Update on Bernie’s Recovery by Eve Marko, 2/25/2016

We made it home.

Two inches of snow and a tenth of an inch of ice spreading over New England were nothing in the face of all the good wishes and resolve that took us up from the Weldon Rehabilitation Hospital in Springfield up to Montague, where a small Disorderly crowd gave us a loving and colorful welcome.

Bernie’s Strong Women of Weldon—Tara, Janet, and Kelly—all came by not just to say goodbye, but to congratulate him on all that he has accomplished in the 5+ weeks that he was there. To say that Bernie talks is an understatement. He spiels, orates, schmoozes, and basically can’t shut up. He came home in a wheelchair, but is able to rise up to most occasions and his right leg is getting stronger every day. Walking without human assistance and stairs are next on the list.

I can’t say enough about the staff of the Weldon Rehabilitation Hospital, comprising the Strong Women (and Men), therapists,nurses, aides, and doctors. They have been responsive, skillful, and unbelievably caring. A minute before Bernie arrived at the front door to get into the car, an ambulance stopped and two men took a man inside on a stretcher who seemed to have no awareness of where he was and what had happened. I pointed him out to Bernie and said, “This is how you came into Weldon.” I hope and pray that the man I saw will leave Weldon at least in the state that Bernie is leaving; certainly if the staff has any say about it, he will.

The work doesn’t stop. In addition to home therapy and care that Bernie will get, he has his own Strong Men and Woman here in the form of Rami Efal, Godfried de Waele and Mariola Wereszka. The last two especially are here from Europe to support his rehabilitation, while Rami continues to connect us to the world, not to mention coordinating retreats and other events.

While there were only five of us at the Welcome Home dinner this evening (along with Stanley the dog), I felt the presence of multitudes—all of you—who have sent us countless communications, words of encouragement, love and support that have made all the difference in the world. Among all those words, it’s hard for me now to find the words that capture how much we needed and appreciated the tsunami of positive energy and wishes you released on all our behalf. May it rebound back to you, and may it also ricochet everywhere to all the beings in need of succor, sustenance, and love.

Eve Marko

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47 Responses

  1. Dear one, you have brought so much to so many. Thank you for living your life well, thank you for encouraging us to live our lives well. Thank you.
    Our well wishing is with you – May you be well and happy, may you know love and peace.

  2. Whoa! It’s a dog- how could I have missed that? OK, dogs are THE best therapists available for the job!! Marie.

  3. Hello, Bernie. We haven’t met but I’ve donated to Zen Peacemakers and I’ve read some of what you’ve written. I wish you love, support and growing strength as you heal and get better -take care of yourself. I couldn’t see what kind of pet you were looking at in your photo, but all pets are good friends when recovery is happening.
    My Zen teacher of twenty five years has died at 87. You guys are precious, precious beyond description.
    Thank you for giving yourself to teaching us. There is no greater kindness on this planet. Marie

  4. Dear Bernie,
    A very warm Welcome Home to you. I did read about your stroke months ago (Jan.) I wanted to share with you my personal experience and payer to let you know that you are not alone. I too suffered a stroke(cva) Nov.24, 2001, I had slept a total of 13 hours overnight, which accounts for also suffering bran injury. I honestly felt that the world had come to a complete stop. I had recovery therapy immediately following my stroke, I had lost 90 % of my left side, walking and grasping was totally beyond my ability, the first 9 weeks, visiting nurses came into my home to assist me with my rehab, after which time I began going to a brain injury facility on an out-patient basis for another 9 months. There were times I just wanted to quit living, my speech was always slurred, and my short term memory was just total mush, I even forgot about my middle child in her 30’s (my daughter) who had also watched over me in her home as I was post stroke. I will never work again as I have been declared by Social Security 100 % disabled. Today, I ride my Harley Davison motorcycle. I am even capable of doing my personal workout(lifting dumbbells. I love life today, I have learned to accept and laugh off my stm problem, actually today my memory is not an issue to me. I just want you to know there is life outside the four walls, you can tear down the walls of your own disability (if you have any) but life does continue, thank God, I see and hear the Spring weather coming in as the iced over stream across my road melt’s at night I can listen to the running water breaking up the frozen ice. I am also a recovering alcoholic (13 1/2 years clean and sober) Please don’t ever think your too weak, your fingers still move as your eyes. I only began reading and practicing Buddhism 12 years ago, it is teaching me hope, love, compassion, my three biggest needs (I think) but bless you always, a man learning in Maine, Lance

  5. Thank you so much for sharing, Eve, and allowing us to bear witness to you and Bernie. Your picture of you and Bernie evoked such overwhelming joy and sadness all at the very same time . It is so ironic that Bernie is speaking and communicating so much. At the Native American retreat it was difficult to get Bernie to speak , but… That is the kind of man Bernie is. As he said , it was not his gig. Ever giving and so gracious. Thank you so much for sharing , as you all continue to inspire and give us strength on so many fronts .

  6. Dear Uncle Bernie,
    I met you at a workshop at Upaya three(?)years ago. You felt like a long,lost uncle to me. So sorry to hear about your health glitch. So, uncle, wishing you the very best for a speedy and complete recovery. My heartfelt best prayers and gratitude, Jan

  7. We get sheer pleasure out of all your red nose faces, especially from the young red-cap man in front , who is just back home from a hard yourney.
    So we wish you all the best for the next phase !

    With deep gratidude for your presence.

    Lia & Hans

  8. I am so glad to see you smiling again. thank you Eve. for giving us the updates. It is wonderful to see you together again, smiling and a bright light in your eyes.I am sending you healing thoughts.
    love monika

  9. I am so happy for You Bernie and for you Eve now that your home. Coming home is just the beginning of the work that needs to be done, all the strength and energy is just waiting for you to use it. Good luck I’ll still be sitting with you. Now that you, Paco and I made it past our 77th birthday, I can just exhale for all of us. Love, hugs and endless Bows, Phil Sengetsu Kolman

  10. Blessings and Love from all of us at Street Yoga, Each Amazing Breath, and all the peacemakers everywhere who wish you Bernie the strongest recovery possible. We wish you well, and send you deep gratefulness every breath.

  11. Such wonderful news! I just spent a week with Ram Dass and we held you in loving awareness all week. He was so happy to talk to Bernie on the phone. May his radiant energy at 85, 19 years after his stroke, be a model for your recovery. So much love, Mirabai

  12. Eve,

    Thank you so much for the updates, and for a sense of how much good support you and Bernie are getting. We know how challenging it must be for you. Our thoughts are with you both.


    Mugaku & Musho

  13. May I add my joy to the welcome home! My heart was touched by the miraculous ordinariness of the photo of Stanley with Bernie and Eve. Thank you for including us in this wave of healing energy and love. Many blessings.

  14. As the rain falls and the sun shines equally on all, may our wishes for your speedy recovery Bernie also extend to all our relations–including you Musai and the man entering Weldon as Bernie was exiting, etc etc.

  15. your recovery enhances and inspires my own recovery from a month of surgeries, TIA’s, and seizures –thank you and may you continue to thrive and teach.

  16. Dear Bernie, Dear Eve, We are so delighted to know that Bernie is home and that he continues to improve. We send our very best wishes, positive thoughts and enormous gratitude for our friendship with you both. We sit together. Cecilie and Mervyn, Sun Mountain Zen, Australia.

  17. From the Deep South, a deep bow of gratitude and hope. We love you and practice prayer, well-wishing, and Tonglen on your behalf. May you continue to be vital, clear, and free.

  18. Thank you so much for sharing. What a powerful light and joy come out here! Yes indeed, may they spread all over the world, all over our planet, most of all to each person in need.

    1. ….and of course of course prompt recovery, good health to Mr Glassman, a man who makes a difference in the streets, in real life.

  19. Dear Bernie and Eve,

    It is such good news and a welcome sight to see you home together. And in such Disorderly spirits!

    sending lots of love, Genyo

  20. ^^ Yipee! May home be everywhere, and cosy!
    / As far as I remember: you, Godfried&Mariola, are also there to support some book project, and I am really excited about the kind of writing that will emerge from this plunge you experience… (and that already emerges from your tender mind, Eve)
    Love from Bonn where spring rises with high decibel bird announcements,
    Kathleen & Thomas

  21. Yes! So beautiful to see you back home Bernie – especially with that crew of lovely people around ❤️ And somehow comforting to hear that you can’t shut up, I guess Eve and the others can outrun you if they need a few moments of silence.
    Thank you Eve for your updates, and thank you Rami, Godfried and Mariola for being there.
    May you all be happy, red nosed and at ease at home together!

  22. Hurray, Bernie, You’re back, Send you much healing vibes and much love and admiration, now enjoy all but keep working, We love you, Renata

  23. Welcome home, Bernie! Eve, thank you so much for the updates. I’m also sending waves of love to all of you to add to the tsunami. May you be blessed with strength and peace.

  24. Yay!
    So glad your home!
    We continue to raise our hearts for full and speedy recovery!
    No Gate Sangha, Albuquerque NM
    Jitsudo Roshi, Zenho, Taido, Issan,Scott,Wayne,Travis,Diana

  25. Eve. thanks for your writings and bringing us inside….so wonderful to see you all, especially with the noses, big smile <3 Moshe

    1. Wiat a great news!
      Wellcome home Bernie, Eve and All of us!
      Great great!

      Nów I assume from your noses it’s winter in Monteque,
      so stay in love and light and joy and warmth

      Happy Andrzej

    2. Welcome home Bernie!!!! You look great.
      Sending you and Eve much love. You continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.

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