Rebuilding my life one section at a time

 Education:

     As you know, I am a full-time student at American Public University. I am in the BS Public Health program. I am taking two classes every eight weeks. That translates into working 35-50 hours per week on my studies. I have completed four courses, and my current GPA is 3.9. One of my goals is to maintain my GPA at a 3.9 or higher throughout the continuation of my program.

I always knew that online college would be a challenge for me. Having ADD is a challenge for any student in a regular classroom, but the problems of an online class are tenfold when you have ADD. A person must be very organized, focus and have the ability to keep to a timeline.  When you are an Online learner, you give up the commute and hours sitting in a classroom listening to a lecture and taking notes and spending hours in the library or at home reading, studying and completing assignments. Online learners must teach themselves the material given by the instructors. We rely on weekly forum posts for classroom dialog, hours of reading and pulling as many resources as possible to connect the concepts to make sense.

Over the years of being a student, I have been able to adapt to any situation being a student. I have sought out and used many different resources for study tips, organization tips, note taking…I could go on. The system that I find works best for me is to use a combination of old tech and new tech. I use pen and paper, printed notes, highlighters, textbooks, whiteboards. I also use my iPad, pencil, ebooks and online with my laptops. Many look at my system and say “that’s too much”. My mind has to use all of those things to learn. That has been the key to my success.

My current term started on Nov. 6. This term has been a more significant challenge for me than the last two. I am taking Chemistry with Lab and Food and Culture. The Food and Culture class is a combination of Psychology, Sociology, and Nutrition all mixed together. So far the week has been introduction and reading. I would say that the reading assignments this week are fascinating. I loved when I took both Psychology and Sociology since I find the study of both fascinating. Take that and mix it with why we eat, what we eat

The Food and Culture class is best described as Psychology, Sociology, and Nutrition all mixed together. So far the week has been introduction and reading. I would say that the reading is very interesting. I loved when I took both Psychology and Sociology since I find the study of both fascinating. Take that and mix it with why we eat, what we eat.

Chemistry with Lab online, yes that is exactly what I said. I know I have said for years that I would not ever take Chemistry. I will admit that I am scared out of my mind to not be successful but I am up for the challenge. Taking a Lab class that is full hands-on via computer is strange but so far it is interesting. I have been spending many hours this week getting not only organized for my class but reading, watching lab videos.

At this time this is all I have for an education update….Stay tuned… more updates to come.

 

Depression how deep did it go…

Over the last few days, I have been Looking over my “on this day…” on my Facebook feed. I am reminded of this time last year when I was at the start of my deep depression. I held the smiling mask for months over my tear streaked face, so the world world did not see. I faced the hardest part of recovery, law suit, hardest most painful days and nights not just physically but mentally.

I faced issues in all aspects of my life, home, work, school and every bit that came with it. Physical pain, mental anguish, nightmares, flashbacks, solitary nights, I could go on .

My public face stayed positive, high spirited but internationally I was in a deep dark place that even I did not recognize being in. It took months before my amazing doctor who sat in the chair across from me while I entered into a complete ugly cry, over one simple question “how are you?”. He took one look at me and said “your depressed.” Those words started another round of melt down. Why did I not recognize the symptoms or signs? Why did no one else? Was I that good at masking? 

Depression, it is the silent killer no one wants to talk about. It’s the silent lover that tears marriages apart. It’s the silent bearer that comes between friends and loved ones.

After a year I still battle with depression and generalized Anxiety disorder. It is a daily struggle that for me day I hope win the battle.

Team, thanks for being you!!

 

Cheers!

 

Look who’s 40

The other side of the hill, is not that bad of a place to be. On June 24th I turned 40. In the short time that I have been 40, I have learned a few things.

1. I am sick to death of pleasing other people. I have spend my whole life being a people pleaser…No longer. Its time people do what it takes to make me happy.

2. I will live my life the way that I want to live it. I am going to take what I have and go with it. I am a gyspy at heart and simply I will live that way without regret.

3. I am done giving people excuses for bad behavior. “She is young…” “He does not understand…” no more! It’s time people start taking responsibility for his / her own actions. I live my life with an attitude that “I don’t make excuses”. I own up to my mistakes, and I am a true person. Others need to learn that and start living that way.

4. The friends who have not left your side are the ones who count, and no one else (This statement needs no further explanation)

I have done a lot of reflecting on my life that past few weeks. Thinking back to the people who have touched it in some way. I count my blessings very carefully and I am thankful to the people in my life. I also, think back to those people who at one time or another were more important to me than my own self or needs. I think about those who left me, dropped me, broke up with me, or simply faded away from me. Then I remembered those who stayed, got closer, handed me a tissue when I cried, or called at just the right time. Two groups of people that served two very different purposes. I’m thankful for both.

40 is not so bad, I used to think it was old. Now, I realize its just changing rows on my quilt of life.

Happy 40 to me!

 

April has been full of great happenings…

Hello TEAM!!! Happy April to you all…

So far the month has been filled with great and exciting things happing for the Holmes family…

Happy 40th Birthday to my world, my one and only… Steve!

Steve turned 40 on the 21st! We had a wonderful celebration over the weekend. We got 1/2 bushel of beautiful blue swimmers, that were steamed to a beautiful red color then sprinkled with yummy old bay seasoning. We had corn on the cob, steamed shrimp, and ice cold beer. The next night we Grilled steak with veggie kabobs and introduced Chris to Hopkins dairy ice cream…YUMM.  The most important thing was we had good times, laughs and made many memories. On Monday night had a wonderful dinner with two of our closest friends and added more laughs, and good times was had by all.

man and woman standing side by side
Happy Birthday to my love
bushel basket with lid
ymmmm.. this is filled with cooked crabs for Steve’s 40th Birthday!
Steve showing off his Birthday crabs…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

man in red shirt eating a crab claw, smiling
Chris enjoying his crabs on Steves 40th Birthday Celebration

Another grand celebration this month is we got a visit from Chris. He has spent several days with us, prior to heading up north for work.  We have traveled all over DE and MD for the past few days. Lots of smiles, laughs, good times and memories. From Thrashers at the beach to yummy crab cakes MD style to hot steamed crabs and beer. He has been able to spend lots of time with nana and mom that has been great. We missed having his beautiful wife Lisa with him this trip. She makes our family complete!

 

If you know much of anything about me, you know that my brother is not only my biggest supporter but my hero! I do not know where I would be without him or his guidance. I do my best to make him proud each day. We are on opposite ends of this great country but I know that with a moment’s notice, he will move heaven and earth to be here if I need him.

 

Now, in true Cheryle fashion… I have saved the best news for last… see what good little things you get if you read to the end of my post….

 

picture of graduation announcement, picture of girl in cap and gown
Mischief Managed!! I am finally GRADUATING!


First, I am officially announcing my GRADUATION from AACC.

On May 25, 2017, I will walk across the stage and receive my Associates Arts Degree from Anne Arundel Community College. As you know, my dream is to become an RN, sometimes our dreams have to be put on hold so we can full fill our destiny. This is not the degree that I wanted when I started, but I earned it. I dedicated the past 5 plus years to my education, and I will take this degree with a smile knowing that hard work, determination, and dedication made it possible. I am very proud of myself for bing able to check this box off.

 

university seal
BS Public Health

My other news, that some of you have been patiently waiting for…I am proud to announce that I have been officially accepted to a Bachelors of Science program at American Public University in West Virginia. I will be pursuing my BS in Public Health. I start classes at the university in July.

Now, I know what some of you are thinking… “she wanted to be a Nurse?” Yes, I did and YES I DO. Once I earn my BS Public Health I will be able to apply to a BS Nursing program. I will have taken nursing classes so I will have that under my belt. Once I have my BS Public Health and my BS Nursing and my Masters degree. I will be able to pursue my dream of becoming an educator in the healthcare field.

The universe threw me a curve ball, so hit it and have to go where it goes. I will not give up my dream or my goals it will just take me longer than I planned. I will be taking a full course load each term. I know the commitment that I am signed up for and I know that I will be able to do it. I’ll just have to remember the 3 D’s: Destination, Determination, and Deliberation….oh wait that’s how you Apparate. Well, I feel that the same things apply to school.  “one must be completely determined to reach one’s destination, and move without haste but with deliberation.” according to  Wilkie Twycross, Ministry of Magic the official Apparition Instructor.

I’ll just have to remember the 3 D’s: Destination, Determination, and Deliberation….oh wait that’s how you Apparate. Well, I feel that the same things apply to school.  “one must be completely determined to reach one’s destination, and move without haste but with deliberation.” according to  Wilkie Twycross, Ministry of Magic the official Apparition Instructor.

The biggest thing now is coming up with the funds to pay for the next step in my educational journey. I will do what I can, and make it happen somehow…

 

I have been slacking a little bit on blogging, for that I am sorry. I have had several things in the works and working very hard on them. I am very busy at work, climbing the clinical, balancing life, career, family and self. The balance is nothing new, it’s just a new balance.

Well, my friends, for now, that is all… I will leave you with all of this goodness.

Don’t forget to leave comments in the guestbook, let me know you have stopped in to say hello!

 

 

Beautiful

Hello! It’s a fantastic Wednesday! The sun is shining, the air is warm. I am able to spend some time with steve before my crazy work week starts.

My positive thought for today:

“keep swimming, no matter how rough the water is…you will make it to land”

What is your positive thought of the day?

fight another day…

I have often said “the one thing that I want people to say about me, is ‘because of her, I did not give up'”

The past few months I have wanted to give up each step of the way. I have spent hours, thinking about what I am going to do with my future. I have spent hours and hours trying to re-invent myself.  I have looked into different careers. I have spent hours trying to figure out how I can have the future that I want. I have spent hours thinking “will I be happy doing something else?”

I was reminded most recently, that someone, in fact, thinks of me as a hero. Someone that I meet by chance and a friendship bloomed. We have never met face to face but I consider her a friend. I have such respect for this person, she is a beautiful person both inside and out. She has been through tough times and fought tooth and nail to accomplish her goals. Most recently she had to make a very tough decision. When the decision was made she reached out to me, for words of wisdom, advice, and comfort.  In one way she and I have walked the same yet different path. My heart breaks for this young soul, for I am truly sad that she is going through this tough time.

I also, want to tell her “I’m sorry, I feel that I failed you…” I was supposed to succeed. I was the one who was to beat all the odds. I was the one who was not supposed to give up, just keep getting up and fighting. Hero’s are not supposed to let people down.

I know that in my heart that I did not personally fail her, and maybe she does not agree with me, and yes I know that many of you reading this who personally know me do not agree with me.

I will continue work hard to beat the odds, get up each time I am knocked down for you, my friend and for the others who look up to me….I will fight another day.

3 days…

When the world feels upside down, you can only hope that it is temporary. My world has been upside down for the past 8 weeks, but that is not really true. That is a lie. My world has been upside down for the past several years. I have been waiting for the glasses to be removed, so my world can turn right again. I was reminded of one of my favorite episodes of Bones, the other day. In the episode, the case involves Bones investigating a case that the murder victim lives a parallel life to Bones. The investigation digs deep into her psyche and she gets wrapped up in the case as she does she loses part of herself. It was the security guard who brings Bones back to herself.

“…they set up a bunch of people who wore glasses that made them see the world upside down. after a while, they were made to take off the glasses and instead of seeing things right side up, everything was upside down. after three days, they could see the world right side up again because it takes the brain three days to adjust.” Bones

That particular episode was more about Bones realizing she did not want to be alone, and that she really did love, Booth. If you are not a fan of the show then that does not mean much to you, that is ok. My meaning is far different. I keep trying to find the meaning in why things happen to me. The meaning in how to change things that are out of my control. I know that I can not bend the universe or fate.

Another quote that comes to my mind is “have the bad things been outweighing the good things all theses years and I just never noticed?” Abby Sciuto.  This particular quote comes from my other favorite show, NCIS.

 

In the days, weeks, and months ahead.

 

Often I think about how funny life is. I reflect on the choices I have made in the past. I think about the people who have come and gone from my life. I think about the people who have come and gone from my heart. I think back to the days when life was carefree and easy. I remember the laughs, inside jokes, and the times that made me feel alive.

I often think about the people in my life past and present. The people who have helped to shape the person that I am today.  It does not matter how long or short someone touches your life, the moment that you meet them, you are forever changed.  Every day you meet new people, in line at the bank, standing to wait for your coffee. Even if you don’t share more than a glance or smile. When you are driving to work, you stop at red light and glance to your left and right (I know you do, don’t deny it). You think even for an instant “hmm he needs a hair cut” or “that music is too loud” or “heeeelllllooooo hotness”. The thoughts form even if they are not in your conscious mind. Then the light turns green and you are off again going about your day, moving on to the next person.

The people that you work with, customers that you take care of, even if you move on never to think of them again, they impacted your life or better yet you impacted their life. The kindness that you showed, the way you made them feel. They carried something with them from your interaction.

Thinking about the people who have impacted my life over the past 39 years…

The special people whom I hold near and dear to my heart. The ones who are no longer with me, but will never really leave me. I can still hear the voices and the laughter of our final conversations we shared. Our final goodbye’s, promises that were made and the ones that did not get the final words spoken to me. The lessons that I learned from the aging men, who fought for our freedom. The stories of lost love, forbidden love and the children they left behind. The funny stories that I will never forget and the history lessons I did not even know I was learning.

Those people who are special enough to find a place in my heart.  Imagine tiny drawers with initials on the front of each with a small golden keyhole.  Each person that you let into your heart earns a drawer and a golden key.  The golden key is special to each person who possesses it. Some drawers I  had to lock knowing it could never be opened again,  while some are locked not by me but the key holder.  The hardest part is when the drawer is left open and the key is lost. It’s like an ache that will never go away.

I started to think about the people who make up my technicolor quilt of life. The living, breathing hmmm that surrounds me. I have bright vibrant patches, and dark gray ones alike. The patches on my life quilt make me who I am today and who I will be tomorrow. It keeps me warm when I am cold, the rain off my face when it is storming and wipes the tears from my eyes.

I think of the people whom I have cared for over the many years. The faces, families young and old alike. I think about how the short time they spend in my care somehow made a difference. I look at the people who have told me “I don’t know how you do what you do” I think of the people who have thanked me for being me. I think of the people who have changed me. I think of the people who have walked away from me, with no reason or excuse. Why do these particular people come to mind? That is easy, they are the ones who hurt me the most.

I think of the people who have changed me. I think of the people who have walked away from me, with no reason or excuse. Why do these particular people come to mind? That is easy, they are the ones who hurt me the most. I have had many people that I have let get too close to my heart and broke it without even realizing it.

I think of my mentors, professors, teachers who believed in me, supported me. I think of them because I know that I let them down. I think of the friends that I made along the way of my journey that I let down, the same ones who don’t know what to say when they see me. The ones who just can’t find the right words.

I just need to find away to….

 

The 5 exam points that failed my family…

As I sit here waiting….I think about the 5 exam points that failed my family.

I have been told, God closed this door because it not the path I am suppose to take. I have been told, to refocus on what I really want to do. I have even been told that, well this means that nursing is not for you…

5 exam points is what I lacked to earn the grade of B. 5 exam points is what kept me from walking across the stage today and graduating.

In the year of 2016, my Senior semester of nursing school, I survived 2 car accidents (one that I could have died), surgery…yet each day I smiled. On a daily basis I deal with PTSD, severe depression and anxiety…yet each day I smile. I was handed court papers stating I was being sued over an accident that was not my fault, that was to take place the week prior to my first exam…yet I smiled. I worked full time the entire time in nursing school went days without sleep, yet I smiled. I have not lived with my husband for over one year so I could focus on school, yet each day I smile. I dealt with stress of bills I could not pay, fear of a pending law suit, and the knowledge that when I was done I would need to deal with my second accident, yet each day I smiled. I came home each night to an empty home, eating dinners at my desk, yet I smiled. I would wake each day at 0430, only after going to bed at 0130, and yet I smiled.

I spend hours, morning, noon and night studying, while even not realizing that I most likely have undiagnosed post concussion syndrome. I deal with aches and pains from my injured body, yet I smile each day…I dealt with disability accommodations that were not met, yet I smiled…I took care of myself as best I could knowing that the finish line was in sight, yet I still smiled. I held back tears and the overwhelming feeling of loneliness that I felt from missing my world, the one who completes me, yet I smiled. I hid my feelings of sadness, fear and emotion so that the world would only see my smile, reminding myself each day…”you are almost done”.

I fell 5 exam points short…5 exam points that failed my family. 5 exam points that would have made the difference for the future for steve and I. 5 exam points that missed the “minimum required exam points if 188” making all other work, assignments and projects null and void. 5 exam points that should have earned me a B, but more importantly my future.

As you sit and read this post, know that I do not blame anyone for my 5 exam point failure. Not anyone who was going to help me study, anyone who simply knew I would do it, not anyone who…does it matter?

In 2008 I woke up one day, and decided to go to nursing school. Since that time I have experienced more than more 30 year veteran nurses. From CCU, surgery, med-surg, hospice, illness, wound care, ventilator care, PT, OT, rehabilitation, ADL’s, respiratory, medication issues, trauma, orthopedics, GI… I have spend 45 plus hours at the bedside holding the hand of a very sick patient not knowing if he was going to live or die. I have held the hand of a man telling him it was ok to let go..I sat for hours ina hospice room watching and waiting for the final breaths to come, and the pain to stop… I could go on… What do I lack? 5 exam points that gives me the official education to say, I am a nurse graduate.

All through Nursing school I earned A’s and B’s…except my one last class that shows a D, because of missing 5 exam points. I went from a B to a D. I can not change what has been done. I can not go back and redo anything.

I do not know what my future holds. I do not know where I will go from here. I know one thing, will not give up on my goals and dreams. My entire adult life has been chasing after a dream, sacrificing everything I have to make a better future for steve and I.

Compassion, dedication what does it get you theses days??? Ask me I know…disappointment, resentment and anger.

I sit here on this cold chair watching the nurses go by…i wonder if those 5 exam points would have made me a better nurse? More compassionate nurse? Better skilled? I don’t think so. I know that when I watch my loved one being cared for why I don’t first ask…”what were your grades in nursing school?” I mean should I? When you are about to get an injection of antibiotics that can heal you,do you ask your RN for a transcript of her grades? How about when you are about to die and need emergency care? Do you stop the treatment and ask? No….

Now, if you are asking yourself…”5 exam points…what’s the big deal…” I’ll tell you… I now have to repeate the entire nursing program. Not one class, not one semester…the entire program. I can earn a 1 year certificate and sit for my LPN boards, work in a doctors office or nursing home then apply to a RN program…to join in the 3rd and 4th terms again. Then, sit and take the RN boards…By the time I do that, my classmates will be graduating with their BSN degrees, and I will be about 44 years old ..starting over. So before you sit and judge me, for being angry, bitter, or sad…know that my entire future has been taken from me because of 5 exam points. I do not know if I have the strength left to fight another day…My fight song may have ended.

I will continue to smile each day, but know that on the inside, I will forever be reminded of my failure of 5 exam points.

 

 

The hard truth…

Hello  Team,

On this early morning, I find myself looking into the hourglass of time.  Old age is what it is that I speak. If you are lucky enough to live into your 70’s, 80’s or even 90’s you should count yourself lucky right?

We move through life with an expiration date that is on each one of us. The date is unreadable and nonnegotiable. We come into this world knowing that at some point we will leave it. Some of us are lucky enough to have a life filled with family, children, grandchildren. Lifelong friends who become closer than family. Some of us are lucky to have a life of good health, wealth and carefree adventures. Others, find it a daily struggle to put food on the table, provide a little holiday cheer, or simply go a few weeks without a trip to the hospital or doctor.

We find the love of our life and marry them. Taking vowels of sickness and health, richer or poor, til death does us part. Those words are tested many times over and over throughout your lifetime and marriage. Did you ever stop to think what happens when your unable to care for yourself because your mind has betrayed you? What will you do when your unable to care for your spouse of 40 years, because she wanders at night? You have never spent a night apart and now you are faced with a very tough choice to make.  The day you wake and just know you can no longer, do for him, as he has cared for you over the years. Your heart breaks as you take him to his new room. You see the fear in his eyes… You see the tears as they roll down her face when it’s time to go and she does not understand.

You know in your heart that this is the best thing. You know that no matter how much they cry and want to simply “go home” that home is no longer safe. You hold his hand as you visit each day. Getting to know that staff who have now become is everyday family. You sit and see him slowly slipping away, each time just a little further from you into the unknown. You notice that she does not recognize you as she did just two days go, calling you the name of her long since deceased brother. You will dread calling to check on him and the staff telling you, “today has not been a good day”.

You will learn to cherish the moments that she is in the here and now. The ever so brief recognition, that you are her child. You record the moment with a quick snapshot of the big smile on his face because he remembered you don’t like red jello but offers it to you anyhow. You will learn to cherish the days that you come to visit and you hear the staff say “today is a good day, she ate all her food.” You will look through photo books, wishing you had written the names, dates, and story’s down that you had heard so many time.  You will find yourself recalling the same stories over and over to the younger generations so they will be remembered.

As a woman who has no children, I often wonder who will care for me, as my hair turns gray (more than it is now..) Who will make sure that my stories will be remembered. Who will the hospital call when it’s time for the family to come? Who will come for me to hold my hand and tell me its ok to go…

I have been in that same situation a few too many times. Holding the hand of a grandfather, thanking him for welcoming me to his family with open arms. I have said goodbye to aunts and uncles, friends and loved ones.

I have stood, alone in the funeral home next to the casket and said my final goodbyes.

The hard truth is who will stand at my casket?

What you really learn in Nursing School

human legs with running shoes on running up steps with words: "I may not be there yet, but I'm closer than I was yesterday"
I can finally see the finish line. The end is near, I am in my last 4 mile stretch…

 

I am not done fighting. I until the last points are handed out… My journey has been filled with delays, roadblocks, success and tears. I have wanted to give up so many times. It was the love, support and encouragement from all of you who are on my team that has kept me going…

Along the way I have made some incredible friendships. I used to hear nursing students before me say “its the hardest thing you will ever do”. “I can’t talk about school… don’t ask. (as tears would form..) “I am sick all the time, I have gained more weight than ever in my life” I can’t eat a thing, I have lost so much weight from stress”.  All the statements’ are true. Those who are answer the calling to become a nurse are among the bravest and strongest souls I have even met. We may not run into the burning building, but we are standing along side of it with the bandages, to care for you. We may not run into the firefight, but we are there with the IV fluids, and gauze to stop the bleeding. We may not protect and serve, but we are there to hold your hand as your take your last breath ensuring you are not alone. In the end, I always hear this:

“It’s all worth it. You will have days you hate it, then you will get up for the next shift and you will make a difference in a persons life, and you will love it all over again…” RN, 33 years.

 

“When you get to the other side, you will see how fast it went..” RN, 5 years

 

“The time, money, tears, and stress…worth every bit of the struggle. It has made me the Nurse I am today.  I would do it all over again..” RN, 20 years

 

I have also seen some of the most determined people do some amazing things. Nursing students never give up. We may fail. We may repeat. We never give up. We find the plan B, C, D, E, F… until we achieve our goal. When we do fail, after the initial shock and overwhelming heartache has passed. We refocus our goals, and figure out what is next for us on our life journey.

I also have learned one great thing about nursing school. You are connected to strangers who become family. You are put on the path with another person who will change your life as much as you will change their life.  I just said this today to someone who crossed my path, who is family for more than one reason. I am thankful for the friendships that I have made. You learn very quickly when you are a Nursing student. Each day you attend a lecture, or walk into your clinical site. The person at your left, and your right may not be there the next time you go. But the friendship you form will last a life time, no matter what you will always stand by that person and they will stand by you.

“People are put on our path of life for a reason…I am glad that our paths crossed. They will continue to cross. Friendships make the beautiful Technicolor quilts of life” Future Nurse

 

Have a beautiful day…Be kind to yourself and each other…

 

Being happy is a good thing…. :)

Hello Team!!!

 

Thank You

Veterans!!!

Raising of the American Flag Iwo Jima

Your service means a lot to me!! I appreciate the sacrifice you and your family made to help keep our country a little safer!!


To those who have served and to those who choose to serve in the future.     Thank you!

I believe that serving your country is a calling. At some point in your life you feel that calling, it could have happened after a tragedy. May be the draft called you. The point is that you answered that call and sore and oath to protect our great country. I am very proud to be an American! I am proud to say thank you to those who served. I have spoken to members from WWI, WWII, Korean War, Vietnam, Gulf War, Afghanistan, and Iraqi war through current deployments. I have listen to history first hand from a gentleman who was a Tuskegee Airmen. I have held the hand of a Vietnam veteran who suffer sever shell shock (PTSD- as we call it now..) after a fire alarms put into extreme fear. I have witnessed first hand the what the family of solders go through, when they are getting ready for deployment, not knowing if their Solder will come home. I have seen the excitement when they finally get to say, “My Solder is HOME”. War is not a movie, or a TV show. It’s real, full of death, heartache, sacrifice, courage and fear. I have attended funerals and listened to taps being played, and
collected the shell casing from the 21-gun solute to honor the fallen.

 

Honoring the armed forces silhouettes with american flag and the seals of each branch of service

 

Veterans day and Memorial Day two different days honoring two types of solders, but the biggest picture is that, it is not about the sales, or the day off from school. It is about honoring those who have served.
Today, I honor those who have served that on the home front, and over seas.  
Stay Safe; Thank You for answering the call.

From Land, Air, Sea. I solute you!

Well this will be a short check in today! I have had a great morning so far… I am feeling extra positive today. It has been a whirlwind of a semester to date. I have meet some great life long friends and been able to reconnect with older ones. I have put my best foot forward, and like always I am not willing to give up just yet…
You have to believe in yourself to be the person you want to be. I also know that when your confidence is shaken, the best way to get it back is take a step back and re-examine some of what you have been through, what you have over come. You sometimes need to be reminded why you are doing something, and it really is worth it on the other end. I am so close; I am digging deep inside and pulling from my strength reserve to keep going. I will not give up. I will prove not only to myself but also to the world that I deserve this and I will be an amazing RN! I will pledge to be the voice they cannot be. I was born to do this, and I will do this…

American flag with sun shining through the blue/stars

 

Have a super fantastic day!!

Be Kind to yourself and each other…

 

Maryland flag Black and gold with red and white

The final leg of my journey.

I have given all that I can give. I have accepted the truth of my situation. I have accepted the new way my body moves, feels, sounds. I have accepted the path that I am now on. I have accepted the view from my window.

I move forward with a smile on my face. I move forward with the knowledge that this time is the time. I move forward with the knowledge that this is the “Do or Die” so to speak time. have accepted the cards that life thrown at me. I will play this had until the very end.

This is my final leg of the race. I have been running a marathon relay race with myself. It really started long ago, but the past 3 years have been the hardest of my race. I have faced obstacles, challanges, and pain. I have faced each roadblock and found a way to keep going. I can not only see the end to this journey but I can feel that this will be the end of my journey. I will be able to finally close this chapter on my life and start a new.

The next two weeks are my last before my term starts again. I have my schedule planned out by the hour of each day from now until then delicately balancing work, study and self. I have prepared myself mentally to start the sprint on August 29th. When I wake up that morning I will start running fast and hard.  I will not look back, I will not look left or right. I will have my head down, my eyes focused on knowing the end is around the corner. I will have my days and nights planned. I will have each hour of my day filled with a task to be completed. I will check off each task, each hour, each day. I know that no matter what I will keep going. When I feel my body, getting weak. When I feel my muscles screaming for oxygen and rest. I will answer the call with “almost done”.

I will hear the cheers of support from all of you as I pass. I will feel the love and support from you along my journey.

I know that this will be it for me.

 

When you want to give up…

I have been having days that I just feel like the world is closing in on me. I have days that I feel like the darkness is like a never ending down pour of endless blackness. Yet, I still move forward. I smile, even when I don’t want too.  I still think of others even when I don’t want too.  I do my job even when I don’t want too. I even have time to care for others even when I don’t want too. I look for the silver lining in the dark storm clouds. I look for the rainbow after the storm has past. I keep taking each hit to the gut, that feels like a baseball bat, over and over and over… I endure the pain, heartache and the darkness. Yet, I still move forward.

The past week has been particularly hard for me. I have had hit, after hit after hit…I have felt like giving up a few times. I have wanted to crawl into a hole and let the darkness take me. I have wanted to simply give up the fight and say…”WORLD YOU WIN!”

We live in an ugly world and yet I still try to see the good in people. I try to find the small shimmer of light. I believe in doing the right thing, showing respect and earning respect. Looking out for your fellow man, saying “hello” “good morning” and “good bye”. I say that not everyone is looking to “get” you….. I am not so sure about that anymore.

I can not even describe the pain, fear and hurt that I feel. I can not begin to tell you the reasons I feel this way. I just want to give up…

Then, just as I am about to do that someone says to me:

“You inspire me. I wanted to give up so many times, but I think about you. If Cheryle can keep going then I know I can too.”

“It’s because of you, I decided to go back to school. With all you have been through you keep going”

“I read your story. I am amazed at the love that you share with your husband. You two have been through trials and tribulations and still look for anything positive.”

“You’re one of the reasons I’ve been able to be somewhat successful. When shit comes down I know, it’s nothing like what Cheryle deals with and she keeps trucking along”

“You know this will pass and it will all be ok”

“we are here for you”

The people who have said these things to me are family, friends and comments from strangers.  I am thankful to have those people and all of you on my side. So, I know that I have to keep going, fighting, and pushing through each and every day. I have to get up, get dressed, and face the day. The monsters will only win if you let them. I am choosing not to let them win. I may not have much left when the fight is done. I may not be more than a shell of a human by the end of the day, but I will say that I fought bravely and true of heart.

 

The wisdom that I will pass down from this weeks post is this:

Even if you want to throw in the towel, You Can’t.

Even when life is the hardest and you want to give up, You Can’t.

When you have $5.00 left in the bank, you simply need to be happy, that $5.00 will cover a few cups of coffee so you will be warm.

You can never give up, no matter what…Keep following your dreams. Keep reaching for the stars. Keep going after what you want…knowing that one day it will be worth it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

NOTHING LEFT TO GIVE

i have nothing left to give

i have given all I can

i have given my body to be hurt

i have given my mind to be broken

i have give my money to be paid

i have given my time, that I will never get back

i have given my heart that will never heal

i have nothing left to give

i have nothing left for me

Thinking…

I have been thinking over the past few days. I have been thinking about the hate that is being shown. I have been thinking about the Love that is being shown. I have been thinking about the neighbors who are coming together for a cause. I have been thinking about the families who are in mourning. I have been thinking about the families that are worried about their loved ones. I have been thinking about…

What has happened to the US? When did we go back to the divide?

Struggle

It is the middle of the night for me. I have woken, not in my bed. I am not where I belong. I have woken on the couch. I must have finally fallen asleep sometime very early this morning, for some this is not a big deal. I view this as a big deal, I was too scared to even go into my room last night. Steve braved the night and set traps for our unwanted guest. He must have come into check on me, cover me, and turn the tv off at some point. He always does when I fall asleep out here.

I woke to see the unorganized chaos. I woke to see the clutter from the week that needs to be put in its proper place. I think, Oh let me get my day started…then I remember its the start of my work week. for the next three days, I will be gone more than I am home. I will do it with a smile on my face. I will do it with appreciation in my heart. I will do it with the burn of need and dedication within my soul.

I have come to realize and accept that my life is a constant struggle. I am not the person that things just come super easy. I am not the person that has life fall into place. I am the person that some days I feel that the harder I try, the more struggle I endure.

I have also come to realize that the more struggle that I endure, the harder things are, the more that I push myself. I counter balance with the positive of a situation.

The struggle is real, but so am I.

Have the kind of day that makes your struggle worth the fight.