Chapter 35 – January 31, 2012

January 31, 2012

Hey everybody.  Hey happy New Year. It was the Chinese new year this week. Year of the Dragon. Sounds good doesn’t it.  Let’s make it a good one.
I started the week in a good way.  I went to another eye doctor.  It was a big day for me because my parents drove me into the city.  I had lunch with my parents in the city and then we went to the eye doctor.  This whole procedure takes a lot out of me.  It’s like running a marathon, but well worth it.  The eye doctor was really positive and informative.  I’m really messed up, but I believe they can help me.  It’s good to always get a second opinion, another point of view.  It made me feel good which is really important.
As well as good news, I’m constantly surrounded by negative energy.  It’s good to take all of this negative energy, flip it around and do something with it.  That’s why I have my projects, like driving across America, this blog, my show coming up, and my book I’m working on.  Just a few things.  It’s good to stay busy.  And stay positive.
I have a funny story I’d like to share with you.  I have a mental health nurse come by once a week.  She checks up on me, so anyway, I said to her, I’m really sad, and she said, why are you sad?  And I said, Ive got no one to talk to, my parents, I talk to my friends, my therapist.  But I have no one to talk to.  I even talk to the dog and he’s started talking back.  And I started crying, and it was a joke and she thought I was serious.  She started looking at me like she wanted to medicate me.  Never a dull moment.  We worked it out.  She’s actually really cool, and does help me.
This reminds me of another moment I thought was funny.  I get flashbacks once in a while and at one point in my surgery, #2 brain surgery, I was lying on the operating table and before they put me under, I glanced over at another table.  It was covered with a cloth, but the corner was exposed.  The surgeon looked like he had stopped by Home Depot.  I was like, “What’s all that for?”  He was like, “Excuse me?” And I said, “What are you going to do exactly?” And he said, “Exactly?” And I said, “Yeah exactly.”  And he said, “Well, we drill a hole into your spine, drain all the fluid out of your spine and relax the brain.  And then we operate.”  I said, “Oh, o.k., and by the way, good luck with that.”  And then they put me under.
Anyway, let’s make it a short one this week.  That’s all for this week everyone.  All of you out there that have been helping me out, thank you so much.  It means a lot to me.  And it helps me get through all this bullshit.  Like I said before, this is the toughest thing I’ve ever done, so thanks again for helping out.  Love, B. Nice.  See you next week

Chapter 34 – January 24, 2012

Hi everybody.  Hey, check it out. It was my birthday last week. It was a small party with the people I grew up with. My sister hosted the party at her house. It was a great day. Any little thing like this to brighten your life, when you’re like this. It was a great day.
It’s strange. I have flashbacks to the past three years. It all blends together. Little things come to mind like the emergency room visit, living in the hospital for 5 months, therapy, etc. It all blends together. The first operation, the second operation. I never feel like I’m getting better, but I am. It’s slow. I’ve been doing a video journal to keep track of my progress. It’s very helpful. I highly recommend it. You’ll have advancements and you’ll have setbacks. I recently had a slight setback due to stress. You wouldn’t believe my personal life. It’s like something out of Hollywood. Let me take that back. You couldn’t even make this shit up. It’s like I said before, my life is like a bad country song. Hey, remember, if you play a country song backwards, you’ll get your house back, your dog back, your truck back, your woman back, your job back.  You’ll get everything back. Somethings I don’t want back, but we won’t go into that.
I just got back from therapy this morning, and it was really good.  Once a week, right now, I do water therapy in a warm pool.  It’s great.  I can walk and run. It’s really cool. I did it after the first operation. Now I’ll be getting used to it again. It’s really helpful. I get so tired though. Oh man. You can’t believe how exhausting it is. Just the simplest things make me so tired. For example: my therapists want me to get on the floor with help from my mom and an assistant. I’ll do this, but it’s tough to lie on your stomach. You realize how vulnerable you are and how far you have to go.
My friend who is typing this, I’ve asked her to help me with my next project. She said she’d help me type what I need. You see, when you’re like this, you have to do what you love and I love photography. When I was an athlete, I ran across America. That was 1979. I plan on going back across America on the same route with a car and a trailer. I’ll photograph landscapes as I go, and I’ll do a small documentary film. I need to get funding though. Like a grant or a fund from a large corporation. It would be good advertising for them. So anyway, my friend here is going to help me write a letter that I’ll send out. I’ll probably build a website for the project. Another thing to keep me busy. Oh yeah, and when it’s all done, I’ll make a book of the journey. You see, books will become valuable. Coffee table books. Everything is on the iPad or technology similar, but a tangible book that doesn’t cost a lot will be special. I can see it. So I plan on doing books. That’s my vision anyway.
Oh yeah, my father and mother bought me a machine that helps me walk. It’s really great, very simple, but it will help me walk. I’ll use it at home. It teaches you how to walk again. It helps you get better. I’m very lucky. Thanks Mom & Dad.  Remember, never forget how lucky you are. I’m at that stage where I look at people and I get very envious watching them just walk or pick something up or eat. I wish I could do that. I can’t even sit up right now. Ha, ha, and at lunch, I kind of fight with my fork. I manage to stab myself in the face a few times before I got the food. Never a dull moment.
Let’s end on a positive note:  I did sit up in therapy and managed to put on a shoe. A little thing like that will make your week.  Amazing. Remember, small victories, they all add up.  See you next week.  B. Nice

Chapter 33 – January 17, 2012

Hi everyone.  Well, I said this before, but I’ll say it again.  I really believe my whole life has gotten me ready for this moment in my life. You see, I had a very full and interesting life. My parents took me out of school.  I traveled around the world.  I lived in Australia, Paris, New York City.  I built my dream house upon the cliff of Montauk in front of where I surfed.  I ran across America. I held several track records. I’ve survived plane accidents, car accidents.  I was hunted by warriors in New Guinea.  I was married twice. I got divorced twice. That was worse than the warriors, heh. I was a fashion photographer, traveled the world, met some really interesting people, etc., etc.  I could go on and on.  The point is, this all got me ready for here and now.  This is the toughest thing I’ve ever had to go through, and I think I’ve made it so far because of how I grew up. Anyway, that’s my thought for the week.  My profound thought.
So to give you an update:  I had some auras that are a warning to a seizure, so they increased my seizure medicine.  It’s just a slight adjustment, but anytime you change your medication, you feel it.  I’m also on antibiotics because of a bad cold I got.  All this new medicine makes me feel weird, not to mention the cold.  It’s been another tough week, but what are you gonna do. Huh? Just suck it up and keep going forward.  Remember, one day at a time.
I’ve been thinking, you see, you tend to do a lot of thinking when you sit around on the porch or by the fire.  I’ve been thinking that it’s really important to look after each other.  Right now, my parents look after me.  It’s important because one day will come when they will need someone to look after them.  You have to take care of each other.  Very important.  Then, the other thing I thought was, I think they should have nothing but good news on TV.  I’m just so sick of watching bad news.  Can you imagine, if we turn on the TV and see puppies and kittens, backlit in a field of clover and flowers, nice music.  You get the idea. Good news. I remember, I was photographing a very famous news anchor and he seemed really sad as he looked at his laptop.  I said, what’s wrong, you seem so sad.  He said, Oh, it’s a bad day for news.”  And I was like, what do you mean.  What happened?  And he said, “Nothing happened.  That’s the point.  Nothing bad happened.”  What a drag to think like that all the time.  So negative.  So remember, stay positive.
Oh, I just saw the space where I’m due to have a photographic show.  It’s a nice gallery.  Good light.  I’m really looking forward to putting the show together.  It’s really important to have something to look forward to.  It keeps your mind occupied. Something to think about, other than therapy. The other good news was my friend who’s an electrical engineer came by.  We picked out a hybrid car to buy and a trailer.  He’ll come with me on the trip across America.  I’m trying to get a grant to fund the whole project.  It would be good advertising for someone.  Anyone out there know somebody?  Just a thought.  Hey you never know. Just had to ask. I’m going to do it either way.
One thing I’d like to say is that Music has been so important for me.  When I have some down time, I listen to my music.  I’ve been lucky enough to keep my hearing.  I got really depressed the other day because there’s still a lot of things I can’t do and I was really sad, but my mom reminded me when you’re sad, think about the things you can do, and I thought that’s a really good idea.  You see, I can reason, I can think, I can move my hands, my feet, I’m getting better.  I can now feed myself.  It continues to get better and when I started thinking about the small things I can do, like swallow liquid, very simple things, but I get really happy.  So don’t think about things you can’t do.  Think about the things you can do and it’ll make you happy.  I never realized how lucky I was.  I did some amazing things like windsurfing in Hawaii in the open ocean.  Nothing like it.  Total freedom.  I’ll be back there one day.
See you guys next week.  B. Nice

Chapter 32 – January 3, 2012

Happy New Year everybody! It’s a new year and I’m going to think positive and self
image a good year. Anyway, check this out. Imagine me, lying in bed trying to pee in
a bottle. Imagine me trying to keep my dog away. Imagine me with the worst cold you
can imagine. Basically, I’m a mess right now. Now imagine this, imagine my ex calling
to speak with my little one. My ex happens to be in the Caribbean having champagne,
taking in the sun with my ex’s new love interest. Who said life is fair? Anyway, you
gotta have a laugh. Talk about extremes.

The past few weeks have been kind of tough. They changed up my therapy, and I
got a wicked cold. You see, any time I get a cold or flu or anything like that, I feel it
tenfold more because of my condition. Basically, I feel like hell, and then, my little one
arrived to see me. And my little one is sick as well. Man, I can’t catch a break. I need a
vacation. I would always complain about it before, but I miss my work trips. We used to
work in places like Hawaii, St. Barts, etc. Not a bad way to make a living.

I’m going to go off on a tangent here. Are you a climber? Do you climb faces? Cliffs?
Breathing is so important. Don’t panic. You see, right now, my friend who’s typing
this is seeing my diaphragm panicking and going crazy. It’s hard to breathe. It’s hard
to relax. I keep coughing. Can’t stop. My diaphragm is spassing out. It’s a very
uncomfortable feeling. You have no control. The only real way to relax is to meditate. I
feel like the past three years I have been doing meditation. They’re quick ones, but they
get me through what I have to get through. Surfing has always helped me. You see, in
surfing, you live in the moment. You have to to make the ride.

It seems my coughing has calmed down, so I’ll continue. I’ll talk about therapy
again. I mentioned before, in my last blog, they discontinued my physical therapy and
occupational therapy. I didn’t know what to do. My mom looked around for me and
there was nothing as good as what I got. I made a decision to join the wellness center at
my hospital and I will continue with my swim program. They know me at my hospital.
So it’s good to stay where they know me. They also have a rapid response team if you
get real sick, so you’re taken care of right away. The other places I looked at, they might
find you a week later. I’ll continue on my own and I’ll get better and go back to my
physical and occupational therapy.

Oh, I forgot to tell everyone, I’m going to get a car, a trailer and an assistant, and go
across America, taking photographs. It will be a continuation of what I’m working
on now. I photograph the world as I see it. It’s pretty funky. It’ll be a great project.
And hopefully, I’ll have a show when I’m done. Who knows, it might even turn into
something big. I’ve got some ideas. You tend to get good ideas when you’re lying on
your back and thinking for three years.

I’d like to remind everyone what’s really important in my life, at least what I’ve found
to be important. I guess you could say, this is my profound thought of the week. When
you see family, it’s so important. Family is so important. It’s what really matters. My

family has helped me get through this. And they help me get better. It’s really the only
thing I can rely on at the moment, and I’m talking about immediate family. If you don’t
have this in your life, the next best thing is a good friend or friends. Anyway, it’s just my
point of view. Happy New Year everybody. Let’s make it a good one.