Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Perfectly clear? Or is it!

The answer are starring me right in the face and so why do I feel guilty and hesitant? How many times do I have to be pushed around kicked around and have my things broken? Before I say enough is enough?  For years I didn't know how to express how I was feeling. This became a real problem, because I was holding everything in, the littlest things would become issues and i would blow up and most of the time I would vent my anger on the wrong person.  So, I worked hard and eventually I was able to tell people how i felt, but like everything I do I ended up over compensating which also led to problems.  Because now i can tell you how I am feeling, so divorcing the logic center of the brain I allowed my life ti be ruled by my emotions.  Much to my dismay I have found that all thid did was allow others to walk all over me and hirt me.

Yet, I have finally reached my breaking point. In my 20's and 30's I had trust issues.  I let very few people close to me. I always expected that they would steal and eventually they would up hurting me very similar to my fears. Then somewhere around 38 I got really sick. I ended up losing my gall bladder and 1/2 of my stomach and my outlook on life began to shift. I began to feel that life is so very short and fleeting and I struggled to leave the past in the past and to live in the moment. This triggered another seeeping change I went from trustinh no one to give everyone the benefit of while searching for the goodness of human nature. Unfortunately only about 70 percent actually show human kindness and compassion.  The other 30 percent has hidden agendas and lives by falsehood and trickery. I'm always disappointed when I put my faith in to someone only to have them hurt me and reveal their inner nature. I have rationalized and lied to myself so convincingly that I honestly do expect them to change and then I feel even more violated and betrayed, yet the person themselves hasn't done anything wrong other than being themselves.

Now, combine these issues with the full empathy the it doesn't seem so much a gift more so a curse. Being able to read another persons emotional state does nothing to reveal their agendas, intentions or motivations. Sometimes these glimpses of anothers emotions so greatly masks deadly actions. I am once again working on myself trying to reach a happy middle ground between the two extremes. It is never too late to improve yourself.  If you are like me and have been hurt so many times you owe it to yourself to embrace the future strive to make the necessary changes that are going to protect you.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you.

Uncle B

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Another Sleepless night situation worse then ever

Last night was one of the worst nights for me.  Actually this month has really been bad all the way around.  I have someone in my house that is constantly destroying my things.  I thought by moving in a roommate the constant fighting would slow down and maybe even stop.  In actuality it just seems to have made things so much more complicated.  The frustrating part is that there is a part of me that cares about the person, but he doesn't have any respect for me or my things.  His habits make the situation that much worse.  He likes to pop xanax, but when he combines that with alcohol a fight ends up happening.

Tonight much to my distaste he was given alcohol and he was already under the influence of xanax.  Everything was fine till around 3:30 in the morning, I was watching a tv program, it was almost over.  He comes out of the bathroom and starts searching around for his weed.  He ended up kicking the coffee table and my marble morter and pistal fell on the floor and another piece chipped off.  All I said was please watch what your are doing and please don't stop breaking things.  This immediately started a fight and now the coffee table is totally destroyed along with many of my glass storage bowls that were sitting on the dining room table.

This arguement became physical and extremely violent, the new roommate was pulled into it and a heated exchange happened between the 3 of us.  The police ended up showing up when my roommate left and both me and the other person were talked to about the situation.  Because I care and don't like to see anyone put out on the street, but I told him he was going to have to leave.  That is when he told me that he wasn't going anywhere and that because he has been here longer than a month there is nothing I can do but go to the courthouse and start the eviction process.  Though tonight I learned something new, I could have had him arrested for the destruction of my property.  I did not press charges at the tiime and because he told the officers a completely different story and made it out that the fight was between him and my new roommate they wouldn't do even consider it a domestic dispute and take him out of my house.

My roommate came back about an hour later and told me that if I don't do something and have the other person removed from the house that he was going to move out.  Now, honestly I explained to him before he ever moved in that I was having these issues and the fights and needed his help in getting the other guy out.  Originally, I let the guy stay with me because the other people he was staying with were getting evicted and he didn't have anywhere to go.  I told him he could stay for a couple of weeks until he got himself onto his feet and could find somewhere else to go.  He refuses to leave, I was evicted from my last home because of him and me constantly fighting and I am very afraid that this is going to happen all over again.

I really wanted to help him, and feelings became involved and we started dating, but things have been on the steady decline since labor day when he destroyed some very expensive things which I am still currently paying for.  I told him tonight after everything calmed down that I still want him to move out.  I have never been good with confrontations and I don't like that the police had to become involved yet again. This time though I did have it thoroughly documented.  I have come as far as I can go.  Honestly he is the first person that I have tried to help that has totally and utterly failed in an epic way.  All I have ever asked for him to do was either get a job or go to school.  Do something to better himself and he has not made any effort to do any of these things. 

As hard as it will be, and no matter my personal feelings on this matter enough is enough.  I can't deal with living like this any longer.  He feels that he can talk to me and treat me any kind of way and I am just supposed to take it.  When I try to stand up for myself and my personal belongings he becomes irrate and out of control and ends up causing physical damage to property and personal possessions.  I am exhausted, I have had no sleep and I don't need this stress in my life at this point.  I have tried to reason with him. To talk to him about his attitude and anger problems, and instead of it getting better the situation has become unbearable.  So this morning I am faced with a series of choices and I am going to have to think about myself, I am going to have to be totally selfish, and I am going to have to give back a portion of what he gives to me.

I don't feel like I should have to do this but I have tried asking him to leave and I cannot get him to leave on his own accord.  My hands are tied and I honestly cannot afford to continue to replace the things that he breaks or the damage that he has done to the property that I am renting.  I am going to have to go to the courthouse this morning and I am going to have to file paperwork to start the eviction process and because of his violent and destructive behavior I feel that with my new cancer diagnosis I am going to have to get a restraining order issued against him.  Since he is not on the lease and because my health and wellbeing is at risk I am going to ask the judge to have him removed from my home since he cannot be within a certain distance of me.

I am torn up about this whole situation, and I really am not the kind of person that takes pleasure in doing any of these things, but I shouldn't feel uncomfortable in my own home.  I know that I am not a strong person when it comes to things like this, but I have to cut the ties, I don't like being treated this way, and because he will not leave rationally I am left with very few choices at this point.

My friend that I had move in to help me with the bills shouldn't be the one to move out, when the other person does absolutely nothing to contribute to the paying of bills or expenses.

Wish me luck, I feel like such a terrible person, but I guess this too shall pass.

All my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Dare to Do

Each and every one of us have particular dreams and desires.  There is something out there that we would love to be doing, however so few actually ever go out there and strive to make them a reality.  Procrastination comes in many differnt forms, worrying, fear, lack of understanding and knowledge, perfectionism are just a few that I can think of off the top of my head.  These little bity things can be very powerful and keep us locked in to place, and will definitely keep us from achieving our dreams and desires.  Dreams and desires are like a seed, they need the right soil to be planted in, they need the right amount of sunlight and warmth, the appropriate amount of water and care in order to flourish.  Once that seed is planted it needs to be nurtured and taken care of so that it can grow and bear fruit.  It is a process and once we get it down we can apply it over and over again, before long you will be able to cultivate and grow anything.

Trust me when I tell you that none of us knows everything it is truly impossible.  Everything in life is a process in which we must start off at the bottom and work our way up.  No one can come out of school and know everything there is to know about a business, and we all have to start somewhere.  The most successful company owners and CEO's started out at the very bottom and learned their business inside and out. Taking baby steps, learning the things they didn't know or understand, until they gathered the essential knowledge they needed to make it all the way to the top.  Dreams and desires are just like any other form of work, they require action, energy, the appropriate mix of soil, light and nutrients in which to take root and grow. Everything starts out as an idea, it has to take root and grow to fruition. You can't expect to know and understand everything you are going to have to take the necessary steps to teach yourself and learn the things that you need to know to become a success.  Once you get that seed planted and it has taken root and blossomed to the point of bearing fruit, you will soon realized that by applying the same process over and over again you will quickly be able to cultivate anything you set your mind too.

The idea here is that you can't sit around and wait for things to happen for you. Trust me things just don't fall in your lap fully developed, there are actions, energy and steps that need to be taken in order for your dream to transform into a reality.  But, nothing is impossible.  You just have to put in the work, energy, sweat and tears in order for it to become an entity itself.  If you don't apply yourself and work to make it happen it never will.  Every venture whether, dream, desire, goal or business needs to have the required amount of energy and work put in to in order for it to become a living entity.  So I challenge you to get up off of your butts, learn what you need to, take the steps necessary and just do It!  Because if you are just waiting for it to be handed to you and think that you don't have to work for it, guess what it will not happen, nothing will.  Nothing ventured nothing gained.

Every dream and desire starts out in someone's mind.  To become a viable and living thing the appropriate planning and work must take place before it can even be initiated.  Once you have initiated it, the hard work then begins, because you have to figure out each and every single step that you will have to take in order to achieve the desired result or outcome.  Very similar to a project management work flow.  First comes the planning stage, then the initiation stage, then the development stage, which results in a product(dream, goal, desire) which can then be implemented and used.  From there you have to work to maintain it and  nurture it to keep it growing and adapting to whatever the needs become around it.  See just in like life, dreams are constantly shifting, evolving, growing, changing and need to be just as flexible and adaptable as we are ourselves.  If not they will be short lived and replaced by something new.

Yet, if you never start, how can you possibly make it happen?  You can't, because in life the things that are too good to be true usually are. You can't expect that it will be handed to you and that you won't have to put in any effort, that is totally unrealistic.  Don't worry or be afraid because you don't know how to make everything work, that is part of the growing process, and you will learn the exact things you need in order to achieve the result, just remember those baby steps and keep learning.  Again, none of us knows everything, and we have to learn things all the time to keep up.  So why wouldn't the same thing be true about dreams, desires and wants?  Taking those small steps forward, one at a time, and learning the things we need to along the way are so very important, because that is what is going to make them enduring and long lasting. 

Patience is another crucial ingredient in Daring to Do, because once again you have to start at the bottom and work your way up. You need to understand that those things that are instant are not lasting, what we put our energy into are the things that end up lasting and working over the long haul.  If you expect immediately be successful and long lasting you have to understand the work and process that goes into creating a dream and turning it into a reality.

I know you have all heard of those get rich scams, right?  Guess what the only person getting rich quickly is the individual that thought up the scam in the first place and sold it to you.  They are taking your money and running off, it was their dream and desire to separate you from your money and they figured out a way to do it.  Take their example and figure out how to make your dream a reality and trust that you will end up making the money that you need.

Do it right, take your time, plan out every detail, incorporate the necessary steps, be patient and before long your dream and desire will become a reality.  Take it slow, learn everything you need to know and just Dare to Do.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

Friday, April 15, 2016


As we look back across our lives it is amazing at the things that spring to mind. A simple song can evoke the sweetest memories, that can bring a brilliant smile to your face. Passing a  familiar spot can herald a bright spot in an otherwise dreary day. But memories are funny things,  they often become colored by time. Even the worst experiences don't look so bad after time has passed by.

Most of my friends seem to pass through life, never taking stock of the people, places and things that they encounter.  One friend said today that he keeps moving forward never looking back at anything. He feels that he can't keep up his forward momentum if he is constantly looking backwards.  While he has a valid point. I tend to think a little differently on a minor particulars.

Like most people when his relationships end, he keeps it moving. In almost every instance I can think of if a relationship ends there were issues that were the caused it to end. Those same issues are more than likely still be there if the person comes back into your life.  But,  that doesn't mean that you have to write that person out of your life totally.

True good friends are few and far between.  Each one of us don't have so many friends that we can afford to write any of them off. I have remained friends with the majority of my ex's, because the shared history that we have are what have bound us together and is the basis of our friendship.  There have been 1 or 2 instances where I have tried to rekindle a past relationship. But like I said earlier, there were issues that we felt so strong about that caused us to go our separate ways, and they always seem to crop back up.

Relationships that are founded on mutual respect and trust have a foundation that's worth investing time in and are the easiest to convert to a lasting friendship. It is important to keep in mind that every person that has come into your life was brought there for a specific reason. We grow and learn from each other, we have a need that the other filled in some fundamental way.

You may be wondering why in an entry about memories would I digress to talk about friendships and relationships?  The truth of the matter is that each and every person who enters your life touches you in a fundamental way, memories of these people, places and events are indelibly written in your subconscious which at some point become memories.

Memories are precious things and they evoke an emotional response when they pop in our minds.  Like I said at the beginning of the post time can make even the most terrible experience seem not so terrible when you look back.  Be careful because if you compare new experiences to a remembered experience you might think that the past was better and be unhappy.  Which just might make you think that nothing will ever be able to compete with your past and you might miss out on something truly remarkable.

People all around you see what you are going through and how you deal with life's situations and problems.  You might be surprised at how your actions and reactions to certain situations inspires and gives another a sense of hope and peace.  Beacause no matter what you are actually going through there are others out there going through something similar or maybe even worse and they see how you are handling it and it gives them that extra push to help them make it through.  Remember always that a casual conversation can take you somewhere that you never thought you would ever go.  Random encounters can inspire and give hope to others and who knows might bring someone into your life at the right moment to help you through as well.

Memories are not perfect and they are a snapshot of time from our own unique perspective.  Plus, keep in mind that someone else's memory of an event might not even be close to what you remember because each of us filter things differently and are truly seen from our own perspective.

Remember the good times, the in between times and the bad times, in the end as you look back over time you will be amazed at the things you have come through, survived and have learned.  These are pieces of shared history between you and whoever you were with and they can never be taken away from you.  If you are embarking on a new relationship try your best not to compare it to your past relationships, because one of you is always going to feel that they can't compete with the past because to them your rememberance focuses mainly on the good and positive times.

Everyone deserves their own chance, remember your past fondly, be proud of what you have accomplished and have learned, know that you have survived and been strengthened by each and every event.  Hold on to your memories share them when appropriate and find your true happiness within your heart and mind.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

True Prosperity

Many of us do not understand what prosperity means. To most they believe that prosperity is an abundance of riches, and is measured by monetary figures. So many struggle trying to get prosperous,  but never seem to ever get close. Lack of financial means is the major cause of unrest and stress in our daily living. This feeling that there is never enough to cover all of our expenses seems to drive everyone crazy.

The truth of the matter is that prosperity is a state of mind and a place of understanding.  True prosperity literally has very little to do with monetary things, and doesn't really have a quantitative unit of measure.  If you think back to some of my other writings you will start to get a better understanding of what I am trying to tell you.   Anyone can achieve the state of prosperity,  because it comes from a place of knowledge and understanding.  Much like happiness,  prosperity cannot be found. Because it really does not exist outside of our minds.

Prosperity and happiness are two things that can only be found from within ourselves.  So what do you think prosperity is? What is the definition of being prosperous? What is it that you can do to attain it?

Here is what I have discovered about prosperity and being prosperous. Prosperity is a state of being. A mindset that goes hand in hand with happiness and contentment.  This understanding is something that you continually have to work on.  Because it isn't a static state, it evolves and changes as you mature and grow.  Prosperity is the state of being one and consciously accepting your place in life with happiness and contentment  with what you have and where you are at in every state of your life.

There is nothing wrong with setting goals and striving to do better for ourselves. The problems start with the amount of pressure and anxiety we put on ourselves while trying to reach for our dreams and goals. We are our own worst critics. We seem to hold ourselves to a higher standard then we hold others too.  Disappointment often creeps in and we become depressed and discouraged. But let me remind you, you are not alone in your struggles. Everyone in the world goes through the same exact things. In this one case we are not so different from every other person in.  How you handle and deal with these things are what makes you different.

I know that I have often told you that life is a journey with many pitstops and rest areas along the way.  But, I learned that sometimes the road itself is the true destination.  See we are the sum total of all our experiences and it is on the path that we learn from our mistakes, rebound from pain and gain the knowledge and wisdom that helps us grow.  Life is not a stagnant thing it is constantly moving forward, evolving, changing and becoming something new.  Each experience gives us the knowledge and strength to change as we move forward in time.

So what are you supposed to understand about life and the long journey that you are on?  Well it is that as long as you make yourself happy, contentment and joy will follow.  You can be prosperous, happy, content live in the moment, don't stress your needs are always going to be fulfilled.  It is true that you are going to have to work on achieving the wants and the extra things in life, but that is what makes them so valuable to us, that is why we cherish them more.

Remember that happiness and prosperity are a state of being and a state of mind.  Take some time, think about the issues at hand and once you do I think you will see that they are not really mountains at all, just another lesson or stregthening tool that will help you get to the next place on your path.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

Thursday, April 14, 2016

For you

Another day another time, when one season ends another begins, for with every ending comes a new begining.  If you do not reach out and do something for yourself you can't expect someone else to do it for you.  Have peace and confidence in all that you do.  Change is in the air, and before you know it you will be in another space.

Each season has it's own color and theme, life is colored by the grace and warmth that each new dawn brings. Nothing ventured nothing gained.  You cannot expect something to come from nothing, because nothing ever will. Listen to the sound on the wind and the song of the birds in the air.  Let their joyous melody free you from the mundane. 

Grow from love, because compassion and understanding given will benefit you more when it is returned.  Love hard and love long, because it will keep you strong.  Everything that you put out will be returned to you ten fold.  Trust and believe that everything that you ever need with be granted unto you.  The needs must come before the wants, if not nothing can thrive.

Balance all you do with tolerance and understanding because these are what makes you a stronger man.  Acceptance and peace are gifts that can be graciously recieved and given.  Be open and receptive so that you can grow taller and stronger.

Abide in truth and honesty so that others know you to be a stalwart guardian of peace and love. Integrity above pity, Trust before greed and faith in others should be you work of the day.

For in the end you can only grow if you learn to be trusting compassionate, truthful and strong. 

The future is full of change and hope for you.  I see it all the year long.

May God grant you fortune and prosperity, seek and find your happiness, time can be an enemy or a guide use it to your own advantage. Beware of those that seek to drag you from your path.  Stay true to your desires and keep your goal firmly in your mind.

Love yourself so you can show that love to others.  Do not fear what tomorrow brings because God is with you in all things.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

Aging Gracefully Under Pressure

As we get older it gets harder and harder to relate to others, and if we aren't careful we might end up all alone.  There seems to be an unspoken concesus in the world that we are supposed to act a certain way as we age.  Unfortunately, I seem to have not gotten the correct memo.  Because no matter how old I get I still like the things I used to like when I was younger.  I still like to read and write, and most of my other habits have remained relatively the same.  Though I have noticed that the older I get the less tolerant of certain things I become.  However, I believe that I have always had the same issues I just didn't speak on them like I do now.  It is my contention that the world around me might have changed but I have pretty much remained the same.  I am getting older this is true, but that doesn't make me any smarter or wiser, just experienced. 

What I can tell you is that life doesn't get any easier the older you get.  You still have the same worries and concerns that you had when you were growing up.  Bills still have to be paid, and you still have the family concerns but you have to add on new health issues that you didn't have before.   Next thing you know you are sprouting grey hairs in the most unlikely of places, such as your ears, nose and other unseemly places.  You also start to realize that you really don't have all the answers of the universe, and you begin to realize that your parents weren't so off the mark.  However, aging isn't something that happens all at once, it is a gradual change and your body seems to recognize it before your brain ever does.

Sometimes, I wish I would have listened more closely to the advice my parents gave me, but no I had to be a hard head and do things my way.  I didn't take their experience into consideration.  I just looked at it like every other kid, that my parents just wanted to control me and ruin my life.  Oh how I was wrong on those assumptions, because whether or not I cared to admit it most of the time they were just trying to help me avoid some of the common mistakes that they made when they were young.   Trust me when I tell you that I never thought that I would ever get this close to 50, but here I am just a sneeze and a wink away from it.  I used to think that being 45 or higher was old, now that I am there myself, I see that it is middle aged.  I honestly didn't really start living my life until I was in my late 20's early 30's,  and now I wonder what was the big deal when I was younger.

Growing old gracefully is something that we all should try to strive for.  Use our experience to help mold and guide others that are growing up behind us.  I remember years ago a dear friend gave me a pearl of wisdom and that was to stop looking for the impossible and the improbable, be happy with yourself first and everything else will fall into place.  Let me tell you that is easier said then done.  I still had all these preconceived notions of what my life was going to be when I reached the ripe old age of 45.  Guess what my ideas and notions were dead wrong.  I never in a million years would have imagined how my life actually ended up turning out.  I had no road map or guidebook to help me navigate the myriad of health problems that was going to plague my life. 

Hell at 28 I had a career, two houses, a loving partner, two dogs, a cat and 3 automobiles.  I never in my life imagined that cancer would come back into my life and rob me of the things that I worked hard to get.  I watched everything crumble around me.  How illness and disease drove a wedge between me and my partner.  In just a few short years everything that we had worked so hard to achieve and accomplish in our 12 years together, just disappeared like a dream.  It has taken me long time to come to grips with what had happened and how it all faded so quickly.  If someone would have told me that I should have looked at the situation from my partners perspective things might have turned out a lot differently.  But I never could quite put myself in his shoes, and I didn't realize until it was much to late, how powerless and helpless he felt knowing the pain that I was in and  being unable to help in anyway.  I watched how it robbed our relationship of it's vitality as I battled harder and harder to beat cancer.  

Though that was a long time ago now and he has moved on and is doing well for himself, I never once understood how solitary being sick all the time renders a person.  No one can understand what you are going through unless they have gone through something similar themselves.  No one will understand the pain that you have to endure as your body starts failing at the most basic levels.  Or how weak you would get from the treatments, and the dangers those same treatments were to you.  I have learned a lot over the years about myself, my body, and my illness.  I can pretty much diagnose whatever ills come my way now without a doctors help.  But, it is a journey that you have to make on your own.  Not one person is ever really going to understand all the things that you have to go through. 

Now that I am 47 years old and have gone through 4 major bouts of cancer, I can look back and see the stress and stain my illness has had on everyone around me.  I just wish I could have noticed it much sooner.  But, time marches on and I have lost quite a few good people from my life, I hope that they understand that I am thankful for them being with me and standing my side while I was going through the worst moments of my life.  I hope they understand that the support that they gave was exactly what I needed at the time.

I want you to know that as you age certain parts of your body suffer before others.  For some it is the joints, arthritis creaps in and stiffens you and is very painful.  Others their hips and knees give out and they end up having serious falls and spills that could potentially be life threatening.  Most people suffer from chronic pain and have to take medicine daily to function somewhat normally.  But there is no instruction manual no easy way to comprehend the changes that occur in your body the older you get.  You must be patient if others around you don't understand or sympathize with what you are going through, because they themselves might not even suffer from the same malidies that you are. 

My one piece of advice that I would give to you is this, be receptive to the feeling of others, put yourself in their shoes, and try to understand that because their circumstances are different than yours, doesn't mean that they don't care and hurt right along with you.  Aging is not something to take lightly, and trust me when I say to you that before you know it you are going to be exactly where I am at today.  One positive experience I have had was that I ended up in a skilled nursing facility/rehabilitation center for my back when 10 of my vertabrae fractured. I got to meet some very interesting people and I understand what it is like to feel alone and forgotten behind the walls of a home like that.   It is surprise how many individuals reside in these facilities that never see family or friends. 

It is sad that in today's society we would rather let someone else deal with our elderly loved ones than take care of them ourselves.  I spent 9 months in a facility and only had someone come visit me once a week.  I made it a practice when I had a vehicle to go up and see the people at the home every Sunday once I got out.  But, more and more people end up in these homes lost and forgotten.  Yet, what a store of knowledge they have, and experience and wisdom if we just took the time to reach out to them.  Eventually I will end up in an assisted living facility I think or maybe in a retirement community of some sort because of my extensive health issues, but I am not rushing into that situation until it becomes absolutely necessary.

As you get older you hope that you will have a better understanding of people, their motivations, the angles that they use and how to avoid them. Unfortunately, if you haven't learned how to tell if someone is running game on you before then nothing will change as you get older.   I have never been a good judge of character and life wasn't always easy for me, but through the struggles I have endured, I have become a more knowledgable person, and stronger than anyone could ever imagine.  Yet, to some people looking at my life from the outside they would probably think that I have had it easy, that things seemed to come naturally to me and that my life has been pretty amazing, outstanding and awesome.  For the most part I would agree.  I have met some really famous people and can call them friends, I have been in social setting where no matter my actual standing I always seem to fit in.  I have had some grand adventures and done the most amazing things during my time on the Earth. 

I have some great stories to tell, but that will have to be at some future time.  Aging gracefully is something you just do, it isn't something that  is taught in school, it is taught by life itself. From the moment you were born till the day you die you will always feel the pressure of your responsibilities, but that doesn't diminish your life and what you have accomplished.  Life is but a journey with many rest areas along the way.  We will never know how the story is going to end till we get there.  You are never to old to have surprises, and you will continue to learn and experience things.  Just be you, be happy, be confident, be pround, because every experience you have will continue to mold you and develop you into an extraordinary being.  You are growing, evolving, experiencing, learning, achieving new things the longer you are here on this planet.  You can't ever be replaced, because there is only one you. You are totally unique in everything you do.  Remember that!

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

Friday, April 8, 2016

You have got to watch "Miracles from Heaven"

This past weekend a feel good Christian movie opened in theaters across the country.  I didn't know anything about it, but tonight i was searching for a movie to watch and came across "Miracles from Heaven"  starring Jennifer Garner, Queen Latifah and various other stars.  The story is very close to my very own story, except it was happening to a 10 year old little girl.  The story is based on a true story and much of it takes place in Burleson, Tx and Boston, Ma.  This story touched me at the very core of my being and I cried throughout the entire movie.

Some of you are believers and know all about faith and prayer.  Others of you may not know what I am talking about.  This story revolves around 2 different themes, one is the stress and strain that an illness can have on the family and the parents of the one who is sick.  But, it also revolves around this little girl and her faith that God was with her through everything.  So much so that her faith brought peace to another child that was suffering terribly from cancer. 

As you watch the movie unfold you will see how the mother's faith was tested, lost and then found again.  You also see that the little girl despite her pain never lost her faith and shared it with those that she came in contact with.  In the end a beautiful miracle unfolds and faith is restored and peace granted.

Pay close attention to the ending of the movie.  Be aware of all the different people that were behind the scenes that the family knew nothing about that were drawn into this little girl's life.  Many people behind the scenes worked through the Will of God and brought this girl's story to the attention of the people that needed to hear it most.  I promise you that even though you may not know it there are people all around you that are touched  and inspired by you whether you know it or not.

This story is a beautiful story and is something that I highly recommend watching.  For anyone who is struggling with their own faith, or who might be going through severe medical problems this film will give you inspiration and hope for a better future and total and complete healing. 

God is the great physician, He knows your body better than anyone.  If it is His will you will be totally and wholely delivered from whatever it is that you are going through.  Open your eyes, because whether you believe it or not miracles happen around you daily and if you are focused on the world and not on your spiritual walk you stand a big chance of missing them.  Prayer is a vehicle for our hopes and desires to be present to God.  Faith is believing without truly knowing the outcome. Faith is believing without seeing and if you have faith and use prayer anything is possible.

My story is very similar to little Annabel's so this really touched home for me.  I am so glad that I stumbled across this movie tonight because I needed to see it after the news that I got on Tuesday.  I know that I am not alone, I know that God is always with me and will carry me through the hardest times when I am weary and down hearted.  But, after seeing this movie I honestly know that I have nothing to fear.

Listen to that small still voice that speaks to you, know that you are in the Hands of God and that there is nothing that is impossible for those of us that believe.

I usually don't go out of my way to talk about movies in my blog, but this is something that I honestly think everyone should see.  I believe that this little girl got to speak with God and recieved the complete healing that she needed.  I also believe that her faith gave hope to little Haley and that made all the difference in the world for her.  Haley had no fear of dying and lived her last few weeks in harmony and peace.

I can tell you that 24 years ago I was diagnosed with cancer and was given 18 months to live.  I am still here and I still believe.

May God bless you and touch you tonight.  Take the time and watch the movie, I think you will be glad that you did.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

Thursday, April 7, 2016

How do you do?

Hi there,

How do you do?  My name is Bryan but you can call me Uncle B, everybody does.  I am here to talk to you about the things that are going on in my life.  It is my fondest hope that some of the pitfalls, problems, obstacles and issues that I go through in my life might offer you hope and guidance when dealing with stuff in your own life.  This introduction is probably way over due because I have been writing in this blog since 2012.  I have been going through so much over the past few years, that you can take some hope from.  My health has never been the greatest and after I served 6 years in the United States Navy, I found out that I had stage 4 cancer and that I was going to have to go through extensive chemotherapy and radiation treatments. 

This is happened quite awhile ago, 1991 to be exact, so why am I writing this now?  Well, I have started writing my story, it is a story of hope and faith, healing and prayer.  As you can tell I have been through a lot, but guess what "I am Still Here"  Thus the title of my new book.  I hope that you can gain a little insight to my life and maybe a little hope infused with inspiration.  I think that God has wanted me to write this book so I have sat down and started to dictate my life on the pages, and hopefully one day soon it will be shared with alll of you.

So here we are it is now 2016 and I have just found out that I have once again a new round of cancer.  This time they found a tumor on my right kidney and in just a few days I will be having surgery to try an rid my body of this disease.

I hope you enjoy my story and that it helps you through whatever difficult time that you might be going through.

With all my heart I wish you only the best.  I hope you will keep on reading.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B

My Dearest Child

It is hard to believe that you are 15 years old now.  Time has surely gone by you are so grown I can't believe it, I always thought that I would have had more time to spend with you while you were growing up, and guess what I blinked and you are already a teenager.  I wanted to write to you and tell you some of the things that you can expect as you get older.  I want you to always remember I may no longer be here, but I am never far away as long as you keep me in your heart.

You are about to embark on the greatest journey you will ever take.  Life is full of pitfalls and obstacles along the way.  It isn't going to be easy, but no one ever said that it was going to be.  Don't get discouraged at things that happen because they are only temporary and will soon pass by.  I am sorry to say that you are going to have to work only to pay bills and raise a family.  But there is nothing more rewarding than seeing your children grow.  Work can be boring, tedious and you are never going to feel that you are being paid for what you are worth, just remember that you have to start somewhere and there is only one way to go and that is up. 

Stress of life and daily living might get you down from time to time, but focus on the things that make you happy and bring you joy.  Spend as much time as you can with your family for you are going to need each other, because no one knows you better than they do.  Love each other daily and be thankful for the things that you have worked so hard to get.  Be wary of strangers that continually try to interfere or drag you down, they may people that you consider as friends.  Your heart my son is the biggest target and your feelings will often be hurt, guard yourself against those that would use your kindness for weakness. There is nothing wrong with saying "No" and meaning it.  You have to learn how to be selfish at times, otherwise you are going to get used.

Smile everyday and be thankful for your health and life.  I wish I could tell you that life gets easier the older you get, but unfortunately that isn't going to be the case.  You are going to be tested, tried and sometimes feel like "What's the use?" The secret to this my son is that everything that you go through hone you and make you stronger.  You will be amazed at the things you are going to do.  Do not be afraid to speak up for yourself, let your voice be heard, because all it takes is one person to change the world.  There will come a time in your life when you are going to look back at your past from where you are at.  I do not want you to feel sad or depressed, trust me when I tell you that you might feel disappointed because you are not where you thought you will be.  The secret here is to look back at all you have accomplished, all the things you have been through and be proud of what you have done.

Keep in mind that the place where you are at is not the end of the road, but just one of many stops along the way.  The path that you have taken is what matters, it is the path that gives you knowledge and strength, the path and all it's pitfalls, obstacles and traps are what have developed you and made you the man that you are.  Love often and hard, show compassion and understanding to others, because it will be returned back to you.  Cherish what you have because you have worked hard and long to get it.  Don't let what other people say bother you, because at the end of the day they don't mean a thing.  They don't pay your bills, nor do know what you truly are about.

Those that take from you more than they contribute are not truly friends, they are trying to benefit from your suffering and pain.  You cannot choose who your family is, but if they are not meeting your needs create your own family and support network that you can depend on.  For those are the people the truly love and care about you.  If there is one thing that I could teach you and help you to understand.  Happiness is not something that you can find, it comes from with in.  You create your own happiness, don't let anyone take it away.  Prosperity my son is something that you can achieve easily, all you have to do is be happy and content with what you have where ever you are at in your life.  You will see what I mean, just trust me.

No matter what you think you are never alone, God is with you always and hears all your prayers and cries.  When you are weary and tired God will carry you through, open your heart in prayer and know that it will be answered.  I wish I could be there with you my son as you grow older, but since that cannot be. I would say to you what my grandfather once told me.

"A man does not leave their mark upon the world, by how much money he has, or what they own, but by how many lives they have touched and who remember them once they are gone."  Explore your talents, always do what you love, because if you love what you do, your passion will shine through.  Money is an elusive thing but if you follow your heart and do what you are passionate about the money will follow.

I love you my son and I hope that by reading this it will help you along your journey of life.  I will see you when you get to the other side.  We will see each other in heaven you have my promise.

I love you,

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

The Time Has Come

Tick tock goes the clock on the wall
Tick tock I can see it all
Nothing spoken here
can make this clear
Body lies in shock and fear
have heard the message dear
that the time is near or should say that it's here

Cause in the morning I will see the sun
Oh the day has just begun
The darkness of the night has been swept aside
The sun is full of life and cheer
so sweep away the dread my dear
The time is here
Its bright outside.

Be happy and merry
there's no time to terry
tick tock goes the clock on the wall
tick tock can't you here it's call
It's spring beckoning to summer's call
winters dread has lost its thrawl

In the light you see it clear
Nothing last forever
be merry and full of good cheer
Except for happy ever after
Nothing last forever.

Tick tock goes the clock on the wall
Tick tock I can see it all
Nothing ventured nothing gained
Don't let earthly things give you pain
Face each dawn with a smile
Don't give in to stress or strain
just laugh and give that extra mile.

Tick tock goes the clock on the wall
Tick tock I have seen it all
Tick tock goes the clock on the wall
Tick tock be brave and tall
Tick tock you will survive through all.

Nothing last forever
except for ever after
so treat each trial with a smile and laughter.

The big C not totally unexpected but still?

I was talking to my father yesterday afterr meeting with my urologist.  I told him that I thought it would get easier thelonger I dealt with cancer.  But the truth of the matter the disease scares the hell out of me.  I have seen what it has done to other people, and I certainly have had my share of experiences with this disease.  Yet, each time I am told by a doctor that I have cancer that  same old feeling descends on me and I feel helpless and afraid, just like the first time I ever heard the name mutttered in my direction.

Now, if you are a faithful reader you know that this is definitely not my first time at this rodeo, as a matter of fact this is my 4th reoccurence of cancer in one form or another since 2005.  So when I entered the doctors office the verdict was not totally unexpected.  When you have lived as long as I have and have continued to battle the same disease over and over again, you sort of become an expert in strategy and tactics that the doctors have in their arsenal. Not to mention you become highly tuned to the inner workings of your body that nothing  creeps past you and jumps out from the shadows. 

Luckily when I was 23 and was diagnosed with cancer the first time, the chemo and radiation were highly effective and I was able to enjoy 11 great years totally cancer free.  I would say that this was the time that my life and career actually excelled and I accomplished meaningful tasks and learn so much.  It was during that 10 year break that I learned everything I could learn about the disease that I had, and how my body felt throughout the different stagesof treatment and trained myself to look for recurring symptoms that might indicate the a major change was happening within my body.

But, no matter how much you know and how well you think you are prepared you never like to hear the words cancer when referring to yourself.  True there are all sorts of new treatment options and a great many people survive and eventually become cured.  In my case I have been attacked on 3 occasions with 3 different types of cancer.  The first one is Large Cell Lymphoma,  this is a non-hodgekins lymphoma and it primarily attacks the lymphatic system and is very fast growing.  The next was colorectal cancer and that in comparison with Large cell is a much slower growing and moving type of cancer and in most cases surgery seems to be the best offer.  If you  have a localized spot where the tumor has grown and is contained within an organ or a cavity, these types can be easily removed with little because they have not begun to spread. 

I have learned that chemo is so harsh on the body andit is actually industrial stregnth poison that is injected to your blood in the hopes that it will kill the abnormal cancer cells before it kills your healthy good cells.  Which in and of itself seems like a risk that has the potential for great success or for great failure depending on your body and the resiliency of the cancer which they are trying to fight.  Repeated treatments of chemo add the potential for large amounts of scar tissue to be formed where damaged cells have tried to protect themselve and recover from this harsh toxic agent.  This can lead to complications down the road, because as scar tissue is formed abnormal cells can also form right along with it.  These abnormal cells when they grow together are called a tumor and are the basis for cancer.  Thus begins a vicious cycle.

Cancer can come back multiple times and can form due to many different reasons, some genetics, others damage to organs and tissue.  Whereas, certain medications can cause certain problems to creep up and from there the cells can easily be mutated and viola, cancer is once again a major player on the field waging war with you entire being.  In my case the HIV drug called Atripla is largely responsible for the damage to my kidney.  The component of the drug cause some trauma to my kidney and impaired it's functioning.  This impairment became great enough at one point that kidney stones formed, and because of their size had to be surgically removed.  What I didn't realize then was that the complications that came up when I was dealing with the kidney stones was going to greatly impact my life in any meaningful fashion until yesterday. 

When my right kidney was filled with stones, my kidney would back up and the bladder would not be able to totally empty itself completely.  Because of this a urinary tract infection soon ensued and the urologist of the time decided that he was going to put a stint into that kidney and by pass the uritors and connect the kidney directly to the bladder and aleviate some of the pain and discomfort I  was having from these infections.  This took place in 2011, and here we are 6 years later and the significance of that action finally hit home with me yesterday afternoon once I got home from the doctor and was able to sit down and think about what I had heard and battled 3 other times in my life.  It is my opinion, which I must say is pretty well supported by the ultrasound and image studies that were done on the tumor before the biopsy was completed.  Looking at the pictures it is fairly easy to tell that the tumor has formed in the most likely spot that a stint would have resided years ago that connected the bladder and the kdiney toget.  

See when the doctor pulled out that stint so long ago,, scar tissue was able to grow over the areas that were actually damaged by the insertion of the stint.  The scar tissue was dense enough that the tumor was able to grow for a period of time hidded deep within.  The scar tissue not only gave the tumor a very good hiding place it also was able to mask the symptoms so I wasn't actually aware taht I was feeling off and that I had another outbreak of cancer.  This being said I want you to know that once again my trip down this new adventure has started out just like all of the other pervious bouts with cancer.

All I can tell you that finding out that the cancer is back and that it is in another location and that you have a chance that this tumor has spread to areas where you can't find it and that is when things really start getting really scary and real period!  I really wasn't surprised that the tumor that they found on my right kidney turned out to be cancerous.  What was surprising was that this was a totally new form of cancer, one that I have had  absolutely no experience dealing with previously.   The up side of this type of cancer is that it currently is localized to the right kidney wall and though it has tendrils that could eventually mean growth and spreading I was assured by the doctor that this was a very slow growing form of cancer and that I should respond to the treatment plan that he put in place to highly favorablely. 

However, with all of that out on the table in front of you to view I should go on to tell you about the entire conversation that I had with my doctor yesterday and sort of point out where the creeping little doubt and fear is coming from with this new found information.  See even though this tumor was caught fairly early in the stages and it is slow growing I have to add in the factor that I have had a very complicated medical history with numerous issues and complications creeping up in all of my previous encounters with this dreaded disease.  So, with all of the previous issues and complication this tumor could actually become more serious than orginally thought, especially if it truly has started to grow and spread.  Because the migration path is not a very clean path and could eally if this isn't handled in the best possible manner could easily spread to my spine and from there pelvis, chest and eventually could even reach my brain.  Once it reaches the spine it is only a matter of time before it goes from casual to tragic.  See I already have spinal issues and compromised bone marrow, and these factors alone make for a deadly outcome. 

A vicious cycle seems to ensue and before I know it the cancer could be everywhere in my body.  Plus the fact that this tumor has grown significantly it's symptoms and pain might actually mask the growth of cancer in other parts of my body and thus lead to a much larger problem than originally indicated.  So I have decided to take the most proactive steps that I can aggressively persue and have selected having a different type of procedure performed that might be able to totally eradicate the diease way before any more significant damage can happen to my body.  I have agreed to let them go in through my back and freezd the tumor which will immediately necratized the bad cells while allowing the good cells to remain unharmed.  I am looking at having to have this surgery performed rather quickly to head off the cancer and be totally healed.

It is just funny that no matter how many times I have been told that I have cancer,  that same ole fear and trepidation seem to sneak in and cuase mental anguish.  Nothing prepares you to hear those words or how to react once you have heard them. But like I told a woman that I met at Family Dollar the other night:  "God doesn't give us more than we can bare, for longer than we can stand!"  Which serves to remind me that this too is just a fleeting problem, and will not last very long in deed and will therefore make me a much stronger person in the long run

As always my hopes and dreams ware with you ,

Uncle B

Monday, April 4, 2016

Earth Renewed

Welcome to Spring the time of Earth's renewal.  I wanted to write a poem but my heart wasn't in it tonight.  So I thought that we would just have a little chat, just you and me.  There is so much happening right now, my head is spinning and I don't seem to have the traction I should have to move forward at a steady pace.  It seems like I am constantly running to this doctor or that doctor, but I know it is just for now.  Nothing last forever and this health scare will be over before you know it and something else will be pulling me in a new direction.

But as winter has lost it's hold on the world and the days have gotten longer, the temperatures have gotten warmer, things don't seem to be as grey and bleak as they did just a few months ago.  The air is full of sounds of nature breaking from it's long slumberr, and I wake every morning to the songs of birds.  All of this brightens my tired and weary soul.  I love the smell of all the fresh new growth and the brilliant colors of all the new growth, and I know in my heart that nothing is going to hold me down. 

Spring is a transitional time and  as I told you I feel that change is inevitable for all of us.  With spring comes all sorts of new opportunities and the world unfolds before us with endlless possiblities.  I don't fear what these doctors are saying because like the earth my body is also going through a period of renewal.  I am looking forward to taking time iin just a few months from now and traveling up to Pennsylvania to see my family.  Too much time has gone by and I haven't seen or talked to many of them in years, and I think it is time. 

As the air becomes lighter and the fragrances of new life flows all around, I life my head to the sky and feel the warmth of the sun on my face and know that I have been so highly favored and blessed.  I have been so very lucky to have had a few good people who stood by me and helped me through the dark days of illness. I want them to know that everything that you did for me and meant to me didn't go unnoticed and certainly was appreciated.  Each and everyone of you has been a part of my support network and without your prayers and valiant efforts I probably wouldn't be here still today.  So Thank You!  I love you with all of my heart.  I know there are a couple of you that I no longer talk to, I hope that life has been treating you kindly and that you have found the happiness that you were seeking.

The lessons that I have had to learn, the time I needed to grow and mature were necessary for me to get to where I am today.  I am sorry that we lost each other along the way.  But, it finally dawned on me that we learned from each other and our time was up and we had to move on, but I have never forgotten you. I think about you often, if you don't think of me that is cool, I certainly understand there was stress and tension and as with all growth a certain element of pain. 

With the days warmer my pulse has gotten stronger, I feel the need to be out in nature and see new things.  I have finally put away the selfish desires and I embrace each new morning with a clean slate.  I live in the moment and celebrate life, I no longer dwell on the past, and I have learned how to let go of the stress.  I love spring because as the earth renews so does my heart and my spirit.

With a song in my heart and joy and happiness in my mind I walk forward from this day to the next with a renewed sense of self, with a brand new purpose and goal for what is coming next. 

You don't know how long it took me to learn that strenght and happiness are something that is found within.  That self confidence and self esteem are attributes that are better off demonstrated and that life is too short and fleeting to worry about what other people think about me.  Nothing they do impacts me or my life in any way so why should I let their opinion get to me? 

In 2004 my roller coaster health journey took off in high gear, and has been a long and tiring ride.  But honestly I don't know what my life would have been had I not had to go through everything that I have.  It wasn't my lot in life to have perfect health like my father and brother.  I wasn't that fortunate.  But, i gained so many other insights that I might not have learned any other way.  This journey has taught me a deeper understanding of my spirit, my heart, my mind all of this has created the person who is here writing to you tonight.  I would have never learned how to experience life to the fullest and live in the moment, I would still be carrying around the baggage from my past. Carrying that stuff kept my hands full and I couldn't pick up new things and I missed out on so  much.  It also taught me that If I kept looking backward, how in the world could I move forward, all I was doing was stumbling around. 

I can't say that i would wish my journey on anyone else because I really wouldn't.  It was difficult for me, but I knew that i wasn't going to be given anything that i couldn't bear.  The Bible promises that we will never be given more than we can handle.  But, I also learned that God will never give us more than we can bear for any longer than we can stand.  Issues come and go, they never last forever, and that is because God is watching out for us.

To Joe, Sterling, David, John, Alan, Sa'Corey, and all the others that were so instrumental in helping me get through the long hard days of cancer, HIV and everything else.  I wish that things were different and that you all were here with me and still a part of my daily life.  Like I said earlier, I am so thankful that you were brought into my life and were there for me when I needed you most.  You are missed terribly, but I am thankful for all that I have learned from you and I hope that you learned something from me in return. 

To my family in Pennsylvania, I am so sorry that we drifted so far apart.  You are always in my heart, thought and mind.  I am sorry if I have disappointed you, but Grammy gave me a piece of advice that I have tried to live daily, to be myself and to be true to my heart and feelings.  She told me that it made me special and that because my heart was so big that I would help a lot of people and would change the world one person at a time.  Not a day goes by that I don't miss Grammy.  She knew me way before I knew myself and accepted me and loved me for who I was and who she knew i would become.  One day I hope that you will see that I am still the boy that you grew up with. 

It is time for the renewal of the Earth.  It is also the time to renew ourselves.  Be honest with yourself, love yourself, do what makes you happy, and everything else will fall away and you will feel an inner growth and peace that is so worth it.

As always my hopes and dreams are with you,

Uncle B