Seize the Day! --By Rolf Kotar

Submitted by Jose Torres-Vega on May 18, 2017 - 4:24pm


Has anyone come to you, cheerfully exclaiming, "carpe diem!" (Seize the day!) This remark is so joyful! It's better than "never give up” or worse, saying, " You look like you've lost a friend."

In "seizing" all days, I fully expect nothing will happen I can't handle. I am surviving worsening diabetes, Parkinson’s (from major tranquilizers), schizo-affective disorder (in remission), and severe stage angular glaucoma. Now, I feel very well. I see multitudes of options on how to spend life. Why should I suffer?  Recently my primary doctor was out on vacation, so I saw a wonderful nurse practitioner covering for him. She adjusted both daily doses of a diabetes medication. (I had several-letter low blood sugar levels supplement I took myself that were unsafe).

There I argued with the practitioner that the glucose tests I was taking three times per day, all resulted in levels much too high.  The nurse practitioner didn't dispute my request. She approved a 50 percent increase in the drug. One day later,  my sugar level after fasting through the previous night resulted by in a level 100 points less than it has been! It's only one of thirteen medications I ingest daily. I feel lucky to afford them.

Near to the end of our appointment, the nurse practitioner said, "Mr. Kotar, you've such a positive attitude!" I pondered this remark. I responded, "With the numbers and gravity of my three disabilities, without taking care of myself, I would not be alive today." Keeping a high affect has made me able to accept my disabilities, resulting in a healthier me, I thought to myself. Following, I thought about ways I could improve the practice of my music discipline. I could perform, teach and speak for very small groups. I had invitations in the past, but did not take advantage of them. Perhaps, I was not ready.

I’ve written before about the daily realities of my life. We at CCDC are not so thrilled everything we have accomplished is so fantastic that we are ready to travel down "a yellow brick road."  However, it's plausible that a happy medium is possible with each of us having a positive outlook. Experiencing unbridled joy is not frequent for most of us. Libraries hold writings of near euphoric states, e.g., Emily Dickinson has poetry about her love of other people. One piece begins, near to nirvana, "How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. I love thee the length and breadth and height my soul doth reach. I love thee as a summer’s day." As a writer, I would apply Dickinson's words to my gratitude for my life.  Every bit is so precious.

I propose I acquire top return in my earthly existence. I like planning my next move and making work more meaningful. I call this visioning. In my mental picture, I simply create the life I want. Some call this discipline prayer. At the time of writing this essay, I have my perfect writing vocations. These are my blog posts for CCDC, as this one, creating an anthology of essays, and jumpstarting more grantsmanship through volunteer work. I have decided to play, teach and speak about music is small, private venues, when invited.

Struggling daily, and maintaining an existence on a survival level is not pleasant. A positive outlook makes life more livable. In non-Christian metaphysics, Dr. Earnest Holmes has said for us to "be cheerful, grateful and expectant of good." This says it all for me.

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