Birth, Death, Joy, Grief (47)

Jan 19, 2021

Birth, Death, Joy, Grief (47) 

“Never be afraid to trust an unknown future 

To a known God” 

  • Corrie ten Bloom

My wife of almost 59 years (59 years on June 10, 2020) and best friend Eileen had been diagnosed with terminal cancer of the esophagus, in February 2019. Eileen died on February 22, 2020, the day following the birth of our latest granddaughter, Maria; 60 years to the day after we met; the funeral was March 4, 2020, and the burial was July 3, 2020. Then my brother Tom began having serious health problems, and I spent two three-week sessions with him this summer. But Tom died in October; combined with the COVID pandemic this has created a very challenging year. This blog gives my thoughts, fears, prayers, and hopes during this challenging and difficult time looking at the spaces in my life. 

01/17/21 This has been a challenging week technology-wise, besides all that is going on in our world. Tuesday morning the computer I use to write this blog and all the things the iPad doesn’t do froze. It had been acting flakey for several months, so I decided it was time to buy a new one. I took the old one down to Best Buy (after trying to go to the Apple store, but it was closed – only a 100-mile wasted trip) and bought my computer and left the old one to have them transfer the data, as I have been doing every time I buy a new one. On Thursday I received the dreaded call-it was the hard disk that crashed, and everything was lost. I have to start with a clean slate. 

Luckily presently everything I use day-to-day is hosted on the web, so I knew with a lot of work I could get myself back up. I will lose anything I had scanned in, and much company data over the years. With the pandemic, I had to make an appointment just to pick it up from the store, and the first opening they had was just before closing on Saturday eve. So here it is, 9 PM Saturday, and I am just starting to write. 

Once I have this finished, I must fight my way into the web site to put it in on Sunday, for publication Sunday at 6PM. So it may be a bit obscure at times. (Normally I have the computer set up to open the web site automatically, and I will have to set that up tomorrow. 

This week has been a sad week for the country. The reality of who this country truly is can be terrifying. I know, many are saying “that is not who we are”, but they are wrong – this IS who we are. A huge percentage of our citizens are terrified that they will lose power of some type. (I am sure most will not be sure of what power they would lose, but that fear drives them, fed by the talking heads on Fox and others). I wonder how many of the rioters understood just a little bit how serious it was – but after all, their fearless leader would be with them (not) so what could go wrong? 74 million, 46% of those that voted, voted in favor of continuing this route of surrender to a dictator (for that was the ultimate goal of Trump), and a large percentage of Republicans are convinced, somehow, that they were cheated: despite no proof. In their minds, the fact that there is no proof IS proof that the “deepstate” is controlling all and preventing the ‘truth’ from emerging. All the rest of the country is working together to punish them. If you can’t find any truth, invent “your truth”, no matter how impossible it is, and no facts can prove otherwise. 

Sad indeed! 

But we have the inauguration this week! Lots of junk to clean up from the mess left behind. 

I do have a time for my Covid vaccination – February 13. It will be at Binghamton University, not that far. Hopefully they will have sufficient vaccine on hand. 

I still find time for my meditation time, usually right after breakfast. I am a night person, often going to bed at 1 or later. I don’t arise much before 9 unless something is going on the next morning, and finish breakfast and cleaning up around10:30. I grab my coffee mug and I always do my daily readings and meditating, and most of the time have time for a 20-minute guided meditation using one of the many Deepak Chopra 21-day guides.  

I must say that God has kept me busy this past week. My book club will hopefully start this week, but I must see how things move along. Lots of fiddling with the new computer and getting it set-up so I can back up those portions not on the web directly. 

What I find most interesting is my reaction when I received that phone call telling me that my computer was trash, and all data is lost. Once upon a time I would have been really upset. But I said to myself, well, most things that I use day-to-day are on the web, so I lost old stuff – stuff I haven’t looked at for years, so I doubt I will miss it. I have had some really difficult losses this year, so this was a “eh!” 

What data? This was my work computer, the original purchased when we started the company in1996. I have carried over everything about the company I thought we may need, all kinds of scanning of documents, etc. But I don’t recall every needing any of that, and today I have not been part of the day-to-day operation for almost 5 years but weekly involvement (usually several phone calls a week). I doubt it will ever be important in the future. Our business has shifted over the years, and most of the stuff I thought was so vital is not even on the horizon of today’s activities. 

So now I have a clean computer, eager for new ideas. 

After pondering, I am calling this a message from God to simplify, simplify, and then simplify again. It will make it easier for those who handle my stuff after I leave. I have a lot of stuff, both mine and Eileen’s, to begin to sort through. Yes, God talks to me and lovingly but bluntly tells me to get on with it, by forcing some issues. 

It was a year ago that Eileen began to have the spells and found it very difficult to eat; she basically stopped eating as nothing would stay down. I must get through all these memories and store them away to move on with my life at this point. Yes, God has blessed me. 

Covid has reached my extended family. My sister-in-law on Long Island is in the hospital with Covid and pneumonia but seems to be holding her own. Her daughter now has it, and her house which contains several generations is starting to experience it; at least one more has it. So far it is just feeling lousy except for my sister-in-law. 

I am still waiting to get into my web site, and it is the day before the inauguration when we will have someone to start guiding the country into a sense of stability, with much pain to begin to heal. I will finish with a prayer-poem from this morning prayer, from the book Life Prayers: From Around the World, 365 Prayers, by Elisabeth Roberts and Elias Amidon: 

Now is the time, 

To climb the mountain 

And reason against the habit, 

Now is the time. 


Now is the time, 

To renew the barren soil of nature 

Ruined by the winds of tyranny, 

Now is the time. 


Now is the time, 

To commence the litany of hope, 

Now is the time…. 


Now is the time, 

To give roses, not to keep them 

For my grave to come,  

Give them to me while my heart beats, 

Give them today 

While my heart yearns for jubilee, 

Now is the time. ….. 

Mzwakhe Mbuli 



Oh Gentle One, I lay myself down in Your Love, as sometimes grief is staring me in the face to the point where You step in with something that must be delt with, even the mundane things as my computer failure, telling me to do the tasks that are there for me to do. The You tell me to learn to cook better meals to keep myself healthy, and mind the cleaning, etc. These nagging thoughts are clear and distinct, as I tend to ignore them, but You are insistent until I acquiesce. Thank You, I am grateful for Your constant presence. 

2 thoughts on “Birth, Death, Joy, Grief (47)”

  1. What a challenge and opportunity this crashing of your hard drive is/will be! But you are so right…in the light of your other losses of the past year, this pales.
    You have a great attitude but that doesn’t mean that it isn’t hard or isn’t another loss. I pray that you will find all the grace you need in and through this experience.

  2. Hi Uncle Dave, I guess I had read this, but forgot most of it! Getting scatterbrained with the house all torn up! I like the poem at the end.

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My God has led me on an 80 year jaunt to ever more wondrous beauty. I am led to share this journey and gifts of God that have been showered upon me, not just for me but for whoever God brings into my path.

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