Growing Up and Growing Old What the F@#k Can One Guy Do?

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    A Bit of a Crooked Shot of Edmonton’s River Valley.  This Was Taken a Week or Two Ago and the Valley is Already Beginning to Turn a Beautiful Shade of Green

 

Today’s Poem:

 

April Poem

For some reason, it seems that poems escape me
When I’m no longer in pain

When I don’t feel the wrenching grip of loneliness
I can’t seem to write from my heart

This day was wonderful
A taste of heaven
Cool, sun-shiny Spring day

I met with a friend so close
That I’m not afraid to tell him I love him
And we sat with new friends
And laughed and talked
While the blue sky enveloped our hearts

Why do I get these pleasures?
How is it I can justify to my conscience
This incredible life?

So many of my years before this were painful
So many were lonely, I lived
In desperation
For a little more food
Some better medicine
For all that ailed me

Now I seem to have arrived, achieved
My sweet holy God in heaven I don’t deserve all this

Make me learn poverty
That I can remember to give
Make me learn loneliness
That I can remember to love
Let me know hunger and pain
So I have compassion

Take all of this from me

Oh God, my God I have done so many things wrong
Made so many mistakes
I’m told all of us are sinners
I must be the worst

A good friend once told me
We all have a God-shaped hole in our hearts
But after today
Sipping cold root beer
With warm friends
On a sunny day
I feel somehow as though
A perfect shape has filled my hole
And I want all the world to know

Leif Gregersen
April 17, 2016

Hello, and welcome to a beautiful Spring dear readers!  I took a very long walk today to meet up with a friend and got a lot of incredible surprises.  First of all, my generous friend, who is an internationally well-known author and film producer sat me down and explained that he is going to help me market my books, something I have been hard at work trying to do.  I have some opportunities to do this coming up soon, one of them is that I am going to be speaking at a conference in Toronto this August and at another conference in October in Halifax.  My friend is trying to set up something for me to go on tour in the Northwest Territories, giving writing workshops and also speaking about mental health.  Our Northern communities in Canada have been hit hard with a chain of suicides and I am strongly hoping that I can reach even just one person to seek help that may not have otherwise done so.

I also have a two-hour a week job teaching a writing class to adults with mental health difficulties and I am really enjoying it.  It takes a lot of work and it is a lot of effort to sit down with a group of adults who have psychiatric issues and keep them engaged for two whole hours, but I welcome the challenge as it just may lead to more things.  I like to teach people about the power of writing, the course is actually called “Writing For Wellness”.  We are doing poetry right now and there is a woman in the class who is actually showing some talent, I would really like to see her pursue her poetry further.  Once again, that is the one person, someone who you can make a difference with that makes things like this all worthwhile.

I don’t know if this is going to be a sleepless night, but I am having a hard time resting my head.  I am not following my own rules about sleep hygiene, I should not have let myself sleep in this morning or take a nap after supper.  When you go out and exercise for 3 or more hours, though, it just feels so incredibly wonderful to sneak in an hour of sleep.  I think what I am going to have to do is stay up late, perhaps write  a short story to pass the time, grab just a couple of hours in the early morning and drag myself through my day.

One thing I am really noticing though is that my stress levels seem to have gone way down since I stopped my labor job and started my present job of being an Editor.  I would just love to keep doing this job for as long as I can, it feels great to be a boss and help others to create their best work and put magazines together.  My only real worry is that the magazine may not last as long as I want to be employed by them.  Hopefully, at that point, things will get better though and perhaps I can find an even better job.

So I hope everyone out there is taking care of themselves.  The arrival of Spring is a good time for all of my readers to take enough care of themselves to get a doctor’s check-up done.  I had a bunch of blood tests done and found that my liver is working a little harder than it should and that I have been eating likely too much saturated fat.  All of us who are on medications and those who don’t want to be should be aiming for a goal of 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise each day, not allowing themselves to become too sedentary, watching caffeine levels (2 cups a day in the morning, then try and switch to teas), and spending time with family and friends, hopefully going for walks in the park or volunteering or working.  The sunny seasons are a great time to resolve to spend less time in front of a screen and maybe more time living an active life.  But who the hell am I to say?  Actually, just a happy, healthy middle-aged man with good friends who has managed to control his bipolar through good living and medications!

Best,

Leif Gregersen

viking3082000@yahoo.com

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