I have come to the conclusion, thinking about myself first, that nobody on God’s green earth deserves the word “good”. Everyone is, in fact, some degree better than bad, even though they themselves try and hide us many distractions pointing to someone else. When in need of peace, which the world constantly says it needs and is chock-full of versions of. Not the True Peace, the peace that will fix the problem in totality, that can ONLY be found in the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ.
The knowledge of whether or not this is valid or an obsession remains semi-blank to my mind’s eye. It started far earlier than late in my situation and was actually one of my steps to stepping, making it possible But seeing that it is neither harmful to myself or anyone else I will let it continue.
According to Jean Piaget, a Swiss clinical psychologist known for his pioneering work in child development, children go through four key stages of cognitive development. The sensorimotor stage, from birth to age 2. The preparation of stage, from age 2 to about age 7. The concrete operational stage, from age 7 to age 11. Then the formal operational stage, which begins in adolescence and spans to adulthood.
Now, seeing that this was in a sense my re-rebirth, everything moved as if I was on speed. What happened in years seemed to happen in months to me, disorienting, to say the least. I Googled stages of child development thinking I would get something far different, but I was wrong.
Same-difference, I have long since then quit attempting to get back pieces what was lost and instead focusing on what can be created new.
…I HAVE BEEN So SINCE I CAN LAST REMEMBER, to some degree despite the severity of my lacking in the memory department and due to the research in regaining of such. I have found out that my being one with a “yearning” nature has been evident since the age of seven. Probably even before because it is not as if you are one way, you lay down to sleep, and then you wake with another way coursing through your brain.
What I have learned\suppose\suspect is that from what I remember… plus what has been told me of my actions from both before and after the injury. Seeing that a brain injury works as a magnifying glass but unlike normal magnifying glasses that just magnify. It has the ability to selectively randomly magnify or shrink traits. That being said my addiction to adrenaline, a God-given drug, was magnified.
Now you must be saying to yourself, well now the A word. “Addiction.” Isn’t that a bad thing? Yes, in most cases like the ones where a person chooses a drug over something important, say a girlfriend, wife or a loved one.Those, plus others, would be cases where drugs could carry the label BAD but in this case. It would show itself to be the opposite reason… not good, but necessary.
Now remember every little thing that I went through just out of the hospital, I do not. Anti-seizure meds rightfully so, seeing that “They” had me on a whole plethora of medications. Most of which did a whole bunch of nothing, I mean ex- that out. Every drug given me in the hospital was important, even the drugs that weren’t given me. Those drugs turned out to be the BEST drugs.
Three, four weeks, or whenever it took place. On the mental-billboard, surrounding the four words that have come to describe my injury as “Way BETTERthanBAD”, came another. My minds eye “painted” PEACE. Many religions and things claim to bring peace to the situation at hand, and they do but only for a season.
Being a gentleman involving constant uneasiness and worry about what the next hour may bring. The first couple years were insane, or a form of, with my mind’s eye still thinking third person (a personality
It’s insanity but not the (laugh, ha-ha) funny type of reality or even the fearful kind. It is the sick twisted kind of insanity, the sane insanity. I knew nothing of my actions prior to first waking up in the hospital, not distinctly at least.
Picture all of my memories as files and my head the cabinet holding them. Now when my head came into direct contact with the cedar tree at some speed over 65 miles an hour, files were metaphorically strewn all over the road. They were as warm feelings, except, feel I could not.
Emotional blindness was and is the natural hell-hole I found myself in, outwardly being a seemingly normal 25-year-old gentleman but inwardly a mess. A ticking time bomb that had already gone off yet at the same time waiting to explode. Emotional blindness means exactly what it sounds like. You picture an emotional blind man crying while running into walls. Which would be half-right, my “mental-boy/man” seemed to be stuck in a maze running into walls but, cry I could not.
Eight years into the “ordeal” some tracks have lined up forming trails, of a sort. Taking them and mixed with what I know to be true about my past. Tells me, minus the moments that weren’t, that almost every moment was spent trying to be something I wasn’t. I was some degree ashamed of my recollection of some of my actions, but then it came to me. There is no difference between me and everyone else, it’s just that I lost a more than couple time. Then gave up, mentally shrugging my shoulders and becoming too acceptive choosing to be a follower instead of a leader.
A follower did not suit my upbringing from what I’ve been told of it, for I had one of the most normal childhoods. My mother, who was my father too, had settled in the notion of raising a child up on her own. A thing she had settled in her head to do after my earthly father had neglected to. Not that he cheated on her or abused her either mentally or physically, but they separated getting a divorce. My memory of the kind of man he was is not tainted by tales of horror or anything of that sort. For that matter, at my first wake in the hospital, I didn’t even remember ever having a father. Even now being ten-some years into my situation don’t remember anything BAD, BAD minus the fact…
Viewing Facebook the reality that “those that be” are making us think that we are in control. And although we are in some respects, we’re losing the battle if we try to fight it by ourselves. If you control, it equals POWER and if you have the POWER it equals control. I had to stop___, it was taking over my life.
I asked God to please only let me remember that which need be, and remember not that which is not, which is what I prayed to the Almighty Father. People have been good and/or bad to me, choosing what they chose.
Back when I was attending the Cluck-house (Clubhouse), it wasn’t for my own enjoyment, but it was what it was. The chance arose to meet people for the first time and when the two choices, staying indoors “playing house” or roving the mall, were presented. I chose the latter. Plus, at that time, the added benefit roving the mall presented. Yet another chance to keep on moving my legs. For I was in a wheelchair at that time, and the main benefit, a kind of trick God had placed in my head. Was to walk behind my wheelchair, pushing it and thereby giving my gimpy legs a workout.
Now the main general idea of that establishment is to “help” people with a disability find a job, but the main administrator and I we didn’t see eye to eye. Being an atheist, and I a child of God. As everyone is whether they believe or not. They are. I guess educated-ly that, that was the reason. Although this story may come out different when cooked up by another “chef”, it is what it is.
Really there was nothing wrong with the Clubhouse, it just was not for me. I amused myself though when I wasn’t inside by walking up to strangers, preferably foreigners, and asking them how “peace” sounded in their natural tongue. This gave me more enjoyment than “playing house” ever could. The mistake I was making was that I was being assessed for my work capabilities. And would not pass in their eyes. So two years down the hole, wasted. Till I became madder than not and in a tiff walked out, vowing to never grace that place with my presence again. Excessive is as excessive does and believe you me I was before and I am now. Wilder than tame.
I wouldn’t say it was all for not, I did meet some interesting people. And although I do not remember exactly who they were, I learned something from them. I can honestly say, “I learned things even when I shall never remember what I do.” So on that note, although I did not do everything that was told me, God used it to grace me with knowledge. How to say peace in various languages.
My mindset before the incident was some degree worse than good. Not bad per se, but not good either. For you see everybody has sinned and come short of the glory of God. The only way, the only being that has enough peace to give is the Prince of peace. I was saved by none other than God through His son Jesus Christ. Which I do not have evidence of, besides standing here on my own 2 feet. Sometimes I wish I had evidence of but if I did have evidence I do believe no-one would believe me. Seeing Hollywood’s special effects and movies have numbed our senses, leaving us able to see more graphic material than one should.
But the knowledge of all these choices, people living their lives as they saw fit, did not come into my mind’s eye till it did. The subtraction of God from the whole ordeal remains minus from my whole mind frame. Since God originally made this country great, what gives them the thought processes that deem it okay to run off of third base, going in a “new direction”. A direction that is seemingly new but has been tried way more times than not. Every time flying a banner with “new” colors. Usually yellow, and whatever keywords are in vogue at that time, e.g. “Forward”. In the meantime, they’ve long since excommunicated the Prince of Peace, they’re trying to make it to God their own way. When in fact it is written, posted on so many websites that the only Key to heaven lies in Jesus.
I urge you to do your own homework though reading up on the end, your end. It was what it was, as it is what it is. Peace has been a mentality, or a state of being, of mine since my “meeting” with the tree. You could say it was beaten into me and you wouldn’t be lying. Now don’t get me wrong I would be lying if I tried to stand here and say. With eyes way bigger than not, bottom lip quivering, the while spouting some nonsense like I am so “good”. That nonsense about humans being so “good” is a crock.
In my line of thinking, there are three beings who deserve the label “good”. And that would be the Holy Ghost, Jesus, and God Himself. Peace is as peace does. From what I remember the word peace came out of my mouth before my “tree-meeting”, or “treeting” for short. All the while, more often than not, my mindset and my actions spoke otherwise.
I remember at one-time friends used to be everywhere, coming out of the woodwork. And all around there was nothing but “friendly” faces doing friendly things. That all depends on what your “definition” of what friendly is. Mine at that time being what felt good to the body, thinking only for myself. There’s nothing wrong with looking out for yourself at times, but trouble arises when those times become continuous.
At one time thinking myself to be wise and smart I was known for a host of things. Then the incident with a tree happened. My accident. God stripped me of random vanities, things that were not of Him, making myself more useful to Him. What most people would say was “bad” He made “better than”. Not only that but He healed the relationship between my mother and I by showing me that there is almost no other reason, besides loving Him, that I was made.
Life is a good deal slower since my “meeting” but in a quick way. Almost too quick. If people would slow down, stop letting the news dictate what to do, truly taking notice of the blessings that come with being an American. It would go better with everyone. If my accident has taught me anything it is to not worry about the past for nothing good can come from worrying. Instead what we should do is learn from the past, both what to do and what not, place one foot in front of the other, and move forward.
The thing I want to say, the thing that I don’t know whether it’s stressed enough, is to never give up. When, waking up in the “special place” known as the hospital and finding myself surrounded by “helping professionals”. I didn’t necessarily want to give up because I had nowhere to go, it was what it was. As it all is what is. There are numerous times throughout history, times where people have done above their human capabilities, and all times God had something to do with that situation. While in HealthSouth rehabilitation center, receiving my first steps to stepping, I became annoyed with them and this situation I was in. Part of it was my fault, seeing that I was the one who had been driving. But the other part was the people that were hurt for me, and the system’s fault. Not all the people that were hurt are at fault, but those who play the system. They are the ones at fault and the system has to take some of that fault, allowing themselves to be played of the played, it takes two. Over the multiple years that followed August 31, the day I was released back into public, and noticing the constant, growing fear of the helping profession. Fear of being sued, I began taking mental notes of places I could put my steps-to-stepping to work in public, in daily life. The game of “pretend” being an ever so popular game in my younger years, I would play that I was walking on the edge of a cliff. When in reality I was just walking on a sidewalk, walking on the edge I called it. The game came to be known as “walking on the edge”.
First and Last Home
My favorite place, seeing that God deserves and gets all the credit. To my surviving and recuperation from an accident that should’ve taken my life, is church. Now don’t get me wrong, I feel led to remind everyone that this is a fallen world. If there is such a thing as a good there must be evil, God foreknew this when He built the world. This is why he sent His Son to die on the cross thereby creating a way to bypass all the end of the world horrors, whenever that may take place. I just figured this out since the accident. But I digressed. I do believe I was talking about a game : “Walking on the Edge”.
Early on in my injury I became semi-obsessed with the word “peace”. The word escaping my lips not all the time but way more often than not. At that time I was attending the High Street Clubhouse that met on the downtown mall. Because of differences in opinion I chose to spend my time milling around the downtown mall, striking up conversations wherever I would go. That obsession drove me to in more words than short learn peace in whatever language and nationality that presented itself to me.
I learned to say peace in Hungarian from a lady from that country. She works at the mineral farmers market. It’s “Beke” (pronounced: Beka). Not the first way I learned peace, that was “Kapayapaan”. My uncle who is a missionary in the Philippines had married a local, RonaFe making her my aunt so she taught me that.
On the Jaunt bus a French couple taught me “la Pei”. Then, at the time, I was attending the Cluckhouse (the clubhouse) on the downtown mall. Where instead of “playing house” like a good little boy, I walked around the mall pushing my wheelchair and talking with whoever I talked with. Doing this I ran into and became good friends with a Tibetan gentleman who taught me, “Shi De”. Then you of course, my “Smiling-Eyes”, taught me “Haiwaa”, which is peace in Japanese.
Of course the church I attend played a big part in teaching me peace and Burmese which is, “Te sou”, “Asumdri” which is peace in Ghanan, and peace in Chinese which is “Heping”. Another, of the many languages broken in Africa, is “Amani”. Also, I don’t know where I learned this, I learned peace in Italian which is “Pache”.
Then, of course, the lady who works in the lunch room of HealthSouth from over in Russia taught me “Mirr”. For the life of me I do not know exactly where I learned this but in Sweden it’s “Fred”. In Indonesia it’s “Damai”, in Nepal it’s “Sante” (Which is strangely familiar to Shanti, peace in India) In Vietnamese it’s “Hoah binh”, I learned that one Sunday from our waitress, a Vietnamese lady. Then a gentleman I don’t know where this took place but he was Armenian and he taught me “Hagutun”. Then in a Turkish restaurant the owner taught me Burrish. Another day a lady from Germany taught me “Freeden”.
All you have to do is ask, believing in your heart, and He’ll do the same for you.
Despite the number being unknown to me, I thank the Lord alone for saving me from both myself and others. It was Him alone who kept my train a chugging despite my not paying much attention His way. He blessings continue always, never stopping.
The Mineral Farmer’s Market is open in season Saturdays, rain or shine, from 8:00 am – 1:00 pm, at 81 Louisa Avenue in Mineral. Directions here.
The Mineral Farmer’s Market is thriving! We average 30 vendors each Saturday and there always seems to be something new and exciting to look at.
Yup, we’re a “Farmer’s Market”. Our farmers grow what they sell, know what they grow, and are proud of their food. Fresh, locally grown produce is our game, and our veggies are grown thousands of miles closer than some competitors. The Mineral Farmer’s Market is also proud of our other producers. Seasonally, you can watch an alpaca wool spinning demonstration, learn about plant care and pest management, try homemade hand-churned ice cream with seasonal fruit (yum!) and pick up goat’s milk, soap, and other body care treats. There are yard ornaments, honey, herbs, and teas, gorgeous flowers and plants available as well as offerings from our talented local bakers. You MUST try the pork sausage, fabulous jams, jellies and pickles. Of course, you can sit in the shade of the redbud trees and enjoy a picnic lunch or snack with your friends and family. Need a picnic table, Adirondack chair, baby gift, other gift or a customized piece of jewelry? EVERYTHING, not some things, is BETTERthanBAD all to different degrees!
It all began with my accident as most everything does, besides that which doesn’t, of course. Which happened on May 19, 2007. The date was around March of 2010, and after sitting moping ’bout what to do with my purty lil self. The knowledge of how this situation escapes my head of who called who, but my ex-soccer coach. June Clifford, the pastor of Beautiful Gate, and I planned on having Jesus’s Church youth group build a small garden outside my house. So AlmostEDEN was born. Which gave me a job and a gymnasium all in one. The fact that it’s named AlmostEDEN, a name I came up with, and for me it was IN THE BEGINNING. The parallel did not come to me till it did, and when it did.
Hello. Life with a brain injury is way harder than easy, let alone one with the synonyms “severe and traumatic” in front. I should know because I am blessed with one… When talking with people, because it happens way more often than not, I wait for let’s say three seconds till the subject of what I do with myself between the hours of 9 to 5 normally comes up. Or if not that, normally I can tell them noticing the darting glances elsewhere on my body, the way I walk. The “question” comes up. Why.
I am ever so glad, in and un-glad kind of way, to tell them why. It is not that I do not know that it was and is a shame on way more levels than one. The way it I was living. Partying, the girls, and drinking, which way more than one person has been guilty of. May 19, 2007. The fact that I was driving solo on that night was merely a God-sent blessing. Thereby removing the need of me nervously stuttering while going through the story of what happened to a crying mother and steaming father. And the only person I have to blame is myself.
The reason I did not have to go to jail was that the officer on duty thought I was as good as dead, and good reason too.
Brief bio of Jesse Clowater:
I was born on August 24, 1982, in Charlottesville, then grew up in Fluvanna County, where I did country boy stuff, like fishing, hunting, and playing soccer. My mom began taking me to church when I was two. I went to Christian school until the ninth grade. Even though I believed in God, I got further and further away from Him during my late teens and twenties. Substituting temporary fun for the Truth, I followed a track that would either end up in jail or a funeral parlor.
God used a cedar tree that connected with my head at 75+ MPH in the middle of the night, to wake me up. After consuming copious amounts of moonshine with friends, I somehow thought I could drive home from Crozet.
I woke up days later in a hospital room with tubes and wires trailing off my body, unable to talk or eat—even though I cannot remember it.
A severe traumatic brain injury has its definite downside; it narrows a person’s world to what is really important. My story is one of being stripped of my rebellious identity and of returning to the Lord I had tried to place on a shelf.
My name is Jesse Clowater and I would like to tell you what my God did for me. Before I begin I feel it necessary to inform you that when I say, my God, I am referring to the Maker of heaven and earth. The only God, my beginning and my end. For that matter everyone’s beginning and everyone’s end.
I’ve been face-to-face with way more than no people, all with 1 million different excuses or reasons they would rather not listen and keep on doing what they do. Yes, they’ll listen to me tell about how a 25-year-old man struggled to live and survived. They will answer it with the usual wows. All the while their faces masking up as one of the usual excuses is said and/or used, to distract me like women, alcohol, and drugs. Rather successfully used to keep me complacent, off the subject, and from popping the question of whether or not they’ve decided where they’re going to spend the longer portion of the life. They hearing that I have turned over a new leaf, following a new road, did not know what to think. You see I am more certain than not that God saved my life through Jesus. Peace. Understanding that we don’t have to face it alone, all we have to do is ask and help will be there. I’ve been prescribed to lots of different medications ranging from ones to do with my spasticity and others to deal with the seizures. Now, as of when it happened, I no longer need to take medication, and for that I praise God. I praise Him for a host of reasons. For allowing me the pleasure of walking again. Repeatedly saving my life.
Feel free to get in touch with one and/or all of the contact above. The first is a worker at FUMA, Fork Union Military Academy. Steve Feden, a good friend of mine, is the shepherd of many heads. Mr. Small was my high school drama teacher and is another good friend of mine. Mrs. Ragland is the leader of a brain injury support team I’m involved with. Dr. Harold Bare, a devout man of God and yet another good friend of mine, leads my church in Charlottesville, Virginia. Pastor Doug Adams a leader of another church and the opposite of an enemy. And lastly, but not least, Ms. Terrie Wood another teacher at the high school and good friend of mine.
GISZACK, TODD COL (GISZACKT@fuma.org)
David small (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Carol Sears Ragland (dblmiracle@Hotmail.com)
Dr. Harold Bare (434-953-9065, Pastorbare@covenantchurch.net)
I have let my Author down more times than I haven’t, but the key lies in teaching myself not to let him down. The thing I will not stand for is the use of His name in vein, that being the third of ten laws given to Moses. I now follow a being that set ten simple laws which I will present to you, keep in mind IT IS NOT ME SAYING THIS BUT God Himself. If you disagree with anything stated here, take them to the proper place…TO GOD.
I am the Lord thy God, … Thou shalt have no other gods before me.
I think that this law is the easiest law to follow personally, that is unless you are one that seems compelled to hug trees, they are beautiful and all but…
Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.
It seems like everyone turns a blind eye to this one…Unfortunately it even goes for you atheists, just because you don’t BELIEVE that there is a God does not give you the freedom to escape the punishment from my God, and to those who say, “He knows I do not mean it.”, what’s the point of saying it then?
In the past, certain friends have fought me on the subject of Church and some I agreed with others I didn’t. I wouldn’t consider myself a baptist or any of the other random factions there are, I am a child of the One and Only God. I believe that God sent his only son, Jesus, to die on the cross thereby giving everyone the choice between Heaven and hell.
This one is easy until you get to thinking bout it. I don’t care if you do not believe the way I believe. Even the girlfriend(OR PARTNER)significant other has a husband or wife in their future, and if they only knew…
Thou shalt not steal.
I committed this one even when I wasn’t committing, I had to apologize to my friends and family.
Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.