They say to live your life as if it's your last day on earth. Cherish each moment because you will never get it back. Live life to the fullest.

Last week, during my hockey team's championship game, I aggravated a knee injury that I sustained several years ago and never had taken care of. I tried waiting out the pain in the hopes that it would just go away, like it did the last time this happened. After 3 days without the pain decreasing very much, I finally caved and called my doctors office to make an appointment.

The doctor felt/heard some clicking in my knee and decided to send me over to the hospital to get some X-rays done on the knee. I got the X-rays and by 4 PM I had at least a partial answer.

I have an osteochondroma on my the back of my right femur. My doctor had me schedule an appointment with an orthopedist and after that appointment (with more X-rays being done) I am going in on this coming Monday for an MRI and to talk about my options.

The point of all this is, at least for the time being, my hockey playing is completely on hold. My season starts up next week and I have no clue when I'll get to play again. And this made me think of how much I took for granted the ability to just drive to a rink, suit up, and play. Some people can't drive. Some people can't dress themselves. Some people can't move, let alone play. And I just took it for granted that all these things were available to me.

I'm not saying my playing days are over. My orthopedist mentioned that if I had to have surgery, recovery time could be 4-6 weeks. In the grand scheme of things that's not really that long. And you know what, I don't even have to worry about how to pay for all this because I have excellent health insurance. Another thing I usually take for granted. If I didn't have insurance I probably couldn't pay for a surgery. And if I couldn't' get the surgery my playing days likely would be done.

In general I don't say "Bli ayin hora". I try to say "Baruch HaShem" instead. Bli ayin hora makes me feel like I need to always be afraid that HaShem is about to take things away from me. For instance, if someone tells me "your daughters are so cute" I don't say "bli ayin hora" (which to me sounds more like "HaShem, please don't make my children not cute anymore because I acknowledged that they in fact are cute"). Instead I like to say "Baruch HaShem" ("thank you HaShem for giving me cute kids").

So, live your life recognizing more moments where you can say "Baruch HaShem". Baruch HaShem my kids are cute. Baruch HaShem I can drive. Baruch HaShem I can play hockey. And Baruch HaShem I can take care of injuries and get back to doing the things I love to do. Live in Baruch HaShem. Don't live in Bli ayin hora.


Peyton Lost and I Won

As millions of people around the world know, the first Sunday in February is Super Bowl Sunday . The biggest North American sports day of the year. It seems almost like everyone in the United States is either hosting a party or going to one. Chips, beer, pizza, wings; pregame, football, halftime, and of course the most expensive commercials known to man. Clydesdales anyone?

Since the age of eight (1997 Packers vs. Patriots) I have only missed watching one Super Bowl and it was because I was in Israel and couldn't find anywhere to watch it. Watching the big game was basically a given for me. "Where?" Was really the only question about it. My whole day would be planned around this one game. 

Not this year. This year I took my day back from the NFL. I decided a couple of weeks ago that I really don't have any interest in this game this year. My interest in the NFL has been rapidly declining over the last few years and if it weren't for the Ravens making it to the Super Bowl last year I might've won this battle a year earlier. So I planned my day the way I wanted to spend it and I executed on my plan. 

This doesn't mean I didn't check the score a few times during the game. And it doesn't mean I'm not a sports fan anymore. This wasn't to make a statement that watching professional sports is a waste of time. All I wanted to do was take back one day. Maybe next year I'll watch the game. Maybe I won't. When I'm living in Israel and the game starts at 1:30AM it's a fair bet I won't be watching.

So, while Peyton Manning and the Broncos shocked the nation by being so dominated, I shocked myself by not being dominated. 

Is playoff hockey here yet???