calling all Zen… by Art~

(the day the earth stood still)

I was at my friends/ co-worker’s, yesterday. The Sergent and I were putting in wood floors in his house. My brother dropped by to say bye. He had been here, visiting, from upper New York state. My brother was all smiles as usual, a positive energy that radiates. I was glad to have the opportunity to visit with him since he lives so far away, I haven’t seen him in years.

My brother took off and I went back to laying out the floor. A few hours later (5-6), I got a call from my mother. She said, ‘my brother had a heart attack and was in a really bad auto accident.’ (I froze) when you are told something like this it just doesn’t seem real, but the truth is… it is! (like a stone, buried on the beach. You may not be able to see it, but it is there.) They said he had a heart attack while driving, he tired to pull over and passed out, his foot may have slipped from the brake to the accelerator and his car went flipping off into the woods, totaling the car. The hospital had no way of knowing who to call for all his possessions were in the car, he ‘came-to’ long enough to give them my mother’s phone number.

My Mother and her husband, went to the Hospital that was about a couple hours away. I sat in total disbelief and shock. I had to draw on all the zen, wisdom, sayings, enlightenment I could recall. (“It is what it is”… one of my favorite sayings, was not acceptable). My mother told me, ‘he knows she is there for he woke for a moment and squeezed her hand.’

“Those who fail to prepare – prepare to fail,” I failed, I was not prepared for this situation. My brother is younger than me and to think of him having a heart attack was hard to swallow. They put to “stints” in his heart where they say he had 90 percent blockage. I always knew my brother had a broken heart because his life’s love, died of cancer. He fell apart and amazingly enough pulled himself up to where he now counsels those with drug addiction and runs a half-way house for those who are released from jail and have to go through the steps/meetings and probation/parole.

My mother called when she reached the hospital and told me his heart was fixed but the problem now was that he needed hip replacement and the hospital he is at can’t do this…? So they are shipping him to another hospital. His arm is broke, his face is riddled with lacerations and both eyes swollen shut. My step-father said it looked as though his nose was torn off and put back on. (This was the day, I felt the earth stand still)

I went through the phases, (felt each one) sadness,  anger, rage, self absorbed, praying, and a whirl wind of thought. I recall all the moments we were together. My brother and I grew up in a rough neighborhood, we fought side by side just to make it home from school. We fought each other (some of the toughest fights I’ve been in was with my brother and against my brother. We come from a long line of scrappers (tough nuts) Indian blood. I posted somewhere in this blog … how my mother was raised on an Indian reservation in New Mexico ( Cometh the wild ). I felt that this was another fight my brother is in and I was not there to help him. I was not there to help him when he had the accident, all the emotions of helplessness.

My little/ big brother (he is younger yet bigger) it is always a feeling the older sibling has to protect the younger sibling.

I called on all the zen quotes and stories to help me deal with the feelings I was having and nothing took the pain away in my heart. I was testing my zen and it failed. The power of human thought and emotions are some of the strongest obstacles we will ever encounter. Where had all my wisdom gone? Swallowed in one big lump in my throat. Stuck there and couldn’t get in to go away.

I called his girls, told them what had happened and they rushed to the hospital where he was being sent. I know when he wakes from surgery and see’s them it will be some comfort. I woke this morning and called to see how he was and they told me they are worried he may have bleeding in the brain. I thought he was pass the critical point only to find he is still fighting for his life. Human emotions… has the ability to knock you to your knees with out a physical blow.

I have often reflected on the saying that religion/ god, is like electricity, you can’t see it but you use it, you pay for it, but you can never see it. I have been raised christian, I like zen, but I’m not a buddist, yet I like the way the religion is structured. What god do you call on. ( Four blind men and an elephant ) Does God have a plan, ( the ant ) I know my brother, Alan, has done good and bad in his life (as we all have) and lately has done great things for so many so I know he will be welcomed in heaven if he doesn’t pull through. ( Butter and Stones ) but I haven’t accepted the fact he could pass away, I know he is a fighter and will pull through (the power of positive thinking).

I am calling on all my zen, and wisdom quotes to help me deal with this, to help my family deal with this and most of all to help my brother the best that I can. I am feeling powerless, helpless, and saddened, emotions that I am struggling with… the day the earth stood still.

bows (~_~) helpless


may you tell those you love, how you feel, for they may not be here tomorrow.