I write and write and write. I am looking for authors and down-to-earth people who share my interest and can give a novice, like myself, good advice in this exciting but demanding field. Looking forward to hearing from you. God Bless!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Strength is there even if it doesn't seem like it....

I read a story from one of the Chicken Soup for the Soul books. It was very inspirational and as I read it one afternoon walking on my treadmill, I cried. I want to share it with you:
The phone rang at 2:30 that morning and scared me out of my wits.
"Mom, I'm sorry to be calling so late, but I just have to talk to someone about this." It was my son Lee. He had just returned to his apartment after helping at the 9/11 Pentagon disaster.
I asked, "How are you holding up? Have you eaten? How are you feeling?"
He asked, "How is the rest of the family doing? Were there any events in Maryland? How are your patients handling it?"
The tragic story emerged throughout our nightlong conversation. Lee worked across the street from the Pentagon. He heard the explosion and ran over to help.
He went from bystander to rescue worker in one horrible heartbeat. His friends worked in that building and he wanted to help. Lee was not a fireman, military man, or medic. He was there and he was willing to do what needed to be done. Someone gave him directions and a flashlight and sent him to join one of the search teams.
He cried into the phone. "I wanted to help so I could say to one little girl, 'your Daddy will be coming home,' but that didn't happen.
"Mom, there were no bodies....only arms and legs. I wasn't able to save a single one of them. There were no pulses...not one, the whole time." He began sobbing. My heart broke for him. He struggled to continue. "I saw a hand, just a hand, on the floor, it had a wedding ring on it and all I could think of was my Crissy." (Crissy was the girl he wanted to marry.) That said, he wept again. "Mom, I never meant to lose my composure - I'm sorry."
"No son, don't be sorry; if you could go through what you just did and not feel anything, you would not be human."
"I'm supposed to be in control of myself. I'm falling apart here", he proteseted. "sorry to call so late," he continued in a whisper.
"I'm honored you called to talk to me," I whispered back.
"Since you're a nurse and have watched many people die, I thought you could tell me how to handle it," he said. Then he wanted to know how to regain his composure, so he could go back and continue the search. I told him that the devastation he just saw was not like anything I had ever witnessed.
"You're going to feel overwhelmed because it is an overwhelming situation. There is nothing you can do but rest and go back and do what you know you must do," I said.
He kept repeating, "I have to go back and try to help, but it's hopeless.."
With all the love a mother could give, I tried to explain that he had done all he could and that he was only human and he couldn't change fate. I tried to think of comforting Bible verses but none would come to mind. I just kept reassuring him that he had done all he could. He told me that once he rested and regained his composure, he wanted to return to the Pentagon.
"That's why I wanted to talk to you, Mom. How do you do what you do and not break down in front of people?"
"Lee, it doesn't matter if you break down. No one will care about that."
"But, he protested, "I'm supposed to be objective, controlled, and saving lives, not picking up hands and legs!"
"Who said you have to be composed through all this?" I asked. " Is there a rulebook on how you should act in the midst of a terrorist attack?" Son, you are reacting like a human. Are you really worried that someone might see you cry?"
"No. It's not that. I just want to handle this and keep my composure and be strong for the families, like you do at work."
Apparently he pictured me as Florence Nightingale attending to war-torn troops. The truth was, in the entire forty years of my nursing career, I had never witnessed the horrors he had seen in the last forty hours! However, I admitted that I had wept with the families when there was nothing more we could do to save someone they loved.
"Hon, we're only human, we feel human emotions."
"Then tell me how to control my thoughts. I have to think clearly," he pressed.
That I could do. "Even when I was crying, I prayed for strength and concentrated on doing my job to the best of my ability, and I continued to do it," I answered. "That's what you have to do, pray and concentrate. Remind yourself that you are there to do a job and do it. Focus on the task and ask youself what do I need to do next?"
He answered in anger, "I'm supposed to be rescuing somebody but there's no 'body' left to rescue!"
Just then, he let out a gut-wrenching moan and shrieked, "Oh my God!"
I screamed into the phone, "What's happened now?"
"Mom, I just looked down and there are fragments of other people's skin on my arms!" Then he broke into sobs. His heartbreak seeped into my heart and I cried with him.
My mind tried to think of something else to say to comfort or help him. I reminded him repeatedly that even when we can't see it, God is in control. I also reminded him that this life is not the only life we will ever have.
After an entire night of talking, "pray for the strength and do what you have to do to the best of your ability," was the only sound advice I had to offer. After all is said and done that is all we can ever do. Lee went back to finish the gruesome job.
The advice I gave him that night will help him through anything. Lee now knows he can get through any crisis by praying for strength and doing what he can to the best of his ability. That is all I could ask of my son. That was the best advice I had to give.
In the aftermath, I worried that such a horrible experience would scar my son for life. It didn't. In fact, he is a better man for having done such a tough task in a terrible situation. While I wished he had been spared that tragedy, he because a stronger person because of it. He has a deeper appreciation for his life and the people in it. He cherishes each day and he takes nothing for granted.
Lee and I are still miles apart. Yet, we are closer in heart and spirit because of a night spent talking on the phone, sharing tough times.
~ Joyce Seabolt

Monday, March 7, 2011

My epiphany

I am a person that enjoys writing my thoughts down on papers. I'm not sure how good I am at it but I do enjoy it. Maybe someday these thoughts/stories, etc. will make me some money but until then I am content with whomever reads them by chance and enjoys their contents.
About a week ago I was hit with a brick... it was like God was rapping me up side my head with a 1/2 ton truck to get my attention. I guess I hadn't been listening. (For those of you who know me, I'm sure you're saying... "Imagine that".. ha) My dad always used to say, "It just takes some people longer than others." Most of the time he was referring to ME.

Anyway, I had been strugging a great deal for sometime with life, my purpose and what I was supposed to do with whatever skills God had bestowed upon me. I had grown increasingly angrier over the years feeling defeated and wondering why God was not answering my prayers. I mean, I was basically a good person. I had good morals and values and loved my family. I had a great work ethic and tried to go to church every Sunday. People liked me. I had a lot of friends. Yes, I was overbearing sometimes and opinionated but when people took the time to get to know me, they enjoyed being around me. Or, was I just kidding myself... Well, you've heard the old saying.... "There are none so blind as those that can not see". Well, I think that I have NOT been seeing for a long time.

It's amazing how great your life can be with the right attitude, a PMA (Positive Mental Attitude) as you might say. That actually comes from a book I've been reading. Well, that morning about a week ago I suddenly realized that I had lost that PMA somewhere along the line. I used to be such an optimistic and positive person. But there had been SO much going on in our lives. We had moved away from all of our family and friends to a small town where we knew NO ONE. Our first child was born 2 months premature and spent the 1st 2 months of his life in the NICU. I continued to stay home with the kids after we had our second child. Then I tried to get back out in the job market but couldn't find anything really satisfying or comparable to my education or degree. I was frustrated. Then, the reality of the finances started playing a part. We longed to try and be social and fit in with the community but found ourselves staying home to try and save a buck. I thought maybe getting more involved in volunteering would help (and it has) but I still had the wrong attitude.

I prayed for that right job to come along but it seems like God just wasn't listening. Until that fateful morning when he hit me with a brick and said, "LINDA!! Just be happy!! I have given you so many blessings. You have a wonderful family that loves you. You have your health, a house that has everything you've wanted in a house, food on the table, a job (even though it's not where you want to be yet). Be patient and trust ME!!!! I will fill your life with so many more blessings if you just trust me, be happy and leave it up to me."

Oh my.... now some of you probably don't believe that that's what He said but it was. I'm not saying that I actually heard God's voice BUT I did hear what he was trying to make me understand. And it's so AMAZING how things just work out when you put a smile on your face, give people the benefit of the doubt, have a positive outlook on everything and everybody and just trust in Him to make things happen. I was so concerned with controling my life and trying to do it all myself and I finally GOT IT. I can't do that. It's never going to work out like it should if I try and do it all myself.

WOW! The past week has been amazing. Life at home as been incredible. Everyone is happier and things flow better. I know that that perfect job (or, at least, a better one) will come along in God's own time and I can feel my natural smile coming back. Feels Good!! Try it... they say it takes less muscles in your face to smile than frown. Now, if I start thinking about something negative, I immediately smile and soon those negative feelings and thoughts are gone. Live is good and it's only going to get better!!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011


I just finished reading this book. It was so sad and made my heart just break. Everyone remembers Farrah Fawcett and how beautiful and alive she was. Her cancer just tore her down to nothing. I think it would have been a privilege to know her. She sounded like she was a very selfless and loving person.

I saw an article that came across email a while ago which goes right along the same idea as Suzanne Somers has been talking about regarding injection of the right things into your body. When you're down, angry, sick, not eating right or treating your body poorly, those cancer cells can come right to the surface. That's why it is so important to eat right and to exercise and to not take all the medicines/pharmceuticals if it's not absolutely necessary. The body is an incredible machine. God made us so we can be perfect and healthy if we just make the right choices.

This is just my opinion in trying to make good, healthy "life choices" and I'm not saying that Farrah didn't make the right choices. But after spending 2 years on procedures, surgeries, radiation and cemo to try and stop the cancer it just weakened her body even more so that nothing seemed to work after a while. Eating the right foods, exercising and staying away from the wrong chemicals/medicines can be SO beneficial to your life. Unfortunately, the results are NOT immediate but if you stick to it, the end result will be SO WORTH IT.