Tag Archives: family

I actually died IN the hospital this time…

So, here’s the story.

I wasn’t sleeping well the few days leading up to Easter Sunday. That’s not all that abnormal. Sometime I get busy at night and I have a strict 4am wake up policy (however depending on duration I may sleep an extra hour, or if I can’t squeeze more than an hour or two in I may skip it all together). I know, it’s not normal.

So, I was getting about 1.5-2 hrs of sleep Friday and Saturday night, and Sunday I was back up pressure washing the GRASS at dawn … because I fell asleep while I was pressure washing the patio.

Apparently I was acting a bit out of sorts, and when our Easter celebration was over I was encouraged (told) to go to the hospital. Apparently people could see things that I could not. I remember showering, leaving, arriving in the ER on Sunday Night…

then waking up with a tube in my throat on Tuesday morning…

I have not a clue how this happened or why. Apparently they had me on various types of breathing apparatuses and when I was alone in a room, I simply stopped breathing (Monday morning) and was emergency intubated which is worse than a planned one because I have some serious bleeding in my throat and lungs…. part of the deal I guess. The reason I stopped breathing was yet again my Co2 levels in my blood/brain were so high that my brain turned my lungs off.

Like the first (Feb 22) episode and unlike the second (April 4) episode, I actually have a touch of pneumonia in my left lung.

So what is going on?

Lots of theories, lots of questions, no concrete answers, and I’m afraid to die in front of my children.

Some theories are Chiari Malformation, which was found in an MRI. Apparently very common and usually asymptomatic. Repeated MRIs showed that this is most likely not the cause, and the Neurosurgeon and her team feel comfortable this is not the issue.

Another theory is Central Sleep Apnea, but evidence is lacking at this time. And another working theory is that I may have a it of daytime sleepiness (narcolepsy) which causes my sleep/wake cycle to be off and can cause central apnea among other things. This would explain alot since I do have a habit of falling asleep anywhere at anytime, even in the car. These two theories are from Team Pulmonology.

I’m not afraid to die at all, my Creator has that all worked out. I just don’t want my kids to see it happen. That’s not okay.

But I must put my trust in God because the alternative is unspeakable and truly nihilistic.

I ask for two things…share this far and wide so we can possibly find some workable theories, and comment below if you have any ideas…

Also, I ask for your prayers. Whether you pray or not, I ask that you suck it up, speak to my God in whom I place all trust, and ask him to proceed with his will, whatever that may be.

That’s pretty much what I have for now.

Please and thank you, share, share, share… pray, pray, pray… and pray for my dog also…

God Bless!!

-Andrew

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Simon Sinek on Millenials in the Workplace (~15 minutes; less time than it takes to scroll your feed(s)).

This brief video is better described as:

“Digital Dilemma,” “Digital Dementia,” or “Piss Poor Parenting/Preparation.”

As parents we need to be more engaged with our kids as they navigate through early life, adolescence, and young adulthood.

I see too many 12 year olds, 10 year olds (mine previously included), even as young as 6 years old having cell phones or iPads. Listen to this video, and identify yourself, your friends and family, and your kids in his talk.

How many of you are guilty of being on your phone when your kid is trying to get your attention, then getting angry because they are interrupting your game, or post, or mindless scrolling?

Me. I’m guilty. As a matter of fact, I’m guilty of everything that I wrote in this…advice piece…rant….whatever. I’ll call it an enlightening article.

We have to pull these phones back. They have watches that allow kids to call a set amount of pre-programmed numbers, and you can track your kids via GOS on them. No messages. No social media. No addictive dopamine kicks throughout the day, which then cause terrible crashed, withdrawal, and depression later.

I propose that kids have no digital device (social media, texts) until they are at least 16 years old, and even that may be too early.

And stop giving your kids everything they ask for. If they didn’t earn it, then they don’t give it.

And seriously, what kid needs a smartphone? It’s barely necessary for most adults to own.

Watch the video… on your device…then put your devices up because your kids probably want your TIME.

www.youtube.com/watch

Simon

Example from video’s implications of negative effects:

A ‘friend’s’ kid went to the doctor recently and was prescribed an antidepressant. From a 30 minute office visit, from a physician…and no diagnosis. I advised the ‘friend’ to disregard this hack’s prescription, find a new doctor, and maybe try to spend less time on their own devices and more time with the kid. Like Simon says in the video, when our phone is siting in close proximity when someone (in this case our kid) is trying to interact, we are sending a signal that they aren’t important, or at least as important as the strangers on our social media pages.

Feeling Stuck, Unhappy, or Unsatisfied? Unfulfilled?

You don’t have to stay there. There’s hope…if you seek it.

Most people are afraid of change, yet everything (including YOU…AND ME) is in a constant state of flux (change).

People are afraid to take risks or ‘take a leap of faith,’ because people fear uncertainty…and more often than not fear of rejection is a contributing factor. What will my friends think? What would my Dad say? What are people going to say about these extravagant dreams/goals?

SIMPLE ANSWER: Who cares what other people think…

When you start chasing those seemingly outlandish life-long dreams, people will come out of the woodwork to try to convince you how crazy that is or why it’s a bad idea. SHUT THAT SHIT OUT. Go with your passion, visualize the end goal, and work your ass off everyday to get there. Never stop, never quit, and never take NO for an answer. If you fail, change your strategy and do it again. And again. And again.

Shut those toxic naysayers out of your life. Friends? Bye. Spouse? Sorry, Bye. Family….yep…Bye.

You’ll quickly find out who has your best interests in mind. And that process won’t be pretty, but in the end it will have been worth it.

Someone said (Jim Carrey?) that “you can easily fail at what you don’t want in life, so why not go after what you do want?” Failure is part of the process. Don’t be afraid of failure, that’s how we learn and grow.

And for crying out loud, stop comparing yourself to other people, and start comparing yourself to an earlier version of yourself. (Jordan Peterson, Rule #4 in his book “12 rules for life: An anecdote for chaos). All rules listed below.

WATCH THIS ~5 MIN VIDEO BY JOE ROGAN

www.youtube.com/watch

LINK TO Dr. Peterson’s BOOK HERE

12 RULES FROM BOOK:

Peterson’s 12 rules

Rule 1 Stand up straight with your shoulders back

Rule 2 Treat yourself like you would someone you are responsible for helping

Rule 3 Make friends with people who want the best for you

Rule 4 Compare yourself with who you were yesterday, not with who someone else is today

Rule 5 Do not let your children do anything that makes you dislike them

Rule 6 Set your house in perfect order before you criticise the world

Rule 7 Pursue what is meaningful (not what is expedient)

Rule 8 Tell the truth – or, at least, don’t lie

Rule 9 Assume that the person you are listening to might know something you don’t

Rule 10 Be precise in your speech

Rule 11 Do not bother children when they are skate-boarding

Rule 12 Pet a cat when you encounter one on the street

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THANKS FOR READING!!

Until next time.

Andrew

Either you control your day, or your day controls you…

What’s it going to be?

www.youtube.com/watch

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Goals

Well, after reviewing my self-proclaimed ‘epic’ advice blog post about goal setting…I realize there is very little actual information about how to actually set the goals rather than just the importance of having them.

I will write a shorter, more digestible blogpost later today with some practical steps/advice on how to set goals that will be productive rather than destructive. I’ll also explain the importance and difference between 1st level, 2nd level, and 3rd level goals (short-term, mid-term, and long-term goals, respectively).

Prioritizing within these levels is also important, and developing and implementing an action plan is just as important as setting the goal(s). You can’t have one without the other. Well you can…but you won’t end up where you want to be.

More on this later….get your workout in!

As soon as I’m healed, I’ll be joining you. I had my workers (family/friends/spouse/kids) finish my workout space/office…and I can’t wait to use it.

And here it is!

Patiently (impatiently) waiting for my body to heal…meanwhile…Shakeology!!

The Benefits of Cold Showers (AKA…Scottish or James Bond Showers)

Tony Robbins is standing in front of an 18 degree plunge pool which he jumps into every morning.
Tony Robbins and one of his Cold Water Plunge Pools (sign says 18 degrees…wow)

The first time that I heard anything about cold showers, I was young. And it was spoken about on an old sitcom called ‘Seinfeld.’ One of the characters, Kramer, liked to take cold showers, and one of hid friends suggested that cold showers were for psychopaths or psychotics…one of those. So, that’s what I’ve thought about it my whole life…until about a month ago. And since then, cold showers have changed my game in many ways.

There are many touted health benefits to cold water immersion. Tony Robbins has a Plunge Pool that is set at ~56°F that he jumps into every morning. He does not not have an internal discussion about it, because his brain would win every time. He doesn’t give himself the option, he simply does it because he decided to. That is discipline.

I know what you’re thinking, ‘why would anyone want to do that to themselves?’ Well, I’ll discuss several reasons why it’s awesome, as well as giving examples of ‘professionals’ and ‘celebrities’ that engage(d) in cold water immersion therapy (cold showers). 

There are several different methods employed that fall into this seemingly bizarre practice. One is complete immersion in cold water, instantaneously; this is how Tony Robbins does it in his pool. Charles Darwin (depression) and athletes like Lebron James and Kobe Bryant (health, muscle recovery) immerse themselves in large [tubs] of cold water, Henry David Thoreau (writer) jumped into an extremely cold lake to treat his depression, Australian model Miranda Kerr took cold showers because of the benefits to her skin and hair, famous actress Katharine Hepburn loved cold showers for health benefits and great skin, and of course….I have been doing it for several weeks now and I can’t even describe the changes that I….oh, yes I can…but first…the science. 

NYC-based dermatologist Whitney Bowe, MD, is an advocate for cold water immersion, though she does recommend tepid water (room temp) over frigid temps. “Hot water disrupts the skin’s natural oils, removing its natural ability to ward off dryness and irritants,” says Dr. Bowe. “Lukewarm water is much more gentle on the skin.” It can even help to tighten pores and reduce inflammation, including under-eye puffiness. If lukewarm water can do that, then what about COLD water (mid-winter Michigan well water)?  Cold shower therapy is recommended by many medical professionals to patients with depression and anxiety as a naturopathic approach to mood improvement. Research has shown that lowering the brain’s temperature with cold exposure has “neuroprotective and therapeutic effects,” activating the brain’s release of norepinephrine, the adrenal hormone that helps people with depression to feel more “up,” naturally. Pretty cool—and even if you don’t struggle with depression, the cold exposure can work as a great mood-lifter for winter blues, and can help with weight loss and hunger cravings. Also, Wim Hof (the Ice Man) has been talking about the positive effects of cold exposure therapy on the brain, aging, skin, and immunological effectiveness of the body. He says it is the answer to most of society’s mental and physical health issues. 

And now about my experience… 

It’s no secret to those who know me or who have read some of my other writings that I have suffered (and currently still occasionally suffer) from anxiety, major depression, and bouts of mania. I also have (more than one type/cause of) PTSD, and many areas of early onset osteoarthritis, surgical bone deformities and painful scarring, and I have chronic pain, asthma, ADHD, and sleep apnea. I began waking up early in the morning (4AM) at the beginning of this year to create more time for meditation, self-care, workouts, and school work while the family slept. I now wake up earlier than that because I read that Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson gets up at 4AM, so I get up at 0330-0345. This new wake-up time has done amazing things with my productivity and time-management. But it contributed to emotional strain, stress, and early afternoon fatigue. 

Well, I started taking cold showers about the first week of February of this year, after having watched Wim Hof on You Tube discuss the benefits. I researched his claims, and they were backed by a significant amount of research over decades…so I began. I started with the hot to cold method, slowly lowering the temperature throughout the shower until it was fairly cold for the last couple of minutes. This week, I went all in and ran a shower with straight from the frozen Michigan earth water. It was an experience, that’s for sure. But what has it done for me? Well, I can’t rule out the probability that the improvements are psychosomatic or correlated with other factors….but anecdotally I have noticed a dramatic increase in energy, motivation, mental clarity…decreased anxiety, depression, and mood swings…and much better sleep. I’ve also been having better and faster thoughts and ideas, and have really been able to begin multiple projects that I have been putting off. My dandruff has almost disappeared, I’m still dropping weight (I also workout and drink Shakeology everyday), and I consume less than half of the amount of caffeine (coffee) throughout the day than I did prior to this new habit. Hair, skin, and nails seems to be healthier, less allergic response to the animals in the house. Again, many factors to consider, but there has been a very dramatic shift in these areas. 

If you’re doubtful but curious, try it for yourself. Research it, here. Do it every day for a month, come back here, and comment your thoughts and experiences with it. 

Do you think this is something worth trying, given all of the reported positive health effects? Or would you rather stick to your hot showers?  

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Thanks for reading, 

Andrew

Thoughts on Parenting Pt. 1

I think, at least for those of us with kids, or that had kids, or that work with kids…that they can be SO DIFFICULT!!

They are little sponges….and they’re super intelligent. They’ll remember something you said or did 4 years ago and bring it up in an argument…literally rendering your point moot. But they can never remember where they put that other shoe. Mommy and Daddy always “take ONE SHOE” and hide it to make her upset (so I’ve heard…).

I’m raising three beautiful and smart daughters, and I have no idea what I’m doing. There was no manual that popped out with the kids during childbirth (trust me, I grabbed a tool and checked…:) ) I don’t know if there is a perfect way to raise kids, and I’m sure there are a million ways to mess it up. But what I am sure of is that if I show them love and respect, along with discipline and consistency, they will have a fighting chance.

They do have my attitude and stubbornness, and they are more intelligent than I give them credit for sometimes. But I love them, love them, love them…No lack of hugs and verbal affection in our household. I think that’s important. I also know that our communication needs improvement, because if they can’t open up to me then they’ll open up to someone like me (when I was a teenager)…and this is not what we want at all.

We are a work in progress…which is where I think most of us are in our parenting journey. Of course it can’t be a universal and static process….every person is different. And there are plenty of confounding variables outside of the family system, especially through media, that really mess with some of the core values and beliefs that we (I) try to instill in them.

Older picture of me at my heaviest…just over a year into recovery and cranking out mad classes to graduate.

I love my babies….and I wouldn’t give them up for anything. But I’m also not having anymore biological children…snip,snip,snip…. But we may foster or adopt at some pointy when my educational journey has come to an end….

Thanks for reading….Please share some of your parenting tips, tricks, and complaints below!

**Please pardon any typos…I am going to start writing my posts in MS Word so I can regulate the grammar and spelling more efficiently.

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Thanks