Sunday November 4th, 2012 – Fox Lake, IL
I had another one of ‘those dreams’ again. I don’t have them often, but when I do they are very vivid and it feels like it’s actually happening. The last one I remember was last year after getting out of the hospital with my diabetes diagnosis. The owner of Zanies Comedy Club Rick Uchwat had recently passed away, and I had a vivid dream where he assured me my health would be fine.
I had never had a dream about Rick before, and I haven’t had one since. Was it him? I have no idea, but it sure felt like his essence. Rick was a strong influence in my life, and I always had an enormous amount of respect for him. He took care of me at the exact the times I needed it most, and nobody I can think of besides my grandfather told it like it was as candidly or without sugar.
In my dream, I could absolutely tell it was Rick before he spoke. It looked like him, and he was exactly as I remembered him in his prime. I felt a strong bond with him in life, even though we’d maybe see each other once a year on average if that. There was just something about his vibe that was magnetic. Jay Leno was friends with him for years, as was Jerry Seinfeld and many others.
I have read in more than once source that if souls indeed do come back from the other side for a contact visit it happens in a dream. I’m not saying I totally believe that but I’m also not saying I discount it either. The truth is, I just don’t know. I don’t think anybody does, but who can say?
The dream I had last night was completely different. Rick wasn’t in it, nor was anyone else I’d ever met. I was led into a room by a couple of big old knuckle scraping goon types who appeared to be mobster thugs. They told me to sit down at a table, and then they sat down on each side so I couldn’t go anywhere. There were more of them at the table, and none of them looked to be glib.
One of them directly across the table pulled out a deck of cards of all things, and started to deal hands of blackjack to everyone including me. One of the ones at the table told me this was going to be my “last chance”, and if I didn’t get dealt exactly the right cards I would be dead very soon.
They were all very serious, and I could feel a very real tension as the cards were dealt. I tried to take a quick peek at my cards but I couldn’t make out what they were. I’ve never been much of a card player anyway, so it was very strange to be in this situation at all. I felt totally out of place.
After a few hands, apparently I lost and the game was over. Everyone left except the two goons who’d first brought me into the room, and they said in ominously somber tones my life would be coming to an end very soon and there was nothing they or I could do about it. Then I woke up.
I don’t ever remember having a dream anywhere close to this, both in subject matter and how it felt. The situation was uncomfortably tense, and in such vivid detail it really seemed like I was in a real life situation. Most dreams are forgotten immediately upon awakening, but this stayed with me all day. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Did it mean anything? Was it real? Do I need to stop eating before going to bed? It sure did get me to think. I wanted to bring it up on The Mothership Connection radio show tonight, but I didn’t. I didn’t want to ruin the mood. It wouldn’t have fit.
I didn’t want to bring anyone down, but at some point we’ll talk freely about it on the air. It’s a subject we all have to deal with at some point, but I don’t think it has to be negative. I’ve had all kinds of close calls with death, and by now I’m not afraid of it. I don’t want to feel pain before it happens, but who does? The actual process itself not only doesn’t scare me, I find it fascinating.
There are only a few experiences that everyone on the planet is guaranteed to share, and death is one of them. Birth is another, but none of us can remember that far back. We can’t really share the experience, even though we have all gone through it. Death is something only the person that goes through it can experience, but it can affect those around that person in very different ways.
Some of us prepare for it, and others don’t. Very few of us know exactly when it will be, and it can come as a big and rarely pleasant surprise. Look at all the random shootings that happen on a much too regular basis these days. It’s impossible to predict when or where life will cease to be.
Then there are those who have a long illness and know how it will eventually end. I just had an uncle die of cancer on January 1st of this year, and he had been dealing with it for years. He had a lot of time to prepare, yet he went out a defiant ass right to the end. He became stubborn as it got close to the end, and instead of making peace with his kids and family he chose to alienate us all.
My father was the same way. He never made the effort even when he knew his time to live was short, and now it’s too late. He also left behind a trail of useless heartache, and that just seems to be such a waste in my opinion. All of us have limited time here, and when the end becomes near wouldn’t it make sense to at least end on a high note? I guess everyone doesn’t share my view.
I can’t live for anyone else. I can only do what I can do, but I want to do it right. If indeed I am not long for this world, I’m totally fine with it. It really doesn’t bother me at all. I just hope there isn’t a lot of suffering and pain involved. Going to sleep and not waking up would be my choice, but I don’t know if anyone gets to make that call. We’re all on red alert, and it could be any time.
The important thing is to make the most of our time alive, and I have been doing that very well as of late. Pulling off that benefit for Officer Albert in Milwaukee was a perfect example. It took a lot of effort to make it happen, but as it was taking place I sat back and watched it unfold and it was a no brainer that it was the right thing to do. If I do have a death bed, that will be a highlight.
I look at my father and uncle’s lives, and neither one of them had many highlights to look back on. They both mishandled their relationships with their kids, and didn’t build any good will for a lifetime that they could look back on with pride and know they made a difference. They didn’t.
I may not have made close to the difference I think I can, but I did at least make an attempt and at times even had a bit of success. That benefit show really spread some good vibes, and I would love to keep building on it in the future – however long that might be. It could all end tomorrow.
Who can say if this dream I had was a ‘warning message from beyond’ or just a goofy reaction to what I ate for lunch? Whatever it was, I got the message. Life is short, and I want to live it all.