Good morning. Beautiful day outside, birds were twittering long before dawn as I walked to the gym a little after 5 AM to get on the elliptical to see if it would unkink this back and leg problem. Situation is reversed. I awaken and get out of bed pain free now, but I’m no sooner up and about than the whole leg freezes and the stabbing pains start. So, to the elliptical I went for nearly half and hour and it did help. Then worked out at home with the exercise ball and it also helped a bit. It was warm this morning with a pleasant, refreshing, spring breeze and the swimming pool looked so inviting as I passed it, a half moon overhead, and the very happy birds singing.
There’s an old New Orleans tradition I never fully indulged in re coffee in the morning. For a long time some people would pour condensed milk–one of my favorite things on earth–into their cup of Joe. I didn’t, because it’s so fattening, and full of cholesterol. But over Christmas I did buy a can of fat free condensed milk and it’s just been sitting in the pantry. So yesterday, after making my French press pot of coffee, I poured a slight dollop of the condensed milk into my cup and stirred it until it transformed into a beautiful nut brown, and Mon Dieu, it tasted delicious. A new tradition in the morning has begun. Thank God for little things.
I didn’t have pleasant dreams last night, but they are a tad too gory to re-tell. Easter Sunday morning, INSP showed a program that recounted people’s stories of near-death experiences, one of whom, surprisingly, was Jane Seymour. Most of these stories told of people going, apparently, to heaven, but there was one take that really stood out, told by a former real estate broker who was making half a million a year, was active in his church, and gave to charities. This man, whose demeanor itself when telling the story would make you believe it described what happened to him around 15 years ago. He was asleep besides his wife and awakened suddenly for no reason, at 3 AM. (Oh Lord, been there, done that.) As he walked to his kitchen to get a drink of water, he said that something dragged him straight down into hell. By al accounts, he had always been a very laid back, staid, rational and calm person, yet his wife found him screaming, crying and flailing about in his living room and she couldn’t reach him for several minutes. He described a dark pit of fire and he could hear people screaming in terrible suffering; he described horrific looking creatures who beat him; there was never ending suffering, and…snakes everywhere. I have to say that the thought of possibly spending eternity in a snake pit makes me want to carve the Ten Commandments into the palm of my hand. Jane Seymour had a bad case of the flu, was given an injection and went into anaphylactic shock…she described herself as sailing towards a very bright light and she realized she was about to die and started praying to God to let her live because she knew she wasn’t ready yet. It’s funny how you know when you aren’t ready.
I was reminded of a New Testament quote this morning: “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you have hidden these things from the wise and understanding and revealed them to little children; yes, Father, for such was your gracious will.”
(Jesus, Luke 10:21)