From the Author

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

The Optimist

A wonderful lady, Elodie Armstrong, diagnosed with multiple sclerosis wrote her own ten commandments:

Thou shalt not worry, for worry is the most unproductive of all human activities.
Thou shalt not be fearful, for most of the things we fear never come to pass.
Thou shalt not cross bridges before you get to them, for no one yet has succeeded in accomplishing    this.
Thou shalt face each problem as it comes. You can handle one at a time anyway.
Thou shalt not take problems to bed with you for they make very poor bedfellows.
Thou shalt not borrow other people's problems.  They can take better care of them than you can.
Thou shalt not try to relive yesterday for good or ill--it is gone.  Concentrate on what is happening in your life today.
Thou shalt count thy blessings, never overlooking the small ones, for a lot of small blessings add up to a big one.
Thou shalt be a good listener, for only when you listen do you hear ideas different from your own.  It's very hard to learn something new when you are talking.
Thou shalt not become bogged down by frustration, for 90 percent of it is rooted in self-pity and it will only interfere with positive action.

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Saturday, February 16, 2019


Recently I heard about a mother and wife who was in a car crash.  She did not have sufficient brain activity to maintain life.  I know that a sudden life and death situation is very shocking to the point of having difficulty making decisions. In this case, the family were asked about organ donation.  I don't know what they chose.  It is important that all of us over 18 years old let our family and friends know about our wishes.  There are many people on waiting lists for organ donors for lungs, hearts, kidneys, livers, eyes, etc.

This particular woman who was dying was a loving, giving and caring person who may have had donor directives on her driver's license.  However, family members can override any of those wishes.  If there was a conversation about this issue, family members would not have to wonder what your wishes are.  Many lives can be affected for many years ahead as other people fill their lives with hope.

                                                                         To Remember Me
                                                                          by Robert N. Test

The day will come when my body will lie upon a white sheet neatly tucked under four  corners of a mattress located in a hospital busily occupied with the living and the dying.  At a certain moment a doctor will determine that my brain has ceased to function and that, for all intents and purposes, my life has stopped.  When that happens, do not attempt to instill artificial life into my body by the use of a machine.  And don't call this my deathbed. Let be called the Bed of Life, and let my body be taken from it to help others lead fuller lives.

Give my sight to the man who has never seen a sunrise, a baby's face or love in the eyes of a woman.
Give my heart to a person whose own heart has caused nothing but endless days of pain.
Give my blood to the teenager who was pulled from the wreckage of his car, so that he might live to see his grandchildren play.
Give my kidneys to one who depends on a machine to exist from week to week.
Take my bones, every muscle, every fiber and nerve in my body and find a way to make a crippled child walk.
Explore every corner of my brain. Take my cells, if necessary, and let them grow so that, someday a speechless boy will shout at the crack of a bat and a deaf girl will hear the sound of rain against her window.
Burn what is left of me and scatter the ashes to the winds to help the flowers grow.
If you must bury something, let it be my faults, my weaknesses and all prejudice against my fellow man.
Give my sins to the devil.
Give my soul to God.
If, by chance, you wish to remember me, do it with a kind deed or work to someone who needs you.
If you do all I have asked, I will live forever.

Check out my book, e book and audio book, "The Dying Teach Us How to Live" and my art gallery at

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

The Yellow Roses

"I walked into the grocery store not particularly interested in buying groceries. I wasn't hungry.  The pain of losing my husband of 37 years was still too raw.  And this grocery store held so many sweet memories.  Rudy often came with me and almost every time he'd pretend to go off and look for something special. I knew what he was up to. I'd always spot him walking down the aisle with the three yellow roses in his hands. Rudy knew I loved yellow roses.  With a heart filled with grief, I only wanted to bury my few items and leave, but even grocery shopping was different since Rudy passed on. Shopping for one took time, a little more thought than it had for two. Standing by the meat, I searched for the perfect small steak and remembered how Rudy had loved his steak.  Suddenly a woman came beside me. She was blonde, slim and lovely in a soft green pantsuit.  I watched as she picked up a large pack of T-bones, dropped them in her basket, hesitated,  and then put them back.  She turned to go and once again reached for the pack of steaks.  She saw me watching her and she smiled.  "My husband loves T-bones, but honestly, at these prices, I don't know.'  I swelled the emotion down my throat and met her pale blue eyes. " My husband passed away eight days ago,' I told her.  Glancing at the package in her hands, I fought to control the tremble in my voice.  'Buy him the steaks.  And cherish every moment you have together.' She shook her head and I saw the emotion in her eyes as she placed the package in her basket and wheeled away. 
I turned and pushed my cart across the length of the store to the dairy products.  There I stood, trying to decide which size milk I should buy.  Quart, I finally decided and moved on to the ice cream section near the front of the store. I placed the ice cream in my cart and looked down the aisle toward the front. I saw first the green suit, then recognized the pretty lady coming towards me.  In her arms she carried a package.  On her face was the brightest smile I had ever seen.  I would swear a soft halo encircled her blonde hair as she kept walking toward me, her eyes holding mine.  As she came closer, I saw what she held and tears began misting in my eyes.  'These are for you, ' she said and placed three beautiful long stemmed yellow roses in my arms. 'When you go through the line, they will know these are paid for.'  She leaned over and placed a gentle kiss on my cheek, then smiled again.
I wanted to tell her what she'd done, what the roses meant, but still unable to speak.  I watched as she walked away as tears clouded my vision.  I looked down at the beautiful roses nestled in the green tissue wrapping and found it almost unreal.  How did she know?  Suddenly the answer seemed so clear.  I wasn't alone. 'Oh, Rudy, you haven't forgotten me, have you? I whispered, with tears in my eyes.  He was still with me and she was his angel."   Anonymous Internet 
Remember to look around at the people you see and don't be afraid to reach out to someone who appears to be sad or grieving.  We can be angels to each other, earth angels. I'm sending you a hug!

Check out my art gallery, e book, audio book and published book, "The Dying Teach Us How to Live"