Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Mr. Z's most important blog post....he'd have wanted you to share it with friends, I hope you do xxx

photo by Mr Z

This piece was written by Mr. Z a few weeks before he so unexpectedly passed on to be with the Lord. He wanted me to share it with friends then and I think he’d have liked for me to share it with you today. We were going to post this before he died so unexpectedly; he prepared it more anonymously as if it were from a friend because we didn't want it known that he was ill quite yet, but now I can print it as he wrote it. I hope you'll all be blessed by it.

“Survival Guide......or The Worth of a Life”

There’s a Russian, one of the richest men in the world, who owns a yacht worth $850 million and the English soccer club FC Chelsea. I am sure he knows a lot of people in the ‘in crowd’, but I fear these people would drop him like a hot potato if he lost all his riches. I am saying this because at the end of the day he will face the Almighty with just a shirt on, like everybody else, but very likely with nothing else to speak of. Sadly, “empty” would probably characterize him correctly.

These thoughts came to my mind recently when I was thinking about my situation. I have a very grave illness and, when you are in a situation like this, you think about the meaning of life and whether it is really worth fighting for. I am well aware that there are people with more serious problems than the ones I am facing; as a matter of fact, we don’t have to look too far beyond our own circle of friends for that. But every situation is individually different and I can only speak for myself. I have invented a “Misery Factor“ with a scale of 1 to 10 to assess my situation, 10 being the worst. If I didn’t take chemotherapy, I am sure that, over the short or long term, it would approach a 10 permanently. With the therapy, it appears that the factor can be kept in check, and we will be able to see over time whether the corresponding blood values return to normal. I am optimistic. But I have to step back for a moment and explain what keeps me going.

The first factor is the doctors. After the first symptoms, it took quite a while to correctly diagnose this extremely rare disease. I was very touched by the concern and care these doctors showed in their almost zealous drive to find out what was wrong. I was also extremely impressed that these excellent doctors put their egos aside and consulted with other doctors when they felt like their amazing talents had hit a wall. This team of doctors ultimately got me to the one specialist in the LA area who deals with this illness – and he implemented immediately this chemotherapy with which he has had some good results in other patients. My point is: If they are personally that concerned about me and encourage this strenuous treatment, how can I not go for it?

But there is another, even more important reason. First of all, the care which I receive from my dear wife makes it possible for me to survive this ordeal at all. Not that I hadn’t expected that, but it has also brought us even closer together. In addition, I had never imagined such an outpouring of prayers and help keeping up my morale from my family and friends here, my family and friends overseas, and from many, many people whom I have never met or even heard of, through prayer chains, cards, emails and calls. This is unconditional love and concern and it comes in an avalanche which I would have never thought possible. It truly has caught me by surprise – but it shouldn’t have surprised me really, knowing the tightly knit family, the many old friends, and the religious roots of many of our (and mostly my wife’s) friends.

This clearly gives me the feeling that not only am I still needed and cared for on this earth, but that I will not stand with empty hands and only a shirt on when the time comes, facing the Almighty in whom my faith has solidified and who has always come through for me and my wife. This is a very comforting feeling and strongly confirms what is really important in life – it is certainly not the biggest yacht, or ownership of a soccer team; those things will mean nothing when any of us meets our Maker.

Hug your wife or husband, cherish them even on the days that's the last thing you feel like doing. Be optimistic, have faith, never complain, and remember that THINGS don't matter. For Mr. Z's sake.......

I hope this piece Mr Z wrote touches you as it has so many of our 'real life' friends. Thank you for your amazing supportive comments since his passing and, please, take a little time to read some of MR Z'S OPINIONS on my side bar from time to time, when you can.......I'd like his pieces to be remembered. Thanks, everybody. Z.

Mr. Z's funeral is Sunday, please pray for calm for me and that all goes well. xxx

I will be posting next week on what my Mr. Z died from and will be informing people of the early symptoms of his rare disease.....for his sake. I think he'd like it if he helped others discover this rotten disease early enough that they can live. Please come back some time next week. thanks. Z

And, PLEASE do not use my real name here on the blog; for some reason people I know off the blog are suddenly commenting and I can't have our real names here, sorry. I'll have to delete, though you're all so kind to comment.



heidianne jackson said...

it's just SO mr. z. I hear his voice in my head as I read this, saw his smile and new he was reaching out to touch your hand. if i am THIS unready to let him go, I cannot imagine how you're getting through this, z.

I have saved every email he has ever sent me and I will treasure them always. I never failed to learn something from him and through his writings - in email and here at your blog - I know that learning continue.

you will always be in my prayers and in my life, z, as will mr. z. I am thankful to god everyday for making that happen. I am equally thankful for your reminder to hug and cherish those I love. I will endeavor to do so everyday.

you are both quite amazing. god bless you and be with you always. I will always love him for who he was, who he is and for his love for all whom he claimed as "his" - know what I mean?

LOX beautiful, dear,z.

heidianne jackson said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
heidianne jackson said...

ugh! typing on my phone - sorry for all the typos...

Opus #6 said...

Amazing post. The world lost a WONDERFUL man. He is right. It is not THINGS that matter. That last line brought tears to my eyes. What a blessing to have found the love of your life. SO painful to lose them, I can only imagine. I pray that you feel surrounded by the comfort of the Lord and your friends and family at this time.

Faith said...

Very touching writing, Z, from the heart of a man facing what really matters in life. Thank you for posting it. It's good to see that you had the prayer armies of God out in force for him too.

sue said...

Z - Thank you for allowing us to read Mr. Z's last words. I can't imagine how much courage it must take to face the knowledge that you are approching the end of your life, and leaving loved ones behind.

It can only be his faith that got him through, and the close relationship that you had, and still have.

May you have the strength to carry on, z. You are cared about more than you can know.

Deborah on the Bayside said...

I am so touched by the post, Z. And, yes, I too hear Mr. Z as if he's sitting right here. A wonderful testimony to his heart of optimism and gratitude, of focus on what really matters ... all the more poignant knowing it was written with one foot closer to the threshold of eternity than anyone knew. I cherish his exhortation -- and your advice. (I took it tonight - your last thoughts as I was leaving.)

Anonymous said...

The first time Mr. Pris and I went to Z and Mr. Z's home, as we stepped inside the door, it was a warm, welcoming place, and of course it reflected them.

We felt we'd known them forever, old friends, yet, until then I'd known Z only online, and corresponding through e-mails, and Mr. Z from his posts on GEEEZ, and casual mentions of him from Z. I gleaned enough from her to know she was happy in their life together.

It's clear from what he says here in this post, and what Mr. Pris and I saw, was that he lived what he believed.

A most genial, thoughtful man was Mr. Z. and so bright, as we all have had the pleasure of experiencing from his posts.

He was happy with his life because he knew what mattered most, and he had a soulmate in Z who shared that good life with him.

And yes Mr. Z is so right. Everyone we touch in life, and love, remains with us always. This is really all that matters, this, and love of God and country.

And my goodness how Mr. Z loved America.

Thank you Z for posting and sharing this, and I can't conclude without saying, Mr. Z was so fortunate to have you to love as you were to have him. Love is eternal, and it remains.


Pasadena Closet Conservative said...

I wish you the peace that comes with loving memories of Mr. Z. God bless you. We'll be thinking of you on Sunday.

MK said...

Thank you for sharing that wonderful post Z.

I'm sure Mr. Z is watch us right now and we will remember his words. RIP.

Mr. Michael said...

It is posts like these that make the phenomenon of Blogging worth it. Yes, it's pamphleteering for the 21st Century, and the information passed along can save our Nation; but posts like this can save a soul. Thank you so much for sharing such a treasure with those of us who can profit by it.

God Bless you both, forever.

The Merry Widow said...

Pris-Since I live on the East Coast, I never got the chance to actually meet, Mr. Z. But we exchanged some e-mails, he shared some photos and I have spoken to him on the phone...and of course, read his posts.

A thoughtful and insightfl man, basically a happy one(after all, happiness IS a choice)and very much in love with his wife.

I told Z the other night that the 2 of them fit together, like a hand in a glove. GOD puts opposites together for a reason, so that the strengths and weaknesses counter each other...Z & Mr. Z were opposites, but they reveled in it, instead of making it a bone of contention.

They were truly, " flesh..." a very pleasant example in a world of contention and bitterness!
GOD bless and MARANATHA!


JINGOIST said...

Beautifully written as usual. Herr Z was always a talented writer.

Linda said...

I'll be praying for you tomorrow as you have your parting service for your beloved husband. I know he is already in the presence of the Lord, but we need, or at least the family and friends need, that service when they are ready to let him go to his Heavenly home.

Blessings to you, Z. If you'd like to email your address to me, I'd like to send you one of my hand painted cards that I do for the loss of loved ones. It is entirely up to you, and, certainly, my feelings won't be hurt if you choose not to do so.

Listen To Me said...

May God Bless You

Beth said...

That was beautiful, thanks for sharing.

Tom said...

Thank you for sharing Mr. Z's words. Writing from the heart will touch hearts, and that is what Mr. Z has done.

Praying for you and the family.

Elmers Brother said...

You can tell that he loved and cherished you, that he needed you not only through this disease but the whole of his life.

I really like you.

Joe said...

Thank you for the post from Mr. Z that allowed us to see into a man of real fortitude and character.

As you make your way through the grieving process that God, in His wisdom has given each of us, we pray that His mighty grace will be evident to you in ways you never suspected.

Human emotions are real...embrace them. More importantly: God is real...embrace Him like never before and allow Him to embrace you.

We love you and continue to pray for you.

RaDena said...

Z, it's easy to tell from this post alone that Mr. Z was an amazing and courageous individual. Thank you for posting it.

Like Heidi, I can't imagine how you're getting through this either, hon. It's evident you are an amazing person too. Yes, your request for prayers will not fall on deaf ears. I offer you mine, and many blessings as well.

Miradena said...

His thoughts will be as an echo in our minds reminding us never to lose our faith and always to appreciate our lives. That photo is one of my very favorite "Mr. Z" photos. He has indeed found Atlantis...

namaste said...

a beautiful post, z. i am quite thankful to you and mr. z for sharing his last beautifully written words. he has affirmed the way my husband and i try to live with each other every day. a fly on the wall would roll his eyes at how much we gush. but mr. z has reminded the world just how important it is to cherish your spouse. may God bless you both always.

the love that you and mr. z shared is SO apparent in this post. and i envy pris that she got to meet you. but her comment warmed me and made me smile. so nice to hear someone describe so well the love that you and mr. z shared.

i know tomorrow will be tough. i can't imagine how you will feel. but my prayer is that God keeps his loving arms wrapped around you and reminds you of His constant presence. you are so loved, z. you have touched the lives of so many, including mine. be well. and i will be thinking of you, especially tomorrow, but always.

The Vegas Art Guy said...

That post brought tears to my eyes.

Brenda Jean said...

I'm so glad he wrote that so you will always know how he felt. My thoughts and prayers are with you for Sunday. {{{HUGS}}}

Anonymous said...

We all loved him as we do you.
God Bless.

Brooke said...

Wow. Your husband was very insightful.

God be with you tomorrow, Z.

Always On Watch said...

How wonderful that you have this reflection by Mr. Z.

I have been praying for you and will pray extra hard tomorrow.

May the service be uplifting and a comfort.

Jungle Mom said...

Ypu know how much I appreciate this. This is so lovely, Z. I have already shared it with so many.

Z said...

Thanks, everyone, more than I could ever express. I miss that great man SO much.

I think this piece was "supposed to be" because he told me he kept waking up all the night before and writing this in his head and then remembered in the morning and typed it right down. And it's not like him to prod me to send something around.."please send it..." he'd say "...I want people to read this."

This was not about him. It was about Him.

Anonymous said...

An insightful, honest, prescient, loving man. God will bless and save him for His own. I'm grateful that he shared so much with us.

Anonymous said...

He was a a brilliant writer. And you are a Amazing person.
That was a beautiful post, Thank you so much for sharing it with every one.
Stay well.

frogBurger said...

Hi Z,

Thanks for posting this. This is wonderful and insightful writing. I'll do my best to remember Mr Z's advice.

God bless you for tomorrow. I'll be thinking about you.


Law and Order Teacher said...

As I gravitate through life I constantly meet people I wish I could get to know. While I never met Mr.Z, I always felt him to be someone I really would've liked to meet and talk to.

I have always been in awe of those who are eloquent in another language. I feel I can write, but it pales in comparison to the writings of Mr.Z. He was always a great advocate of his point of view and I loved reading what he authored.

Now he is with God and I'm sure he is at peace and happy. He is waiting for his loved ones and I'm sure you will meet him in paradise someday.

We can only be happy and enjoy the peripheral way we knew him. As for tomorrow, stay strong for him and praise the Lord for calling him home.

I remember what the priest said at my dad's funeral, "Death is a door through which we all must pass on our way to be with the Lord." Mr.Z is at peace, God Bless You.

FairWitness said...

Z, what a wonderful tribute to you. As ill as he was, Mr. Z showed his love for you was stronger than anything.

I wish you peace and calm, Z. Mr. Z is now in Heaven, where all his earthly frailties are no more. That is very comforting for those he left behind. He truly is at peace, Z.

May God watch over you and help you to find the strength to endure this sad loss. God bless you Z.

David Wyatt said...

God Bless you Z, especially on the Lord's Day. Isn't it wonderful to hve HIS promise that He will never ldeave nor forsake you, never. God bless.

Anonymous said...

I too , never met Mr. Z, in the flesh, but I have spoken with him several times and always enjoyed those encounters.

The man had a wonderful sounding voice, and the coolest German accent. He also conveyed the old world style of good manners and kindness and graciousness , that is so lacking in our current society.

I still can hear him saying.."Yah..yah, ", in that way which was his way .

I cried reading this last posting, knowing the man was so ill, it really hits home.

Well, Mr. Z, we will take your advice, for it is true; we all stand at the end and have to give an accounting of ourselves.

We come into this world with nothing and we leave it the same way.
Some of us are lucky and leave something of ourselves behind, and Mr. Z, I think you left something in your own special, unique way.

I can't write much more as I am crying right now; as I mourn for Miss Z and Mr. Z's other loved ones and his children.

Let me end this by saying, now, there went a gentleman.

God Bless Miss Z and Mr. Z's loved ones. Mr .Z has surely gone on to a better place.


christian soldier said...

Z-Our Father will enfold you in His loving arms-tomorrow (Sunday)-

He has already ushered Mr Z into the company of the 'priest-hood of believers' --
where we will go someday....

Jan said...

Dearest I read these beautiful words from all the people who love you, and Mr. Z, I can't help but cry--because of the love that I feel coming through here, and for your sorrow.

I have been praying for your strength and comfort, and will continue to do so.

I love what Mr. Z wrote, and I feel so sad that I never got to know him as well as some of the others--I know he had to have been the most wonderful person, and I know how much you are missing him.

My love to you, and to all of your prayers are with you all.

Mr. Z was so courageous--and so are you.

Anonymous said...

testing (my sis wants to know how to comment! xx)

Papa Frank said...

Mr. Z was an amazing man with an even more amazing mind. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers today, friend.

Maggie M. Thornton said...

Z, thank you sharing Mr. Z's thoughts about the worth of living.

This clearly gives me the feeling that not only am I still needed and cared for on this earth, but that I will not stand with empty hands and only a shirt on when the time comes, facing the Almighty in whom my faith has solidified and who has always come through for me and my wife.

I'm thankful to have the same faith and hope that I can apply it to my life, at the right time, as did Mr. Z.

I know your faith is sustaining you. Blessings my friend as you go forward without your dear husband.

What Was I Thinking? said...

I'm new around here and I never had the privilege of interacting with you or your Husband, but from reading these comments he must have been a wonderful person. You are very lucky to have all these friends here. I hope to become one of them in the future.
May God keep your wonderful Husband in his arms for eternity , and may God Bless you.

Gramma 2 Many said...

Thoughts and prayers for you today.
Keeping you close to my heart.

Pat Jenkins said...

mr. z is not gone, he has become what he was always destined to be.... ONE WITH GOD!!... though we mourn the fact he is no longer with us, we all can rejoice in the knowledge that we too will enjoy who his is fully now!

Moogie P said...

What a lovely piece penned by a lovely soul. Thsnk you for sharing it.

I met you through My Voice on the Wings of Change. Please accept my prayers for you and Mr. Z. And may you soon know peace and be wrapped in good memories of happy times. He is with you always.

defiant_infidel said...

Thank you for sharing his words with me and now everyone, Z. It is as it should be. He was an insightful, wise, loving gentleman.

You were close in our thoughts all day today. I hope you felt my hand squeeze yours and try to steady you.

God please grant this kindly, good woman the strength to persevere and endure. Amen.

Dr. John said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Martha said...

Dear Z, thank you for sharing this with us. You can totally hear Mr Z in what he wrote! I can hear his voice and his love. He was a wonderful, wonderful friend. A great blessing to everyone that worked with him. I miss him greatly.
I've been thinking and praying for you and Mr Z's children today more than every. May God provide you all with strength and love that you need during these hard times.
Lots of Love and hugs xxx

Bloviating Zeppelin said...

I'm so sorry I'm so late to comment.

That was a truly wonderful post.

Something, I'll wager, you wouldn't have had had not the technology existed today.

Technology CAN, every now and then, be a blessing.

Further words I have not. Further advice I have not. I am still dealing with my father's death. I couldn't beGIN to embrace what it means to lose a husband, a wife.

I truly cannot. And I admit it.


Z said...

Dear friends....the funeral was hour and a half service,with "God of Grace and God of Glory", "How Great Thou Art" and "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God"....with preludes before we started including "Can I have this dance for the rest of my life?" which was our first dance at our wedding.
I have to admit that about did me in but I'm so glad I decided on it.
Also, the Adagio from Beethoven's Pathetique, which was played at Mr. Z's Mom's funeral so many years ago and something he loved.
For anonymity sake, I can't share much more, I wish I could.

Thank you SO much for your prayers and good wishes here...I know they lifted me up. love, Z

Z said...

BZ, I'm not sure I'm 'there' yet. it's enormous. Please pray for calm for me......thanks ..

Anonymous said...

Mr Z. will be missed here, Heaven will gain a great thinker.
Go with God.


Jan said...

Dearest gracious of you to come here and share even a little about the service for Mr. Z--I know how terrible you must be feeling.

I was praying for you today, and I was hoping that you could feel all of our prayers upholdig you.

It sounds like it was a beautiful service.

I am praying for calm for you, as you have asked, and for peace to fill your heart and mind.

I hope you don't get tired of our telling you that we love you.

Faith said...

Of course it hasn't hit yet, too much going on, too many people, too many plans to take care of. Oh I ache for you when it does finally hit. Oh Lord, cushion her grief with Your mighty peace that passes all understanding.

Always On Watch said...

Sounds as if the service was beautiful and uplifting!

Jess said...

Wow, that was so touching. I can't imagine what he was feeling inside as he wrote those last words, not knowing what would happen or when. I wish I'd had the chance to thank him for his kindness and give him some words of encouragement in his fight.

Mr. Z's wonderful journey has only just begun. God Bless the Z family and friends...

And thank you so much Z for sharing his last words with us, I feel honored and blessed to have had the chance to be a part of his world here...

Ducky's here said...

I hope the services went smoothly and were a comfort, z.

God bless.

Larry Durham said...

Thank you for sharing Mr Z's last post. It was a blessing to read.

I pray that in the coming days you find strength and peace. I empathize with your grief. I lost my beautiful wife JoAnn to breast cancer nearly twelve years ago. She was only 42 years old. But God does provide grace; and I pray that He gives you the courage and faith you will need to keep going. I know He will.


shoprat said...

You will be together again in the presence of God Himself. This is good bye but not forever. I pray that you find joy in the meantime and take comfort in what he was and what you both will one day be.

Deborah on the Bayside said...

Music, encomiums, readings, remembrances – perfectly fused into one beautiful panegyric. Mr. Bayside and I reflected much on the loveliness of the man we knew – his humor, optimism and ever brisk mind -- and rueful on what we had yet to know of him -- such depth of character and accomplishment, a heart as a mansion with room for both great and small.

Leticia said...

Tears are rolling down my face as I am typing this. Oh, Z I am so truly sorry for your loss. He was a good and precious man. I know that he is finally at rest and with our Savior.

So my prayers are for you and your family and friends. May God give you the strength and courage each minute of the day when you feel you just can't go on. May you feel His arms wrap around you tight to give you comfort the comfort you need.

Anonymous said...

I don't suppose that Mr. Z was once a Karl Haas/ "Adventures in Good Music" fan? I love the Adagio from Beethoven's Pathetique. I used to listen to it in the car every Saturday morning on the way to my son's vocal lessons. I was introduced to so much good music that way. Every show had a theme, and I was hooked from the very first show I heard, which if I recall correctly, was one on classical music used in animation.

EDGE said...

Hope you are well!


sue said...

Z - Thank you for telling us something about the service. I have been thinking about you during this difficult time.

Z said...

thank you for writing, everyone.

Today was surreal. A 'regular Monday' that was as irregular for me as could possibly be.

Larry, I'm so sorry you lost your beautiful wife. It's the most astonishing thing I've ever experienced...I can't grasp it yet.

Faith said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susannah said...

My dear, sweet lady,
What a privilege to be allowed a window to see into your precious man's heart. Thank you so much for sharing his wise words with us. Oh, that we would all hear his words & take them to heart.

And thank you, too, for sharing some of the moments from the service celebrating his life. Beautiful, meaningful choices - as it should be. As others have shared, you continue to be in my prayers, at my every remembrance of you.

We know he is in the presence of the Savior at this very instant. Thanks be to God for that assurance.

Madeleine said...

I am so glad you posted this. This is beyond beautiful, courageous, and inspiring.
Praying for calm and peace for you.

Beverly said...

Thanks,Z, for sharing Mr. Z's writing and also sharing about his service. You have been in my thoughts ever since I read about his passing. I'm sure you are numb right now, and I think that is a God thing. How else could we make it? Hugs.

I.H.S. said...

Thanks for sharing the thoughts of Mr. Z about Him.


gecko said...

Thank you for sharing that beautiful post Z, it bought tears to my eyes.

HoosierArmyMom said...

Just through his writings and photos, Mr. Z has left you beautiful memories Z and with that, much nourishment for your soul in these trying days.
Thank you for sharing this, it is such wonderful wisdom and love that he had produced in this post.

I have always loved the song "May I have this Dance for the Rest of my Life", though maybe one should think in terms of eternity, as I imagine you'll dance to it again when you reunite in heaven.

"...strongly confirms what is really important in life – it is certainly not the biggest yacht, or ownership of a soccer team; those things will mean nothing when any of us meets our Maker."

These are truly important words to remember for the rest of our days. My thanks to Mr. Z for writing them and to you for sharing. May Mr. Z be at peace in the company of our Savior until you meet again in heaven.

Soloman said...

Thank you, Z, for posting this. I know I will be a better person for having read Z's words, and I will indeed share it with family and friends.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Z will live in his fine words, the good thoughts he shared and the love he had for his wife and family.

Though his illness and untimely death were tragic, I can say after reading his last words to us that he was a fortunate man to have discovered and appreciated the true significance of life. I don't believe anyone has ever put it more simply and more eloquently than he.

"Blessed are the dead, who die in the Lord. . . Their work shall live after them . . ."

Those whom we dearly love never die as long as we remember them. Though their souls may be in Heaven, their spirits stay with us and continue to nurture, guide and comfort till we, ourselves, pass on to join them in Eternity.

~ FreeThinke

Z said...

thanks, Free Thinker....I sure did have a wonderful husband.
And this is surely the worst thing that EVER happened in my life.
I'm so glad he'd not here to see me be this lonely for him...among the friends and family and flowers and food and cards and all.........
I just want him to come home.
And I wouldn't trade ONE DAY of our marriage to assuage this pain...the only thing worse than this pain would be never having married my Mr. Z.

Anonymous said...

I am sorry this is so late in coming. I am still shocked at all that has transpired in my year hiatus from blogging.

God bless you Z, and I have a hunch that Mr. Z is watching over you.

Thank you for sharing this from Mr. Z and thank you for sharing this in particular - I needed this reminder:

"Hug your wife or husband, cherish them even on the days that's the last thing you feel like doing. Be optimistic, have faith, never complain, and remember that THINGS don't matter. For Mr. Z's sake......."

God bless you.

Layla xoxo