The Organizational Development Muse

Dr. Mark L. Vincent's Blog

"Walking beside my dying wife" is released

Posted by Mark L. Vincent on Dec 9, 2019 1:47:00 PM

 
 

"Walking beside my dying wife" is a curated blog of posts surrounding the passing of my wife, Lorie, one of Design Group International's Founders. It is now available as a free resource for anyone wanting to move more deeply into hope. Here is a sample:
 
Grit
Grit lives at my house.
Grit is one letter removed from grim. It contains grim's unsmiling severity without the dismal dourness.
 
Grit pinches a crease just above the nose. It sets the jaw. It offers no complaint while it pushes on.
 
Actually, in the middle of this battle there is no capacity for complaint. Finding a way through takes all the focus the very definition of grit.
 
Grit is a product of realism. We are here. It isn't going to get better.
 
The word grit aligns with this feeling I have of walking in wet sand while carrying a rucksack full of rocks. The journey is longer than we thought. The sack feels heavier than ever. We start to wonder about the purpose of carrying rocks from one place to another. It has begun to rain. We must decide to make the most of it. Even with this. We start singing to build a cadence as we trudge along. We decide to find something satisfying in having been able to say we never quit, even if we must suffer.
 
...why...would I want to condemn a person  to a  this-world immortality with their  broken  and aging body?
 
Grit.
What better options might there be? I can't find any.
 
DENIAL? Sorry, but this IS happening. Denial offers no safe haven. Denial is accompanied by delay; combined, they only add injury in the end.
 
MAGICAL THINKING? I wish I could think of prayers for complete healing as useful, but I only experience them as insulting. Complete healing doesn't give us our 16 years back. It doesn't restore lost income or money spent to cover medicine. It doesn't spontaneously grow new organs that were removed. It does not remove harm done by chemotherapy and radiation. And why, through prayer, would I want to condemn a person to a this-world immortality with their broken and aging body?
 
ANGER? Anger is a strong temptation, but it is a shovel handed to someone trying to get out of a hole. The last thing I want is an aftermath from harsh words or more lost relationships. Cancer has demanded too high a price already.
 
DEMANDS? BARGAINING? IRRATIONAL COPING MECHANISMS? I don't know what to ask for. I have nothing left to offer and to whom would I offer it? And, I've been around ministry so long I've seen the additional destruction from "going off the deep end."
 
These options make a realistic gritting it out a veritable paradise by comparison.
 
What is going to happen is going to happen, and it will happen in its time. We will face each day, each moment, with what little reserve we have. When it is over, the sun will rise. The mountains will cast their shadows, and birds will sing. I trust these things are so even though I'm blind and deaf to them at the moment.
 
 
(c) ell vee enterprises. All Rights Reserved. No portion of these articles may be shared or republished without express written permission from the author.
 
Get access to "Walking beside my dying wife"
 
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Topics: Suffering, Lorie L. Vincent, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, leiomyosarcoma, lorie vincent, Leadership courage

8 lessons learned from leiomyosarcoma: a spouse's list

Posted by Mark L. Vincent on Jan 30, 2012 6:51:00 AM

Our book Fighting Disease Not Death: Finding a Way Through Lifelong Struggle is being widely read. Lorie has been speaking at a number of churches (about once monthly is what she feels she can manage), and will speak next at First Baptist Beloit, Wisconsin on Sunday 19, February. Thank you to everyone who has supported this effort!

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Topics: Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, leiomyosarcoma, lorie vincent, fighting disease not death, unproductive meetings

Fighting Disease Not Death: 3 FAQ's

Posted by Mark L. Vincent on Sep 19, 2011 7:00:00 AM

Three questions keep coming now that the book Fighting Disease, Not Death: Finding a Way Through Lifelong Struggle is available. We decided to post our responses here as a means to answer them more readily.

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Topics: Lorie L. Vincent, Mark L. Vincent, Design Group International, mark vincent, the ministry of development, leiomyosarcoma, lorie vincent

Perception Distortion: depth perception for leaders

Posted by Mark L. Vincent on Aug 30, 2009 9:39:00 AM

My wife Lorie and I are often told that we have many things going on. Apparently we are perceived as busy people. That does not match our self perception. Lorie’s long battle with cancer has robbed us of so much of our time and diminished so many plans and forced us into such long waiting periods, that any healthy periods become crammed with buying groceries, catching up on yard work, staying abreast of our professions and paying our bills. We appear busy around others simply because so much time is given to forced stases. It appears everyone is at least partially right!

Perceptions are so easily misconstrued or only partially developed. A virtuous leader must understand this and commit to long and patient communication if she or he wants common and useful perceptions to form. Too many persons in leadership roles decide instead to embrace the ease of manipulating the half-formed reactions of people to their own, selfish ends.

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Topics: leiomyosarcoma, lorie vincent, virtuous leader

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