This Blog is about COPD…..

17 Nov

Folks when I write, I don’t write about cancer or kidney failure or tumors, or many other diseases, because I don’t have any real personal knowledge of them, I write about COPD because that is the evil I know, but even then I am not an expert, I don’t have all the right technical words, and I can’t quote the best meds.  But I can and do write from the heart.  You can argue about any factual claim I make, because I am not an expert, I am just someone who suffers from this disease. But what I do try to do is write for the folks that can’t or won’t.  I am sure a lot of folks out there would like to be able to open up they’re soul and just yak about it, but have better sense than I do.  There are tons of folks sicker than I am, further along than I am that could add volumes to what I have to say.  And I wish they would, I would read every word.  But I also know there are folks out there that have just been diagnosed, that don’t have a clue as to what is in store. And hopefully this helps.  Yes parts are negative but much is positive.   To them I can’t stress enough to get a doctor you trust, get a doctor you trust, get a doctor you trust and if necessary change your lifestyle to something that will best serve you in the future.   You don’t have to make monumental changes slight changes can help you greatly.

In June 2012 I started this blog as a means for me to talk about the disease that was claiming my life.  I wanted to spread the word, I wanted to talk about COPD, I wanted to share my feeling, and what I was physically feeling.  In addition I wanted to talk about things that folks with terminal diseases usually don’t want to talk about, I wanted to share the emotional ups and downs of being terminally ill.  For the first 20 or so posts I had remained true to that mission.  Now in November 2013, I have posted 187 times. The significant portion of these posts don’t even mention COPD, they don’t tell the reader I have COPD, and if the reader doesn’t read any of the “How I feel today” posts the reader wouldn’t even know I was ill, hell if all you read were how I feel today, you would go “that’s not so bad” why is he bitching.

Let me take a moment to refresh you on what COPD is… A non-clinical description would be that the lungs are made up of thousands of little pockets that capture the oxygen from the air we breathe.  These little pockets then transfer the oxygen from the air we breathe into the blood and everything is good.  But these same pockets in a sufferer of COPD, begin to fill with crap, the more crap, the less air, the less air, the sufferer has shortness of breath, and an inability to complete tasks and life functions as they had in the pass.  This gets progressively worst.  When the pockets become filled they die, and can’t process the air into oxygen for our blood. As the disease continues there are less and less pockets to make this transfer. With each infection, with each exacerbation, more and more of these pockets become filled with crap and no longer function. There are a limited number of pockets available, the body doesn’t regenerate them, once they are gone, their gone!  And as you can see, the more of these pockets that die off, one’s ability to breathe declines.

Here is a more clinical definition of COPD…. Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) is an umbrella term for a group of respiratory tract diseases that is characterized by airflow obstruction or limitation. It can be caused by tobacco smoking, coal dust, and a wide variety of other stimuli.  Individual can also be pre-disposed to having COPD, without ever smoking or living with a smoker. COPD is also known as CORD, COAD, COLD which respectively stand for chronic obstructive respiratory, airways, or lung disease. COPD has been referred to as CAL which stands for chronic airway limitation. COPD is a progressive disease. Obstructive changes in spirometry and decreases in diffusion capacity are typically seen before symptoms occur. Early signs and symptoms are shortness of breath on exertion, recurrent respiratory infections or a morning cough. As the disease continues, the symptoms are seen with increased frequency and severity. In the late stages, the patient often experiences severe cough, constant wheezing, and shortness of breath with minimal exertion or rest. At this late stage, progression to respiratory failure and death is common. It used to be thought that progression is typically caused by the patient’s continued exposure to tobacco smoke, but that simply isn’t true,  once you have the disease it progresses, changes in behavior, in exercise, in eating habit, can all slow the progression, but the disease will continue. Although medications often decrease symptoms, it is not believed that they prevent the progression.

From time to time a person suffering from COPD will have an exacerbation, which in its’ simplest terms is a flare up of the disease.  Sometimes these exacerbations are given the label “pneumonia”, and can put the individual into the hospital.  Sometimes the exacerbation is such, that the individual is not hospitalized but treated at home with an intense drug therapy. One of the benchmarks for an exacerbation is when specific antibiotics and/or oral corticosteroids are prescribed to combat the illness, or if hospitalization is required.   LOL in the clinical information I studied to create the above; one of the statements I read said no new exacerbation can start before the end of an existing exacerbation.  To me this is a real DUH !!! moment, and strikes me in my funny bone every time I see it. Also something that struck me funny is that according to the stuff I read no exacerbation is over until the doctor says so.  Clearly these are 2 “that ain’t no shit” statements.  I guess its doctors putting on their lawyer hats. Apparently frequent exacerbations are those that happen more than 2 times in a year.

I have just spent the last 300 or more words defining COPD and Exacerbations, and what it does to the body.  But I haven’t said a single word on what the disease does to the human.

I haven’t talked at all about physical limitations; the need to sometimes stretch one’s neck out to feel they can eat, or having to take smaller bites, and allowing that food to clear the passage way before the next bite. I haven’t spoken about having to grab a counter top to get from one side of a room to the other side.  I haven’t spoken about how difficult it is sometimes to take a shower.  I haven’t talked about how it severely hinders one’s sex life. I haven’t talked about getting dizzy walking to the mailbox and back without the supplemental oxygen. Nor have I spoke to the thousands of other things COPD makes it almost impossible to do, the keyword is almost.  But I will try in this post (well not all of the impossible things), but thru out this post I will add specifics to the short list above.  Also I haven’t spoken about the stress it puts on a relationship, or how COPD plays games with and in your head.  But I will try in this post.

I have used this example in the past, and it still is the most representative of how difficult it is to breath with COPD.  Take a small straw (a coffee stirrer) cut it in half and put each half in one of your nostrils, close your mouth and breathe thru the straws.  Heck, get a regular size straw for that matter and try that, if you’re using a regular straw that is approximately how an individual in the early stages of COPD feels, every second, every minute, every hour, every day, 24/7/365.  If you found a smaller straw, that’s how it is for me generally, but I will admit to having good days, and some not so good days.

If you catch COPD early with a great Doctor, a great diet and a great exercise program, and you watch everything you touch, you can keep COPD at bay for a long time.  And by at bay I really mean you can extend your time without a lot of lifestyle changes.  If you lucky, something other than COPD will kill you first. But folks, I have never heard of anyone dying of old age that had COPD.  I am not making light of COPD or dying, I am not trying to make jokes about it.  I have caught hell from other COPD sufferers for being so outspoken, or maybe flippant about the terminal nature of the disease.  For not being a Pollyanna, but folks the truth is COPD IS TERMINAL, it is the 3rd leading cause of death in the US, and soon will be the leading cause of death in this country.

That folks in the nutshell is the physical aspect of the disease.

But let’s not forget, COPD gets into an individual’s head.  It does so the moment the doctor says, “You have COPD and it is terminal”.  I remember the 1st time I heard it, my wife and I were at my pulmonary Doctor’s office.  We had the last appointment of the day.  Steph came with me to hear 1st hand what the doctor had to say.  In my case Doc Lungs said “Bill, you have COPD, in your condition you have a 50/50 chance to live 3 to 5 years.”  I don’t remember the date, but I remember those words clearly. We asked all the right questions, what can we do to get the max amount of time, what drugs are available, can I get a lung transplant, what will happen if I change my diet, and lose a bunch of weight, and on and on.  Doc Lungs answered each question in depth, and he didn’t sugar coat the answers, which I appreciated greatly, Steph was in tears for a part of the appointment, but she paid close attention to Doc Lungs, took notes, and left the appointment bound and determined.  Folks that appointment was 6 years ago, I have changed my diet somewhat, I have exercised somewhat, I have lost some weight somewhat, and it has all helped.  Because I am still here and earlier this year Doc Lungs again said I had a 50 pct chance to make it another 3 to 5 years.  He is doing the best he can and I know it, that’s why I take his word on face value, and move on.  I have never look at a calendar and said there’s my end date.  Each year I buy a calendar 4 months before the old one expires.  And let me say I like calendars that expire before me.

But for 6 years the debilitating effects of COPD have had their impact, on my body and my head.  Six years ago I played golf every week sometimes 4 or 5 rounds in a week, I played poorly but I played, I can’t play anymore, and trust me I have tried.  During my heyday, I could drive the ball 240 + yards regularly, when I stopped playing I could hit a 3 wood maybe 135 yds, I didn’t have a club in the bag that I could carry 140 yards. When I 1st went on oxygen, I could play a shot without supplemental oxygen, I could walk 30 or 40 yards to the green, stand around putt, and walk back with the group.  Before I stopped I tried dragging my portable concentrator to the green but that extra 13 lbs got to me.  I stopped having fun, so earlier this year I gave up my golf clubs (they had sat unused for 2 years).  Up until this season, I have bowled in a winter league for the last 25 years.  I gave it up this season.  When I go grocery shopping the 1st thing I look for is a cart to put my oxygen machine it, because it is easier to push a cart than pull the 13 pound portable oxygen concentrator.  Imagine when you bend over to tie your shoes you become out of breath.  Walking 40 yards without the supplemental oxygen leaves you breathless, almost to the point of hyperventilating.  The simple act of peeling a pound of shrimp makes you physically stop to gather yourself.  Carrying the grocery’s from the car to the kitchen, makes you stop and pant for a minute to gather yourself. But these are physical acts, if you have COPD you learn to adjust. You learn to give yourself more time; you learn to accept the help of the grocery store in loading the car.   You ensure that you have something in your path to grab onto if you become real short of breath.  The physical limitations as tough as they are, if you have COPD you learn to adjust to them.  You don’t have to stop making love, but you do adjust for your condition. You can go to the grocery store, but take your time, and don’t try and carry 9 bags at the same time.  Have a cart handy to help you move stuff.  Check with neighbors to see whose teens some extra spending money.  There isn’t a single thing I can’t do today that I could do 6 years ago.  Some things I have made a conscious decision to stop doing, but if I were willing I could.  And I believe that includes golf.  The disease forces you to change habits and to recognize limitations.  But it doesn’t keep you from life. But folks as hard as it is to adjust to the physical limitations, and these change constantly as well, it is the mental adjustment one has to make which is so much more difficult, in my opinion.

I don’t and I won’t be sexist about this because COPD is not gender specific, it kicks males and females alike, equally hard.  But being a guy I am clearly more comfortable talking about it from the guy perspective. Mentally it kicks me in the balls! It robes me of manhood. It makes me think less of myself.  It embarrasses me; it makes me feel less manly. Folks, I hide my condition to the best of my ability. I truly do, and only a select few know just how hard it is for me.  Thank God I have an outgoing personality that allows me to use words and smiles and stupid ham tricks to build and maintain a positive image.  But folks I am constantly embarrassed by the need to use the handicapped parking, I have a roll-a-bout which I only use if I have to walk any distance over 50 yards without support, and using it embarrasses me, it makes me feel years older than I am.  I think less of myself for not being able to do manly chores around the house, or to not be able to fix and repair things like I once could.  Sometimes I need to use the grab bars in the bathroom to take a shower, or if I am recently recovering from an exacerbation I have a stool to sit upon as I shower. Having said all that I think I am finally over having to wear the cannula all the time. I am a member of a discussion group that focuses on COPD, and without that group I don’t know where I would really be, soft smile, there is strength in numbers, and my group gives me the numbers.  We all suffer, some (not me) suffer quietly, some hide, some ache, but thru the group we all gain strength. We encourage each other, we support each other, and we share with each other the things that trouble us, the things that get us down and the things that make us smile.

Folks the process of dying isn’t fun.  I have rambled on and on, and I don’t know if I have said all I wanted to, but for those of us suffering from a terminal disease, one of the battles we constantly wage war against is depression.  But I must say this now and a million more times, depression is not a disease that focuses on the terminally ill.  Depression is not a disease that is age sensitive.  Depression is not gender specific, it can and does touch everyone, every age, every sex, every sexual orientation, every occupation, strong or weak, depression can find you and take you over. I don’t have a pill that cures you or me (but some pills can help), I don’t have something to read that changes things and makes it all good (but volumes and volumes of words can lift your spirits), I don’t have a special song that suddenly lifts my spirits (but I have many that do, but I also have many songs that will make me cry in a second).  For the most part I do know when I begin to slip towards depression. I also need to say that I believe there are degrees of depression, and that not all forms are critical. I don’t know all of the things that trigger it (but I know a couple of my triggers), and trust me I don’t recognize immediately when I am about to slip into the various types of depression.  But I know pretty quickly when I am feeling down.

My blog is about COPD, and from time to time I feel the need to ramble on about it.  The rambling helps my head, it lightens the load I carry, and it makes the real issues less burdensome.  For some it opens their eyes, for others it makes them want to bury their head in the sands.  Some find my words, words they want to scream out.  I just hope that it helps someone some small bit to either understand what might be going on with a loved one, or opens a door of understanding for them.

I am going to stop now; this has gone on and on.  I asked a very good friend if she would edit this post, because I felt it was going to be my version of “War and Peace.”  But she said no, she said get it all out, spill your guts, actually she called it “verbal vomit.”  And I thought I used earthy words LOL.  But I respect her greatly, so folks you have been subjected to my “verbal vomit.” If you have any questions, concerns or thoughts please feel free to add them.  Thank you for taking the time and expending the energy to get thru this.

Please take care, Bill


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36 responses to “This Blog is about COPD…..

  1. Brenda

    November 17, 2013 at 8:17 pm

    Many kid interruptions later, I have read to the end, and wow. 6 years of fighting this! Well done. That’s a celebration right there! You’re a fighter, giving your wife every day you can. I hope to face my life squarely like you do and not let depression win, if I’m not taken in a cataclysmic crash. I’ve always felt one was coming for me, but so far, I’ve outlived all my expectations. One day at a time, I try to make each day a good day. So far, it’s been a successful strategy for me. You sound very wise, I’m glad you are sharing that wisdom. Hugs, Brenda

    • FlaHam

      November 17, 2013 at 8:36 pm

      Brenda, This one is indeed one of my longest posts. I had a lot to say. Like you i live one day at a time but i plan well ahead. I think it is fair to say that we all fight depression from time to time, but it how we fight it when we realize we arein the mist of it is what defines us. You seem to understand this, and that will help you greatly. Thank you for wading thru this post, and offering your comments. Please take care, Bill

      • Brenda

        November 17, 2013 at 8:55 pm

        Planning well is always rewarded down the road. I also am a planner, and I have a long to do list, always. Still, it helps to see each day end, and the next a fresh start.

  2. jmgoyder

    November 17, 2013 at 10:56 pm

    Oh Bill I am so glad you wrote this as it gives a clearer picture of exactly what is going on and has gone on during these years of illness. What you have suffered would make most people give up but you never give up and, instead, you offer honest facts and feelings and I think you are an absolute champion. Thank you for this informative and beautiful post. Sending love to you and Steph.

    • FlaHam

      November 17, 2013 at 11:00 pm

      Julie, You are to swee to me, but then you a lot sweeter than my wife LOL. I have never been one to just give up, I keep on fighting no matter if i am getting my butt kicked or not. And I will continue so until I can’t anymore. Sometimes I forget why I started the blog. I truly hope that it helps people understand, but I also hope that it shows you can keep fighting. Thank you for your kind words. Take care, Bill

    • FlaHam

      November 18, 2013 at 4:19 pm

      Julie, Laughing no one gave me an instruction manual when they told me I had a terminal disease. This is just how I decided to handle it. I don’t consider myself to be anywhere near a hero, hell I have the easy part, the folks that care for me have it much harder. But in fairness, when I am in the dumps is when I write some of my most heart felt words about living with COPD. As always thank you so so much for your sweet and kind words. Please take care, Bill

  3. Chatter Master

    November 18, 2013 at 6:13 am

    Bill I can only attempt to try and let you know how much I appreciate your posts. For 12 years I have worked with a population that has often reported “COPD” as a health issue. I had NO idea what COPD was to these folks and their lives. Your education is much deeper and better than any info I could have searched for on line. You tell me exactly what is to be dealing with COPD. And in that process you have shown me the actual living with it. And the life behind these posts is fabulous. You and your attitude and fortitude have grabbed me hook line and sinker. I appreciate what you do here, by explaining COPD, and showing us the life WITH it. Be well friend. colleen

    • FlaHam

      November 18, 2013 at 9:44 am

      Colleen, This is a two way street. I love reading your posts, and I would love to be the fly on the wall watching your thought process as you put together your wonderful stick people. You have worked with folks that had COPD as a health issue longer than I have had it as a health issue, though it was brewing for years before they defined it. Sometimes I forget why I started the blog, and then an event happens and it comes back into focus, then I spew out all the bottled energy in a mountain of words and thoughts. I am glad you understand that when I write I am speaking for me, for what I go thru, for what I feel. While I claim many others have these same feeling and don’t have the soapbox I do. It is only a claim, maybe they just choose to not speak. LOL the only problem with baring your soul is that you bare you soul. I promise I will fight this with all the strength and breath I have. Please take care and thank you so so so much for your continued support, caring, and concern you always show. Also thank you for allowing me an opportunity to express myself. Take care, Bill

      • Chatter Master

        November 18, 2013 at 4:49 pm

        You are welcome for anything I do that helps. I think it is a great service you do for others by trying to explain all of this. Not to mention, talking about how it affects your life. People sometimes don’t see “that” part of an illness. Your soul baring has been nothing but educational, enlightening and quite humorous!

        • FlaHam

          November 18, 2013 at 4:57 pm

          Colleen, You and the few others that I have become close over the past year have been a wonderful forum for my writing. I hope and suspect there are many folks out there that read these out pouring, and get something from it, I don’t care what they get, I just want them to get something LOL. Soft smile, sometimes the soapbox isn’t big enough, other times its to damn big. Take care. Bill

          • Chatter Master

            November 19, 2013 at 5:59 am

            🙂 People are obviously getting something Bill. Quite a bit. With a good chuckle thrown in for good measure. Your soap box comes in handy. 😉

            • FlaHam

              November 19, 2013 at 7:17 am

              Colleen, Soft smile, I wish sometimes when I get up on my Soap Box I could grab certain individuals and say you need to hear this. I can’t do that so I hope they listen. I rarely am totally serious about anything, so I will throw a chuckle factor into almost everything I write. Thank you as always for your kind words. Bill

    • Marlyn Brook

      November 20, 2013 at 9:44 pm

      I read every word, including the ones between the lines. XOXOXOXO

    • huntmode

      November 21, 2013 at 6:30 pm

      Collen, exactly! Well stated. Listen to her, Bill!

      • Chatter Master

        November 21, 2013 at 7:16 pm

        Why….thank you Huntmode! 🙂

        • huntmode

          November 21, 2013 at 8:07 pm

          Colleen – misspelled your name. Oops. 🙂

          • FlaHam

            November 21, 2013 at 9:07 pm

            Hunt, Colleen can handle that and then some LOL LOL she is a great person. Take care, Bill

          • Chatter Master

            November 22, 2013 at 5:59 am

            No worries here. 😉

      • FlaHam

        November 21, 2013 at 9:30 pm

        Hunt, 99 pct of the time I listen to her, the other 1 pct is cause I just didn’t hear her. Take care, Bill

  4. Laurel

    November 18, 2013 at 7:40 am

    Good Morning Bill
    Thank you for taking such time to share all of this information-both about you and your illness. Your honesty is both refreshing and poignant. I learned a lot reading your post today! HUGS!

    • FlaHam

      November 18, 2013 at 9:30 am

      Laurel, Thank you for working your way thru that mass of words. I appreciate your response a great deal. From time to time I use my blog as a soapbox on which I stand and preach. I am glad you were in the group, and if my post helped you to gain a better understanding of what a COPD sufferer goes thru then it has served its purpose. Thank you for taking the time to read it all, I truly appreciate it. Take care, Bill

  5. Sally Jean

    November 20, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    Bill: I was happy to read this post. I am alone with this disease; and I get very depressed. I was diagnosed in 1999. Hard to believe I am still here? It is refreshing to read “your” truth. It resonates inside of me; as like you; I try to hide my condition from others. All of my friends have slowly withdrawn from my life; as I walk too slow; or maybe my 24/7 oxygen embarrasses them.
    It is hard to give up pride; but I had to. As my Emphysema progressed; I could do less and less.
    Maybe the hardest part, is knowing I will never be the person I used to be. My own body has betrayed me. That is how it feels to me. Thank you so much for sharing with others. It becomes hard to smile and reply that I am “fine” all the time (hard to keep up the pretense). I am not fine; as you know; because we face a similar battle. Blessings to you Bill. Sally aka Blueirisnw

    • FlaHam

      November 20, 2013 at 3:38 pm

      Sally, Just moments ago I sent you an apology for mixing you up with someone else on the DS. I truly appreciate you telling me I had the wrong info. I did go back and check and I now know who I was talking about. Again thanks for getting me straight. I also want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for this response to my blog. When I 1st started writing the blog COPD was all I wrote about. Now I only write about it every couple months. I spend so much more time writing stories for my granddaughter. But having said that, your are one of two people I wrote the post for. The first is me, I need to talk about it, I need to share what is going on in my head or I will explode. The 2nd is YOU and all the other folks that suffer from COPD or Emphysema. Everything you said in your comment is my life. I have been fortunate, my friends have not abandoned me, but yes all the rest is true. I feel so unmanly, so dependent on others it eats at my head all the time. Sally I will not abandon you, you will always have my shoulder, and if you need I will stand on my soap box and preach to the masses. Please don’t give up or give in to our disease. I refuse to and will encourage you always to fight it with all you have. Please take care Sally, and please be safe. Bill

  6. Clowie

    November 21, 2013 at 6:11 am

    One of the wonderful things about the internet is that it makes it so easy for people to share information and communicate, without having to go anywhere.

    • FlaHam

      November 21, 2013 at 6:27 am

      Clowie, That is quite true, and a very good thing. But I am old school, I really enjoy the personal interaction. Have a great one. Scratching that point behind the ear. Take care.

      • Clowie

        November 21, 2013 at 6:51 am

        I see what you mean! That virtual scratch behind the ear was lovely, but not as good as the real thing. I’ll see if my biped will do that on your behalf.

        • FlaHam

          November 21, 2013 at 7:33 am

          Thank you, I am sure you both will enjoy it.

  7. huntmode

    November 21, 2013 at 6:27 pm

    Bill, I’m writing before I read everybody else’s comments, so keep that in mind. First off, I love your long posts. I love and appreciate (not the same thing) your honesty, your clarity, and the saltiness of your language – hey, you were Navy, right? (or maybe not….).

    You have urged me to talk up and out re having COPD on my blog and, because of THIS post, I give you my word of honor as a HuntMode, that I will do so. What I found before I had it and was around those who had asthma or COPD, was: I didn’t get it. Would have been helpful had I known about the straw exercise. LOL. You, dear man, help us get it.

    Speaking of which, add in: when using the small straws to pinch your nostrils closed to keep ’em in place! I kept visualizing that exercise and wondering how the straws stayed in place! 🙂

    I am so profoundly grateful you made it past the first deadline so that I could find you. Thank you for leading the way with such grace and courage. My best to your wife as well. 🙂

    P.S. – I’m making a point to do a search through what I wrote and anytime I talk about breath or COPD updating it into the COPD folder. 🙂 Best ~ HuntMode

    • FlaHam

      November 21, 2013 at 9:29 pm

      Hunt, I was telling Colleen that I earned my bachelor’s in cussing while in the Navy, I have since moved on, Colleen is going to go to cussing cases with me. She will be chasing her Bachelor Degree, and I will be going for a PHD in cussing. Heck if you ask my wife I already have a PHD in cussing. oh well. I was haze gray and underway for 9 years active and another 5 in the reserves. Hunt I do want you to talk it up and out in your blog, but like anything else sometimes to much is to much. I have a gut check about every 3 or 4 months. And I use that post to have a verbal vomit (as another fellow blogger describes it), it allows me to refocus and spread the word further. You have a great blog, don’t turn it into a blog about COPD, keep doing what you do best. And from time to time have your own verbal vomit. In the past I have used the example about the straws and I believe I have told folks to pinch their nose. But thank you for the heads up. The reality once they have the straw in their nose they won’t need to pinch to get the point. LMAO I am going to do my best to be around when the next DEAD line passes. I am trying to become the poster boy for COPD. LOL LOL Take care, Bill

      • huntmode

        November 22, 2013 at 1:07 am

        Bill, I’m with you on the 4 month vent. And I find your “how you’re doing today” just excellent. What I appreciated about your input re getting the word out was making sure folks can find it, so I created one spot where any story or post I write mentioning it will be there for the reading….

        Like you, I find I have to just let her rip every once in a while. 😉

        • FlaHam

          November 22, 2013 at 7:13 am

          Hunt, There is no secrets, venting helps the head, and the head helps the body. And trust me venting is better than exploding. LOl. Take care, Bill

  8. Wanda

    November 27, 2013 at 6:47 am

    After reading your post and the back-and-forth in the comments, I can only say that your blog is a huge success. You accomplished (and continue to accomplish) your goal of educating and encouraging your readers, and along the way you’ve earned the friendship and admiration of many of those readers. I’m glad too that you expanded your blog content to include some of your life stories. Your stories have brought me to laughter and to tears (sometimes because of the laughter!) and I treasure each one for the wit and wisdom you share.

    • FlaHam

      November 27, 2013 at 10:40 am

      Wanda, Smiling, and you only have yourself to blame LOL. I have as much fun with the comments components of my blog as I do actually writing and sharing what I do. Actually I learn a great deal in the exchange of comments, and it is that knowledge that pushes me forward. I have been very fortunate in the people that have chosen to follow my blog, to a one they are wonderful folks. I also have developed friendships that I would not have otherwise had the chance to develop had it not been for my blog. I know I will continue to write, I get such great joy in the sharing of my stories. Take care Wanda, and have a great day. — Bill

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    June 14, 2016 at 12:56 pm

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