Sunday, March 15, 2009

Slow Down, Mike!

If I’ve heard that above phrase one time in the last 40 years, I’ve heard it a thousand times!

“Slow down, Mike!”

For 40 years, my answer has been: “I’ve only got one speed!”

I think I was born fast. I’ll bet Mom’s labor lasted only 10 minutes.

I’m being facetious, of course. I don’t know how long Mother’s labor lasted, but, I CAN tell you that once I was here, I WAS RUNNING!

I don’t TRY to walk fast - or talk fast - or think fast - or write fast. It’s just natural. In fact, when I write on the computer (as right now), I write so fast, that my fingers get jumbled, and I have to “back space” to remove the misplaced letters.

I suppose I should be analyzed (Ha! You thought so, didn’t you?) to see what’s wrong with me. I don’t know what makes me walk so fast.

For years, Jean would say, “Slow down, Dad.” “I’ve only got one speed”, I’d answer. I guess Jean wasn’t a slow walker, but generally, when she COULD walk, it was more slowly than I. I tried to adjust my pace with hers. Later, when pushing her in the wheel chair, she would say “Don‘t walk so fast, Myron!” I’d then TRY to slow down.

When John was trying to show me various things on the computer (he’s a whiz at computers), he’d always say, “Be careful, Dad. Slow down so you don’t make mistakes.”

I’d try to, but my mind works faster than my fingers even, and I just have to “get it all out”.

I think I mentioned on a previous posting that I’ve moved back into the Assisted Living Facility in Springfield - The Grand Court. Jean and I spent 2 years here before we had to move in with John and Tonya, to help with her care. Since Jean went to heaven last October, I’ve now moved back to The Grand Court.

Though not everyone here is “old”, the average age, I’m told, is 85. I know of at least 2 men here in their 90’s. That means that there has to be someone under 80 here to “average out” to 85. Some are here due to physical impairment, rather than old age. One I know of, is not older than 52.

And, since I’ve been back, I regularly hear the phrases “Slow down”; or “Don’t walk so fast”; or “Where’s the fire, Mike?”; or, “Look at him go!”, etc. I always answer, “I’ve only got one speed!”

For many of the 34 years I ministered at WEEC, our facility was in a two story house. My office was on the second floor. At SHARATHON time, I would travel up and down those stairs 50 times a day. “Look out! Here comes Mike!” I guess I did “run”, rather than “walk” at least “down” the stairs. It was just natural. Why waste time “moseying”, when “rushing” will get you there faster?

I also talk fast. Often, I jumble the words and not speak distinctly, because I’m going too fast. That, from a guy who SPECIALIZES in requiring good diction. Can’t help it.

In the Army, I don’t recall walking so fast. I just “went with the flow” of the march, keeping pace with “Hut,two, three, four; Hut, two three, four.”, etc. But, in getting ready for chow, I was there early.

Like I mentioned some time back about getting to the High School football game last year, early. I was so early, that the visiting team hadn’t even come out yet to warm up. I just put the iPod pieces in my ears, and listened to music.

While at WEEC, Jean and I spent many of our Sunday mornings visiting one of the area churches, representing the station to the listeners. If we were going to a church out of town (most times we did), and especially if I hadn’t been there before, we left early. We’d get to the church maybe 45 minutes to an hour early. I knew then just where the church was and how to get there. We COULD go for a cup of coffee if we wanted to, and be right back at the church “on time”.

I don’t see this “speediness” as a virtue that I should brag about. In fact, if everyone didn’t tell me to slow down, I probably wouldn’t even have mentioned it. I’m just responding.

Since many in this facility are on “walkers”, or “wheel chairs”, I don’t want to “rub it in” by walking fast, but it’s just natural for me to walk fast, and I can’t help it. I pass them up walking down the hallways to lunch. I suppose some might be offended. I hope not. At least, no one has said so to me.

I’m actually thankful for my physical stamina, and don’t “take it lightly”. I realize that “some day”, I’ll be using a walker, or a wheel chair, or even be “pushed” in a chair - if I don’t die first. I don’t take my good health for granted. I’m VERY thankful for whatever good health I have, or will have.

Praise the Lord!

“Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof” Matt. 6:34

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