Corroborate

Corroborate: (v) to make more certain; confirm

There are those final moments at the end of a heated argument when two or more people stare at each other, exhausted from trying to outwit one another, realizing that life needs to go on, yet all the debaters are suspicious of exactly how that could happen.funny wisdom on words that begin with a C

Human beings are the most fragile, yet indestructible, organisms ever conceived.

We can have our bodies shot with radiation to kill cancer.

People have fallen out of fifteen-story windows, landed on cement and survived.

Yet one foolish accusation or ill-placed assumption can render us emotionally paralyzed, unable to continue without years of therapy or medication.

What is it that causes us to believe that disagreements, which are plentiful, are somehow or another insurmountable?

There may be only one thing that aids the survival of the human race: a single action placed at just the right time after we have failed, cursed, stumbled, lied, cheated, argued and even threatened violence. It is the stillness which often comes over the soul and allows a moment of heartfelt reflection.

At this juncture we realize that the best way to confirm what we hope, what we are or what we believe is to stop fussing and go out and find a way to corroborate it.

  • Cease wishing; begin to work.
  • Stop praying and instead, produce.
  • And fail without becoming a failure.Donate Button

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Convalescing

Convalescing: (v) to recover health and strength after illness

If you will allow me, I will outline the process:

  1. I am sick.

I am not just “under the weather.” I am not “fighting off something.” I am not struggling with allergies.

  1. I am prepared to receive assistance.

Having used up my favorite rabbit’s foot and gone through the Internet to try several homeopathic methods, I am not prepared to do what is necessary to get 
well.

  1. I will understand and honor the procedure.

Even though there are many medications for a cold and the flu, the old adage, “3 days coming, 3 days with you and 3 days leaving” is pretty much on point. The goal is to try to even those nine days out, into one common, more tolerable passage of misery.

  1. I will start doing things that keep me well, and begin convalescing toward better health in the future.

A friend of mine was diagnosed with lung cancer. He wanted prayer to be healed. I saw nothing wrong with that, so I joined in agreement. Three days later, when nothing got better, I walked into his room and he was smoking cigarettes again. I said, “What the hell?”

He replied, “The damage is already done. Might as well enjoy my exit.”

If you’re not ready for your exit, start convalescing by treating your ailments for what they are, and then find ways, through good health, good eating and good attitudes, to scare them away.

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Colon

Colon: (n) large intestine or large bowel

Talk about “it’s a dirty job but somebody’s gotta do it.”

How’d you like to be a colon?

“What’s your job, Mr. Colon?”

“My entire function is to take the shit to the hole.”

I’ve had two colonoscopies in my life. That’s where they go into your intestine with a camera to make sure that it’s ooey-gooey and doing its job. They want to confirm that you don’t have cancer or polyps, which are possible precursors of the disease.

The first time I had a colonoscopy I went into the hospital feeling really bad. A beautiful young woman from China was my doctor. She was so sweet–but I knew
she thought I had cancer. It’s not that I believed I was free of the affliction, but I saw no particularly good reason to etch my tombstone until I had more information.

So they prepared me for the whole process.

The day before the event they brought in a gallon of fluid and told me to drink all of it in as short amount of time as possible. The drink loosens the bowels and empties everything inside–or at least, everything that is willing to be dislodged.

I was faithful. I pooped until my poop looked like water. (And that is a little weird.)

Well, long story short, she went in with her camera and found out there was no cancer and gave me a clean bill of health.

What I remember most about that experience is the legitimate joy on her face when she came to tell me I was alright. It was so intimate, tender and childlike that I teared up and cried.

Was I crying over her gentleness, or was it releasing tension I didn’t know I had about the possible diagnosis?

I don’t know. But it was beautiful.

So every time I go to the bathroom–well, nearly every time–I think about my colon and how patient it is to do its job.

And I also think about someone who was a complete stranger to me–a doctor–who possessed such empathy that she took a moment of grace and the memory of it will last for my whole lifetime.

 

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Cobalt

Cobalt: (n) the chemical element of atomic number 27, a hard silvery-white magnetic metal.

My dad decided to die when I was sixteen years old.

He had planned it for nearly thirty years.

As a cigarette smoker who actually bought tobacco in the can and “rolled his own,” he had pretty well determined the end of his story long before he’d lived out all the plot lines.

I was one of the plot lines.

Before I found out that he had terminal lung cancer which had spread to his brain, there was a brief, three-month period when he became warmer, more tender–wanting some closeness with me.

Unfortunately, by that time I had created so much distance there was no way for me to transport myself to his side–even when I discovered he was dying.

They sat down and explained it to me, pointing out that he would be going through radiation treatments, which involved cobalt. He did.

Yet he barely survived the only cure they had available. When he returned home, he could barely walk and had trouble breathing. His skin was red like he had a deep sunburn, and he smelled like the trash we burned in the back yard.

Being around him just scared the hell out of me.

Everyone wanted me to turn into the devoted son who held the hand of his ailing father up to death’s door.

I just couldn’t do it.

Even when his breathing became so heavy that I could hear it through the walls while sitting on our porch stoop, I couldn’t bring myself to tell him that I loved him or even be present when the last gasp escaped his being.

This is my memory of cobalt.

It was used in the early years of radiation treatment, and left the patient nearly vacant of the resources to think and move.

As I sit here today, I can wish that I had been a better son and he a better father.

But that is because I have an older mind, and sometimes find it difficult to regain the fury involved in being sixteen.

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Bust

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Bust: there are many definitions, but everybody always thinks about breasts.

“Mixed company.”

It was a phrase I heard when I was a kid–always in reference to what you were able to talk about.

In other words, if the room were filled with men, certain subjects were available. Yet if one single woman appeared, the topic–especially the approach–had to be changed.

I completely understand this.

People have certainly learned it’s not good to do jokes about Mohammed in front of the Muslims. They don’t have a sense of humor on the subject.

Even though you may want to come off as relaxed when visiting your friend in the hospital, referring to cancer as the “Big C” is probably not the best selection.

And many men and women are quite uncomfortable discussing female breasts.

This is confirmed by how carefully we avoid using the word “boobs.” Yet even women call them boobs. Most ladies don’t particularly favor tits, but there are so many names for them that it would be impossible for me to go into the full extent of the vocabulary in this brief essay.

So even though the word “bust” is a generally acceptable term for, as we say, mixed company, it is not very good for romantic encounters. In the heat and passion of seduction, stopping to say “bust” might even tamp down the moment.

Now, I don’t know exactly what you can garner from my little observations, except to know that since America seemingly is in the midst of an emotional migraine–where people are pained by everything–it might be better just to avoid using any term whatsoever … and point.

 

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Bronze

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Bronze: (v) to make a person or part of the body suntanned.

I’ve often missed out on conventional wisdom because I could not afford to go to the convention.

So I frequently found myself going against the common thread of understanding and sewing up my own solutions.Dictionary B

On one such occasion, I scheduled our music group to perform in Miami, Florida, in the month of July.

Nobody does that.

Miami becomes a glowing hot rock, to be avoided by any living creature which does not wish to swelter. But our group wasn’t that popular–we were certainly never going to be able to be in Miami in January.

So we went in July.

It was very reasonably priced (since nobody was there) and really no hotter than the rest of the country, which was also experiencing summer.

But my achievement during those two weeks was something I had never experienced before and haven’t since. For you see, I worked up the courage to put on a pair of shorts, go shirtless, and walk around the beach until my skin turned bronze.

God, I loved it.

At night, I stood in front of the mirror and stared at my brown hide, realizing that I had never before enjoyed my body–because it was the color of pewter.

I was bronzed.

I wasn’t intimidated to step along the sidewalks near the ocean in my cutoff blue jeans and just act like I was one of the locals.

In the midst of those two weeks, a friend of mine debuted her new book and invited me to come to Nashville, Tennessee, for the signing. When I arrived I was the talk of the town.

“Where’d you get that tan?”

“Must be nice to lay on the beach all day long…”

Never in my life had I felt physically valuable to the world around me.

  • Spiritually–yes.
  • Emotionally–certainly.
  • Creatively–I hope so.

But for the first time, my “bronze” covered up some of my obesity, puffiness and, shall we say, “whitey-white-white.”

Now, I know you’re not supposed to get too much sun. I know there’s a danger of cancer.

But I am so grateful that on at least one occasion in my life, I got to walk around, for a little while… as a bronze Greek god.

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Broach

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Broach: (v) to raise a sensitive or difficult subject for discussion

All cancers are birthed and thrive in a climate of silence and indifference.Dictionary B

If there were an awareness, every soul would be on the lookout for such a killer. But for some reason, it becomes more important to maintain the illusion of good health than to actually confirm it.

So it is with our society.

Because we possess an irrational fear of being found without merit, or even weakened by vice, we fail to discuss the things in life that would make us stronger, wiser and more valuable.

We don’t know how to broach the subject.

It leaves us startled, insisting that a tragedy has beset us … one that was actually well-planned through the rigorous efforts of our dumbstruck apathy.

 

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Bout

Bout: (n) a short period of intense activity of a specified kind

Everything can’t be a struggle.Dictionary B

There are certain people I’m acquainted with who spend most of their time sighing or frowning over the simple task set before them.

They know these responsibilities are coming.

They are familiar with them.

But for some reason or another, they think it makes them more adult to be cranky.

But somewhere along the line, we have to produce some joy–otherwise we have no strength. The absence of strength is the introduction of anemic effort.

Not everything is a “bout:”

  • You don’t have a bout of doing the laundry.
  • It is not a bout of cooking dinner.
  • Buying Christmas presents should not be a bout.

But we can probably agree that calling it a bout with cancer is in order.

Maybe even a bout with insomnia.

I will give you a bout with diarrhea.

The actual way that we show our maturity is by proving that the journey we’ve been on has given us some skill to approach our difficulties … without a grimace.

 

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Body Clock

Body clock: (n) a person’s or animal’s biological clock.

Dictionary B

I try not to think about it very often for fear of becoming a whack job.

For you see, considering one’s own mortality is a drippy, sappy journey into sentimentality which often leaves tears in one’s eyes, considering how miserable the world will be without us.

Still, we’re all dealing with a body clock.

The little girl who dies of cancer when she’s eight years old should have had an opportunity to know that she was going through middle age at four.

Yet how weird would we become if we had any inkling of the actual time of our demise? In other words, if death did not surprise us, how much life could we muster before dissolving into a heap of self-pity?

Fortunately for us, there are certain points of awareness when we realize we have lost a step, can’t move so well or think that most street signs are now written in Mandarin.

We get that little nudge from life that we have less time remaining than what we’ve already used.

It is a merciful motivator to muster the magic.

Because if we don’t start the magic soon … we will run out of opportunities to show off our tricks.

 

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Biopsy

Biopsy: (n) an examination of tissue removed from a living body

Dictionary B

I got sick.

I mean, really sick.

There are so many times that we are convinced that we are ill or have contracted some mysterious disease, or contend that we are presently “under the weather” that we fail to recognize what it means to be in trouble.

The body is a great megaphone of its own condition.

In other words, when you’re ailing, every single part of your anatomy sends a memo, an email, and even tweets, “Danger.”

There’s little doubt.

I found myself in the hospital under the care of a lovely female doctor from China. She was beautiful in all ways. We immediately struck a chord of friendship, even though by cultural standards we had little in common. For some reason, she liked me, and I certainly appreciated and loved her for her soul and gifts.

She scheduled a series of tests. I could tell by her demeanor that she was worried that I had cancer and that we had caught it too late.

I will never forget lying on my hospital bed the night before my colonoscopy, alone in the dim lights with a few machines whirring and tweaking in the background.

It was just me…and me.

I thought about my own death.

I thought about dying soon.

I realized that to a barbarian fighting in Gaul in 32 B. C. that my death was insignificant, whether it happened next week or forty years from now. After all, what’s forty years to a Gaelic barbarian who’s been dead for over 2,000?

Of a certainty I was going to die. The question was, which ailment, disease, condition or speeding bus was going to perform the task?

Gradually, peace settled into my soul. It was a peace accompanied by an unexpected comedic, jovial sense of well-being.

For certainly, unless an angel of God was going to enter my bowels and produce a miracle overnight, what was in me was soon going to be made evident–and all I had left was the class and style that I could muster, to deal with the biopsy.

As it turned out, there was no problem and my young doctor came bouncing into the room with tears in her eyes, speaking half English and half Chinese, which I translated as “all is well.”

Yes, my friend, all is well until all isn’t well.

Between those two stations lies the possibility for some beautiful living.

 

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