Early Monday Morning, April 15, 2012:
Here I sit, reasonably close to the highest spot in all of Houston, near Willowbrook Mall, waiting for the bus to take me on the next stage of my journey to Old Town Spring to have lunch, my treat, with a longtime friend and fellow cat blogger who I will meet for the first time.
As I gaze down the street, looking for the bus, I am also gazing toward a hoped for creative, prosperous and very long life to come, my head almost as smooth as my bottom once was on that glorious March 5 day, in 1960, when Pomona Valley Hospital ushered me into this world.
Thursday, and on April 23rd, I will have eye cancer surgery, at MD Anderson, dealing a heavy blow to the latest and, hopefully, last of several physical issues that have tested my faith, my confidence and my physical strength since spring 2010.
Neither seizure, broken ankle, or left and right eye issues have dampened my sense of humor, my pride in my creative abilities, my confidence in relocating to Houston, my ability to ride a bike, nor my determination to find work and build a platform and future for myself as a writer and even speaker.
I read in the Sunday Houston Chronicle about Kobe Bryant, of the Lakers; and his reaction on Facebook to his torn Achilles heel, suffered in a recent game…
“Why the hell did this happen? Makes no damn sense. Now I’m supposed to come back from this and be the same player, or better, at 35? How in the world am I supposed to do that? Maybe this is how my book ends. Maybe Father Time has defeated me.”
Those words, you wrote, on Facebook are the words of a frustrated 35 yr. old multi-millionaire who can’t see, through all his pain, that this is not the end of the world but maybe the start of a new, rewarding, next chapter in his life.
God knows why it happened and it makes perfect sense to Him. Don’t ask how; just find the will and a way to DO.
If you can’t return to playing basketball that doesn’t mean your “book” has ended, instead it means that you have been given an opportunity to begin the next chapter of your life.
I am 53 yrs. old, sir, unemployed since Sept. 2010. Since spring 2010 I’ve had 2 seizures, suffered a broken ankle, had a Vitrectomy done to fix a recent issue in my left eye and am about to have Brachy Radiation Surgery to take care of a recently discovered cancer in my right eye.
That’s 3 eye surgeries since moving to Houston, last September, to re-start my job, personal and creative lives in fresh new ways.
I refuse to let my medical issues get me down, or define who I am. I can manage those issues with confidence, trust me. While no-one has hired me, yet, I have done many new things, as a writer, since arriving in Houston and have slowly built a confidence in my ability to do more.
Kobe, you end your little Facebook pity party by following those first two maybe’s with a third, more defiant, one:
“Then again maybe not.”
Now THAT is a sign of the Kobe I was a fan of your entire career with the Lakers, the one I cheered on from the Inland Empire and Orange County.
If Kevin McHale, coach of the Houston Rockets, can find the strength and determination to move on from his playing career, after a devastating injury, then, if that is what is meant to be for you, you can, too.
Mr. Kiril "The Mad Houstonian" Kundurazieff