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Tuesday, June 18, 2013

My Journey Back to Normal

I finally went to the doctors last week to check what was going on with my chest pain. I knew there was no danger of anything, but I couldn't let any other day pass by with so much pain.

The doctor asked me to do some X-Rays, and in the meantime he prescribed some pills to ease the pain. He warned me though. No alcohol (that was already covered), no driving (also covered), and I had to eat a lot before taking the pills (and I was like, lucky me...). Long story short, them pills would make me dizzy.

That was an understatement. Even though the pain was almost gone the next day, I felt like a zombie. I wanted to go to sleep all the time, and this lasted an entire week. It was crazy. The only thing that kept me awake was Green making those three pointers (what a performance!!). Of course, the non Basketball fans won't get this one....Go Spurs.

I am back to normal. The pain is gone

What else? Oh yes. It was fathers' day this weekend. I received a gift from Skylar who was also celebrating her first birthday! Time really flies. Our daughter is now 1 year old!

I cannot tell you how it has been a year full of surprises. As a father, it was all about learning by doing. Now I do everything almost my eyes closed. My training was over a long time ago. Time for a second one (hope my wife won't read this one).

Coming back to Basketball, I hope the Spurs win tonight, even though it would mean no Basketball until November (my wife is actually excited about this). Can I give you a homework? Check out what Danny Green, the San Antonio Spurs now superstar went through to get to where he is now. It is really a very inspiring story. You can check it out here

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

My Journey to an Amazing Weekend in Ottawa

A few weeks ago, I received an e-mail inviting me to host an event in Ottawa as the Master of Ceremonies. "Ishaka" is the name of the group that put together the event that they called "Beautiful Africa". It was a showcase of African dance and art. I was really looking forward to it.

We left Toronto early in the morning on Saturday. Our predictions were that we would be in Ottawa by 2pm the latest. We had a GPS with Snoop Lion voice as our guide. It was so funny to hear him say "woo, woo, slow down man!"

By 2.30 we were still on the road. We could not understand why we were not in Ottawa yet. Our GPS was showing exists that we could not understand, and we thought it was going crazy. You can't trust the machine all the time, right? We thought Snoop was high lol. Guess what! He was right. We had missed our exit. Do you know how we figured out that we were lost? We saw a sign saying "Bienvenue au Québec" (Welcome to Québec). We were in Montreal!!!!

A quick phone call to the hosts of the event, and we were back on the road again. We arrived at 5.30 (and the show was starting at 7pm !!!).

The ladies at "Ishaka" were ready. I was treated like a VIP man. They had a package ready for me with all the information I needed, they had a lodge for me, a professional producer and stage manager I was going to work with, some snacks and soft drinks (I guess they knew about my passion for food). In about 30 minutes, I was ready to go.

What a show!! It was breathtaking. I have never been in something like that in my ten years as an MC. Never! Ishaka is top notch. I was speechless. It was a sold out event and many who came late couldn't get in. The venue was awesome! I cannot say enough about these people. I was simply amazed.

All this time, something was nagging me. A few weeks ago, I injured myself playing Basketball (I took a sharp elbow in my chest). I was almost healed, but for some reasons, on Saturday I was hurting again. Just before the event, my chest was hurting so bad that I thought that there would be no way I could do the job. It was so bad. I could hardly breath.


As soon as I hit the stage, the pain was gone. Absolutely gone. For two hours, I felt nothing. Even two hours after the event, I was still good. And then...BAM. The pain came again. Even now as I am writing this blog, my chest is hurting so bad. I am about to go to the doctor's. I have spent three straight sleepless nights because of it.

As I was sharing yesterday with a friend of mine how the pain was gone when I was on stage, he simply went: "It's because you were doing what you love to do". As simple as that, he was right.

When I do things I love to do, time stops. I am simply in the moment and it is like I am on another planet (I guess I become high like Snoop on our GPS). That is true man. Passion is the cure of everything. You don't think about any other thing. You don't worry about your bills or anything.  The "now" is the only thing that matters. It is an amazing experience.

My hope for you is that you find something you are so passionate about. Something that you feel like you were born to do. It is a great experience once you are in the zone, when nothing seems to bother you any more.

I have to warn you though. Most of the time, living your passion comes with a price tag. Are you willing to pay the full price? I hope so.

A big thank you to Ishaka. Thank you for letting me be part of this amazing event. I will be forever grateful

Moral of the story? Do you want to get rid of your chest pain? Just do what you love to do and you will miss your exit.

Always a pleasure
The Journeyman

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

My Journey to A Thankful Day

I know it's Tuesday and I know you were stuck on your computer all day yesterday waiting for this one to come out. I really apologize. But once I explain to you why I did not post my blog yesterday, maybe you will understand.

There are people who have an extraordinary art of containing their pain. My wife is one of them. But when she asked me to call 911 last Thursday, I knew something was up. I got to tell you. That was the first time in my life to call 911.

So, we rushed to the hospital. Thank God Skylar was at the daycare, otherwise it would have been hard to manage. A few hours later, we walked home, and I thought it was over. Later in the evening, we called a taxi. Back to the hospital...again. This time she stayed overnight.

Five o'clock in the morning, she was back home. Finally this was over. So I thought. Guess what! At eleven O'clock we were back to the hospital (this time you maybe thinking that I am making this all up..). Later in the evening, we came back home. By this time I was so exhausted, so was my wife.

Saturday was calm, then came Sunday. My wife was so in pain. She started to pray. Minutes later, we were back to the hospital... But this time, something was different. It was as if she knew her prayers were heard. She just looked straight in my eyes and said. This is my last trip to the hospital. I won't come back again. This is it. I am going to be healed today.

Guess what! She was right. It was our last trip to the hospital. She came from there singing (I thought she was drunk or something lol).

That evening, she asked me to come next to her (and I was like, "I hope it's for a kiss"....just kidding). She just said: "All of this has been a wake up call for me. I have been complaining a lot lately, now it's over. Starting from now, I am going to be thankful of everything. I know life can be short, it's time I start living it fully. Whenever you catch me complaining about anything, just remind me of this day and I will stop".

I was speechless (and of course I forgot about the kiss...).

My wife is a different person now. I learned a lot from her this weekend.

My shout out to all the friends who stepped up to give us a hand. We are so blessed with true friends, and I was so overwhelmed by their help. Thank you so much guys (you all know who you are..)

Back to the blog. As I was about to write this one yesterday, all the stuff we went trough over the weekend made me so tired that I was about to fall asleep in front of my computer. I couldn't write anything. Add to that the defeat of the Indiana Pacers, there is no way I could concentrate and write anything. But I am glad the Spurs are sweeping the Heat (I know I am getting into trouble with some heat fans).

Moral of the story? Do you want to be thankful in everything? Just go to the hospital a couple of times and you will fall asleep in front of your computer.

Always a pleasure


The Journeyman.