Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers,
but to be fearless in facing them.
Let me not beg for the stilling of my pain,
but for the heart to conquer it.

- Rabindranath Tagore

Inspirational Music

Friday, February 15, 2013

Taking another step in the right direction

Today, I met with a potential roommate. She liked the place, so hopefully we can move forward quickly with the process. We have to go through the landlords--it's not a sure thing yet, but I'm excited that I can help a friend get a start in Omaha. This morning, I decided to relaunch my old photography company "Visions by Baber," but with a different structure and name. I've got a lot more research and networking to do before I can talk much more about it. I am very excited, though, and have already made some great progress. I also have an interview with Express this afternoon. It's located across the hall from Teavana at Westroads. It would be another great opportunity to work in a place I actually like. It would also be a great place to learn a different side of salesmanship. I'm not sure if I'll have time to post tomorrow. I am having breakfast with James Bond a.k.a. Fez a.k.a. Jason Thomas. Then hanging with my great aunt Brendee and first cousin once removed (I had to look that one up; I've never known exactly what it was called) Shellee. We are meeting my other first cousin once removed Sandee and my "cuz" Darrin (He's actually my second cousin). I haven't seen Darrin for a very long time. We used to spend a week at Brendee's with Shelley every summer and have some awesome memories. We once went to a Husker game and got our picture on the front page of the Lincoln Journal Star by painting our entire upper bodies. After that I'm going to attempt to play poker with my house mate and some of his friends. I have only played poker once and it wasn't pretty. I was out of chips within minutes--poker is not the game it appears to be.

As I was thinking about things I wanted to write about, I realized something. I have very few pictures of me with my friends. I was thinking about writing about the blessing of amazing friendships with amazing people I've had over the years. Many of these people and I have never shared a photo with each other. This is not surprising to me; I rarely see a camera out when hanging out. I also seem to end up behind the camera when one is present. This lack of photos, while not a negative thing, is surely a positive I've missed out on. And, I'm not saying there are not photos out there, but I am not in possession of very many. So if you have a photo of you and me please send it to me. One of the most bizarre things about this to me is that I've walked around with an 8MP camera in my pocket for 4 years in the form of a smart phone. The one I currently have has a 3D camera even. So, if I see you mention getting a photo, it would be sweet to have a little photo album of my friends (and family).

I'd like to take some time to talk about the quotation I have at the top of the page.

Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers,
but to be fearless in facing them.
Let me not beg for the stilling of my pain,
but for the heart to conquer it.

- Rabindranath Tagore

I do not remember exactly when I found this quotation. I do remember it was not long after getting back on my feet again. I still have not taken the time to read much more of Tagore's poetry, but I hope to soon. These few lines seem to give words to the courage I have tried to live in. My life has taught me that there are dangers everywhere that we will never see coming. There are things that will swoop into our lives and mess things up, mess us up. We will have our lives altered in ways that range from uncomfortable or inconvenient to absolutely terrifying and we cannot do a thing about the circumstances we find ourselves in. I believe that living fearlessly is the only way to approach this fact of life. Let danger come and like Hushpuppy from Beasts of the Southern Wild, we can take a long look at what we love most and then turn and face it and say, "You're my friend kind of." Danger is a constant companion in my life. I never seem to be able to shake it. I guess that does kind of make it my friend. My life has also seemed to have been served with a full helping of pain. I know stories of people who have endured more pain than I can imagine, and I do not think I've learned anywhere near as much about it as many people know.  I do, however, have a familiarity with it that is not common. My life has also taught me that pain is one of those things you cannot necessarily avoid. And, if you live courageously facing your fears, you find there is a certain amount of pain required to do so. I believe that it is possible to live with avoiding pain and danger as a modus operandi of sorts, and many people go that route. As for me, I guess I have tried to take the road less traveled. I would like to say I wouldn't trade it for the world, but I have lost a few things that would be hard to not attempt to regain. I do not know what I would choose given a choice between my life as it is and a life where my body was whole. It would be very hard to give up the memories I've had with the spectacular people I've met because of what happened. Back to the poem, pain, that frightening thing we just want stilled. There have been moments and sometime much longer periods where I have endured intense pain. The most vivid is from the day after Thanksgiving in 2008. Long (and not so tasteful) story short, I did not have IV pain medication on my chart when we needed to change the wound vacuum dressing on my left leg. I was left with only oral medication which, after more than 50 days straight on some of the most potent narcotics, their effect was negligible. The process for the dressing change would normally have taken 10 minutes but lasted over an hour because of how difficult it was for me to keep my body still enough for the nurse to change it. There are more stories like this but none so intense in my memory as this one. I don't think I would have been able to endure it without the family members that were visiting. They gave me the strength to grit my teeth and focus on what I needed to do. They strengthened my heart when I was in the midst of it. So I agree with this old Indian poet and I think he is talking about courage.

Please feel free to leave comments, criticism, and whatever else might come to mind.

2 comments:

Tami Tucker said...

I am thankful we were able to be there for you!!!! Luv u so much!

caleb said...

So am I.