The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will direct your paths.
Proverbs 3, 5-6
I live by these words daily. Back in 1992 I was a fun-loving 19 year old who was starting a career in the US Navy and finally coming out of her shell. I was stationed in Pensacola Fl and was scheduled to leave for Hawaii in February. I thought life was pretty good.
On December 6 on the way back from an overnight trailride I was in an auto accident. The Ranger I was in flipped 2 1/2 times and I was thrown out sometime during those flips. I was asleep and when I was thrown from the truck was knocked unconscious so even now, 8 years later, I don't remember any of it - which some say is a blessing and the lords will.
I awoke in the hospital unable to move because they had me strapped down so I didn't further hurt myself. To say that was one of the scariest moments in my life would be an understatement. To make a long story short I sustained a broken collar-bone, twisted lower spine and depressed skull fracture. I was told then that I would more than likely have problems later on from these injuries.
With the arrogance of youth I thought no, it will never happen to me. I developed a devil-may-care attitude and while I still believed in the lord and knew that it was by his will alone I made it out of that accident I pushed everything to the limit. In time though, the symptoms and medical problems the dr's warned me about began happening to me and while at first I tried to ignore them they got to the point of where they was interfeing with my life and I had to face up to them and admit I had medical problems.
By this time I was happily married with a daughter, both of whom I love more than life itself. I knew I had to get help, if not for my sake then theres. Being a veteran I was eligible for medical care at the local VA hospital and was already classified at 20% disabled. In 3 years I went from that 20% to 70% to unemployable due to the severity of my service related disabilities. At 26 this can get depressing and the severity of my problems are scarey. As the poem states though I take it one day at a time.
The Lafferty family
~Life is a Miracle~
Life is a miracle
Don't let it slip away,
Open your heart to others
give of yourself each day.
See the Beauty in everyone
regardless of where they've been,
Some have a difficult journey
and really need a friend.
Share your talents
Listen with your heart.
Do the things you dream about
but don't have time to start.
Pick a bouquet of flowers
show someone that you care,
Be gracious and forgiving
Life is never fair.
Hold on to your courage
you may need it down the road,
We all have a cross to bear
it could be a heavy load.
If your practice all these things
no matter where you roam,
You may find both sun and rain
but you'll never feel alone.
What happened after the accident . . . .
When I awoke I was informed that I had a broken left clavicle(collarbone) with inferior displacement, a reversal of the lordotic curve in my lower spine, and a depressed skull fracture on the right side of my skull.
Needless to say I was in shock, I also found out my new truck had been totaled, I was lucky to be alive and that the guy who was driving walked away with hardly a scratch. I had made the foolish mistake of letting someone else drive back to base because I had stayed up all night rideing and was unsure if I could make the hour drive safely. Little did I know . . .
**NOTE: If you're squemish, you may want to skip the next paragraph as it gives a little detail to the surgery performed to my skull.
I had to undergo surgery for my depressed skull fracture, and to sum it up in a few words bur holes was drilled into my skull, the depressed skull bone was removed & reconstructed and wired back together. After ensureing the site was cleaned they drilled multipole holes around the craniotomy site and stainless steel wire was passed and then surgical was laid over the area and the bone plate was then fashioned to fit within the hole again and wired back in position. I also had a frontal scalp laceration that was a small skull depression. This was cleaned and reapproximated then closed.
All they could do for my shoulder was put it in a figure-of-eight harness and give me pain medicine for it. They also couldn't do anything about my back because of my head injury and when I finally got back to base from medical leave nothing was ever done about it.
It was 6 years before I was able to read these operative reports and I immediatly got sick. I then sat and cried for quite awhile. In only a moment the course of my life was changed beyond my control. The lord saw fit to guide me through that ordeal and let me live. I know I cannot change what happened and what is happening to me now. I've accepted this as the path the lord wants me to follow. The flesh is weak at times though, and at these times I get angry and/or depressed over this.
~DON'T LOOK BACK~
As you travel through life
there are always those times
when decisions just have to be made
when the choices are hard,
and solutions seem scarce
and the rain seems
to soak your parade!
There are some situations
where all you can do
is to simply let go and move on
gather courage together
and choose a direction
that carries you toward a new dawn.
So pack up your troubles
and take a step forward
the process of change can be tough
but think about all the excitement ahead
if you can be stalwart enough!
There could be adventures
you never imagined
just waiting around the next bend
and wishes and dreams
just about to come true
in ways you can't yet comprehend!
Perhaps you'll find friendships
that spring from new interests
as you challenge your status quo
and learn there are so many options in life,
and so many ways you can grow.
Perhaps you'll go places
you never expected
and see things that you've never seen
or travel to fabulous,
and wonderful spots in between!
Perhaps you'll find warmth
and affection and caring
a "somebody special" who's there
to help you stayed centered
and listen with interest
to stories and feelings you share.
Perhaps you'll find comfort
in knowing your friends are
supportive of all that you do
and believe that whatever
decisions you make,
they'll be the right choices for you!
So keep putting one foot
in front of the other
and taking your life
day by day.
The Dr's Diagnosis
The main reason I'm making this page is I'm finally being sent to a specialist over my problems with my head and I am asking for prayers. I believe in the lord and the power of prayer. At this time I feel I need all the help I can get.
Here's some of the problems I have;
Lower back pain, with muscle spasms and loss of spine motion in a standing position. Piercing pain from my lower back that shoots down my legs and up to my neck. Numbness in my legs and back as well as a "hot - heated" feeling in my back and neck.
A seizure disorder with minor seizures daily and at least two major seizures a month. I have black out spells, auras, focal seizures along with many other symptoms I wont go on about right now.
I have a generalized anxiety disorder due to my depressed skull fracture. I experience emotional tension and anxiety attacks and have PTS syndrome from the accident. I also have poor memory, poor concentration, mood swings, chronic sleep impariment, mild memory loss, irritability and mild depression.
I am also afraid to drive often for the obvious reasons of having a seizure as my attacks come with little or no warning now. If I get in a crowded area while driving I'll simply freeze up and cannot move. I also do this in crowds. I hate being around a lot of people, I have been known to panic in crowds if I don't have an "anchor". I prefer to stay at home, in the mountains on my horse, or at a family members home.
Some find it hard to understand me now because I'm so different from the person I used to be. It's depressing to me at times because used to love going out and meeting new people. Now I prefer to make my friends online.
If any of you experience any of these problems or similar problems PLEASE write me! It helps some being able to talk to others and see how they deal with these problems. I have a close friend who is more like family to me that has similar problems and it has really helped me since we met and I've had someone to talk to who knows what I'm going through.
I hate having my family see me like this, especially my 4 yr old daughter. She has seen too much in her young life. They are very supportive though and that means a lot.
~I Refuse To Be Discouraged~
I refuse to be discouraged,
To be sad, or to cry;
I refuse to be downhearted,
and here's the reason why...
I have a God who's mighty,
Who's sovereign and supreme;
I have a God who loves me,
and I am on His team.
He is all wise and powerful,
Jesus is His name;
Though everything is changeable,
My God remains the same.
My God knows all that's happening;
Beginning to the end,
His presence is my comfort,
He is my dearest friend.
When sickness comes to weaken me,
To bring my head down low,
I call upon my mighty God;
Into His arms I go.
When circumstances threaten
to rob me from my peace;
He draws me close unto His breast,
Where all my strivings cease.
And when my heart melts within me,
and weakness takes control;
He gathers me into His arms,
He soothes my heart and soul.
The great "I AM" is with me,
My life is in His hand,
The "Son of the Lord" is my hope,
It's in His strength I stand.
I refuse to be defeated,
My eyes are on my God;
He has promised to be with me,
as through this life I trod.
I'm looking past all my circumstances,
To Heaven's throne above;
My prayers have reached the heart of God,
I'm resting in His love.
I give God thanks in everything,
My eyes are on His face;
The battle's His, the victory is mine;
He'll help me win the race.
I don't pity myself for these problems, I have accepted that I have them and cannot change the fact. I do have the courage to face these problems head on; most of the time. I live one day at a time, enjoying life at that moment instead of wondering what tomorrow will bring. The lord has chosen my path and I willingly follow it because I know at the end of it I will find peace.
There is much I would change in this world we live in, but everything happens for a reason that only He knows until He deems time for us to know otherwise. I believe with all my heart and soul that the lord will make it right. Trying to always be happy with my life was hard, there was a void, a huge hole that needed filling. Today though, thanks to my kinship with Him I know happiness and contintment with my life. He has given me 2 of the most precious gifts a person could have, a wonderful husband and a darling daughter.
When things get me down I look around me and thank the lord that I'm alive and have my family and friends. I then thank the lord for helping me through the harder times and giving me the life I have. I know there are people out there with bigger problems than mine and who don't have as much as I do and when that runs through my mind I feel shame for being depressed about my problems.
I refuse to be discouraged and give up, and will fight to live a life as close to normal as possible. While this "normal" may not be the "typical" norm, it works for me and my family, and I have the lord to guide me.
Please remember me and my family in your prayers today. I ask you again, if anyone has similar problems please write me. Thank you.
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