Thursday, April 30, 2009


I’m in the mood to ramble so I’ve decided to write it down. Or type it. Whatever.

This week has been very difficult for me. Yeah, I have no intention of going into it again. Even I’m bored with the recitation. But, I’ve been trying to grasp it all.

Now, I have the sin of pride. I know that. I’ve committed it so many times I should have a giant P monogrammed on my shirts just to mark the mortal sin. And I’ve confessed it so many times that my contrition sits on my lips more often than a woman’s kiss. So. I know my failed and my faulted.

Yet I also know that I’m a wise man. When I have a problem, I find comfort in the fact that if I consider my options - I’ll arrive at a resolution. I have assurance of that. When presented with my friends’ problems I say, “Give me a moment to think about it.” I’m confident that I can find a livable solution. And I do. I find the livable solution to our problems. That’s not conceit. It’s concrete. It’s the foundation of my confidence and my camaraderie. My friends count on it too.

When I was diagnosed with diabetes - once the antibiotics saved my life and I was out of immediate physical danger - I thought out my consequences and I made my plans. I've lost weight. I've quit my three pack a day smoking habit. And I've changed my life. I've altered my life with such extremity that my physicians asked me to teach my methods so that others could follow my furrowed path.

Tuesday I learned that I cannot and will not avoid the consequences of my past behavior. And I can’t grasp the fact that I can’t think myself out of this. I sit inert and aghast. I can’t comprehend my inability to enact change. Now this sounds arrogant. I get that. But it was my secret weapon and my hidden comfort. I knew that I knew. I knew I was gifted. I've titled my blog The Obligation of Enlightenment.

I had a beer with a buddy tonight. We shared a bullshit and he mentioned my blog. I picked up my phone and typed his comment verbatim: “Mark, your title The Obligation of Enlightenment is ballsy man. Just ballsy.” And I replied, “Yeah.”

So I have the balls. You can’t choose that title without them. I know the answers. But see, I know this answer too. I did the math. This time I can’t think myself out of it. Not this time. So, I’m sad. I’m brokenhearted.

An old friend of mine called me today. I looked down and smiled at his name. I answered his call. And when he asked me how I was, I replied.

And he said, “Oh well, this isn’t a fun conversation!”

I silently swallowed my sorrow. I can’t be fun right now.

I’ve lost so many things. I just keep putting my palms into my pockets and pulling out the linted linings. My gift is gone. The loss is like a cavity in my mouth. I keep running my tongue in the groove because I can’t fathom the missing.

He thinks he’s missing my joy but he’s missing my pain. I’m not angry with my friend. It’s not his fault. I’ve cast myself in the part of the merriment. I’ve assumed the role of mischief maker. In our past, I’ve played my part. But now that part of me is apart from me. So I can’t take part.

I just can’t right now. I can’t.

Because you see, for the first time in my life - I can’t.