Sunday, November 6, 2011

Christine McFadden, Who Had To Learn To Be Inspired To Survive

I've been trying to watch a lot of the Oprah Lifeclass series, that's been on during the past month (Oct. - Nov., 2011). For the uninitiated, they have taken pieces of various past guests from the Oprah show that go along a common theme. One of the more recent episodes was about learning from painful emotional experiences and featured Christine McFadden, who went for her daily early morning walk, to discover on her return home that her troubled ex-husband had come to the house while she was out walking and murdered all four of her children, and then took his own life. At the time of her children's death, Christine was a successful veterinarian. Her 3 oldest children were successful and well-liked  high school students. Her youngest child, which was the only child by the ex-husband that committed the murders, was a lovable 5 year old. There was nothing about this that made sense on any level. This episode features Christine being interviewed at different stages thru the years, as she moves from someone just holding herself together, eventually coming to some terms with it, but still thinking there's no future for her, until a final interview in recent years when she has (surprisingly to her) fallen in love again, remarried, and had twins. One of the quotes I especially loved came from the Dalai Lama, "It's worth remembering that the time of greatest gain in terms of wisdom and inner strength is often that of greatest difficulty." It was brought out in the lifeclass episode that one of the factors that helped Christine McFadden overcome her deep grief, was the outpouring of thankful Oprah viewers that wrote in how Christine helped them survive their great grief. There were women that said they had thought about ending their own life after the death of a child, who realized they needed to not give up because of her encouragement. 
Oprah Interviews Christine McFadden -   'via Blog this'Various links to Christine McFadden at the Oprah site:

The Single Most Important Mindset Shift You Will Ever Make | Positive Thinking | GalTime

People can spend a lot of time and effort blaming everyone else for their problems. "If I hadn't....if I had only.....if that had never happened....sometimes they get so hung up on dissecting the past that they forget to make time for the present or truly work on their goals for the future. Then, to do further damage to their psyche, they allow themselves to become more damaged, rather than allowing themselves to move on. I first ran across this blog entry on the "Positively Positive" blog today and thought, if only more people could take this approach, not only their lives would be more productive, but society as a whole would be better. I remember years ago when I was in child welfare, sitting through some training where character disorders was discussed. I made the conscious decision that day that for the remaining time I had left to raise my children, that I was going to take the approach that I was going to teach them they were the only ones that could take responsibility for their own actions. I had so many run-ins with people that wanted to blame everyone else for their own behavior. I think this article really sums it up. Rather than taking you to the Positively Positive blog, I choose to link it back to the original post by Stephanie Zamora at GalTime, where the article was originally published: The Single Most Important Mindset Shift You Will Ever Make | Positive Thinking | GalTime:.  Just in case you also want to check out Positively Positive, here's a link to their site:  Both GalTime and Positively Positive have lots of interesting articles, so check them out.

'via Blog this'

Friday, October 21, 2011

Catching Up

I didn't realize how much I had fallen behind on writing here. I'm posting a link from my other blogs that will explain my absence. Hope to feel better soon. Really trying to change my eating habits in order to feel better and it seems to be working so far, although, it appears I will definitely have to have surgery. Oh well, I just want to feel better, so whatever it takes.

Catching Up

Monday, September 19, 2011

Old Advertising Fan
Remember when it was common to find fans sitting on the church pews before air conditioning was common? I thought someone might enjoy seeing this fan I found at an old junk store awhile back. They were usually made for advertising purposes, popular with funeral homes and politicians.     

Inspiring School Leader Makes Difference In Her Community

Raised in the projects, Sherrie Gahn's mother instilled hope & inspired her. When she became a principal at a school with a high population of homeless kids, she feared those children didn't have someone to inspire them to have hope and so she wanted to create a school environment where kids could grow up having hope for their future. We should all look beyond our front door to see how we can help others & be a more involved community member.

School helps students fend off bad times -

'via Blog this'

Labor Day Thoughts

My work ethic was inspired by my grandfather,F. L. Millwee.A truly remarkable man,he came to Indian Territory at age 6. Times were hard, housing would've been considered substandard. His mother died in childbirth while he was a boy. He lived to 102,sharing a rare agricultural vision. One accomplishment was the 1st electrical dairy in western Okla. Nothing was too hard for him. He was our family labor day model.  (note: I was so overwhelmingly busy the past couple of weeks that I'm just making sure I've updated my blog from my Facebook page.) Yes, I know, there's a way to get it all done in one whack, but I'm technologically challenged about how to do that at this point. I'll eventually get it all figured out.  

Change Is Coming, Like It Or Not

One of my favorite quotes for years has been, "The definition of insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result." unknown source.

I think a lot of times people would really like for things to change in their personal life, but they don't follow through to develop new strategies in order to make them happen. When we want change, WE must change. If we want to lose weight, we have to change diet and exercise habits. If we want to make better grades, we have to change study habits. Some people may need to attend class more regularly. You get the gist. 

When I worked for a big agency, I remember at various times through the years we would have major change that no one ever asked for. Sometimes we would have this unrequested change almost overnight - although there were times there would be a major announcement that on a specific date such and such would hapen. Sometimes it was good, such as the time my agency entered the computer age and every employee got a computer on their desk. At the time, there were many people that didn't even know how to operate a computer. It was in the days before most households even had a computer. Classes had to be organized so everyone could learn how to operate a computer. We also had to learn the software system that was developed that was specific to our program. It was intensive, but worth it in the long run. I truly enjoyed that computer system and the changes it involved...the time involved, not so much. For an entire summer while the people with school related jobs were off doing their thing, my unit was working hundreds of hours of overtime converting everything we had on paper to a screen on a computer system.  It was worth it, because in the long run the system helped us save time, it had the potential to make children safer because we had so much more capabilities we had not had in the past.  We were able to determine the history of, for instance, a sex offender. As they say, "the possibilities were endless".  Oklahoma had the most sophisticated computerized child welfare system in America at that point.  It was the only time I ever received overtime pay at that job, our family used some of the money to replace our color TV that the screen was showing everything in various shades of green. So in the long run, I guess my family thought it was worth it.  

Not every change was as valuable or welcomed. Other changes came along that just seemed foolish, time wasting, or petty. There would be people that just couldn't deal with it. Sometimes they were the employees that I supervised and I had to hear all their complaints. I would tell them we didn't have any choice, it was either deal with it at the office or go somewhere else. But, one of the most important lessons I learned while I was persevering through all those changes, often unwanted, was that those who don't like change need to develop a strategy to deal with it or figure out a way to get off the bus.

This is life, change is going to happen whether we want it or not.  But expecting things to happen without change is, as the quote says, insanity.                  Elaine Bellamy