Death and Birth January 27, 2007Posted by Ben in : Baby, Musings , add a comment
Yesterday my grandmother passed away (my mom’s mom). She had battled cancer for many years, and underwent chemotherapy treatments for a long time. Chermotherapy is just plain evil. It’s poison that’s meant to kill cancer cells. The problem is that it doesn’t target cancer cells, so it affects your entire body. It’s very painful, and it’s hard to watch someone undergo the treatments.
Several weeks ago, the doctors decided that chemotherapy wasn’t helping, and so the decision was made to stop treatments. When this conversation occurs, the inevitable is apparent: there’s not much more time. My mom has been making frequent trips to south Georgia, and yesterday, my dad, brother, sister, and nephew made the trip down to see my grandmother. Things were not looking good for her, so we all knew it was time to visit. Unfortunately, I was unable to go. Liz’s due date is Feb 2nd, which means the baby could come at any moment, and I have to be here.
Then, yesterday evening, while close family gathered round, my grandmother passed away. My sister called me at the very moment it occurred at 9:08pm. I was grateful for that because I was able to feel a little bit like I was part of the experience, but, still, I’ve not really been able to deal with it emotionally like I know I would if I were with my family.
Now, as one member of my family passes on, so, too, another member enters the world. Our baby could be born at any minute, and the death of one family member and the birth of another makes me think about how life is a sort of cycle with the older generation passing its knowledge and lessons learned on the next, giving them the charge of this world and it’s burdens, good and bad. While my grandmother is gone, I look forward to introducing my child to his/her grandfather and to my paternal grandparents, as well. I also plan to talk to them a bit more often and let them know I love them.
Not all those who wander are lost January 25, 2007Posted by Ben in : Musings , add a comment
My cousin reminded me of this poem from The Fellowship of the Ring. It’s a poem by Bilbo, and he bursts out into it during the Council of Elrond. It’s about a character in the book (Strider/Aragorn), but I think it can also lend some inspiration to anyone who’s looking for magic / the fantastic / joy in the daily mundane but unable to find it.
All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by frost.
From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken:
The crownless again shall be king.
Two Ways to Achieve World Peace December 12, 2006Posted by Ben in : Musings , add a comment
Just a quick note to share a thought that’s been going through my mind a lot lately . . .
When I was growing up, there was a lot of talk of trying to achieve the ever-elusive “World Peace,” but I haven’t heard the phrase “world peace” in a long while. Maybe I’m just not listening for it. Nevertheless, I think world peace is within our grasp, and, as I see it, there are two ways to achieve it:
- Kill everyone who does not share your same values, culture, ideology, and worldview. Then, all that are left are those who agree with you (or who are too scared to disagree). Instant peace!
- This is the more difficult way, but I think it could be possible. Everyone in the world must agree (by social contract) to tolerate those with conflicting values, cultures, and ideologies. They do not have to accept these conflicting beliefs. They do not have to regard them as valid. They can continue to disagree with them whole-heartedly, but the difference is that they must accept without precondition the humans who hold these beliefs. We don’t have to live in harmony, just in peace. This isn’t something that can be accomplished through a treaty between governments; it must be a conscious decision on the part of every member of the human race.
So, call me an idealist, but I’m also a realist, too. The latter is the preferred approach, but how do we achieve it? Well, we kill off all the adults and raise the babies to be tolerant of others.
That, or we instill in our own children a desire for peace, and we tackle this problem through the slow, laborious process of raising one generation at a time to be better than the previous at solving problems and resolving conflict. Is there any hope for the human race, or are we, at heart, destined to remain creatures of conflict with a desire for power?
Last Day and a New Beginning August 13, 2004Posted by Ben in : Job, Musings , comments closed
Today felt like one of those great fall days—the ones where you would get out of school to find the leaves changing color, the crisp, fresh air meeting your face as the windows on the school bus were all down. The spring and autumn times of the year are filled with great memories for me. For some reason, I vividly remember good times in high school and college during these times of year. I know it has something to do with the weather, but I can’t quite put my finger on what it is.
The only problem with today is that it isn’t fall. No, it’s August, usually the hottest month in Georgia, but today was an exception. Today felt like fall.
Today was also exceptional because it marked a new, drastic change in my life. It was my last day at EUREKA! Interactive, Inc..
I’ve worked at Eureka for just over four years. When I think about that, I think, Well, that’s the same length of time I was in high school and nearly the same length of time I spent in college. So, it seems to me that a period of four years is sort of a natural grouping. We have leap years every four years, the summer and winter Olympics occur every four years, and presidential elections are held every four years. So, now that my four years at Eureka have come to an end, it’s only natural for me to move on to something different.
I sit here at my desk waiting for a CD to finish burning. Once it’s done, I’m out the door. I’ve already turned in my keys, so I can’t lock the deadbolt, and I hope that someone from the lawyers’ offices downstairs hasn’t locked the deadbolt to the outside door, or I’ll have to crawl through the window to leave.
It’s an odd feeling being the last to leave and this being my last day. In a sense, it’s like just any other day. However, the folks here at the office did something uniquely different for an employee that’s on his way out. They threw sort of an office party for me, which was a nice and unexpected gesture. In addition, they gave me a book and a gift card to Barnes & Noble, also quite unexpected.
These things and more make leaving hard, but, for me, it’s time to take on different challenges and new responsiblities, and that is ultimately why I am leaving.
So, now I’ve passed the time, and the CD has just finished burning, and I now walk out the door for the last time as an employee of Eureka Interactive.