A Short Walk Down Memory Lane….the memories you like to forget

The seventh grade threw me for a loop. New kids, new teachers, new courses and a Science that would add points to your grades if you were willing to eat chocolate covered crickets! I enjoyed his course, along with a few grasshoppers. Let’s just say I had Science aced without trying.

But many other things were going on around school that I never had opportunities to try in the my younger years. Mom suggested checking into a  few options, try out, then see how it goes. Well, let me tell you…….I picked cheerleading. What a mistake! I faithfully practiced, at school and home. I was ready and would make the squad. My plan did not match the plan Jesus had for me.

When my turn arrived. I nailed the routine. I worked a “split” into my routine. I started the end of my routine. Finished with the best split I had ever accomplished! I felt incredible, until I realized I could not get up! One of the judges helped get me on my feet. Needless to say, I did not make the squad!

Ra Ra Re, Kick them in the knee……..Ra Ra Re, Kick them in the other knee!

clip art

 

“Worshipping the Lord in Song” (if you can call what I do singing) by Jill Baynes

Some may call me silly, but I choose not to care. I cry at Chipmunk Movies, now that is silly. I cry when a sweet commercial is on television. I’m silly….take me as I am and deal with it!

In 2009, my life changed forverer. I understand I am a child of God and my body is part of God’s plan. I had to learn that God’s plan is different for all and we are unaware of what our plan entails. The changes I endured, due to brain surgery, are all part of that plan. The Good Lord gave knowledge to the doctors to keep me alive; in my book, that means the Man Upstairs is not finished with me yet.

A dear friend spent 6 years attempting to get Barry and I to visit her church. She never gave up, she was never pushy; always encouraging. We put her off due to our business.

God had to really shake our lives up to get us in the front door. I had been through the brain tumor issue, when Barry shocked us all with a stroke; one year after aortic valve replacement surgery. By the grace of God he survived with minimal difficulties.

It took Barry’s stroke to open our eyes. We chose to close the business and focus on us. Barry continued to work, but eventually retired. Work did not do good things to his blood pressure.

We have been active members at Victory Baptist in Loganville for close to 2 years now. Today, I decided it was time to take a new step at church and joined the choir. After the brain tumor surgery, I would try to sing and found I was unable to get a word out.

Several months ago, l realized my singing was improving. As I sang with the congregation, my voice had come back and was growing stronger! I waited a few months and spoke to the choir director. He said when I was ready, just to let him know.

Well, this morning, the choir made me feel loved and welcome, as we waited to rehearse before the morning services. It felt incredible to be part of the group that makes such beautiful music each week. Of course, half-way through the first song, I saw Barry smile up at me and I cried…….

Daily Prompt: Regrets, I’ve Had a Few

What’s your biggest regret? How would your life have been different if you’d made another decision?

Photographers, artists, poets: show us TURNING POINT.

If I had to choose my biggest regret would be my first marriage. When we met, I was head-over-hills in love and could not see a future as anything other than his wife.

I gave up going away to college to stay close to home and be near the man that had swept me off my feet. I even ignored my family to put him ahead of everything else. I left my younger sister and father out in the cold to focus on being a girlfriend and eventually his wife. I should have been around for the two of them, when mom packed up and took off.I missed that time with both of them. Time I can never get back

On the other hand, I was there for my older sister to help when she had the babies. I started a career I love. I am the woman I am toiday, because of the experiences I went through with my ex-husband. I love doing what I do today, because of him. Most importantly, I wouldn’t have been in the area to meet Barry after the divorce. In a sense, my ex lead me to my soul-mate.

I don’t think it is supposed to work that way. Regrets can be good things. They can lead you to a future you were not expecting or they can fill you with longing to change things that are no longer possibke to change.

In my book, don’t look back. Always keep your eyes forward and enjoy your life, You cannot change the past, why regret it?

Daily Prompt| Origin Story

I have always kept a journal. Summarizing the day always seemed to make me feel better and helped get any feelings out that I usually would let build inside myself until I got angry.

I gave the journals up with my first marriage. I missed the writing, but I was focused on being a new wife,  no time to write.

Barry and I started the blog after we both dealt with serious illnesses.  Barry suffered a Massive Right MCA Stroke in 2011 and I had brain surgery in 2009 to remove a brain tumor. The tumor was benign, but it left me with a few after effects. The tumor he was unable to remove, started pressing into my cranial nerves causing twitches, voice trouble and neck problems.

The tumor ended up being a side effect to a genetic disorder that can cause all sorts of health issues. Barry has been released from his neurologist care, but just needs to call if any issues pop up. My neurosurgeon has released for the next five years. As long as I have no issues, I only have to see his funny face every five years, I love it!

The blog was originally the idea of our Neurological Counselor. She felt that if we wrote our feelings down, we could manage any issues better. It has truly helped. Barry and I communicate better, we aren’t cranky with each other, and our relationship has improved. This helps us transition through issues as they come up.

We continue to blog today, because it is helping to retrain our brains and keep our writing skills as sharp as we can. We work on the daily prompts together. Keeps the brain sharp. We enjoy writing together. We pass ideas around until we come up with a good response to the daily prompt. I do the weekend post. Barry does two post a week and I do the other two days. Most of the time, we work on all the post together. It has become an important part of our day!

In memory of Ms. Eva Frady Baynes Roper

Barry and I were dating, marriage had not been thought about yet, when he got the news that his mother was sick and his step’father neefed our help. It was the first time his stepfather had ever called with any issue concerning his mother.

He had been taking her to a doctor, home health had been ordered and the things they needed him to do at home, he was unable to accomplish. He was asking for help, unsure of what to do himself. Barry and I made a few phone calls and scheduled a few doctors appointments, then headed to Calhoun to check her health status out for ourselves.

One toe on her left foot had turned totally black. The orders the home health agency had was to soak the foot two times daily and apply an ointment and dressing to the toe. The physician had started her on medications for the problem.

Two days later, Barry and I took the two of them to the doctor ourselves and talked to the doctors ourselves. Her diabetes was out of control and she was about to lose that toe. He tweaked her medications a little and sent us home.

The next day, the home health nurse called my cell phone looking for Barry. She felt her health status had changed drastically and was calling an ambulance to send her to the hospital. I immediately called Barry and we headed to Calhoun.

Her kidney doctor did a test that let us know her kidney’s were failing and it would not be long.

While in the hospital, I was talking to his mom and told her that she had to get better. She asked why? I told her that son of her’s was eventually going to ask me to marry him and she would have a wedding to attend. I had to lean in to hear her, but she said, “Do not worry, I’ll be there”! At our wedding, Barry sat two chairs off to themselves for his parents. It was so sweet!

We spent the next three nights sharing a cot by his mother’s hospital bed. We decided to head home to shower and change clothes. Home was a two hour ride. Of course, the minute we walked in the door, the phone was ringing. She had passed away a few minutes prior to the call.

We let James know, we would be back early in the morning, showered and headed to bed. We were exhausted. We had plans to make.

The next day, we called to see about checking Frank out of school to get to the funeral. He took the news hard. His mother was unable to pick him up, but my dad was kind enough to drive me down to pick him up. It was a two day trip, we stayed the night in a hotel and headed back to Calhoun the next morning. Frank’s school was on the Georgia coast and Calhoun almost in Tennessee.

The funeral viewing had begun when we arrived. I have to admit I was a little angry with Barry’s ex-wife when we arrived. She could not make the trip to pick her son up for the funeral, but she could rent a hotel room and head to his mother’s house to start picking out what she wanted and driving poor Barry into a nervous frenzy. My aging father took the time to help me accomplish that task and she never said as much as a “thank you”.

I calmed Barry and got serious about circulating. Ignoring the cause os his nerve overload. Ms. Eva had a wonderful turnout. The mortician had done a beautiful job. The church service was well-done. Frank’s tearful memories were my undoing.

At the graveside service, the flowers were beautiful. As everyone was leaving the service to head back for lunch at the church. Barry, Frank, and I stayed back to take a few photos and take time for our good-byes.

Just as I said, “Ms. Eva, don’t worry, I’ll take care of your boys!” At that very moment, a rose fell off the casket in front of Barry and Frank and landed at their feet. We all froze and looked at one another. We still have those roses in a bible today!

My “EEeeeerrrrrry” Phone Call: God works in mysterious ways

Spring

A few years back, just before Barry and I married, I was enjoying my peaceful ride to work. I loved my time alone driving to work. I could crank the radio up or just have peace and quiet. Once I walked in the door at work, chaos always ensued.

I was sitting at a stop-light when my cell phone started ringing. It was a resident at the home I worked for. She wanted me to know that God had just spoken to her and said he was coming for her shortly. She requested that I call her family and get them to the home quickly, she wasn’t sure how much time she had and wanted to say good-bye. She requested I call the Hospice to get them to her bedside.  She then told me to be quick and careful getting to the office, but she needed to hug my neck one last time.

When she hung up, I immediately called the home to get someone to lay eyes on her. After contacting my supervisor, I did everything she asked. I decided to contact her pastor, since he was local.

Everyone made it to the home for a wonderful good-bye. When I arrived, I headed straight for her room. I walked in, sat on the bed next to her. She sat up, wrapped her arms around me and kissed my cheek. She whispered, “Thank you” in my ear and fell back on her pillow. She was gone. Our Heavenly Father had her at His side.

 

Daily Prompt: Moment of Kindness

Describe a moment of kindness, between you and someone else — loved one or complete stranger.Photographers, artists, poets: show us KINDNESS.

While driving home from work one evening (at that time I worked the second shift, 3-11pm at a local hospital). I did not like driving home at that hour, but the money was perfect for a low-stress position. I enjoyed the job, making the drive worthwhile.

It felt like a long drive home, due to the main route between the two towns. It was a long country road, through the sticks, in the middle of no where. One gas station stood as the only sign of civilization on the ride.
While driving home one evening, just past midnight. While driving down a big hill, I noticed a car on the side of the road, flashers going. As I drove closer to the car, I realized the car was empty. I made sure no one was laying around the car and continued my ride home.

Approximately, one half a mile from where the broken down car sat, I drove past a man. He was dressed in a suit, walking up a huge hill, carrying four suitcases and sweating bullets. I backed up, opened my window and asked if he needed a ride and if so, to get in.

I then told him that if he intended to kill me and steal my car, I’d get out and let him have it now. If he genuinly needed a ride, to get in and I’d take him to the closest pay phone.

He put his bags in the back, and got in the front seat. He buckled up. I gave him my extra bottle of water snd we headed to the local gas station. I made sure he had help on the way and headed home, myself.

He never said a word, other than “Thank you, ma’am”!
One year later, to date, I received a surprise. It was a dozen pale pink roses from a shop in a smalltown, nearby. The man I picked up, was the mayor of the next town over.

He sent roses on that date for 12 years. There was a small article in their paper, that week, about the kindness of strangers. I kept a copy for years, but he stated what a shame it is that there aren’t more kind strangers still out there. This happened over 20 years ago!

Ms.Mater, the first resident I assessed for admission to a Personal Care Home

As I walked down the hallway, toward Ms. Mater’s room, the air was filled with laughter. I knocked on the door four times before someone heard me. I was instructed to “come in”. I looked around the room as I walked in. The room was full of resident’s of the home, as well as employees. Ms. Mater was the center of attention. I was about to discover that she loved every minute.

Ms. Mater had suffered a debilatating stroke and upon discharge from rehabilitation, she was scheduled to move into our building. All of this was a preliminary arrangement, based on the results of the assessment I was about to go through with her. Procedure, procedure, procedure…….

I introduced myself and asked a staffmember to assist with the other resident’s; I needed Ms. Mater to myself to complete the assessment.

Once alone with my new friend, she started cracking jokes. This sweet, little, gray-haired lady was hilarious! She had me about to wet myself within seconds. Within minutes we were fast friends. A friendship that continues today. Even though she can’t hear me, we speak several times monthly and we visit when in the area.  Neither of us gets out like we used to, but we enjoy life.

Ms. Mater elegantly answered my questions and performed the tasks I asked of her, without complaint and to the best of her current abilities. She made no excuses for her defeciencies, she joked them off. As we worked, she told me stories of her childhood. She claimed to have grown up being called “The Ugly Duckling”

I just could not see it, she had such a timeless beauty. She said she grew up on her farm, the oldest of three girls. She was born with a headful of flaming red curls and as each of her sisters were born, they had Strawberry blonde curls. She said she was furious, until they grew up and she was prettier than both of them. From what I heard, she did not mind sharing that fact at all.

The only clue she was ever a red-head, was the red tint in her silver hair. It almost appeared to be blonde or light brown. She never left her room without being immaculately dressed, with makeup and lipstick perfect.

She had a set weekly appointment with beautician. I was sworn to secrecy over how she keeps her hair in place at night. It is actually a little funny. She doesn’t know it, but I have a photo of her sleeping in her get-up.

Ms. Mater was crazy about my now husband. She repeatedly told me that if she were twenty years younger, she’d take Barry away from me. I wouldn’t put it past her to at least try. Ms. Mater always said she loved me due to my “smart-…” attitude. I’d just say “back at you”and keep going.

When I need to cheer myself or need a little giggle, I think of Ms. Mater. It always makes me smile. I can see her sitting in my office chair, telling everything I need to get done “around here”. Cheers me right up! I’ll usually give her a call later that evening. I miss having her around!

For the Week of June 16, 2013: A Father’s Legacy: Lee Van Hayes, my father and Barry L. Baynes, my hubby

My daddy

My daddy


This is reblogged from earlier this last month. The part about Barry, my husband is new. The Two Important Fathers in my Life! All fathers are important, these are just the two big guys in my life.

I speak a lot about my mother and the rest of my family, while Pop sits quietly in the background. He has always been quiet, but he is always there. Ready when you need him. He gives great hugs!

My mom and Pop divorced over 20 years ago. Daddy was head over heels in love with mom, but she just could not be happy. I’m not sure mom knows how to be happy.

Pop is a sweet, sensitive man that likes to stay busy. His body is breaking down and he still wants to go. My sisters and I just want uim to take a little better care of himself in the process.

Growing up, Pop would be gone when we got up in the mornings and did not get home until we were in bed asleep. He made sure we spent time together on the weekends. We picniced and went fishing a lot. I still love it today.

He and mom planted a garden yearly. Our punishment during the summer month was weeding the garden.
Each one of us does some form of gardening today.

With Pop working so much, I wasn’t sure how he felt about us or if he knew we were alive. It was my childish mind not understanding, he was out working his hiney off, so that we could live the life we were living. We vacationed 2 weeks at the beach every summer, when I wanted knew clothes all I did was ask.
I can remember the first time my daddy told me he thought I was pretty. I was ready to go to a dance, all dressed up in my 80’s garb. Homecoming dance, I think. Pop came in from work early. He walked over and kissed me on the cheek. Then said, “I think I just realized how pretty you are. Have great time tonight, honey.” I had to redo my makeup. But it is a moment with my daddy, I’ll always remember.
HAPPY FATHER’ S DAY, POP! You are the best!

image

Now to my sweet husband. He is a father. He has a son from his first marriage. When Barry and I met, Frank was in High School. When we married, Frank was not happy and has not made life easy for himself or us, including his own mother.

It didn’t matter what I attempted to do, Frank decided long ago he did not want me as part of his life and did everything possible to get rid of me. It has been his choice to not be part of our lives. I feel horrible, if it is my fault. But it has been his choices and actions that has gotten us to where we are today. I truly wish something could be done. Barry and I pray for him nightly! Hopefully as he grows up a little more, things will change. Both Barry and he deserve better!

Barry is warm, caring, giving, highly-intelligent and loving man. Frank’s mom suffered from health issues after his birth, so Barry was in charge of 90% of the raising. Most of us are either a lot like our mother or father. Frank looks just like his father, but has his mother’s personality. That is as far as I go on this topic.

I do not know what words to say, to make this day easier.

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY, HONEY! You are the best!

Love you guys, Jill Baynes, your daughter, Jill and Barry, your wife, Jill (in case you forgot my name)

Daily Prompt: In Good Faith: A brother’s wish

Describe a memory or encounter in which you considered your faith, religion, spirituality — or lack of — for the first time.

Photographers, artists, poets: show us FAITH.

During a shift at my first job, I admitted a man to my unit that was in bad shape.  I discovered his admission was at the request of his Hospice,  for pain management. Being a new graduate nurse, you get crazy assignments and tough cases as learning experiences.

I completed the proper paperwork, gave the patient medications his doctor ordered, did what I could to help the family and make them comfortable. I gave the report to my charge nurse and then; started rounds on my other assigned patients.

The supervisor met me in the hallway to tell me of a status change for my new patient. When I returned to his room, I met a representative from his Hospice and he introduced me to the family gathered to say good-bye. My new patient’s diagnosis was End Stage Pancreatic Cancer and his last wishes were to be admitted to Room 434 at the Regional Hospital, where his wife passed away. She died, in 1984, in the same room where he laid dying now.

The Hospice nurse explained his wishes a little better. When his time was close, he requested to be admitted to the hospital for pain management. For about two hours, I played private-duty nurse to his family for whatever need may arise. I tenderly cared for their family member and provided pain management, as ordered, to keep him as comfortable as my capable hands could.

It did not take long for the signs that God was calling him home to show up. His respiration’s were becoming shallow and his heart rate slowing. When the end was upon us, our patient’s brother stepped forward and stated. ” I’d give anything, to see him sit up in bed and take one more breath.”

As in slow motion, my patient slowly, sat up in bed and drew in a long exacerbated breath, fell back on his pillow and was gone. Everyone just looked around the room in amazement. The Good Lord swept in and took him off to be with his wife.

As I watched the family leaving and listened to their stories of this man’s life, I imagined he and his wife walking, hand-in hand, down a beautiful street in heaven.

My faith has always been strong. When it falters just a little, I think back to the 39 years of patients I have cared for and the many unexplained things I have seen. I have no doubt in my mind, there is a God and he is with us always! This story is about my first spiritual encounter. I will never forget the feeling in that room. I left the room full of faith and longing. I get goosebumps, just thinking of that night.