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Healers of the surf and seven spirits cancer can’t handle in the dream of life: the world of never ending sequels of me

June 15, 2012


I was paddling in the ocean to get my strength back. I’d make twenty paddlers then push myself up on my board. Twenty paddles again then push myself up on the board. I was sitting on my board next to The General, a 67 years old guy who has surfed for years.

“When I was going through chemo I found there were two people inside me. There was the body and there was this other guy who–”

“You have seven spirits insider you,” he said, pointing to his face. “There is smell, taste, sight. hearing…”

“That’s right, but I had only two,” I said, but then I thought how I was overwhelmed by chemo and could smell coffee but not taste it, how I would see a world outside of me that I couldn’t be a part of, food I couldn’t taste while I watched other people drink and eat snacks or meals and smile, the sound of the birds and the waves. Then I said, “Yeah, they were there.”

“Those spirits heal you, and they are in you,” said The General as we floated in the ocean. “A lot of people were never taught to find them Some of therm need Jesus to do it. But that’s only one. I saw this TV sbhow and these elephants came upon bones of another elephant, and they carried them in their trunks. They knew. I cried. There are people who don’t have that.” He pointed to the horde of beginners or whatever they were at another break dropping in on each other. “They don’t get it. I had someone take off behind me, and I couldn’t cut back.”

“Yeah, I know. All they hear is the change in your pocket and they want you to by them lunch. I saw one of those nature specials and this lion had a zebra in his mouth, and the creature was still alive, and he was chewing it, and the lion’s eyes were flat, soulless, not reflective. And there are a lot of people like that–they get everything from the outside in, not from the inside out. I mean you can be successful and make money and be nice, but most all they can do is name-drop, talk about their stuff, where they went on vacation, and if you white all that out, all the stuff, there’s nothing ab out them, they’re just a blank white sheet of paper. When I was going through chemo I didn’t think just about me, I thought of other’s pain. When I’d see a kid in a wheelchair, and there I was, sitting in the lounge, weak, in pain, unable to taste anything, and I cried seeing that kid knowing that was how he was experiencing his childhood. It just tore me up.” I paused. “I try to ignore all these people in the water. I tell Deriveway Dave who talks to everybody,’You’re making me say hello to people I’m not sure I want to get to now.”

“Dave talks to everyone because he has a good heart,. But those people are using him to take from us.”

“Yeah, they act friendly on the beach but if your back is turned they’ll steal your wallet, but I don’t care. I’m not going to let those people stop me from getting out in the ocean and being with my friends. It’s like getting caught up in traffic and forgetting where you’re going. If you get mad at them you forgot who you are, you fell in their trap, you got away from yourself.”

The General said, “You know I’m glad I’m out here now. Before I was all mad because this girl ruined my wave, and she knew better but did it anyway. A women in the surf don’t pay the dues we pay. Not the dues we pay.”

I paddled into shore. Terry Arnaud, a buddy of mine said, “Do you need help carrying your baord up the steps?”

I still have these wobbling chemo legs and my feet still tingle and feel half numb so I said, “Yeah I do.”

Terry carried my board up the three flights of concrete steps from the beach. I hobbled behind him.

I drove away with my board on my car, looking at the world I returned to, a world I could taste and smell and see and live in and I felt released and driver and smiled, the world and imaghes opening up to me as I plowed through it. A world I watched from the outside in, and there was, within the painting, doing brush strokes within it, powered by my friends and those spirits, and I said all the images went by me, “Life is a dream.” I thought about it. And why did I feel that way. Becuase I was lying on a gurnmey, going to an operation, and knowing the switch could be turned off and the whole movie could end, and tears streaked down my face because I didfn’t really feel I was going to die, something was pulsating within me that was beyond but within me, waiting to burst out. I was back out again. The benefactor of a catch and release programm, lookiung all all the people and I felt I knew them all. “Yeah, it’s a dream allright, and it ends when you finally go to sleep. I’m living the dream.” And the tears come to me again and my voice cracks and falters.But I’m smiling, remember how I paddled for a wave and felt for the first time I had enough strength in my legs, but I gave the wave to The General instead. But I was going to be able to surf the dream again.

I listen to the Beach Boys song, “Forever,” and do my little in the seat, jubilant happy dance.

“I’m back, I’ back,” I say, my lips quivers as tears of inspiration reform in my eyes. Humbled, I say to the spirits, “I’ m back. Thank you. I want to stay. Let me stay, let me stay.”

Let the others be their karmic reruns. I love the sequels of me!

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Bob Hackl permalink
    June 16, 2012 5:24 am

    Great picture Fred, you’re looking stronger and your spirit is amazing. Keep on keeping on, see you in the water.

  2. Laureen permalink
    June 18, 2012 5:23 pm

    So nice to re enter our world, isn’t it ? And to have great friends there to help when we need it, even if it’s tough to ask for help at times….. I too, am making an exception to my ‘if you’re gonna ride it, you’re gonna carry it’ rule,cause I’m just not able to yet :). But one day soon, I will have to have a chat with Jimmy about ‘paying dues’ clawing my way up the ladder ‘into the line up 40 years ago before the hoardes of Blue Crush wannabes hit the water ! But , you know , it’s all good 🙂 Keep on..keepin on! PS, Sue Stone was asking about you and sends her Love 🙂 L

  3. Linda Walton permalink
    June 19, 2012 6:33 am

    Beautiful . …Thanks Fred.

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