it was a slow day in radiology so i headed over to the ER. a few of my friends were working and one of the Doc’s i like was the serving MO (medical officer). he’s a wolf- did 2 tours as battalion Commander in afghansitan, and 2 of my boy’s were working that are also afghan vet’s. one played hockey goon at U of Minnesota, and the other is a former mexican thug.

we were talking about a patient they had earlier and the hockey thug noted how he saw “the fear” of a man about to die. all of us know that look. i’ve seen it HUNDREDS of times. i watched so many people breathe their last breath in my face that it isn’t funny.

i know death.

the conversation turned to fear. Doc’s afraid of heights, Goon’s afraid of snakes, Mexican’s afraid closed spaces.

when it came to me, i said, “what scares me is every time i get an order for a portable in the ICU, when i see some 80 year old guy with tubes in every orifice, that scares the shit out of me. i NEVER want that to happen to me. some 20 year old nurse wiping my ass as i hear my life blip away. FUCK THAT!”

there was silence for a minute or so when Doc chimed in.

“a man dies fighting a dragon. that’s a proper death.”

we all nodded in agreement. Goon admitted he should have died a few times in afghanistan, but rationalized this it wasn’t his time. same with Mexican. hell, there are MANY times when i should have bought the farm.

Goon chimed in, “i want to have a stroke as i’m deep dicking some cutie.” we all laughed.

i said, “you know how i want to go? like tristan in “legends of the fall”. me, a grizzly, and a knife. i’ll NEVER win, but i want to go down hacking away at a superior opponent.”

Doc nodded, “that’s a man’s death. that’s how a man should go. there’s honor in that death. his family will speak of him with admiration.”

Goon and Mexican nodded in agreement. what we do with out time on the earth is nothing compared to how we leave it. fear must be overcome. if you’re scared of heights- do a tandem parachute jump. if you’re scared of snakes or spiders- go to a pet shop and handle one.

what you fear is nothing to cower from, it’s something you can over come if you have enough balls to face it. it’s right in front of you; will you cower or will you take it on.

i hope you choose the good fight.

this is how i want to die.

stay up.

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