Thought for the Day: The distance from the Chair to the Bed.

Builders;

I have spent a great number of hours in the last several years sitting in a chair by my father’s bed, both at home and in the hospital. My contribution to the care of my parents is little compared with the work my brother and his wife do. In the last several years, one of the children has always been there, we  work together to honor the promise that mom and dad would stay together at home.  We have some professional support, but we do cover wound care and bathing ourselves. I mentioned that to someone who was visibly uncomfortable with the concept. I am not particularly religious, but I did point out the innumerable references in Christian literature to it, and pointed out that it is something you are doing for yourself, not the recipient.

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Having my gall bladder Exorcism this week has moved me from the Chair to the Bed, and brought the great awareness that they are much further apart than they seem from the chair.  The person seated believes they are a few feet apart, but the person laid down know the distance is measured in understanding, not in feet.  I am particularly close to my father, and really try to understand his struggle, but in the end , the person in the chair is a spectator, and the person in the bed is in the Arena. It is human nature for the spectator to believe  he understands, but the man in the Arena is a better judge of the width of the gulf between them.

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Your Aviation Connection:

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I have written at great length and from many angles about the difference between Spectators and Participants in  experimental aviation. If is my firm belief that the EAA was founded on the principle that every member would be welcomed with the message of Learn, Build and Fly, addressing them with the assumption that their rightful destination was their Arena, and they were never to be escorted to a seat in the bleachers because someone else assumed the right to judge them. 

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As we enter the latter half of this flying season, take a moment to evaluate if your influences are occupying chairs or beds. The chair people will tell you they have just as valuable input and perspective, but those in the Bed, who’s faces bear the traces of sweat and blood, quietly know better.

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I would like to apologize to the people who were legitimately hurt by yesterday’s attempt at humor. My only defense it that people on IV narcotics are poor judges of good taste and funny. If you were part of the majority of people who thought it was funny, consider yourself lucky to be a chair person on the subject of losing friends and family many years too soon. The people who wrote to say it wasn’t that funny are bed people on the topic of loosing a lot of friends, and no matter what I wrote trying to be funny, I also am a bed person on that subject.

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WW.

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