on how our money system actually works simultaneously pulling a bait-n-switch67
Private Sector billionaire ‘Rants-Alot-Trump’ professes he will “Make America Great Again.” Though I am not sure exactly when he deems the cutoff point to be as to when the United States of America became “not great,” from rhetoric bounced around and indications from the Republican Party, an educated guess might be that it somehow, in his own Trumpian logic, correlates to when President Obama took office. After all, we know that that point in history is when Civil Unrest became rampant, right? And let’s praise Trump for his wisdom in finally ending the birther theory that Hillary started as well, enlightened, wise man that he is. You know what is genuinely frightening? That Trump supporters would read these words and not even catch a glimpse of the sarcasm that is implied in them. They would agree and pronounce Barabbas-Trump as the Savior! And so it goes, The Gospel According to Trump.
But Trump paints such a picture of the evils of what America has become at the hands of a Black President, the depths to which we, as a nation, have sunk, and by playing upon the emotions of the nostalgia of whatever it is he vaguely sees as the good old days, a picture that is unique to each individual, that he has created a mass hysteria of desire to return to some nebulous time unique to each one’s imagination. . .but it works, because it carries such emotional impact! How naïve and gullible are we, as a nation?
Inevitably, we will know come November 8, 2016. Whether Trump carries us into a coup d’etat into the hands of the financial private sector, becoming a second Hitler by means of taking over the Supreme Court or Hillary is the victor, at the very least bringing experience and common sense, the decision is in our hands. We the people hold the power, as has always been the foundation upon which the Untied States of America has be based. And the choice is ours, along with the implications of what might be with a Trump victory; this may be our last stand to make this choice. The future of our country hangs in the balance. Make your choice and voice count!
Follow the path with Dr. Strickler as he puts into print his life altering journey in his medical event in suffering an acute stroke and the repercussions of the aftermath in his sensitive recounting in his article, “Lightning Struck Late at Night.”
Join Wendy Ford as she permits her Ego to speak in a revealing commentary on two of her previous articles, discovering the power of her exploration of Self in “My Dearest Idiot, This Is your Ego.”
Explore the characteristics of character with Glen Ford expressing the intricacies of the make up of what we do and why in his article “Thoughts on Character.”
Encounter experiences of obstacles and the importance of overcoming them as you travel with Adam Crosthwaite in his article “Caution, Gate Opens Inward.”
As always, get cozy and comfy with a tall or short glass of your favorite beverage and join us once more. It is with hope that our great country continues to be as great as we are right now that we, the staff of Spiritual Climate, invite you take a break from your busy day to travel with us through the meanderings, ponderings and realities as seen from the minds of mystics with our commentaries about what is happening on this crazy, never boring, spinning sphere called Earth!
Welcome to our Autumn 2016 Edition of The Spiritual Climate Newsletter.
O’Donnell, Lawrence. The Last Word with Lawrence O’Donnell. “Political Media Loses Its Mind over Clinton.” News Media. MSNBC, September 12, 2016. Editors Note:Lawrence O’Donnell’s wording, ‘Political Media’ is a concise, powerful naming of the Conservative-Liberal Beltway Media. Thankfully your voice is on mainstream Lawrence![↩]
Most if not all of the surrogate co-chairs, represent a blight and malignancy of cancerous ignorance, such as Mitch Daniels, or they sound like wannabe economists who do not understand accounting identity, sectoral balance identity or balance of payments in macro government budget accounting which put simply translates as government is nowhere near anything like a household checking account. Brilliant economists like Stephanie Kelton, Michael Hudson, Bill Mitchell, Steve Keen or Dean Baker counter against the dubious farce of presentations the CRFB’s broadcasts daily on Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s (PGPF) commercial minions ABC, CBS, CNN, CSPAN, FOX, MSNBC, NBC and not to forget the economic faerie dust from the dolts on CNBC; these economists provide a counter-voice of reason based on economic history and flawless math.
“Here’s something we need to understand – there is a Wall Street Wing of the Democratic party, and one of its most eager representatives is Erskine Bowles. According to Bill Black, noted economist and blogger at Naked Capitalism, Bowles along with Alan Simpson is allied with Republican Wall Street billionaire Pete Peterson who has pledged a billion dollars in the effort to privatize Social Security called “The Third Way”.
Black writes, “The Third Way represents the Wall Street wing of the Democratic Party and has pushed successfully for the worst domestic failures of the Obama administration, including continuing the Bush administration policy of granting the elite banksters whose frauds drove the crisis de facto immunity from criminal prosecution. … Third Way is also useful to Wall Street’s pursuit of other major priorities, including austerity and gaining access to tens of billions of dollars in freebie profits from beginning to privatize social security. Third Way’s specialty is spreading the faux “moral panic” that the safety net is the great threat to America.”[↩]
It may not have been an unusual Sunday, either in the morning or afternoon for that unparticular day: I don’t recall much about August 22, 2004 sifting back through layers of memory. That day, that month and that part of the year does indeed have some type of unfamiliar vibe lurking behind the appearances of its chronological settings. In fact, I don’t recall much about the daylight settings other than the fact that at that time period of my life it was a normal workday for me. Most of my recall seems to surround around the darkness. That would make sense because the lightning struck me at night.
I am not referring to lightning in the ordinary sense of the word. I am referring to a metaphorical sense of lightning striking. Sitting here writing this, I’m still struggling to find any sense of what had occurred during the afternoon on that Sunday. All that day, even to this day, seems to have been obliterated or buried from any sensible recollection. But I do vividly remember lying in bed, having retired for the night, staring into the darkness at the window curtains in front of my bed.
It seemed almost as if it were any other night, except for my usual routine of reviewing the day’s events in backward sequence. Not surprising, details appear to be missing from my recollection of that day into night. That is until the memory of a squirming, agitation yanking my body out of bed to go into the bathroom, turn the lights on and look at myself in the bathroom mirror, for no conceivable reason whatsoever. Then, reviewing that motion, that whole process again of looking at myself, but thinking, “Why do I have the bathroom light on?” Why am I staring at myself in the mirror? Shaking my head, I turned the lights off and headed back to bed.
However, going back to bed, It didn’t stop there, the uneasy restlessness continued with finding myself monitoring my body fidgeting around in bed and I couldn’t quite seem to get comfortable. This was a sense of uneasiness ‘from out of nowhere’ with no apparent cause I could pinpoint. My legs were so restless. Before I knew it I was once more up again turning the lights on over the bathroom wall mirror just staring at myself all the while wondering what the hell was going on? Now there was some sort of inaudible humming sound with tiny electrical sparks that felt like ants crawling up my legs.
All I could think of was, here comes another night of difficulties in getting to sleep but that rapidly turned into a pause producing a growing concern. I began wondering if something was wrong. What was I picking up on? My attention was immediately cast to any family or friends. Maybe I’m picking up on a strong signal of distress from someone, I thought to myself. No sooner had I invoked the thought process above, when right under my nose, my body was getting up out of bed. Yes, I did state that correctly; my awareness was of actually lying there, watching my body getting up out of bed.
Here I was again for the umpteenth time, turning on the bathroom light and eerily seeing the reflection of myself staring back at me as if to say, “Are you paying attention yet?” It was almost as if another probable me was looking at me from the other side of the conjunction between our realities trying to get my attention. Now ordinarily I wouldn’t consider that type of thought strange. Those of you who know me understand when I say that. Small whirlings and vibrations felt like they were going on inside me, taking place like Jonathan Winter’s Maude Fricketmight vocalize, “all over my body.”
What’s Going On?
Staring at myself or the reflection of myself in the mirror, whichever you prefer, I didn’t see anything out of place; my color didn’t look bad, my pupils weren’t overly dilated and appeared reactive nor was the room was shrinking while my body was growing, I did not see any horns or antenna coming out of the backside of my head. It was clear to me, however, that there was something wrong. In retrospect, I left the bathroom vanity light on and walked back to my bed and sat on the edge of the bed, with my feet on the floor, moving both knees up and down in a rapid pace with pressure placed on the front part of my foot, something most parents will tell their children to “stop doing that!”
Absorbed in assessment, discerning the nature of the moment, whatever you care to call it, is the closest approximation I can give you, because any thoughts after my body walked me back to the bed to sit down were completely absent. Instead, I was listening, watching, pondering my next move, or rather, my body was assessing, watching, listening and subconsciously considering its next move. I can’t say that I was frightened. It was in a heightened state of awareness, a form of hyper-vigilance familiar to me through spiritual tools and exercises; some taught to me, some I discovered then used with consistency throughout my life. To put it another way, something was up and I wanted to know what that “up” was.
Immediately after I invoked wanting to know what was up, I shifted into a complete Observer mode, watching my body’s consciousness move into action without hesitation. Translated that means my body was walking to the phone, picking it up and making a phone call. Further translated: the distress signal I was picking up on was ME.
Mentally galvanized and without any thought I found myself launching into action. I was instantly cognizant that I wouldn’t call Dianne first, because she lived further away from me. I called my friend Christine who lived a few doors down. She answered almost immediately, even though she was a bit surprised at my call, she was her usual polite self and asked me what was up. I told her to call Wendy and Glen to tell them she was taking me to the emergency room at Paradise Valley Hospital (now the Abrazo Scottsdale Campus) to which she said with full alertness, “What?” I repeated myself, to which she responded “I will call Dianne.” I stated no, I would call Dianne, just get the car and hurry up please.
Since Dianne lived further away, and it was likely that she was just getting ready to doze off, this meant it would take longer for her to get to me. She answered my phone call; I told her to meet me at Paradise Valley Hospital emergency room, to which she replied, wanting to know what was wrong. I told her I wasn’t quite sure what was wrong, but something was wrong; I didn’t break any bones, I wasn’t bleeding. But, something was wrong, my body was nagging constantly at me. So, I had called Christine since she lived closer. She could respond more quickly to take me to the emergency room at Paradise Valley Hospital. Dianne told me okay and she would see me there as soon as possible.
Just as I ended the call with Dianne, Christine rang my cell and told me she was in the car waiting in the parking lot down the north-south walkway to my apartment. Everything was feeling even stranger. I found myself rapidly locking the door to my apartment and heading to car. I found myself wondering if this was a false alarm was I going to the E.R. only to find out there was nothing at all going on? But there it was again, that subtle inaudible humming vibration making me question again what was going on. I walked fast to Christine’s car.
Christine asked how I was doing; I said I think I am okay and am having doubts about going to the emergency room. Christine said no matter, I needed to go and check things out. Getting into the car, we then left the apartment complex through the north gate to get on Greenway Road. There was little traffic at this 9 p.m. ‘ish hour. Things were starting to feel even stranger as I was talking to Christine and we approached the 40th Street intersection which we had to turn left on to get to Paradise Valley Hospital on the corner of Bell Rd and 40th Street.
Lightning Struck Unexpectedly…
Approaching the light at the intersection as I was talking to Christine, I remember having a odd sense of immobilization and said, “Oh, my!” There was a flash as if ‘lightning struck’. ‘Bam,’ I felt myself free falling forward realizing I was about to lose consciousness. Next, there was this boing-snap sound inside my head between both my ears. Everything then quickly went from live to black except for the small ball of light condensing to a point. I was looking at the blackness of space within, some apparent last thoughts as I was losing physical consciousness. I do not know how long I was out but I did feel a hand on my chest pushing me back into the car seat. I remember hearing, “Boss, Boss are you okay, can you hear me?” I was opening my eyes as I was hearing this.
I think I felt the car moving rather fast. I said, “Wow, that was a trip, I went away, so that is what it feels like to blackout? I feeling lost somewhere between here and now. Christine asked me to describe as best I could how I was feeling and what I was sensing when all of a sudden, wham, bam ‘lightning struck’ again. I told her for the first time in my life I had some direct understanding of what a candle feels like. Christine asked me what I meant, and I responded by telling her my face was melting. It wasn’t my entire face mind you, it was the left side of my face melting and feeling as though it was going to slide off. All I could think of was a) I now have empathy for melting wax and then the startling awareness of b) my body was in trouble and c) I was glad to have gotten in the car to go to the hospital.
With great relief in seeing the driveway of the hospital leading to the entrance of the E.R. while failing to heed Christine’s words, I opened the door of the car while it was moving, somehow putting one foot in front of the other nearly ‘levitating’ with haste into the E.R. entrance. Making it to the admission’s desk, I felt strange with how the admitting nurse was observing me. I told her I had people coming behind me and I felt I was in trouble.
The admitting room nurse was asking me some questions while I reached for my insurance cards, telling her my address and I was 45 years old, having lost consciousness in the car on the way here explaining to her this has never happened to me before. Christine came in behind me; the nurse asked her if my face had always looked that way, she told her no, and told the nurse I had said my face started melting shortly after I regained consciousness in the car. I couldn’t answer the admitting nurse’s question as to what day it was; she said she would be back quickly. They took me into an adjoining room and took my blood pressure which was some ungodly rate of 230-50 something over 170 something. They asked me if I could walk and saying yes, I nervously followed the next nurse into the E.R. room.
Health care professionals started swarming around me in a dizzying blur. All I wanted to do was to go to sleep, but the doctor who introduced himself asked me to please keep my eyes open. I was placed on a gurney which was followed by needles and IV bags being hung around me. To my relief, Dianne suddenly appeared around my treatment room curtains alongside Christine.
I found solace in seeing Dianne. Dianne could look calm in a hurricane and this is not fiction, it is fact. Dianne and I had gone through Hurricane Andrew in August of 1992 in Naples, Florida. She’s always been my secret sure-rock of stability where I’d temporarily lost my psychological footing. I told her I felt strange. She asked me if I was in any pain and as usual, she nails a novel question to me by asking if I was in any pain. Come to think of it, I wasn’t experiencing any pain. Wow, what a trip! Something was incredibly wrong yet I wasn’t feeling any pain. There wasn’t any experience of fear either.
Next came the MRI’s and CAT scans. Between the flurry of dialogue against the curtain of non-dialogue both inside and outside my brain-space-conversation process, I knew my organism was in genuine danger and I was content with my decision to seek out competent health care professionals. They were working fast to ascertain what was happening inside and to my body. After the flurry of blood work, radio diagnostics and small conversation with those around me, I was beginning to feel a huge pause, not in a threatening sense but in positive anticipation, if it can be called that; I stared at the ceiling while listening to the heart monitor waiting to discover what was wrong with my body. Am I going to lose my organism? But there wasn’t even a sense of “impending doom.”
Time to Know…
The attending room physician came armed with two nurses at his side asking me how I was doing; I replied that there was no pain but something was wrong. He gave me a summary of the tests with little segue and finished by saying the indications were likely that I was suffering from an ischemic strokeand based on their investigation he said I was a candidate for Tissue Plasminogen Activator, otherwise known as TPA or PLAT. He also stated that I was within the four hour window to be able to use the TPA that helps by dissolving the blood clot and reduces the damage done to the body from lack of oxygen. Of course, there was then the obligatory litany of a long list of side effect citations. I responded that I needed a minute to think about it and talk to my friends.
I Must Choose…
Geeze, damned if I do and damned if I don’t, I remember thinking. Knowing my sensitivities to drugs it was like being handed a possible death sentence. My hesitation did not go unnoticed in the treatment space. The young nurse gave me five more minutes for my decision, reported to the attending physician and then came back watching the clock. Am I running out of time, I thought; this looks serious from my horizontal point of view. I expressed my concerns about the side effects of the TPA to the young nurse; she told me even though I couldn’t see it at the moment, the after effects of a stroke cause much damage if left untreated. She grabbed my hand and said, “Sir, if you were my father in this bed I would plead with you to take the TPA.”
Man oh man — I could tell from the compassion and concern in her voice that I need to pay attention because my situation was serious and could get worse. So looking back at the Angel speaking through her, I agreed to the TPA treatment and she appeared to give a sigh of relief. The situation suddenly moved even faster. Clipboards appeared out of nowhere for me to sign, giving consent to the treatment and of being advised of the side effect of the treatment. She Proceeded in giving me give the TPA treatment with the physician watching. I could feel it moving through my blood vessels; the next thing I recall happening was tingling in my head and on the left side of my face. My friends were watching me with a recital of ‘Oh my god!’ To their astonishment, my face was unmelting. I was watching the doctor try to restrain a smile of thankfulness on his face.
Not Going Home…
I was feeling much better and asked when I could go home. I was then informed I was being transferred to a facility that could monitor and further my treatment. The doctor was transferring me to Barrow Neurological Institute via St Joseph Hospital and Medical Center for Emergency Trauma treatment in downtown Phoenix, Arizona. The doctor said I wouldn’t be airlifted because there wasn’t a helicopter available, so I would be carried by ambulance. Things got blurry a bit into a flurry and hurry at this point. I thanked my attending room physician and the angel that spoke to me through my attending nurse.
Suddenly, I found myself being loaded into an ambulance with the continual question of how was I doing? I thought I heard the voices of my friends and the ambulance attendants discussing streets. Off we went, as I watched the street lights above me with some occasional talk with my ambulance attendant. She told me that I had to be observed for a 24-hour period after this type of stroke treatment.
Out of the rear the ambulance doors I could see the streetlights go by like a string of pearls in the dark Phoenix Arizona night sky holding just a few small grayish white clouds. For me at least it seemed to be taking a long time to get to St. Joseph’s Emergency Trauma Center. Now for some reason I was experiencing flashbacks of St. Joseph’s Hospital in Lorain, Ohio that I used to work at in the late 1970s; I must admit I was feeling a bit of a synchronicity if nothing else, from the flood of memories of working that job. It seemed to take a bit of getting into the hospital I do recall being amazed at the large volume of people filling the emergency room center.
Rinse & Repeat…
A male nurse showed up to ask me to repeat the whole story again of the evening by remarking “I know you already said these things time and time again, but I need to hear them directly from you.” As an aside, even up to this point in time there was still no pain. After I had given the intake nurse the details, Dianne and Christine arrived; how the hell they ever found me I don’t know, the hospital was huge. I still felt pretty good, as I told them, a bit strange but I felt pretty good; there was no pain, like getting struck by lightning with no pain and no burns.
Then the process started, the whole process of CAT scans and MRIs and becoming a human pincushion, it was another repeat segment of the prior hospital admission questions at Paradise Valley. Leaving out the hypnotizing details of the CAT scan and an MRI visitation, next thing I knew someone was telling Dianne and Christine that I was at being admitted to ICU for further observation. Apparently I wasn’t going home yet.
After getting me checked into ICU, which I shared a room with one other individual who didn’t appear to be conscious. It was dark in there, although there was window; I am almost certain I recall the moonlight coming in through the window. My nurse’s name was David, he wasn’t the only one, but he was the one who introduced himself amidst the flurry of team of nurses who were checking in on me at various points. One thing he stated was that they were not going to let me go to sleep. He informed me that they would be checking on me with some rate of frequency that proved unsettling for me, because all I want to do was to go to sleep.
Some hours later I was eating a cinnamon flavored paste, absolutely ungodly as far as the texture was concerned; I never had eaten Vaseline before, which was close approximation to what the stuff was, but they were preparing to do an echo-cardiogram which meant they were going to slide a tube down my throat. The only thing that caught my interest was they were going to knock me out, which meant I might get a little bit of sleep. Whatever they used to knock me out was wonderful; looking back at that I could of used that stuff post stroke.
It was later in that day’s evening, whatever that day was, that they were transferring me to the stroke ward at Barrow Neurological Institute which is in the same building. My nurse Dave followed me there and informed me that they would finally let me sleep, although with frequency they would come and shine a light in my eyes and ask me questions that hopefully I could answer. I kind of dozed off in and out, when I didn’t have the eyeball light shining on me, only to hear people visiting the patient next to me.
This really caught my attention; I heard the patient’s age was 45, that man was the same age as me at the time. His whole left side was paralyzed and he couldn’t talk. When the family left the room later that night I asked my nurse why I didn’t end up paralyzed like so-and-so; he told me it was because I got treatment in time. I don’t know the man’s name, but my blessings of healing went out to him and his family; that was burned into my memory just like my biological sleep clock was burned into a new time zone.
I met the team of doctors that morning who were getting ready to let me go home. They were talking about some sort of blood tests to be done on a yearly basis and just at that moment my personal physician called me to see how I was doing; we chatted for a few seconds and I asked the one of the male doctors if they would repeat what they had just said to my physician who was on the phone with me. They said that would be no problem at all; they talked for about 5 to 10 minutes I think. I got my release papers and instructions and had to see my personal physician within the next couple of days. I was happy to get out of there alive.
So yes, I made it home and it is here I will truncate the story. It was a few weeks later that what I would call bruising started to show up in my neurological system and physical body. The first striking event: I couldn’t tell which direction sound was coming from! The pain was setting into the left side of my body. I couldn’t see in the depth of three dimensionality that I could before, everything had the appearance of being more flat. I could feel light hitting my skin for example from headlights; I could not take the lights in the store, and I was suddenly possessed by the will to walk. I forced myself to walk every day around the parking lot. The strangest thing of all was I couldn’t stand or walk on a slanted surface without falling over.
Looking back, I think I was becoming frightened at the possible prospect of not being able to walk. The pain was getting to be excruciating on the left side of my body and the pain in my head, the constant headaches, just wouldn’t go away. Of course my physician set me up with a regimen of medications to assist me with the spasticity I was experiencing with my body, but the stroke was beginning to leave its mark in my life and within my organism. All of a sudden I couldn’t remember things; I could no longer do simple math & most distressingly, the photographic (eidetic)recall that I had was nowhere to be found and I felt lost in a series of details. I have a memory of sitting in front of my speech therapist who was astonished that I actually knew I use to be able to add/subtract, calculus which was familiar was gone (to this day) never mind the tears rolling down my face in having those awarenesses.
While attempting to vacuum the carpet by myself one day, I came into this dark realization of the lack of energy in my vehicle, my physical body, and the immense fatigue it was experiencing: I couldn’t breathe after vacuuming 2 foot section off carpet. I had even noticed many cognitive functions had changed and left water running in the bathroom while setting a towel on fire on the kitchen stove to name a few too many things I’ve done post-stroke. To make a long story short, I talked with my physician and requested some rehab. I also requested a neuropsychiatric evaluation, which may help some of you who are familiar with my tweets to understand why I have questioned the cognitive capability of people out there are in various professions. The neuropsych test is painless and it is a fascinating discovery of identifying limitations.
For Whom It May Concern…
So yes, lightning struck me, in the form of an acute stroke, irrevocably changing my life and my relationship with the organism of my body that I operate through, in tandem with my brain and its remarkable capabilities. I am putting this story down since it was only a few weeks ago that it was the anniversary of this event in my lifestream. Why am I writing this? To hopefully give anyone the wherewithal to get their ass to the emergency room if something is going on that you don’t understand, whether with your physical self or your mental self.
There are parts of this story I have left out for the sake of brevity, but I have hopefully included enough of the necessary details to give rational people a chance to realize that in order to exercise a window needed to reduce paralysis in this type of medical event that strikes like lightning out of nowhere, they should act by going to the Emergency Room. This helps themselves with their body more instead of playing macho man or macho woman russian roulette in experiencing an unknown threatening circumstance.
This was an expensive trip that, thankfully, I could take on because of the fine health insurance at my disposal. I have a great many thanks to the people who study diligently in their fields who were able to specifically assist me in my moment of medical crisis. Strokes are confusing and still are to this day but I do know something for sure; strokes affect not only the patient, the stroke also affects everybody who is connected to the patient: the lightning strikes everyone to some degree.
Strokes change people, and I am thankful that I had a group of loving support around me to assist me in this part of the journey of my life with this medical event. Even the people who were in rehab with me in occupational, speech and physical therapy I still remember and feel inspired by their drive to move forward. A moment of special thanks to my Stroke Rehab Team of Therapists below:
11 Years Later…
I would like to take a few moments to address the invisible injuries that can easily happen with head injuries. With any head injury there is an increasing possibility for brain injury and the INVISIBLE problems resulting from it may not be entirely visible to anybody. I look completely normal to people who merely look at me, but my personality has changed, my ability to do things have changed, the stroke has rendered me disabled. ‘My Brain Hurts’ is a normal event for me now — more on that in a minute. Hell, it took me six years to be able to play guitar again viewed right here or here . I tire easily and frequently, I lose focus after 10 minutes, my sleep schedule has been turned into a backwards, afternoon shift of not being able to fall asleep until 5 AM. To top it off, it took another 11 years for them to find the location of the stroke inside my brain. The final kicker? The pièce de résistance is? Get this, I caught wind through the grapevine that a small few thought I was faking it, because “You look fine!”
What I’m trying to say is brain injury is not something to take to lightly; anyone who is had a family member affected with a brain injury, whether it be a severe crack on the head, a stroke or various other ways that head traumas can produce a brain injury, don’t expect the person to respond the same as prior to the injury: they may not even be close to what you recall as “normal” for them anymore. Please, don’t think that all they gotta do is go out there and do it; don’t push them to do things like they did before, because that’s just not going to work. They have been irrevocably changed for this lifetime and need support and understanding as they adjust to a new life.
So, seek medical advice, seek psychological and psychiatric advice about TBI and post traumatic stress disorder therapy such as EMDR therapy. Learn about what’s happening to either yourself or the person whom you love who has brain injury. Why? Because they are forever changed and it is very unlikely that they will ever be the same person that they were before the event, so be flexible and don’t place expectations on them; instead place the expectations on yourself to learn about what’s going on. It’s not the same as working through a cold; it’s more like running into a wall that you can’t see every five or ten minutes and no matter where you look you can’t seem to find it.
Cardiovascular disease is the leading global cause of death, accounting for 17.3 million deaths per year, a number that is expected to grow to more than 23.6 million by 2030.1 Stroke2 is a leading cause of serious long-term disability. You can help by learning how to identify a possible stroke. Whether it is you or a loved one, whatever the relationship, be informed and ready to make adjustments in your life because a new chapter is about to start. When this type of lightning strikes it, will affect you and those around you, ever altering not only the victim of the trauma, but the relationships and interactions with in all aspects of life.
Someone once asked me what it was like to live in the world after a Stroke. “Simple,” I told them, “Take a mirror without a frame. Now drop it on the floor in front of you and then use those fragments to negotiate the world and any number of your thoughts.” He looked at me wryly and said, “Boy, I am glad you told me you don’t drive anymore.”