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entry May 17 2008, 03:00 PM
This was a pretty nervous experience. First of all, I had to get some blood tests to make sure my liver and kidneys were functioning correctly. This was because I'm diabetic and the test can cause kidney failure. Then they wanted to know about my asthma and allergies, because I could have an allergic reaction. I had to file a consent form that listed all the problems the test could cause, in order, from best to death...I'm still alive, so, na-na-na-na-na.
After I got the right amount of clothes off, they took me into this room where there was a table sticking out of a donut-shaped machine. They stuck an IV into my arm and attached it to this huge plunger-like machine, with about a pint of clear liquid in it. The machine started to make a "vooooom-voooom" sound, like a space ship. Then the table slid me into the donut, told me to take a breath and hold it and slowly slid me back out. It repeated this several times. Then the technician started the IV, and I got a warm feeling all over. A few minutes later, we went through the donut a few times more, then 5 minutes later, after all the liquid was in me, we slid into the donut hole a few more times. If I can get images in JPG or GIF, I'll share them.
I see the doctor on May 13 for the scope thingy. Until then, no news is good news.

entry May 10 2008, 01:45 PM
One Solution To Life Problems: It's my hope that, like me, you saw yourself in the previous entries. These kinds of problems are so universal, they're common themes used in stories, from drama to comedy, even science fiction. Even suffering crimes, disease and abuse is common...everyone gets their share. The unusual thing would be to have few troubles, or none. Some problems are obvious and some hidden, but we've all got 'em, whether we admit it or not. The difference comes in how we deal with these issues and how they affect us. One person buckles down and makes improvements in his life...another becomes depressed and kills himself...why? All problems happen outside of us, but some people bring them inside and give them a home, nurture and feed them until the emotions are overwhelming. This brings us to the one way to solve all life problems...living inside out.
Living inside out means deciding that nothing happening outside of us will be allowed to control us, or our outlook on life. We can't change other people, mean co-workers, diseases, crimes...they just are, and we accept that they are. The rain falls on everyone, good and bad, alike. Based on how they've decided to be, inside, some people curse the rain...others use it productively, to quench thirst, wash, and grow things. Living inside out means using our troubles to grow and strengthen ourselves. We can use relationship, job, money and other problems to identify those things inside us that need to improve, and improve them. Instead of cursing the things outside us we can't change, we change the things we can...those things inside us.
Living inside out means we can turn our problems inside out, making them tools with which to build a better life. Think about it! Without relationship problems, we'd be bored with everyone. Without work problems our employers wouldn't need us. Without money problems we would never understand it's value. Problems are the texture in the fabric of life, nothing more. Without them, our lives would lack excitement and fulfillment. How can we appreciate being loved if we've never been hated? How can we have the pleasure of success if we never fail? Trouble means we're still in the game! Next time a huge problem hits you, thank God, because it means you're alive and you still have important work to do and room to grow. If you don't have problems, check your pulse.

entry May 2 2008, 03:41 PM
Problems With Money: You don't really have trouble until you have money trouble. Now we're talking problem with a capital P. At some time in our lives, we realize we're in competition with others. I noticed it first in 3rd grade when Tommy had Converse All Stars tennis shoes, but my parents could only afford Keds. In third grade, you had to have that star or you weren't cool. So, now you're thirty or forty and the star has grown into a 2,500 square foot house, flashy SUV or import sedan, plasma TV, designer clothes, designer vacations and cell phones for the kids, so your seven-year-old can coordinate her social calendar. Somehow the word strapped doesn't quite say it...maybe hog-tied is a better term. I often counsel people who have money trouble, to add up all their credit card balances and then list the cost of everything they remember buying to get to that number. A precious few might remember half of the stuff that was so important they went into debt for it. Imagine paying 20 years on Christmas gifts the kids broke within weeks.

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