This morning started off on a sad note. I received news that my friend, Alan Adams died last Wednesday in the hospital. Alan, like me, had Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy, a disease that has taken away so many people. This news rudely slapped me in the face with my own mortality, and has increased my wish for a cure. It also shows that you must take every day as it comes and to enjoy life; because you never know when that bell will toll for you.
I met Alan, five years ago, on the internet in the group DMD Pioneers. We would chat on Yahoo Messenger, or talk via the internet. Sometimes we would play on-line games as we talked. Often, we invited a fellow DMDer, Jeff Petrie to join us in the fun. I never met Alan in person, since he lived in Pennsylvania. He was humble, kind, good-natured, and had a love of life. I always enjoyed talking with him, and he was glad to talk to me. My thoughts go out to his family on this day that he was laid to rest. It was great to have known you, my friend. You will be missed.
Friday, July 17, 2009
Last Saturday, July 11 was my forty-first birthday party. This year, I decided to keep it small, and simple. I just invited close friends and immediate family. It was a low-keyed affair. We hung out around the pool at my parent's and my house, socializing and having a good time. My best friend Alex painted a portrait of me with oil paints in twenty minutes (check out his blog post about the portrait). It provided an interesting diversion as my guests watched the portrait take shape. The final product was very good.
As I sat there visiting with my friends and enjoying the day, I felt blessed to have the friends and family that I have. Everyone truly enjoyed spending the afternoon in celebration of another birthday. Sometimes the simplest celebrations are the most enjoyable. My fortieth birthday party was so wonderful that there was no way it could be surpassed. Everyone still has fond memories of that day. In homage to last year's celebration, the cake was decorated with butterflies (a reference to the release of monarch butterflies at last year's celebration), and said Happy 1st Anniversary of Your 40th Birthday. Towards the end of the party, my niece, Dallas sang a song for me from the swimming pool (an interesting choice of venue). That was very thoughtful of her and a special touch to end off an enjoyable afternoon. A nice day spent with my family and friends is the best present I can ever receive. Everybody left the party in good spirits. A sign of another wonderful party.
Thursday, July 09, 2009
Today I am forty-one. For most people forty-one is just another birthday, but to me every birthday is a milestone. When I was first diagnosed with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy around the age of six, the doctors didn't expect me to live past my mid-teens. Thankfully, they have been proven wrong. So, every birthday for me is a celebration of life. Here's to life!
Monday, July 06, 2009
The annual Fourth of July parade in Rancho Santa Fe is always a nice way to celebrate the holiday. This year was no exception. It seemed like the whole Ranch was there. The community really gets into the spirit of the day. There were many people in red white and blue lining the sidewalks on either side of the main street, Paseo Delicias. Many people were also waving flags as the procession moved along. The singing of the National Anthem was the signal for the parade to start. As is customary, the procession was led by the Marine Corps color guard, then the fire engines of the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Department with sirens blaring rolled through. After was the procession of classic cars, tractors, children on decorated bicycles and other modes of transportation, and people riding horses. My niece and nephews took part in the parade. My nephew, Stetson was with his Cub Scout troop riding a skateboard. In some of the cars were some of our politicians: our Congressman, Brian Bilbray; Assemblyman Martin Garrick; County Supervisor, Bill Horn; and the new Sheriff of San Diego County, Bill Gore. After the parade everyone gathered on the village green for food and music by an orchestra playing patriotic music and other American Standards. It was a nice way to spend the afternoon. The whole event has a small town feel to it, and brings the community together. Events like this remind me why this is a great community to live in.
In the evening, my sister and brother-in-law came over with my niece and nephews for a nice dinner outside on the sun deck. After that, I watched the annual Fourth of July concert from Washington, D.C. Since I wasn't able to go see fireworks, it was nice to see the fireworks over Washington, D.C. on television. It is not the Fourth of July without fireworks.