It’s been a long time since my last entry.
As I read through other people’s blogs I find that comment a lot. Seems like most bloggers go through periods where they have difficulty posting on a consistent basis.
But I have a good reason:
I almost had my “good day to die.”
Last month I found I had coronary artery disease. After a frightening episode at home, I went to the hospital where they discovered that one of my arteries was 99% blocked. So they performed angioplasty and inserted a stent.
It’s a common practice today, and less invasive than the bypass surgery my Dad had to endure.
But after returning home, I developed excruciating pain in my right flank. So I was back in the hospital within 24 hours.
The pain I experienced was beyond description. The nurse asked me to rate the pain on a scale of 1 to 10. At first it was a 9. Then it catapulted to 10,000!
At first the doctors thought it was a kidney stone, but after a scan they found that I had a growth on my right kidney.
I found myself being transferred to the oncology unit.
Two cardiologists came into my room together (not a good sign) to explain with grim faces that after the heart procedure I was on blood thinning medication and couldn’t have surgery to remove the mass on my kidney … and they couldn’t halt the medication for at least a year without risking further heart problems. They weren’t sure what to do.
Now I was scared.
I’m only 49 years old. My parents both lived well into their 80s. And with all the advances in medical technology in recent years, and in the years to come, I had planned on living to be at least 100.
The doctors called in a specialist who proceeded to conduct more tests on me. This went on for a couple days during which I had plenty of time to stare at the ceiling and reevaluate my life.
- Am I happy and proud of my life?
- Did I fulfill my purpose on earth?
- Did I make a difference?
- How many people would say their life is better because I was here?
- If I’m given more time, how would I use it?
Gladly the story has a happy ending.
Tests revealed that the growth on my kidney is an inert and benign cyst. My doctors will keep watching me, but at this time it doesn’t pose a threat.
So they sent me home.
I was utterly exhausted and could barely get around. The heart procedure, and the intense kidney pain had sucked all the energy out of my body. I was also now on a hand full of medicines each day, many of which said “may cause drowsiness.” I was back home … but in a wheel chair.
Then unbelievably, a few days later, the kidney pain returned. But this time it was even worse than the first time (I didn’t think it was possible).
I couldn’t get out of bed, so my wife called an ambulance.
The trip to the hospital was absolutely excruciating as I could feel every bump the ambulance drove over (they should put luxury suspensions in those things).
There was no doctor in the emergency room, so I was given no pain medicine and just suffered for hours in absolute agony.
When a doctor finally arrived, he had a scan conducted and said I had passed a kidney stone (again?). However the specialist later said it may have blood clots.
I was sent home and have stayed out of the hospital since then.
I’m getting my strength back and doing some walking around the neighborhood now (with my new dog “Hero”).
What does all this have to do with trading?
First, I just wanted to let you know what’s been going on with me on a personal level and why I haven’t posted to my blog for over a month.
Second, as I reevaluated my life during this traumatic time, I realized that I don’t regret being involved in this wonderful industry at all. In fact it has been a wonderful blessing.
When most people think of the trading profession, they think of making money. That’s fine, and that should be part of your plan.
But it’s not just about the greenbacks. It’s about being able to enjoy your life. And for me, I enjoy trading so much that I would do it even if there were no money involved!
I’m very fortunate to have found a profession that I love so much. It’s truly a passion of mine. I enjoy everything about it – teaching, learning, reading, sharing, and of course, the actual trading itself.
I contrast my feelings with so many who come to trading with purely a financial motive. They’re only interested in trading as a way of making money … and if they don’t profit quickly, then they quit it completely and move on to another money-making endeavor.
When I decided to pursue trading as a career, my attitude was not that I would try it, or see if it would work, or “give it a year.” I simply decided that I WAS going to be a professional trader … no matter what it took.
That type of commitment is not possible, indeed not even appropriate, unless you’re committing to something that you truly love.
Here’s to hoping I have many more years to share my passion with you.