Posted On April 7, 2023
Listener’s responses from my request last week:
To the many of you who pulled your Subaru’s over last week and emailed me, thank you. For those who don’t know, I had a stroke about two weeks ago and am, thankfully, ok. I walked out of intensive care about twenty-four hours later. Other than a fistful of pills every day, I’m back to normal. And as I said last week, it was close and I got lucky.
My request last week was what does this all mean? I got very close, received an enormous outpouring of support, and got stuck on the question, “What’s it all mean?”
The emails from listeners had three consistent themes: gratitude, the small things, and people.
Lara Shows emailed to say “find joy in every day even in the mundane things” which I tried to put to use in the Atlanta airport Sunday with a delayed flight. I watched the planes come and go, tried to enjoy it versus getting upset about the delay.
Lawrence Hughey of Mobile and I exchanged a few emails. He wrote “all of us are surrounded everyday by blessings and miracles but we don’t see them. Our vision is faulty and limited. But for you,” Lawrence continued, “I’m betting your vision is greatly improved at this point.” And it is, Lawrence, and I hope to never lose that vision and I know I have to work to keep it.
There was Andrew Willis who works at Alabama Public Radio. He began as an intern where one of his first jobs was learning to edit audio content and used my commentaries years ago as practice. He’s now the Assistant Program Director and Radio Producer. His message: “It’s not about the lifestyle changes that you need to make, but the relationships you have with people. Set aside more time for those relationships. That’s where you really make a difference.”
Andrew, I don’t know if I make a difference or not, but I do remember lying on that table in the hospital and telling my wife I’m not ready to die yet. The imagine in my head was of my children and how badly I want to watch them grow up and celebrate all the chapters in their life that lie ahead. I’m not ready to acquiesce that dream yet. And I’ve made some subtle changes with them already.
In the movie It’s A Wonderful Life, George Bailey’s guardian angel, Clarence, says, “You’ve been given a great gift George: A chance to see what the world would look like without you.” I was not given that gift, but I the stroke I had two weeks ago was a big scare. And I’m going to decide it was a gift and see what I can do differently going forward to try to make a difference.
My doctors told me to take it easy but get back to living. And all this rumination on life and such along with waves of emotion have been exhausting and they’ve left me feeling a bit melancholy. I’m ready to take my newfound lessons and move forward, renewed.
If you offered thoughts for me, I can’t thank you deeply enough. Truly, thank you.
Now, let’s get going.
I’m Cam Marston and I’m just trying to Keep It Real.