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from Raspberry Beret
Nov25 Today on the Self-Rescue Princess, I’m talking with Abigail from the novel Raspberry Beret written by Lisa McCombs.
1. What made you want your story to be told?
I just want everyone to know that even when life seems unfair good things happen. My dad died before my little brother was born so Mom decided to educate us by travelling around the state and appreciating what God has given us. Because we were always moving around I never had a chance to make a friend like other girls my age. That was really okay because I had my journal to write in. This year I made a real life best friend, though, and I am happy, happy, happy!
2. In your life, what has empowered you?
I really don’t think I am very powerful, but this year I got the idea to start a club at school for kids who do not feel like they belong. It’s really been fun and I cannot believe how many students have joined. TAGU stands for Teens Against Growing Up. That’s exactly how I feel sometimes. I think being a …

Just trying to catch up...

I know, I know...it's been forever since my last posting. Sorry to disappoint anyone out there who actually cares that there was nothing here to read of late, but I have found that having a life-long disease is a very good reason to embrace disappointment. Not trying to be a whiner, I just haven't had the energy for "one more" extracurricular activity. This is why I wish I could get a paid for my disease. I mean I "do it" every single day.

Yesterday I had my annual neuro appointment and met the latest in a long line of med students who asked the same elementary questions as the last one as well as my own doctor. I bare my soul to these educated in dividuals by sharing all of the knowledge I have acquired over the last 12 months leave with much less knowledge than I was given at the last visit. I hope they take good notes. I think it's rather unfair that I bring to their table loads of updates on symptoms, results of experimental exercises and holistic t…

Fairmont's First Friday...the last of the season.

Tonight at 5:00, Annette (Bonasso) Rose and I will be signing our books at the Marion County Public Library table. At 7:00 Jenna Won't Sing takes the stage and I can't imagine anything sweeter than listening to my favorite band while sharing Abby with folks stop by to visit. Come out and see us! Good food, great music, fun times!
How about an e-book version of Raspberry Beret for give-away next month? Of course it would be nice if you check out Abby first so that you have a little background; but it is not necessary. Even though my books are actually a trilogy, they are pretty much stand-alone reads.
Don't forget to come to Fairmont's First Friday tomorrow night and get your own collection. Good food, great music, fun time starting at 5:00. Monongah's own Jenna Won't Sing performs at 7:00. Can't wait!
When I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, my name was on the  lips of everyone associated with my family, my job, my friends. Tragic news always makes headlines. Sympathy runs rampant and solicitation becomes an expected reaction. As soon as the novelty of knowing someone with MS wears thin, infirmities are often forgotten. I don't really mind. In fact, if my MS is not part of the conversation, I am relieved to not feel the need to make excuses.
     I do not rely upon my disease and am even kind of embarrassed (for me as well as for the interrogator) when I have to explain my cane, my limp, my slurred speech, or my lack of energy. It gets tiresome; but, I remind myself daily to be grateful for being blessed with tehh ability to continue working and to function in a relatively "normal" manner.
     The first advice I was given upon diagnosis was to join a support group. I did. I was mortified. I spent many, many hours planning the end of my life rather than bei…

Know when enough is enough.

On Saturday I attended the opening WVU football game, as is my resonsibility as a season ticket holder. The day was clear and comfortable; I didn't have to drive (for the first time in a long, long while); I had kettle korn money in my pocket; and I was ready to "bring on the Mountaineers. With that said, I still had to convince myself to get going. My face felt a little drawn (similar to the day I was dianosed with MS) and my dropped foot was demanding notice. I started worrying about walking the distance from the car to my assigned seat (roughly 3/4 of a mile). My anxiety grew when I realized how warm the temperature had become, forcing me to hold firmly to the arm of my husband and lean heavily on my cane.
Because our seats are in the south end-zone directly under the score board, I rarely leave my seat during the game since I am usually only good for one "climb". So, I had that to look forward to. Two hours with no bathroom break, which really wasn't such …

That's my dad! Monongah Citizen of the Year!

Patty Steele McCombs This year the festival honored four very special individuals who have all demonstrated, through their selfless actions, that which makes our town such a great place to live. Paulah Sloan who is a lifelong citizen of Monongah, coincidentally a daughter and grandaughter of previous honored citizens. She and her husband Dave, have operated family businesses in the town for many years, and in addition to serving the many people who have frequented the businesses with grace and a smile. Paulah has tirelessly devoted countless volunteer hours landscaping and maintaining all the flower gardens around town, helping to keep our town looking beautiful. John Myers, a fine gentleman from Paulah's neighborhood, is a familiar face to all the school children in our town, as he spends countless hours main...taining many of the children's areas, keeping them litter free and safe, such as the bus shelter, the ball park, the playground and the Rails to Trails. You can often …

This is an interesting site!

Skip to content HomeAboutEssaysCoping with Adversity in an Epistemologically Fractal UniverseThe Beer TheoryWere Santa Claus and the Buddha Separated at Birth?FictionJust DuckyStories of the WayStories of the Way 1: Negative EmotionsStories of the Way 2: The Cryptomeria TreeStories of the Way 3: Rice with RaisinsStories of the Way 4: The ApprenticeStories of the Way 5: The Tea MasterStories of the Way 6: The ThievesStories of the Way 7: The Swallow Cut
Just Ducky Once upon a time there was a soft fuzzy yellow stuffed duck toy in a toy store in Pennsylvania. The toy store had a long row of bins full of stuffed animals of all kinds; there were dogs and cats, lizards and ostriches, lions and tigers, llamas and elephants, each animal sorted into its own bin with a sign overhead.
Every day children would come to the toy store with their grownups, but although he was often played with, nobody seemed to want a plain yellow duck. One day he was left on the floor by a little boy and the toy sto…

MS is a full time job.

Today I unofficially started back to school after enjoying a summer at home. I didn't really want to get up and go, but I knew at least that I would only be in the building for an hour or so. Tomorrow is a different story since teachers will attend at least one meeting and then Thursday is a full day of test analyzing and curriculum prep before we can spend Friday in our classrooms doing the really important preparation for our students next week.
     Going to a full-time paid job  is a choice we make in order to secure a comfortable life for our families. Even though it is commitment, there is always the option to play hooky or be irresponsible and just quit, right? Of course, we teachers would never consider that. The point is, we determine our priorities when it comes to employment. Do we prefer food on the table and a solid roof over our heads? That is our choice as responsible occupants of planet earth.
     MS does not necessarily allow flexible priorities. Yesterday I…

It's good to be pumped up every now and then.

Words of Wisdom Wednesday!
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Because we can...

So, yesterday should have taught me something, right?
Nope...
I woke up slowly this morning but hit the floor running (kind of). My goal today was to wash the windows, clean the drapes, and scrub the blinds. Then there was the task of cleaning the outdoor grill.

And I managed to complete these tasks but with nice little rest periods throughout the day. That is the secret to successful bursts of purpose. If I can just sit down for a spell, drink something refreshing, and collect my thoughts, physical exertion isn't so bad.

21st Century Technology 101

Okay, so I wrote about limitations two days ago and only discovered this morning that my venting was not posted due to "technical difficulties". So, not only is physical activity a daunting task, but 21st century technology can cause us to stumble and fall just as succinctly.

I took a photo with my phone that I want to share as evidence of my summer challenge (the monster flight of steps separating me from my place of work that must be mastered in order to walk to that destination) and for some reason have forgotten how to download it on my computer. I'm just drawing a complete blank and I don't' know whether to blame it on my memory or technology:)

Anyway, I'm sure it will come to me when I least expect it...while in the shower...at 3AM...during a walk...Y'know, sometime when writing it down isn't feasible.

But I did accomplish something today and I want to share it here. I have two book signings coming up and after two years of trying to get some in…

Know Your Limitations and Learn to Trust That Little Voice

Have you ever had that feeling that you shouldn't do something even though that something seemed totally innocent and non-threatening? Why don't we listen to that little voice when it whispers in our ear?
      I've learned since my MS diagnosis that listening to that little voice is imperative. So, why, I ask myself don't I always trust my instinct?
     This morning before preparing for church, I decided to make up for my weekend lack of exercise to take a quick stroll around the neighborhood to loosen up the joints. So, walking stick at my side and my favorite walking shoes securely tied, I headed out the door to boost my day. The air was crisp and comfortable. The sun was promising to be present where as the largest part of this summer has been overcast and wet, so I chose to ignore my little voice hinting at impending doom. It was just going to be a small walk; nothing like the challenge of facing the mountain of steps that has become my nemesis this season…

Americans with Disabilities Act 23rd anniversary

Celebrating the ADAByPhil PosnerJul 26, 201314Comments
Today, we celebrate the 23rd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) being signed into law. The ADA is landmark civil rights legislation that resulted from the intense and selfless activism of individuals and groups including the National MS Society who fought for their right to receive equal treatment and access. Because of their activism, today, the rights of people with disabilities are protected in several areas including education, employment, public services such as public transportation, public accommodations (restaurants, hotels and retail stores) and telecommunications. Since the ADA’s passage, great strides have been taken to improve the quality of life of people with disabilities and to allow them to more fully participate in and contribute to mainstream society.

Even before I was diagnosed with MS in 1987, I personally witnessed others benefit from this statute. Prior to the ADA, in my role as a health …