Is death an ending or a beginning? Is it one big event or something small occurring periodically and often? Is dying a time of sorrow, or a time of healing? Maybe, death is all of these things collectively.
These are the kinds of questions I have pondered in deep conversation with a friend who is like no other in my life. In fact, I refer to her as my spirit sibling. During our discussions, every part of my being is engaged, with hours and hours easily passing. There is no judgement and no fear. Minds are open and debate draws out Truth (yes, with a capital ‘T’). Our dialogue can be exhausting and exhilarating simultaneously, and magical things come out of them like this poem.
I knew sharing this poem was right one afternoon while listening to the band Hammock and their album Oblivion Hymns. The final track, “Tres Dominé”, is possibly the most hope-filled and uplifting song I have ever heard. Ironically, in an interview about the album, the band stated the collection of songs is about saying goodbye. Hmmm…..is death uplifting? Check out “Tres Dominé” here.
I suffer from Sudden Hypersensitive Anxiety With Noise (SHAWN) Syndrome. Wait….what? That’s not a real medical condition? Well, I will have to look into that later.
Extraneous sounds while I am focused and trying to accomplish a task are like nails on a chalkboard. Clicking sounds, electronic beeps or buzzes and noisy chatter infiltrate my central nervous system which can easily short circuit. The reaction may be one of frustration, anger or even on the verge of a panic attack. Yes, it is ridiculous that I am unable to just deal with the noise and tune it out, yet that is not how my brain works. Sensory overload is one of my weaknesses.
Ask my wife what happens when I am driving and something starts rattling in the car. A creaking dashboard equals time to start shopping for a new vehicle. I once stuck the little red tube attached to a can of WD-40 into the dash of my Ford Escape, saturating the inside with the wonder fluid to stop a squeaking noise. If you are wondering about the level of success – there is a reason that is not among the thousands of uses listed on the can. WD-40 does NOT make a good air freshener either.
This poem came about during a flare up of SHAWN Syndrome. There are similar poems to share in future posts, but……….aaaaAAAAA, what is that ringing noise? Sorry, gotta go.
Exercise and fitness are a huge part of my life. The health benefits are great, but the resulting quality time with my wife and friends is even more valuable.
I became serious about improving my physical health in 2014 and am now in the best shape of my life. Working with a personal trainer has been a key to my success. It was an incredible stroke of luck to find someone who has helped me grow in strength and ability beyond anything ever imagined possible. Also, much more than strength and ability grew. The guy who started off as my trainer has become one of my best friends. Nothing could have been better – health and muscle gains all while hanging out with my buddy.
My workout routine became an obsession. Just working out with a trainer was not enough. At one point I was in the gym seven days a week, and if a workout was missed, it made me cranky. Continuing at that level of demand on my body was not sustainable. Still, I pushed forward until the inevitable happened. A few minor injuries and setbacks occurred, and my body needed rest.
I began to fear all of my gains would be lost. Backing off on the intensity of the routine would certainly mean a loss of what I had worked so hard to achieve. Those feelings were channeled into this poem, and that seemed to be the end of the story. But something deeper existed in the meaning. It was not just the loss of muscle and physical strength I feared.
A priceless friendship had grown from what started as a trainer-client relationship, and although it sounds ridiculous to state it now, a threat to sustaining the insane gym routine translated into a threat to the friendship. My narrow mind was equating one with the other. I was selling my friend and the friendship short.
In no way was this conclusion reached on my own. That was achieved by talking about what was in my head with my
trainer friend – a continuing key to my personal success both in and out of the gym.
I have changed my workout routine, finding new ways to stay active, being smarter about time in the gym and resting. Nothing has been lost and the truly important thing has continued to grow – the prized friendship is worth more than ever before.