- A tribute to Jinny S. Ditzler: PART ONE
Manuel Wachter, Laurie Oswald, Marsila Zainuddin, Jinny Ditzler, Hasannudin Saidin, Tim Ditzler. Denver, October 2016.
Naaah... it can’t be true. I need to really know. Let me call Laurie Oswald in the US. She can tell me for certain.
I immediately called Laurie in Nashville. No answer. What time is it there? I wasn’t sure. I started to have a sinking feeling. I called Cathey Stamps, also in Nashville.
“Cathey, Laurie didn’t pick up my call!”
“Hasan, it’s almost midnight here, she’s probably asleep, and I’m on an online session now. What is it, Hasan?”
“Is... is it true? About Jinny...???”
“I’m sorry, Hasan. She passed away on Friday.”
“Oh, no! But when I met her in 2016 she was well recovering from months of the dreadful Niles Disease. She’s strong. She’s a survivor. This can’t be!”
Cathey went on to tell of Jinny’s neural disorder. Jinny’s family members, Laurie, and Cathey herself were with Jinny in her remaining days.
Cathey went on to try to contain my tears. Cathey apparently abandoned her online session for my 20-minute overseas phone call. My home office is constructed of timber. My pain felt like the wooden flooring had collapsed around my body, the exposed rafters thudded my head, and the splinters from the walls pierced my chest.
“But Cathey...., I’m waiting for her new book...!!!”
I let my crying subside a bit, wiped my eyes, went downstairs and informed Marsila, my wife. Marsila had been with me that time I visited Jinny and Tim, her husband, at their lovely residence in Denver.
Jinny Ditzler had been my inspiration. In 2016 the website that described her work (by now 40 years) said that over a million people had used her system. I say that I am the 1,000,001st and Marsila the 1,000,002nd persons who achieve success because of her!
That night I wrote to Tim Ditzler in LinkedIn in-mail and told him that I have become a very much better person because of Jinny and him. I have also touched many lives in my coaching over the years extending Jinny's work to others who have become much better. Jinny lives on in me.
The next day after the news, I was still heart broken. I was doing my tasks like I was a zombie.
The big test came on day two. I was to appear as guest on an hour-long live-streaming talk show hosted by my friends, Jaklin Juanis and Shaikh Omar Anuar. They loved my suggested topic, "Seven Steps To Highly Effective Learning." I had mastered it and was already coaching a client on the practice of self-learning. Jaklin and Omar were hungry to learn how to better self-learn and wanted it shared with their audience.
But that morning, my heart was not in it. I can't do this! I'm still sad. I'm not in the right state of mind for this show!
Wait, wait, maybe I can get out of this rut. Shift! Perform!
Hey, I remember some ten years ago one glorious morning when I was 30 minutes away to do a presentation. Professor Mahendhiran Nair of Monash University Malaysia had invited me to speak on innovation. But half an hour before time I remembered our work colleague, Nurika Abdullah was in hospital to have delivered a baby the evening before. Let me call her to celebrate the arrival of the bundle of joy. That should pep me up for my presentation!
"Rika, Rika! Ay..., how's the baby?"
It was Hazli, her husband on the line.
"Hasan, we're putting the baby into the grave now. The baby was stillborn."
I broke down. Another work colleague, Sing was aghast!
"Stay calm, Hasan, stay calm." Sing hugged me tight.
"I can't do this, Sing!"
"Yes, you can, Hasan. YES, YOU CAN! You're the best guy to present this.
I held myself up. I did it.
But now!!! There was no Sing to hug me! It's lockdown. I can't go to him! And the talk show is two hours away....! What will I do, what will I do....?
Call Sing? What quickly ran through my mind was, who goes by the name "Sing," really? Does Sing sing? Ha ha... most certainly NOT! Well, he told me that no one in Manchester, the UK, the place he studied in, could pronounce the other words in his full name, Ng Sing Kwei. "Ng" the Britons said "Ngerh" or "Nerg" or some other silly sound! "Kwei" sounded (River) Kwai, or Queer! Of course, now in Malaysia he goes by the professional name, Dr. Ng. I still call him Sing. Ha ha ha... let me call Sing who doesn't sing.
Sing didn't answer my call. Urgh...!
What will I do, what will I do??? How am I gonna do this talk show. Shall I cancel it?
Faz Kamar flashed into mind, I had no idea why. My coach/trainer friend! YEAH, I CALL FAZ!
Faz, too, didn't answer my call. URGH...!
No, I can't cancel the show. I won't let Jaklin and Omar down! Let me pluck up whatever strength I have and do it.
Suddenly Faz called me back! I told her the bad news.
"Faz, Faz, what will I do? I am so sad. Jinny has had too great an impact on my life, my wife, too, the clients I have been coaching, and many other lives I have been touching. Our successes are really because of her!" I was crying some more.
"Now I feel so lost, Faz. So empty. I can't do this show!"
Faz listened, took in my feelings, let me be totally in it, encouraged me, helped me with more questions, and asked me one final question.
"Hasan, Hasan, Hasan, what would Jinny want you to do now?"
"I know, Faz! Jinny would want me to do the show. I have arrived so far in my life because I have “lived out Jinny.” I carry her spirit. I bring along her legacy. It doesn't die. Jinny is alive. In me! I will go on, do the show!"
"Go do it, man!"
I felt Faz's virtual hug like Sing's tight embrace ten years ago. I held myself up again. I logged into the virtual talk show and did it. I rocked - Go ask Jaklin and Omar!
Ha ha ha... the virtual platform is not that HD (high definition). Otherwise if you zoomed in enough, you could see what Smokey Robinson & The Miracles sing (hey, I like the Linda Ronstadt version, too!), "So take a good look at my face .. You'll see my smile is out of place .. If you look closer it's easy to trace .. the tracks of my tears .. whoh whoah..." LOL!
I did it, Faz. I did it, Jaklin and Omar!
After the live-streaming show ended and we were not in broadcast mode anymore, Jaklin, Omar and I did a de-brief. I let on that I was amazed at myself for doing it that well DESPITE my grieving. Jaklin and Omar had no idea. I told my story to them and cried one last cry. That's it. Jinny lives on. No more tears, yay!
FOOTNOTE: Today, September 15, 2020 marks the 4th-month anniversary of Jinny S. Ditzler’s passing. This is the first part of my tribute to her. May her soul be blessed.