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Chaos in Cleveland with Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield and alleged sexual episodes.  Danny loves topics like this. 🏈🏈🏈 What does Ash Wednesday mean to Danny and how will he recognize this day? 🙏🙏🙏 Danny had his liver looked at two weeks ago and the test results are in. 💉💉💉 That and more!!!

true meaning of christmas

As I write this it is the afternoon of Christmas Eve.  As a kid I loved this day.  Every Christmas Eve Mom, Dad and myself would go to to the Czekalinski home in Parma, Ohio.  It was always a lot of fun filled with Polish and Catholic tradition.  We would eat downstairs.  It was a “poor man’s meal.” Sole was the fish.  We ate on a huge table that was covered by a table cloth and underneath was a complete bale of straw spread out evenly.  At the end of the meal everyone reaches under the table cloth and pulls out a piece of straw.  If you had one with a lot of flowers on it, legend had it that you would enjoy the upcoming New Year.  Grandpa and Uncle Ralph now had a few glasses of wine in them and they started singing Christmas songs in Polish  My Aunt and Grandma just rolled their eyes and my Dad just shook his head and laughed.  Now it was time to go upstairs and open gifts!!!!  Finally….what Christmas is all about.

I was an only child and the first grandchild.  I was showered with gifts and it was never enough.  Surely there has to be MORE????  Well I was right with one exception.  It wouldn’t be found in a box with a bow on it.  Life moves fast my friends.  Life is always changing.  Mom and Dad got divorced when I was thirteen.  People took sides.  There was no more Christmas Eve at the Czekalinski’s.  Grandpa got cancer after that.  He suffered a lot and eventually died.  I grew to HATE Christmas.  It reminded me of how happy I used to be.  In my adult life I continued to look for that feeling I had every Christmas Eve.  I would just throw “money” at a bunch of gifts for people thinking that would at least bring THEM happiness.  I continued to be miserable.

I’m a Christian.  Make fun of me if ya want.  If you knew me, there are MANY things about me that you can ridicule.  I really don’t care.  Christmas is the birthday of a man that died for us so that we may experience eternal life.  I won’t bang the bible.  Anyone can do that.  It’s subjective.  You can pick and choose a quote to support any cause.  Try this.  Look around.  Nature is kind of a cool place.  Where did it all begin?  Some will say “The Big Bang Theory.”  Okay….I’ll give ya that.  Who made the big bang?

I’m just seeing this now.  I’m fifty-five years old and lived my life a hundred miles an hour with my hair on fire.  I have no idea why I am alive.  I was in a coma for five days in September of 2015 because I was doing bad things to numb myself.  This isn’t about me.  I only put myself into this story to show you it is never too late.  Christmas is the birthday of Jesus.  Jesus is not flash.  Jesus is all about faith.  What you do with my story is up to you.  Thanks for reading.  Merry Christmas.

seond chanceI should be dead.   Let’s start there.  On September 21, 2015 I started to go downhill, healthwise, at a rapid pace.  I was coughing up blood and struggling to catch my breath.   It was late that Monday afternoon when I knew I had to call 911.  I didn’t have the strength to get off the couch and told the 911 operator that the paramedics would have to come through the window.  She stayed on the phone with me until they arrived.  The paramedics worked quickly to remove me from the house and our destination was Wellington Regional.  They were moving at the fastest pace possible so I knew this was serious.  This thought was supported even further when the one in the back of the emergency unit asked me “Why did you wait so long?”

I was unconscious by the time I reached the hospital so I had to fill in the blanks by questioning my doctors and medical staff.  I had pneumonia.  This caused a heart block.  My heart rate fell to 22.  My other organs were slowly shutting down.  My mother was contacted late that Monday evening and the doctors were honest with her;  They didn’t know if I would make it through the night.  I would remain unconscious, hooked to wires and machines, for the next six days.

I may be ridiculed, by some, for what I share with you next.  Let me preface what I am about to tell you by giving you a bit of background of my religious beliefs and upbringing.  I was raised Catholic.  I stopped going to church a long time ago.  I believed in a Supreme Being and an after-life.  I was never one to read the Bible or one to devote much of my time to prayer.  Now let me share with you what I learned.

There is a heaven.  I know because I was outside the doors.  I begged God for another chance;  for the ability to make a difference and use the talents He has given me.  I begged Him for forgiveness and promised that I would use a second chance to make a difference in my life and attempt to do the same in the lives of others.

When I finally regained consciousness I was told that I did actually “die and come back.”   My mother mentioned that when I was fighting to regain consciousness I kept saying “I’m sorry.  I am so sorry. Please give me another chance.”  Physically I was very sick but spiritually this was an awakening and something that has changed my life.

I learned the heart block caused damage to my heart and I would need a pacemaker.  On Monday September 29, 2015 I was transferred from Wellington Regional to JFK Medical Center, a hospital known for their cardiac care.   One week after my transfer and NUMEROUS tests, pills and pokes my permanent pacemaker was installed on Monday October 5, 2015.  Yesterday, October 6, 2015 I was finally discharged and returned home.

I am on the road to recovery.  I pop more pills on a daily basis than Keith Richards does.  I can’t drive for another two weeks and I follow up with two doctors next week.  I need to take and log my blood pressure and pulse on a daily basis.  Having been diagnosed with obsessive-compulsive disorder, social anxiety disorder and general anxiety disorder this is the least of my problems in fact I just did it five minutes ago and of course I logged all the numbers into my computer.   Yesterday was the first day since September 21st that I was on my feet and moving around for an extended period of time.   It’s both amazing and embarrassing at the things I took for granted. So many people showed concern for me and for that I am drastically humbled and forever grateful.  I have been given a second chance and I plan on delivering on my promise to make a difference.  We all face struggles on a daily basis.  Some days are better than others but I don’t think God gives us anything we can’t handle or is without reason and purpose.  Thank you for taking the time to read this.  I truly believe that what happened to me has a purpose.  You reading this blog entry is part of my spiritual mission.  Thank you for your time, concern, understanding and support.  Enjoy the rest of your day.

I was raised Catholic so Easter was kind of big deal to me as a kid but there are so many things that didn’t make sense to me then and they surely don’t now.  It started on Good Friday when my mother would make me come inside the house between 1-3PM because “that is the time Jesus died.”  With leap years and Daylight Savings Time over the past two thousand years shouldn’t Good Friday actually be before Valentines Day?  How does sitting downstairs silently for two hours on a sunny Friday afternoon give me a higher place in heaven?  I don’t think the secret to everlasting life can be found being quiet and lazy.

Easter Sunday was a big deal.  This is the day that Jesus rose from the dead.  I would think that if this occurred today it would be the main topic on CNN and they would call in Wolf Blitzer for a special Sunday edition of “The Situation Room.”   I can even see Nancy Grace yelling at Jesus, “C’mon!  Do REALLY expect me to believe that you moved that rock all by yourself!!!!!!!

So we have this wonderful man who was without sin and died on the cross for all of us so we can have everlasting life and the way we show our thanks is by hiding hard-boiled eggs inside our house?  I sure hope the Cadbury family is giving thanks to Jesus because he made them millionaires.  What’s with the bunny?  I mean seriously…the Easter Bunny is one step below a clown on my creep-o-meter.  I remember watching rabbits appear at dusk in my backyard as a kid and I would NEVER be able to get within 20 yards of them.  The Easter Bunny is so tall he could play point guard on most NBA teams, he walks on two feet, doesn’t hop, and he likes to hug and shake hands.  Something is not making sense here.  Try bringing the Easter bunny to church with ya one day and see how quickly the cops show up.   Instead of gnawing on a leg of lamb you and your bunny friend will be in a rubber room weaving baskets out of cooked spaghetti.

I hope you and your family have a Happy Easter….that’s all for now…I think the tooth fairy is at my door.