August Takes a Bow

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

August, 2017 closes its 31-day run on the center stage today. The final bow of the year for the summer month is at hand. September, 2017 will make its debut at midnight.

I have yet to fully recover from my episode and fall on Tuesday night. I remain wobbly and weak. For the second night in a row, I slept in my recliner.

Chooey has been a blessing. He has done well in watching out for Daddy.

As an update, Kev and Hailey are doing well in Texas. Other than rain, the effects from Harvey have been minimal for them in Leander, to the north of Austin.

Tomorrow is payday in the Cornfield. I will also being visited by Nurse Tabitha and Aide Bambi.

As is so often the case as of late, the word of the day is maintain.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Thursday going?

#ThrowBackThursday photo:

Think back to start of spring in 2013. This was taken on March 24 of that year.

Scary Scene

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

Before and after the midnight hour it was a scary scene in Mark’s Den last night. For the first time, I had to press my Guardian alert button.

I have been complaining for several days how difficult movement had been on my system. From pain to inability to get adequate air supply had been my chief complaints along with all of my energy being zapped.

Striking quickly, the same type of spell, which in the past resulted in calling 9-1-1, came over me after I locked the door for the night. With difficulty I made it the few steps back to my recliner.

I sat there on the edge trying to regain composure and overcome the tightness, the pain, the gasping. I thought of reaching for the Roxanol to aid in getting through the spell.

The next thing I knew was the sensation of Chooey licking my face.

Disoriented I could not find my glasses or my air tube. I did not know where I was. I could feel liquid flowing from my nose down my lips.

Finding my glasses and air tube, I realized I was on the floor.

Gathering my wits I pushed the alert button. When answered, I cried out for help and that I was bleeding.

I managed to get up and back to my recliner, then to unlock and open the door. I sent out messages to my sons, my parents that I had to call for help with the alert.

Chooey was not leaving my side until someone arrived to assist.

Kev and I texted back and forth until Mom arrived.

The phone rang. It was Mom. I did not know until after Mom came to the house that Guardian had called her at midnight.

I apparently had fallen and passed out for about 5 minuets or so.

Guardian stayed on the line with me until Mom arrived. Mom remained until the nurse came and checked me out.

I ended up sleeping in the recliner last night. I was not going to chance trying to make it to the bed or what it may be like when I woke this morning.

Sleeping in until a bit past 9 a.m., I finally roused to greet the day. I am still not anywhere near 100% – far from it.

This was the first time this has ever happened to me.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Wednesday going?

Leticia, Mark in the background at the Lighthouse Chapel, Dugger, IN circa late 1980s.

Counting Down

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

The countdown to September and payday has begun. The unofficial end of summer is a mere days away.

September will make month five since the doctor told me I may have six months or less to live. He did expound that the prognosis was if the disease which afflicts me runs its normal course.

Since that May day, I have gained weight. I have grown stronger. I have become more independent. I fight on.

The past week, however, the battle has tipped against me. The mucus plugs have increased again. The plugs are thicker and bigger again.

While the weather has an impact on those of us with respiratory issues, I do not believe it is the weather having the greatest pressure on my system. I do believe it may the chronic obstructive pulmonary disease sucking out my life energy.

Susie surprised me with dinner last night of roast beef, mashed potatoes, green beans and tomatoes fresh from the garden. Today Mom is bringing over potato soup and other yummies for my tummy. Bill and Mom stopped by Sunday on their way back from an outing with Bill’s brother with a plate of macaroni salad, cheese, summer sausage, fruit salad, barbecued beef and a brat.

Is it any wonder I am being fattened?

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Tuesday going?

It was 46 years ago come October in Marked Tree, Arkansas I posed for my senior picture. What happened? LOL

August End Begins

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

The end of August, 2017 begins. Come Friday, ready or not, September will arrive with next Monday the unofficial end of summer – Labor Day.

Some how, some way, I managed to sleep in to the late hour of 8:30 a.m. I did wake up for a nature break around 4:30, but climbed back in bed. I actually managed to fall back to slumber.

The rainy start to the day did not help as my body came out of basal metabolism to the stirring and rousing for the day. Trying to catch a breath was like an Olympic sport with a full array of obstacles toward the finish line.

Reluctantly I had to reach for my “secret” formula to quell the pain and difficulty in getting oxygen in and carbon dioxide out. Actually it is a normal pain and breathing medicine and not a secretive formulation.

For family and friends worried about Kevin and Hailey in Texas, they and Philip J. Fry (their Dachshund baby) are wet, but weathering Storm Harvey well.

I have been in contact daily.

Bonnie from the Desert oasis of Laughlin, Nevada called me yesterday to check on the pair. She has been, like most of us, paying attention to the weather reports and social media postings about how Texas is being hit and was concerned. I was able to reassure her that Kev, Hailey and Fry are OK at this time.

Maintenance is the plan for the day.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Monday going?

June 11, 2017 when Kev and Hailey visited me in Mark’s Den.

Gospel Originals for Sunday

I have put together the full album of Gospel Originals as written and performed by Mom (Sharon Hollifield).

The album, audio only, was originally recorded around 2000 in the studio of the late Woody Power in Farmersburg, Indiana. Woody also added sound effects to the album such as trumpets and other horns.

In addition, Woody brought down another female vocalist from Terre Haute to help out with harmonies on the songs.

Mom was the lyricist, composer and vocalist for the project. The songs, which God inspired her to write, have been sung in various churches throughout the Cornfield.

Doing my part, I was the pianist/keyboardist, doing harmonies and helping with the arrangements.

Today’s offering is the nine songs, in video format, which have already been featured as Sunday Gospel on one full video.


Torn Between

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

One of my favorite songs has always been “Torn Between Two Lovers“.  Today it is very apt.

Torn between two feelings
Feeling like a fool
Wanting them both
Is breaking all the rules.

OK, so I changed the words some.

On one hand, I want to go to sleep and never wake up.

On the other hand, I want to live.

I do not mean sit in my recliner and vegetate. I mean be alive!

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Friday going?

In the recording studio of the late Woody Power working on a Crystal Valley Quartet album, about 14 years ago.

But Then Again…

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

Considered this morning not posting to my blog, but I do already take Saturdays off from detailing the Inside My Mind. Plus, I am not relishing the idea of getting a scathing email from long-time reader from the Desert, Bonnie.

So here I am putting thoughts to screen.

My Heart to Heart Chaplain, Kathy, stopped by a few minutes ago. Kathy is always comforting. She never leaves without a chat with God on my behalf.

A little later, I am expecting Mom. Her plans, as of last night, was to cook up spaghetti and bring some to me.

Dad and Susie got my food all put away yesterday. They also picked up a few things at the store for me.

I have not fallen asleep yet today after rising around 7:30 a.m. But – that sleepy feeling is coming over me.

In the last couple of months, I have developed what would be restless leg syndrome. My legs are constantly spassing out on their own. At times it’s like I am going to jump out of the recliner.

Before I fall asleep, I better bring this to a close.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Thursday going?

#ThrowBackThursday photo:

Here I am meeting Dylan, my oldest granddaughter, for the first time. This year she started in 5th grade!


Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

You have heard of “Sleepless in Seattle?

I am wakeless in the Cornfield.

I went to bed at 2 a.m. last night. I crawled out of bed shortly after 9 a.m.

That is seven hours of sleep!

This from a guy who averaged 2-4 hours of sleep for over 40 years.

This from a guy who as a toddler and child never took a nap.

Today, as too many recent days, I cannot keep my eyes open. I keep falling asleep.

I am wakeless!


I said that my new food box of 15 meals was to arrive yesterday. I looked at the schedule wrong.

Today is delivery day.

The Fed-Ex driver arrived with my box around 11:30 this morning.

Now if I can turn off being wakeless.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Wednesday going?

My 15-Day supply of dinners:

Slight SVT Scare

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

Shortly after rising after 9 a.m. today, I was sitting in my recliner, sipping my coffee, when I felt the rush in my chest. I knew that my heart was racing.

Grabbing for my oximeter, my blood oxygen level was a healthy 97. But it was my heart rate which had soared to 191.

I sat there with my finger in the oximeter. My heart kept in the the SVT (supraventricular tachycardia) range for several moments. Eventually the heart rate fell back to the normal 60.

For a bit I wondered if I would need to press my alert button or try and call for a nurse. Fortunately the scare was short-lived.

My home health aide Bambi came a little while ago. I am now cleaned, shaved and presentable to the world. Bambi also did my few dishes, trimmed my eyebrows and rinsed the filters on my air concentrator.

Chooey is becoming more use to Bambi washing Daddy and not being concerned with her touching me.

Waiting now for Fed-Ex to arrive with my next shipment of meals for the next 15 days. I had hoped the shipment would arrive before Bambi came. Now I will have to put the food away myself into the freezer and fridge.

Check out my latest political op-ed:

An Independent Presidency

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Tuesday going?

Mom and Bill on an Alaskan cruise

On Watch

Delve into the light and dark that is Mark

Around midnight I retired for the night. Some time later, I bolted from sleep.

I sprang up in bed wide awake. I was ready to face the day.

With a spring in my step, I made my way to the bathroom. My business completed, I moved to the kitchen for coffee.

That is when I saw the time: 1:46 a.m.

My coffee poured, I walked to my recliner in the living room. I sat in my chair and tried to go back to sleep.

No go.

Several hours later, I remain awake.

Mom and my great-nephew, Chevy, have been by to assist. Mom fried sausage and eggs for breakfast.

The total eclipse is barely an hour away.

I wait and watch.

That’s the way it is in Mark’s Den.

And how is your Monday going?