As you may or may not know, the blogging community has a big heart. When Charli Mills of Carrot Ranch learned that Sue Vincent, a beloved friend and writer, had cancer, she and her friends went to work creating a way to help.
One of the first challenges was the River of Consciousness. My mind went numb, and I did not participate in this one, but several, like Colleen Chesebro, did. To read all of them, click here.
by Colleen M. Chesebro dawn reflections shimmer a blood-red birthing the new journey meanders in small ripples searching for a known truth testing the waters a small stream traverses the land, growth is key consciousness actuates a forward passage as water rushes fast, over stones ahead From the sun’s dying light the darkness succumbs to the passage of time, the river still flows in the celebration of a life well lived
The Everyday Physics of Dreams
by Jeff Gard
Like matter, dreams cannot be destroyed. Unlike matter, they are created by scattered dandelion seeds, extinguished birthday candles, teeth hidden under pillows, and wishes cast upon twinkling stars. They are first kisses, graduations, weddings, anniversaries, and promotions. Desires are our bones and blood. One day we will exhale our aspirations. They will rise on thermals, waver within a red and green Aurora Borealis. They will race into space, outpacing radio waves and light. They will dance in the Milky Way and body surf Saturn’s rings. In spiraling clouds of gas and dust, our dreams will condense into newborn stars.
Sue Vincent had lived dreams -bad and good, and turned them into a beautiful star-studded, Milky Way, Aurora Borealis quilt of life.
I had the fortune of spending several hours of the week getting to know this writing icon, Sue Vincent. Most recently we chatted about her son because his story, as well as hers of terminal cancer, left me weak with sympathy and sorrow, but hopeless in what little I could do to ease her pain.
Ten, nearly eleven years ago, her son was stabbed through his temple with a screwdriver. That should have killed him, and would have killed most, but somehow Nick survived with the help of his mom and friends. Listen as she describes her thoughts and feelings when they heard the news. Click on her name to read the entire story.
Four words changed the lives of everyone in our little family and that of many of our friends. My son, over a hundred miles away in Bournemouth, was in hospital… and we were advised to come at once. He had not regained consciousness since he had been brought in and, at that point, they did not seem to understand why. They thought he had suffered a brain haemorrhage.
They were almost right. Nick had been stabbed through the brain in a senseless attack. The puncture wound was so small it had, at first, been missed, but shards of bone were lodged in his brain and the ten inch screwdriver that had been rammed through his temple had compromised the brain stem. He was in a coma and not expected to live.
I have written, in great detail, of that time. I have told of the moment when the call came through, of the terror and despair, of the kindness and hope of those dreadful days… days that became weeks and months of fear and struggle as we all learned to adapt to a redefined future that was not only full of unknowns, but which was likely to shape the rest of our lives.
When Nick finally woke, it was to severe disability. Paralysed, unable to speak at all, his vision compromised and utterly dependent. The prognosis was grim… especially as it was clear that the bright young businessman with a razor sharp mind was still there… trapped in a broken and uncooperative body and a brain that would not allow the mind to express itself as it should.
In those early days, as soon as Nick began to awaken, my one determination was that he should believe in himself and have all the support he needed.Sue Vincent
In a post she wrote about six years ago, she included pictures of how much he had progressed since the senseless attack. It is nothing short of miraculous.
Aim for the Moon
This morning, as I was dismantling the heavy, weighted walking frame he has hitherto needed just to cross his living room, I couldn’t help thinking about that. To be folding this thing up after several years and consigning it to the shed had me near tears. It had already been an emotional morning. It had all started with the balancemaster, a machine he had installed to help him regain that function, lost to his injuries. He had showed me the latest, quite amazing progress and I, as often happens, had ended up in tears. A screwdriver through the brain is bad enough, but while his recovery from the damage caused by that initial injury was utterly miraculous. The secondary damage from the prolonged subarachnoid bleeding and excessive pressure within the brain cavity is a different matter and affects many of his motor functions and balance. He had woken from the coma paralysed down his entire right side, and though hemiplegia had fairly soon given way to hemiparesis, with the spasticity and the lack of coordination and control, the outlook wasn’t good. His chances of recovering , we were given to understand, were about zero. I could bore you with the details, but Nick suggested I show you instead.Sue Vincent
We, of course, we simply overjoyed to still have him with us and his personality definitely ‘all there’. I had told the surgeon that if Nick came back, he would come back fighting and I was right. There was the first time he was able to move at all.. the first words.. the first time he sat alone and stood… There was also the hidden damage, the emotional rollercoaster and the dark times. It has not been plain sailing. Nor is recovery from such an injury merely a case of waiting for time to heal and perhaps a little physiotherapy to get things underway.Sue Vincent
There’s More You Can Do
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the Sue Vincent Rodeo Classic serves as a special challenge. Riders will have to condense the following photo into a story of 99 words (or, if you prefer, a poem of 99 syllables). Writing 99 words has never seemed TUFFer!
Head over to Carrot Ranch to Donate to Sue Vincent and enter your 99-word story or Double Ennead.
The pictures of Sue Vincent, which I used without Sue’s express permission, came from her Facebook Page, Sue Vincent Writer. Just so you know, I did warn her that I was going to do a post/reblog of some of the links she shared with me. If you click on photos, you can see some of her gorgeous paintings. They will take your breath away.
Thank you Sue for inspiring me this week. I wish you the best and hope you do as Nick has done and beat the odds.
Thanks for reading. Please go to the links for more information, to compete in the Rodeo, or to donate to Sue and her family.