Hap Pollard. A husband, a father, a son, a friend to many and a dedicated and beloved managing director of a hedge fund company in New York City.
Today he has checked into New York Presbyterian Hospital for preparations for open heart surgery, scheduled for tomorrow... March 11th.
He has known for months that an aneurysm is in his aorta. A burden no one should ever have to carry. It was discovered quite by 'accident' when he was being checked out for something else entirely. Thank you God for that invention.
Since learning about the aneurysm Hap has had to scale back his physical activities. No more picking up his children, no more intense games of basketball, or any exertion that would cause his heart rate to exceed 130. Not easy for such an active guy.
I have been so impressed by Hap's decision to follow his doctor's advice and to adhere to all of his rules for living until the aneurysm would reach the size that open heart surgery was absolutely necessary.
But, what I have been most impressed with has been his ability to carry on in life with his head held high, with his focus on loving his family, and doing a 'knock It out of the park' job at work --- all the while knowing the burden he carried, literally.
Not everyone could do this. Years ago a large tumor was found in my stomach. Afraid that I may have an ovation tumor the doctor scheduled surgery 3 days after discovering it. That was on a Monday. Surgery scheduled for Thursday. I am embarrassed to say I did not go back to work Tuesday and Wednesday. I was paralyzed with fear. Now that I understand that fear is nothing more than thinking gone south; and, dreaming up scenarios that feel very real; and, believing every single plot of the movie you are making up in your mind, is a total waste of valuable time.
Has Hap felt fear? I am sure he has. Did it paralyze him. It did not.
Hap is a man of faith. He knows who is in charge. His faith allows him to rest in the moments of uncertainty and his grace is teaching all of us how to 'surf life'. At the moment a very, very large swell is building, he is on his board and about to stand up. He knows this wave is going to be the biggest challenge of his surfing career and he is still saying, '"Bring it on, I can handle you!"
I love you Hap. I love that you are married to my daughter. I love that my precious grandchildren have YOU as their Dad. You are teaching us all how to 'surf' and I love you so much for that (and for many other reasons to be shared in future blogs). God Bless You.