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Instead of Flowers is Available at Amazon:

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In March 2012, I started writing one topic at a time.  The only organization was to relate them either to plant-based nutrition or inspiration to make changes.  I did not want to preach, but at times it was hard not to.  Writing is fun and the more you do it, the more you want to do it.

Well, the book is done.  It is remarkable; by consistently writing a little each week eventually you have a book.  For most of you it will resemble a compilation of my blogs.  The book is oriented towards someone who has just been diagnosed with a chronic disease; cancer, diabetes, heart disease.  Ideally I would like to see it on the nightstand next to a recovering patient.  The type of book you bring in lieu of flowers.


A Bolt to the Chest

Chapter 2

March 22, 2011


I really have done it this time.  As usual, when I do something I go big.

Your husband has 90% blockage in the widow maker” and three other major blockages.”


I was hoping for a couple stents, quick fix; make a few life adjustments and not rock the boat too much.

He is going to need quadruple bypass surgery as soon as possible.”  The next two hours after the diagnosis at the cardiac catheterization lab are a blur.  As I lay in the recuperation room, my wife, Alicia, is frantically calling my business partner.  She is now in charge.  No longer taking the back seat to the Ian Welch show.

Courtney Anderson is a longtime friend and I work with him at his Wealth Management Group.  We do a little work for the University of Miami, so Court makes one call.  Within minutes we have an appointment with the Chief Cardiothoracic Surgeon at the University of Miami.  Problem is we have 45 minutes to drive an hour and half.

Alicia is pulling all her native Long Island driving skills as we make a mad dash to Miami to meet the doctor in between surgeries.  The car ride reflects the emotions taking place.  Inside is quiet, a calm before the storm as they say.  Outside, the world is a blur; millions of random events intersecting with each other.  I look at other cars on the turnpike and get flashing glimpses of their faces.  I wonder what chaos exists for them at this particular moment.

The tires screech as we approach the front of the hospital.  Valet is a nice touch for this occasion and we are directed to the doctor’s office.  The floors are marked with an array of colored lines and you simply have to follow your designated color to reach your destination.  We happen to be red and the irony of our perilous situation warrants this color.  Follow the red line to your fate.  I wondered where the green line leads.  I wished at that moment I had spent more time focusing on the green line and not be stuck on the path I was on.  Not the right time for regrets but I know deep down the time will come when I have to face them.

I hate regrets.

The doctor will be with you shortly.”  What a morning; four hours earlier I had a catheter being pushed up a vein in my wrist to my heart.  Now I am quietly waiting for a doctor to save me.  Gone are any notions I have towards the medical industry, at this particular time I need help.

In comes the surgeon.  He is calm and reassuring.  A couple quick glances at the pictures the morning procedure provided and straight to the point.  “I need to fix this right away and before you know it you will be back to sky diving or scuba diving… better than before.” 

Surgeons fix things.  They exist solely to undo problems.  They don’t preach, they don’t attach emotionally; they simply fix.  They don’t care how you ended up on their table and they don’t do anything to prevent it from happening again.  They live for the moment and I can tell this guy is busy.  Fifteen minutes and we are done.  Next time he sees me, I won’t be able to see him and it is the last time we ever meet eye to eye.

MY OFFER: If you want to read it or need to share it with a loved one, please reach out to me.  All I ask, is you keep it within your group of friends or family and you provide me with your opinion.  Deal?

p.s. If you know any literary agents or interested parties that might like to discuss publication please contact me anytime at wholefed@gmail.com.

Thank you everyone.  Ian