The Soldier and the Squirrel introduces children to the Purple Heart

through a loving story of a friendship between a newly wounded soldier

and Rocky the squirrel with his backyard friends. This story began as a

blog during my first year in bed after my incident. With much

encouragement, it is now a book and has been placed in the

Ronald Reagan Presidential Library & Museum. Please watch the video

on the About page to learn for the Soldier & Rocky are changing children's






Glorious Rejoice Dots Glitter





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The Ring

My favorite silver Silpada ring sits on the counter. Its arch Flattened from where my camera used to press against it within my shooting hand. A reminder of how things used to be.

Hammers collide within our home. Conversions alter the familiarity of its walls.

I can't believe how far my spine and I have come. Surgeries, along with acceptance to a prominent medical team, have changed the world I see almost as much as time has altered me.

The construction of home-conversions is almost complete. I will now be able to roller skate down the halls. If I could skate. Dance in an opened refrigerator. If I could dance. And race to the car at warp speed. If I could drive.

As walls come down, visitors have chosen to retreat. For now. To the wild. That's what I call it now. The Wild. Because the world is so different now. I pause before accepting invitations to its beast. Because I wonder how. How will I get to the sand. How will I make it through their twenty-six inch bathroom frame. Will their children like my chair. Or will they wonder if I am real.

I wonder a lot now. But one thing always replaces it - before it gets me down. The resolve.

I resolve that life may be different. But it doesn't mean it's bad. I have learned how to do things. Differently. In a way that empowers my mood. And makes my dog cheer inside.

I notice my change makes others reboot. Because they wonder too. If I could be you. And deep inside they know the answer is a truth.

My husband returns on Friday for good. The endless months of grasping for us will end. No more locations. Except for our home. A place we will relearn as our own.

Surgeries have staved the unbearable pain that imprisoned a vision only others could clearly see. A lilt in my voice has returned. Reminding me I'm still here. Friends have said I am different now. And I know this time it is good. Because who I was just weeks ago is now a stranger to me. An imposter dressed in a voice so horse from burdens it did not choose. So the transformations now - are all I need - to get to who I will become. Exactly who I was before. Only different. With a side slightly flattened where my camera used to rest. A life full-circle with an arch now softened by reflections of a sky still clearing from a storm. And a stone unturned. Still waiting to reveal a world I never thought would be.

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