ANOTHER DOOR OPENS: The doorway to Room 12.


“When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us.”


“Don’t worry my Sookybear. Just because you left your job, doesn’t mean you have to be upset. Just remember, when one door closes, another opens for you.”



It all has to do with ego.

I have a large, healthy ego, but I am starting to wonder if that’s an asset or a liability. Let me explain.

It seems that all throughout my life, I’ve led a dichotomous existence. While I had this tremendous hunger to achieve—I at the same time, hated school and eschewed the conventional path for achievement in our society: by being a good student.

I had zero interest in school, from kindergarten all way through my torturous years in college.

I must point out, that there is one area of conventional achievement, that I have adhered to: my work ethic. I learned my work ethic (as long as it did not relate to school work) from my parents, who worked 12 hours a day without whinging and whining (that’s Britspeak for complaining–ha!)–who incidentally, did not believe in “retirement.”

Do you know how rare that is in this day and age?

Instead of being fixated on academic achievement, I adopted an attitude of trying to become “the best” in endeavors that truly interested me.

One example of this was when I took up the martial arts, at the relatively advanced age (for martial arts study) of 29. For the martial arts, I chose the hardest road possible, enrolling in a non-commercial school whose system practiced bare knuckle sparring with no punches pulled, and full power hits to one’s opponents.

In a four year period, I became a disciple of my teacher, while spending 5 nights a week at the dojo, and achieved black belt status. In our system, “black belt” meant something. Unlike shopping mall schools where belts were awarded just for showing up and paying tuition—I and my dojomates paid in blood and broken bones—but we developed a toughness from the realistic training, that is lacking from commercial schools.

We didn’t play “tag.” We hit with the intent of trying to hurt the opponent, as much as possible. We cultivated a killer instinct in ourselves.

I eventually opened my own school, where I taught my students and disciples (in the true martial arts, there is a distinction between “student” and “disciple”—disciples being more dedicated) in the same tough manner in which I came up.

After many years of bringing my disciples up, the martial arts became an integral part of my identity. This is what my reference to my “ego” meant—that it was paramount to me, that I teach in the best way possible, and that this—defined me—at that point in my life.

There is a danger in allowing one’s participation in an endeavor, and doing it well, define oneself. The danger is wounded ego, if that endeavor is lost. And so it happened with the martial arts in my life.

After a decade of teaching at night after full days’ work in my regular job, I began to crave some personal time in this endless work cycle—so, making sure that my disciples were well schooled, and ready for teaching their students–I retired from teaching the martial arts

Admittedly, I was fearful of losing a part of my identity, with the subsequent hit to my ego—that of the “respected martial arts teacher.”

I used to bring my disciples for dinner at Chinatown restaurants here in NYC, and I became accustomed to restaurant owners and waiters greeting me with exclamations of, “Sifu, so good to see you. Welcome. It’s honor to have you here!”

“Sifu” means revered teacher in Chinese, as does “Sensei” in Japanese. People in my neighborhood who knew I was a teacher in a school of repute, might call me Sensei if they did not know any better. That sort of recognition does feed one’s ego.

As you know from “Memoir: Worry Not” and “Memoir: Worry Not Part 2—Room 12”—I left my job of 27 years last week.

This is relevant with respect to my fear of losing a part of my identity as a “someone who mattered” in ophthalmology, just as I “mattered” when I retired from martial arts teaching.

I recently said to someone….

“I’ll never retire. I need to have the structure of work; I need to feel productive.”

This was before the detritus hit the cooling mechanism. At that point before what precipitated my leaving my job occurred, I anticipated great anxiety, if I had to retire.

That was then, and this is now.

TWINKLEBEAR: God! So hot, and so wise!

Right after I hastily left my job in an indignant rush, my beloved Twin Flame “Twinklebear” Lesley Maclean said to me….

“Don’t worry my Sookybear…..when one door closes, another one opens for you. You will have less stress now. You will see, it will be good!”

And so it has been. Amazingly, a mere five days after quitting my job, I am so much more relaxed. The full scale panic and anxiety I anticipated at being retired, never materialized.

I love my Twin Flame Twinklebear, so very much. She is so wise, as well as being sexy and hot beyond belief. She was right. All I need in this world to feel myself, is Twinklebear and Room 12.

When I met my true “other half,” my Twin Flame in late 2015, one thing is for sure. Another door opened for me, to a world wonderful and amazing, with my Twinklebear. It is is a heightened spiritual life with her, and yet, an ever so primordial existence.

We are primal.

I could not feel like myself without her. If you don’t know what that means, then you haven’t been reading previous memoirs, and paying attention.

I love you, Twinklbear
Forever and a day
Twin Flames, Podmates always
Bear Pact Forever
12 12 12 in every way



  1. I’m so happy that you are more relaxed now my Sookybear! I did worry, that you had a heavy schedule, and with the extra computer training, bills to sort out, taxes, etc.. it was a lot to do. In other words, work, bills, taxes, cars, all these things become a routine. Obviously our bills and finances, need to be met. You have that covered. As your job entitled you to and helped you to get your ,” house in order!” So now , you can truly relax! Feel glad, happy, and proud, at all you have achieved.
    I am very proud of you! Firstly you are great, at anything you put your mind to ( except cooking!) Ha! Donk! No, seriously you really are, and like you say in this wonderful memoir. You like to do things as best you can. Well I am sure “retirement” will see you do more than you imagine. As I say ” one door closes another opens”. It’s all relative.
    Sometimes we envisage a picture in our minds , of how we think, or want life, to pan out. Trouble is, like life, love, work, health, retirement—we cannot always have control. Some things are “out of our hands” then fate, or destiny, steps in, and she says “hold up, you are regimenting you life too much, too seriously!” The plan, was always for you to be on this route. If you look back at your life, the correct route was always there. Mostly , you took it, to become who you are now. Which is the wonderful! Kind! Generous! Clever! ” Great cook!” Ha! ” Cough!” That you really are. You have touched so many people my Sookybear, with your presence, and lectures, your job, your writing, martial arts. Never fear that you are not good enough, or that you are useless, as really, you kept that office going. Soon “power’s that be” will realise this and “let me tell you another thing !!!” Ha! You jumped ship, according to plan!
    So I would like to be the first to congratulate you, on your retirement! You are more deserving, and worthy of it than most I know. You have achieved so much! So congratulations my Sookybear! I love you always and forever! Podmates Twin Flames 🐻 pact forever 121212 …. P.S. now it’s your turn to relax! Do things at your leisure after all you are now “a man of leisure!” Ha! I love you, for the person you are, and will always be. ” Wink!”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. AC Twinklebear Lesley Maclean! YOU!!! I heard that, about being a good cook! I love you, ya wise arse! Thanks so much for the heartfelt comments, my love. Your love, support and wisdom have lubricated (“WINK”) this transition period, more than you can know–you sexy thing. As always, you are wise beyond “being a blonde”……..”DONK” Hey, watch it with that rolling pin! Ha! Twin Flames, Podmates, Bear Pact Forever! I love you Forever and a day. 12 12 12

    Liked by 1 person

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