Friday, January 30, 2009

Emptying the Glass

My friends,

I have to report honestly, things don't look good from where I sit. I am trying to ride this one out, but the situation is getting worse rapidly.

I am counting on a few years probation on my life, because I seriously believe that the Heavenly Father has some sort of mission left for me to complete. But my probation can be cut short at any moment.

I learned at the University of Utah Medical Center from the cerebral angiogram combined with the MRI that I can and will have more brain stem strokes. Not good news, but now I know for certain where the brain stem strokes are originating. None of the other doctors seemed to care.

Some difference of opinion about what that means exactly leads to a slight difference about just how long I might have to wait until I have another brain stem stroke. I have looked at statistics, and found that the odds are dismal for multiple stroke survivors. They seldom survive more than three or four strokes for more than a five year period. What that means to me is that if I have another stroke, probably within five years, it will likely end my life, and even if it doesn’t, I might wish it had. So, I am working on a mission that prepares me for death within that time.

I have met my sons, something I never thought could happen. I take that as a good sign. not just a good sign, a sign direct from Heaven. My four sons stood united together to give me a Priesthood blessing. Nothing like that could happen-- I thought it was impossible. If you said anything even remotely like that was possible I'd stare at you like you were out of your mind. I don't pretend to know what the sign means, but I pledge to work as hard as I can to help them.

I have had some miracles happen to me, and am trying to write about them all. It isn't easy. I get very tired. Things happen.

Tonight, I swallowed a piece of banana down the wrong pipe, and things got pretty exciting for a while. My swallow doesn't work well, and every food bite is a risk. So I have to be careful.

In the half-full department, I found out that I can no longer directly recall my parents names. I remember my mom and dad. They seem like always mom and dad. But I can't bring up their names when I try directly, and it upsets me.

I can envision a pencil the brothers used to use, it had all their names on it, dad, lewis, dean, bill, dave, leroy, john.

Of course, my dad is Bill. Why didn’t I remember that?

And my parents are Bill and Mary. I know that.

My mom's father is Leo Norris. I own a domain name for his family. How could these things be gone from my brain?

It makes me so sad.

The feeling is as if I had accumulated precious knowledge like grains of sand, laboriously, bit by bit, through my lifetime.

I paid a terrible price, but it was worth every cent.

Now, no matter how tight my grasp, it is slowly slipping away, and soon there will be nothing. I will be left penniless and desolate and not even knowing the glorious things I have lost.

So will end the Snail Hollow Gazette.


Anonymous said...

I understand your concerns about running out of time, I think most people have them, but your time is maybe a bit more defined than we are used to. In some ways a blessing, in some ways a bit fearful.

One consolation, maybe, is that although you may be losing some of the things you've had to enjoy in this life, they will return to you--with even more clarity and understanding--in the next. Our Father is good to us in so many ways!

Please keep writing as much as you can as long as you can, it is beautiful to read your testimony and the way you are facing the trials you have.

love you,
non-anonymous Cindy

Mary Cook said...

I agree with Cindy, keep writing whatever and however much you can. Your voice is so clear in your writing, I find it still undiminished, however much you may miss. I read you every day, sometimes several times a day, to check on you, but rarely comment, because there is so little I can contribute to what you say so well, still. I rejoice with you in the return of your sons, and hope you can use this time to get to know them again. We pray for you daily, and for Mom and Dad, to whom you mean so much, no matter what you call them! (I remember those pencils, too)

Love, Mary

Anonymous said...

Big brother -

Take heart. Whether you remember me or not, I will always be here to kick your butt into gear!!!

I love you more than I can say.


Patricia said...

I went for a walk down in the canyon yesterday. The snow is almost gone. I thought of you just about every time I walked across a patch of snow. I found myself wondering, "Jim, what do I do when all the snow is gone?"

This is the first year I have ever wondered what to do when the snow is gone. Thank you for being someone with whom I could share my newfound love of the snow and wintertime.

Jim Cobabe said...


Believe me, we've missed your comments . Thanks fof followowing my feeble blog so close through thethick and thin. You have become a trusted and familiar friend -- though weve never met!


Jim Cobabe said...


I am reading again your comment through a curtain of my own tears. LLoots of pain, this morn, but I can cope, knowing that I hav family and friends at vigil. Okay, all is well.
All is well.

I was not yet able to shar special assurance with you, ome of my best and closest, that I have been promised years to finish this mission, Years. I will be writing many more editions of Snail Hollow Gazette. Sacred promise has sealed this covenanant, and I am ever hopeful. Best of all, assuances that my sacrifices are acceptable to the Lord, feeble as they are. I am able to finish this mission and lay down in peace, BUT NOT YET. NOT YET. NOT READY YET.


Patricia said...

I have been promised years to finish this mission, Years.

Then we have time yet to meet! If you want to.

I'm sorry for the pain you're suffering this morning. May it pass quickly, and your day settle into greater comfort.

Even if I'm not commenting here directly, I'm always carrying thoughts of you. Frequently I walk out to the nearest cliff, to the very edge of where I can go, and send up prayers in your behalf. Prayers are a kind of creature of flight, language that can wing past the boundaries of where I can go.

Rest up. I'm here every day, whether I comment or not.

Jim Cobabe said...


Thank you.

I underatnd.