Eleven Thousand, Three Hundred and Fifteen so far

July 4, 1987 – A young father, a young husband, and at 29 years old he was looking ahead to more time in Vancouver General Hospital.  Not something he relished.

The phone rang after he arrived home from work, – 5 P.M..  The message was “Don’t Eat anything, Have a shower and come to the hospital as soon as possible. Surgery tonight.”

His feelings were mixed, excitement along with trepidation. The year before the call from the hospital in April had lead to months of disappointment and pain. Inside himself he wondered if he had the strength to try again. He wanted to try, the potential gain meant he had to.

6  P.M. – As they drove together to the hospital,  his wonderful daughter stayed with her grandparents and his wife stayed positive while he shared his wishes, just in case, something happened and she was widowed. They were calm and realistic.

8:45 P.M. – Now he sat on his bed, the thick concrete walls of the old building, the green trees outside. A few minutes alone to stay positive and remember why he was there, sitting in a hospital gown, plain white cloth.

He had kidney disease, surviving on dialysis had had its moments and the restrictions on diet and time were hard on him and his family.  Tonight after midnight, things might change for the better.

Work hardly entered his mind, someone would send them a message, his job would wait.  He tried to slow his mind, be calm, just breathe.

*********

12: 20 A.M. – The halls were silent, as he lay on the gurney, trundled down hallways, and up elevators and eventually he arrived in a hallway outside surgery.

He was outside surgery, laying on the gurney, waiting. He could see people milling around in gowns through the doors. Quickly they moved, precisely.

The surgeon stood beside him, they chatted briefly and he confirmed he was ready, his name and why he was there.  Just before they entered the surgery, he asked that they pray together, and the surgeon was happy to take the moment to do so.

12:35 A.M – Nervous, hopeful,  the last thing he remembered was being wheeled through the doors,  and then the anesthetist asking him to count backwards from 100. His vision faded as he counted down about five numbers, and then just darkness, silence.

**********

6:35 A.M. – he opened his eyes to a nurse asking him his name, and then he fell asleep. He could see two poles and tubes running from the poles to him. He was too tired to think what it meant.

 

 

That was Eleven Thousand, Three Hundred and Fifteen days ago (31  years) ago.  I woke up and the surgery worked. I had received the gift of life, the gift of organ donation from someone and now I would live. I had a working kidney.

During the days ahead, I would celebrate the birth of a son, I would walk my daughter on her wedding day, I would look forward to  holidays, and celebrations. I would work, and make memories.

Organ donation – register please, next it could be someone who means everything to you.

Eleven Thousand, Three Hundred and Fifteen days ago I got the call, and another chance.  My donor I never knew, but I think of that person every day. Someone lost their life but their kidney lived on in me.

 

Thank you to my donor and to your family for your gift that day.  It has meant everything. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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2018 Penticton Beach Cruise

 

This weekend is one of the festivals in Penticton I enjoy the most, classic cars with the Penticton Beach Cruise.

I particularly went looking for a Rambler and I found one because my Dad was telling me about a Rambler he owned that was rare and he wasn’t visiting this year to check out the 850 cars registered. I found one and took a picture (see below).

These cars are seen all over town all weekend and are on show along Okanagan Lake Lakeshore Drive when the owners aren’t cruising the beach.

Perfectly suited to the cars, this is also the weekend of the annual Elvis Festival in Penticton and it is not unusual to spot an Elvis or two during the festival around town.

Fear not my friends, I didn’t take pictures of all 850 vehicles – next weekend is British cars!  It’s a great way to spend a summer evening, sashaying along checking out all the cool vehicles.

Thanks for visiting!

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Love You and Leave You

My Mom, Lillian, connected to everyone in her life in different ways.

She talked regularly on the phone with her many friends, and her family and her way of ending the call was to say “I’m going to love and leave you“.  So many people have told me she ended her calls to them like that also, I’m Going to Love You and Leave You.

She remembered special dates of family and friends by writing them in her little book and would call or send a card. I remember getting a phone call from her wishing me Happy 10th Anniversary for my successful cataract surgery (I had forgotten the date, and lost track of the years!) Obviously she remembered all kinds of events 🙂

Lillian was creative in many ways. She loved painting, and painted in oil, and water colour.  She also enjoyed drawing and on my desk, below my keyboard is a drawing she made in 1967 of Tiger (my german shepherd) that she covered in plastic so I would always have it.  I think of Mom every time I sit at my desk.

Lillian’s creativity was useful also, she studied and mastered card folding and included her needlepoint in beautiful gift cards, get well cards, birthday cards, thinking of you cards. People tell me that they saved every card and bookmark Mom ever made them because it was special, handmade and personal.

Mom also loved to make relish, and jams and when I pull out one of Mom’s relishes from the pantry and every-time I use them I am reminded how she cared for the people in her life and demonstrated that care.

Mom had faith in God, and before you ate at her table or left her home to travel to your own, she made you stop so she could pray for you and your safe trip,  It was not unusual to get a phone call from her so she knew you had arrived home safely.

Lillian loved to knit, and she made toques and slippers especially.  The slippers were soft and especially appreciated by family, who like warm feet in the winter time, I guess that means everyone 🙂  Toques she knitted by the hundreds all summer long while she was watching TV with Dad.  These toques were donated to the homeless in Vancouver for the cold damp winter months, and I loved her toques because they were warm, colourful and not too tight, a bonus because a tight toque makes my hearing aids squeal.

Mom was special and will be remembered for the loving person she was. I will remember her in countless ways,  because she showed her love for me in countless ways.

Mom showed that love and kindness to my Dad, my brother, her grandchildren and great grandchildren. She showed that kindness to her entire family, her nieces and brother in law, sisters in law, and her church family.

I’ll be talking always to you Mom, you loved and left me too soon.

mom and dave on a motorcycle

Mom & I in Quesnel – approximately 1965

 

My Mom, Lillian passed peacefully June 6, 2018 and left a hole I can never fill in my life.

Missing you Mom.

Thanks for reading. I wasn’t sure if I would blog about my Mom’s passing. This post is not about me, it’s about her and the life and person she was. I was fortunate to be her son.  I was so glad I stood and spoke at her funeral because I wanted to share how I remember her, and it was six minutes I prepared for and yet it was a day I never wanted to experience.  I know she would have been proud of her son speaking out and it was my last gift to her.  Life is a gift, hug those you love as much and as often as you are able, you won’t regret it.

 

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Every Day – Help Wanted

 

I was thinking about things that I want to include in my life Every Day. What do you include in your Every Day?

2005-11-18 12.56.08

Sitting Duck

Every Day

  1. Count Your Blessings, before you count anything else.
  2. Stretch, and be aware of the simple pleasures of movement.
  3. Be kind to someone you don’t know.
  4. Pick up one piece of litter that’s not your own and imagine if everyone did.
  5. Smile, it’s healthy for you, mind and body.
  6. Try something new, every day.
  7. When you wake up be glad to be alive.
  8. Like the boy scouts say; Do a Good Turn daily!
  9. Give your significant other a kiss and express your love verbally.
  10. Connect with God daily, through prayer, reading and worship.  Every other daily suggestion will fall into place from here. (Thank you Sharon D.)
  11. Meditating or sitting in silence.
  12. Practicing Gratitude (similar to #1)
  13. Connect with nature – spend some time outdoors every day. It makes a great difference to your level of happiness.
  14. Write something that resounds to someone or just write.

 

 Help Wanted – this is my hope, that NOW YOU will send me an email with your Every Day suggestion at dfolstad58.gmail.com or share it with me in comments. 

I will add them to the list.  My fellow bloggers, please help. 

Photo

what ear hair?

ONLY The first 5 were my thoughts – please share your thoughts from big or small to add to the list.

My hope is for 25 more, but you could surprise me. Thanks in advance.

I will update the blog with your ideas on Thursday May 24. See you then 🙂

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Make That “Some Day” Today

I procrastinate.  I can take a long time to get something accomplished,  and some things I won’t put off at all and they are usually fairly inconsequential.

kick in but 1I think everyone has a “Some Day I will” in them,  they know what they want and/or what they should do  but are lead footed in getting going.

David Gilmour (Pink Floyd) wrote these words for his song “Breathe” and maybe his version of  Some Day is what he was thinking.

I wonder what these words make you think of?

 

 

Breathe, breathe in the air
Don’t be afraid to care
Leave but don’t leave me

Look around and choose your own ground
For long you live and high you fly
And smiles you’ll give and tears you’ll cry

And all you touch and all you see
Is all your life will ever be

There are many types of Some Days including:

  • do something healthy or alternatively stop doing something unhealthy,
  • heal relationships, reaching out with an apology,
  • making memories with the closest people to your heart,
  • making that bucket trip or having that one experience,
  • going back to school,
  •  making a phone call to a friend you haven’t talked to for a long time.
  • whatever comes to your mind 🙂

sweet 8Regardless of the “Some Day” that comes to your mind in this minute,  I hope that today you take a step in the right direction (even if it is small) today to crush it, because only you will know how glad you did.  I’m trying to do better also.

It’s Possible, but it is all up to you and me (I’m exactly like you or worse)  to make it happen.

Let’s each one of us – Make that Some Day Today.

Thank you for reading, commenting, and taking the time to follow my blog posts. 

sweet 7

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Classic but true

7 years ago I posted this and remembering family today seemed appropriate.

Life and Random Thinking

I remember my grandma (Baba) teaching me manners when I was just 5 or 6. She took me to a hotel in Kindersley, Saskatchewan and bought me a cola. I think it was 5 cents. I couldn’t drink it until I said thank-you. She told me, and taught me to remember my manners, always please and thank you.

Baba was right and even for the simplest things, I remember my manners.

My parents and Grandparents taught through their actions. Family was important, and actions speak louder than words.

We never ate in front of a television, my parents taught me to try new things and do it myself. I made kites from balsa wood and newspaper. I used to play “Battleship” with my Dad and I drew 10×10 tables so we could call out the grid numbers for our “bombs”.

I hope I have done some things right teaching Classics…

View original post 13 more words

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Getting old is a pain in the…

2013-07-02 16.30.07.jpgMy grandma (Baba) used to tell me that in her mind she was still 18, and she told me this when she was in her 80’s.  She was a fun person who after she turned eighty started celebrating her birthdays in reverse i.e. 81 became her “18th” birthday.

Body versus mind.

My mind certainly can believe anything it wants but my body, well that’s another story completely.

sweet 8When I was young,  and I went camping with my family, I was the usually first one out of the tent in the morning.  I would spend the next few hours puttering and skipping rocks on the lake.

I mention this because yesterday I was down at the lake reliving those moments along the lake. I would look for a suitable flat rock and then crouch down and twist and fire that rock along the lake surface. 

Getting old is a pain in the BACK!  I hadn’t set any Guinness records yesterday before I realized I was in pain. That quick twist and throw without a few months stretching beforehand proved to be an painfully unhealthy decision that I am paying for.

Yesterday it was excruciating lower back pain, today less so. Last night I barely moved from a chair while I pressed frozen bags of vegetables onto my lower back.  Bless you Tylenol!

Fellow bloggers,  thank you for reading, and rest assured that your blog suggestions and comments are a boon to my recovery!  🙂

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Embrace Your Ugly

Funny thing but on television or in movies I notice that ALL the cars are all shiny, clean, polished even.

2014-06-21 12.20.48

makes me think of Beach Boys music

In real life my car looks either dusty or dirty seconds after I wash it, and never as clean and shiny as the cars in the car show like the one in the picture I took (above).

I think people try to be like those cars on tv, they project this shiny, polished exterior. I think nearly all of us aren’t like that car, always clean, neat and looking perfect. I know my jeans have patches, and some of my patches have patches! Lol

When we cling to and project the “perfect” image, I think it’s like those people who hold up their hand – “tell it to the hand“, and it keeps others at a distance.

sweet 2In my life I don’t blurt out to anyone what is going on, but neither am I afraid of being vulnerable either.

I am not gloomy, cynical either, I am always able to find things to be grateful without pretending my life is perfect.

My “ugly” stuff is probably no worse than anybody else’s. It is part of life for me and that perfect life is for movie scripts, it doesn’t exist anywhere else.

Real life and dealing with it is ugly but it’s my ugly and it could be worse.  I have a half fixed fence outside that I am going to fix over the next couple days, I’m half way there!

I definitely need to lose some weight, get more exercise but I also have people who make me feel good, and I had a hug and kiss from my wife when I woke up. oh yeah!

My life ain’t tv pretty, but I am glad I can embrace it, cause it’s my ugly and I am grateful to have it,  very grateful and I hope you can count your blessings also!

Thanks for reading and commenting; I will be happy to reply to your comments and suggestions. You could inspire my next post! 

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Finding Your Sweet Spot

sweet 6I agonize trying to find the “sweet spot” in many areas of my life, and maybe you do also.

If you golf, or play baseball then the sweet spot is that spot on your club or bat where you hit the ball perfectly. If you are a business person then maybe the sweet spot is where your business life and personal life are in balance.

The Sweet Spot is applicable to all areas of life I think, exercise and relaxing, diet and treats, taking risks and not – you name itsweet 1

Blogging is something I really enjoy and yet I post seldom but derive so many pleasure when people respond with positive comments. I would love to find that sweet spot where I regularly blog and don’t feel I am neglecting something else.  I would blog more but I am looking for that sweet spot where my interests and responsibilities to my myself and others are all met. Is it possible?

sweet 7Another sweet spot that occurs to me is that one acknowledging that my mortality is like musical chairs closing in on me gradually and still enjoy the party while I’m here?

I certainly see lots of room for improvement when I look at myself- being more organized, yard work, exercise, showing my family, and friends how I need each one of them and appreciate them.

Is there a sweet spot between all these areas?sweet 2

I think that regarding to wellness of life and relationships, I am like everyone else.

 

 

Sometimes I find the sweet spot and sometimes that golf ball of life goes wild and

it’s lost.

Regardless I am still swinging my club of life and maybe that’s the best I can do. Maybe in the game of life, we are meant to  just enjoy the journey.

Thanks for reading, I hope you find your sweet spots. Comments and suggestions always welcome and appreciated. Cheers.

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5 foot tall, 100 pounds – Mountain Conqueror

I recently had a discussion with a friend who has set 7 worthwhile goals for themselves.

shaileebasnet.2I confess 7 goals had me thinking and this morning at the auspicious time of 5:30 a.m. I realized it reminded me of Shailee Basnet. (find out more about here by clicking HERE )

I heard this 5 foot tall, 100 pounds young lady at the Vancouver Toastmasters Annual Convention in August, 2017.  The title of her speech was “Together We Reach Higher“.

Now you are wondering the connection between 7 goals and this young speaker. This young woman from very humble beginnings in Nepal has achieved amazing accomplishments she set for herself.

shaileebasnet.1At her young age she has climbed all of the seven summits of each of the seven continents.  (find out more about the Seven Summits by clicking Here)

Moving on from scary cold climbing now she is doing Motivational Speaking especially focused toward women and even doing Stand-Up Comedy in New York. I believe you can find her on Youtube.

Shailee-Everest

Mount Everest Climb

But the thought that I had was that while she had the vision to climb all summits, each of the climbs were individual projects. She would have had to raise money for her team, supplies, travel arrangements, sponsors etc seven separate times although it may have got easier as she became better known.

Each mountain had to be climbed separately, the danger and challenges of each analysed and overcome. Lessons learned and applied and new lessons  added with each mountain goal.

My thoughts as I lay there this morning were big visions and goal setting is fantastic and possible but nothing is achieved all at once.  Climb one mountain at a time, but while climbing that mountain you will learn and it will help your next, and the next.

But first have the vision, plan how you will succeed, and start taking steps.

The  question is really ” Will you be better (closer to your goals) today than you were yesterday? 

“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”

― J.R.R. TolkienThe Lord of the Rings

 

Thank you kind reader for taking the time to read. If you follow me regularly, even bigger thank you!  I love hearing comments and suggestions and when I receive them I am happy to reply so I get to know the readers better.

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