THREW Mikes EyEz

Original Writings, Images, Video and Artworks of Mike Hartley

Comfort Zone


So today’s writing prompt is The last time I left my comfort zone.

I left my comfort zone yesterday when I crawled out of bed. Of course, that is creature comfort and I don’t believe that was the intent of the question.

Oh, I know, I’m well out of my comfort zone because it’s snowing this morning to remind me of my least and most uncomfortable season, Winter is here. Too lame.

I kind of leave my comfort zone each day when I post my blog. Because the quote “Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and to remove all doubt” keeps popping in my head right before I hit the publish button. Yet I don’t think this meets the criteria of the question.

I left my comfort zone last Friday when I left my home. And I mean comfort in that I know the virus isn’t here at my home. But again, that isn’t the meaning of the question.

Some never have a comfort zone. Photo by Mike Hartley

Let’s see, something big, maybe changing jobs would qualify as leaving the comfort zone? Oops. Only had 3 jobs since I was 18. Been at the last one for almost 25 years. I have moved to different positions throughout my career but the last one was 7-8 years ago. So let me see if I can find something more recent.

Ah, I got it, we had our kitchen remodeled and it’s gone over schedule, and while about 95% complete it’s still not done and we certainly left our comfort zone for about 2 months not having one. Nah, that still doesn’t sound good enough.

OK, I think I got it. I had two different cancers in my 50s. So I’ve been being monitored for about a dozen years now. Thankfully after my last cancer surgery and radiation, I migrated all the way to annual testing. Once a year is great. It’s so infrequent you don’t spend time in thought about it. And after you get a couple of years under your belt your think you might be home-free. But 2021 brought a change that took me out of my comfort zone. A number went up and now I’m back to every 6 months for the next 2 years. Yes, it’s better than quarterly but it’s the last thing I wanted to hear at this time.

In some ways the lack of a comfort zone I have about cancer almost everyone knows about now, with this virus. Am I going to catch it, will I get deathly ill and die in a hospital, or be burdened with life-altering long-term effects from it. I know everyone doesn’t look at the virus, like that, but maybe if more did they would get the vaccines.

I don’t go worrying about cancer every day, or every week or every month. No, I worry about it when I get a new ache or an old ache gets more severe. I worry about it when I hear a friend with pancreatic cancer is struggling. I worry about it when the office calls and says it’s test time and then I worry till I talk to the doctor. I worry that when I look into the eyes of my grandchildren that I’m there for them as they grow up. I worry that something might affect me growing old with my better half. I worry about it when one of my best friends goes under the knife for it. I worry about it when I see someone in a cancer chatroom at the job who is struggling.

I worry about a fight I might not win. So I left my permanent comfort zone over a decade ago when I realized I wasn’t invincible. I was just starting to feel good again last year for the first time in a long time when in September 2021 the increased testing came along and removed my comfort zone again.

But I’ve gained knowledge and inspiration from each time this happens. It’s a good reminder to make the best use of each day. Tell people you love them. Show them by your actions. Talk to people like there is a chance you might not get to again and how you would want to be remembered by them. Get to the things you love in life. Get to the people you love in life. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

Remember there are a lot of people who consider a comfort zone a warm place to sleep and a meal. So regardless of health issues that are out of my control, I need to get busy again working and being with the loves of my life so my comfort zone returns.

Random Thoughts of the Day

  • Snow is beautiful when you don’t have to shovel it.
  • There is a lot of action involved in setting up a good still life photo.
  • I hear its cold outside, more incentive to not leave the keyboard.
  • It’s tough returning to a night shift after a week of living and sleeping like a normal human being.
  • I might add chef to the list of things I’d like to become in retirement.

Author: Mike Hartley

With a lifetime and a half in the Newspaper industry I'm preparing for my retirement career as an Artist, Writer, Photographer and Video content provider. I'm a proud father of two wonderful children and I'm still married to the first girl I fell in love with and probably only one that would have me.

4 thoughts on “Comfort Zone

  1. A lovely tell it how it is post, Mike but all so true …my two daughters are unfortunately battling the big C and its not covid…sigh…but yes it makes you prioritise as you say …Happy New Year 🙂

  2. Your one photo says it all. Being homeless is out of anyone’s comfort zone.

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