Thursday Feb. 21, 2019

February 21, 2019

February 9, 2019



DEBBIE MCCANN entertaining from 6:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. at the Orléans Legion, 800 Taylor Creek Dr.

THE PROPOSAL and THE WEDDING presented by the Orléans Older Players (OOPS) in the Richcraft Theatre at the Shenkman Arts Centre.

CHILI & CORNBREAD CONTEST from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Abiding Word Lutheran Church, 1575 Belcourt Blvd. FREE ADMISSION.

THE SNOW QUEEN presented by the Missoula Children’s Theatre in the Richcraft Theatre at the Shenkman Arts Centre. Showtimes at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m.

SING-ALONG WITH THE F.R.O.G.s (Fully Rely On God) at St. Mary’s Church Hall, 1171 Smith Rd. in Navan.

Life is better with a smile and a sense of humour
By Heather Jamieson
Februsry 7, 2018

I don’t expect I am alone in that I have never longed more for a winter to be over.

And not just because of the snowfall, freezing rain and arctic cold. You see, I had plans for January and February. I had opted for an elective surgery that would improve my quality of life and make it easier for me to be the hot shot “senior” recreational runner I like to think of my-self as being. I would be more than ready for my eighth Ottawa Race Weekend.

I was going to have quick day surgery in early January and proceed to be super productive over the six-week recovery period. While I couldn’t run, I would be an active volunteer at the Orléans parkrun, my weekly go-to 5 km running event.

I was going to ruthlessly sort through banker boxes of family photos: if I couldn’t remember where a picture was taken or recognize who was in it, it was gone. I had a list of books to read and a whole season of Madam Secretary to watch. It was going to be “me time” to make up for October’s canceled trip to Italy.

There is a Yiddish proverb: Mann Tracht, un Gott Lacht – Man plans, God laughs. People plan alright and sometimes it works out. It didn’t for me this time. Surgery didn’t go exactly as planned and I have had a catheter for the six weeks since. This week, I am back in surgery, hopefully to resolve the problem.

Although volunteering at parkrun was no longer an option, I was not prepared for how bone-weary I was post-surgery or how long it took to adjust to my new “fashion accessory.” I didn’t sort any pictures and spent a lot more time playing games on my phone than reading.

These past weeks have given me time to think about how our attitude impacts us and the people around us. While I didn’t accomplish most of what I had intended to do, I tried hard not to feel sorry for myself and focused on being grateful for the parts of this adventure that went well: unlike so many, I am dealing with an inconvenience, not a life-threatening condition and I received the utmost support and compassion from the healthcare professionals who have been part of this journey, including a post-op nurse at the Civic who tried to encourage my bladder with a solo performance of “Singing in the Rain”.

Despite the horrific OC Transpo crash the afternoon before, I had a miraculously swift visit to emergency in the early hours of January 12 and was impressed by everyone during my weekly visits to the gem that is the Shirley E. Greenberg Women’s Health Centre at the Riverside.

I am also eternally grateful for my husband, family and friends.

That is not to say I haven’t missed driving, fresh air, my weekly coffee Klatch and my old routine. But who can’t be cheered up by the sight of your surgeon wearing a standout purple scrub hat or by the red flowered oven mitts covering the stirrups in her office’s examination room?

I did get some reading done and watched a few of the shows accumulated on our PVR, but after too many reruns of The Big Bang Theory, I needed to raise the bar on my television viewing and watched the 2018 documentary Pope Francis – In His Own Words.

I am not Catholic, but I have always been inspired by the wisdom, compassion and humility of Pope Francis. In this 96-minute documentary, he expresses his views on many of our world’s challenges. At the end, he asks the rhetorical question: what example would he give of simple, everyday beauty that has the power to “make others feel better and be happier.” His answer was unpretentious: a smile and a sense of humour.

He then admits that every day, after his Morning Prayer, he recites Saint Thomas More’s Prayer for Good Humour, which reads in part: “Grant me, O Lord, a sense of humour. Allow me the grace to be able to take a joke to discover in life a bit of joy and to be able to share it with others.” Ultimately, it was smiles and humour that has gotten me through this interminable and challenging winter.

(If you wish to comment on this or any other View Point column please write to Fred Sherwin at\




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WALTER ROBINSON: The pluses (and minuses) of owning an iPhone


HEATHER JAMIESON: Life is better with a smile and a sense of humour

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