Turn the Light On

Jesus said “I am the light of the world!” While sin will lead down a path of darkness , following Jesus will lead you into the light.

Sin disguises itself as a pet when in reality it is a predator. Noah talked about a guy in South Africa that adopted a hippo as a pet. True story as I just looked it up. He was busy telling everyone it was like a son to him and as safe as a dog. Until the day the hippo chewed him up and killed him. Hippos kill more humans than lions. Just like sin, neither are your friends.

Confession to God and a trusted friend can help you fight your way out of bad choices. My favorite saying “everyone doesn’t need to know everything about you but someone should”. I have a friend like that and if she only hadn’t moved away. We had some good times on her front porch when I was freaking out!

So I promised The Who said I love you first story. Herc leaned over and asked so I told him. Anyway Brian was dropping me off at nursing school after Thanksgiving break. I had been trying to get the nerve up to say it for a couple weeks. So I’m pretty sure I blurted it out mid conversation. Yes he said it back, I ran up to my floor and told my two besties it finally happened. At least he didn’t throw up after I said it, like Noah’s now wife did. She had eaten bad fish the night before.

Mole Moral ~ Light is light, sin is darkness.


The Key to Fishing

I am writing about this mornings session in quite a bit of pain. I do not know what is going on with my right rib cage but the pain upon breathing has really ramped up since this morning. If I had a rash I’d diagnose myself with shingles since it seems to be along a nerve route. But it’s probably the American Mole Virus again. Ha.

So this morning Noah talked about fishing and what are you looking for in life. Is it social media affirmation, is it money, is it a good job, a place to belong, joy or a ring by spring. All of this stuff brings about temporary happiness. Just look at the famous people who have all of this but are still a mess and make insane decisions.

If you lean on Jesus and follow his ways you will have fulfillment that lasts. However this is easier said than done. Just like the best fisherman know where to fish because good fishing is choosing the right spot.

He told a story about a friend in high school that was in a very bad accident who should have died and if lived basically been a vegetable for life. But he proved everyone wrong and turned into a miracle and walked out of the hospital. He wasn’t the nicest person prior but after he made up his mind that he was so close to dying that now he would live. He changed his entire outlook became nice to others and would seek out those sitting alone. Noah invited him to youth group and he came and ended up with 400 plus kids attending from 100. It seems a life altering event always goes one of two ways. You change like the friend or you worry you are going to die for the rest of your life which must be a horrible way to live.

Mole Moral ~ Remember God loves you just as you are today. No need to straighten up before you meet him. I mean he deals with me on a daily basis so the rest of you are a piece of cake!


If You Know, You Know

Big Stuf kicked off last night. The speaker was new to camp and his name is Noah Herrin. It seems his job is speaking around the country and not tied to Atlanta like a lot of the speakers have been.

The theme of camp this year is HELLO. Jesus says hello in the form of I am and fill in the blank. They told us to fill in blank and my answer I am sick. Some people yelled out excited and things like that.

The recurring theme of the talk was you can either know of Jesus or know Jesus. Knowing of him gives you knowledge and can change some things while actually knowing him changes everything. He then told us the story of Andrew meeting Jesus. Jesus came walking by and Andrew just started walking with him. I would have started running if some dude was following me. But since Jesus is bold he straight up asked Andrew what he was doing. Shortly after Andrew asked where he was staying. If some rando asked me where I was staying I might call 911. But again Jesus is not me (that’s a very good thing) and invited him to come and see. And then Andrew joined him and after one day ran home and got his brother. I always wondered why Simon’s name was changed to Peter. Simon means shaky and unstable while Peter means rock and steady. I thought that was pretty cool. I wonder what Jesus would change my name to?

Noah likened following Jesus to cliff jumping. His friends invited him and he wasn’t so sure but he did jump and found out he enjoyed it. He said now if he would have stood on the cliff and watched or hung out at the bottom and watched, it would not be the same experience. He hopes everyone meets Jesus this week. That sentence right there flashed me back to my first camp of 2008. I would say yes I met Jesus right then and there and for the first time in 41 years I could finally feel love. Before this I knew people loved me but I never felt it. This is another example of you know, you know. If you don’t be glad because I missed out on a lot up until that point in my life. So just like the speaker I hope every kid here leaves knowing God loves them!

Mole Moral ~ Even so sick I should have stayed home, camp is amazing and worth potentially never getting better!


My Fathers Story

Today marks the one year anniversary of my fathers death. I have waited a year to tell his story but I feel its important I do it now so that it is in my blog for when I am gone.

My dad was born in 1942 and his parents were 45 and 50 years old when he was born. He had two older brothers Tom and Bob who were 20+ years older than he. Around the age of 18 months his mother took him to the Memorial Day dedication ceremony where they decorated the graves and had food and things. He ended up covered in misquote bites and then contracted polio. She went to her grave thinking the bites caused the polio but that is not how its transmitted. My dad ended up partially paralzyed and went to Shriners Hospital. Someone in the family was a Shriner. My dad never needed an iron lung but his legs never fully recovered. He was in braces and crutches until high school. He was told repeatedly he would never walk without them but he was determined not to enter high school with braces and crutches. Somehow he taught himself to walk by throwing his legs forward with little to no calf or thigh muscles. Most of his muscles had either atrophied or were removed during the many surgeries he had. Every doctor that ever saw him after said it was impossible for him to be walking but yet there he was walking. He had a limp that probably bothered him but I never even really thought about it. His parents told him he would never marry and probably be a secretary for a job. His mom was a worrier and was convinced she would not live long enough to see him graduate high school.

He grew up in Salem and one night he and another guy showed up at my moms house for a date. Well my mom was watching her brother who is 16 years younger than her. She said she couldn’t leave the house but could at nine. She didn’t think they would come back but they did. When she was introduced to my dad she told him “you look like a John”. He was like thanks I look like a toilet. That began their dating and writing letters back and forth until they were eventually married in June of 1962. He took a job with ACIC Aeronautical Chart and Information Center as a clerk. Shortly after my parents married his job was going to be relocated to Ohio so he resigned and then his boss recommended for him to join the negative engraving department. He was in that department for the rest of his career. ACIC then assimilated with the Defense Mapping Agency which we always referred to as DMAC. Maybe the C stood for center as I am too lazy to do in-depth reading on this. I am assuming some restructuring occurred when its name changed once again to National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA). The flood of 1993 destroyed the south Saint Louis facility so a new one was built just one mile from my house. It opened in 1998 and my father worked in that building until he retired. The name changed again in 2003 to National Geospatial Agency which it is still currently is called. My father officially retired after forty years of service but did go back as an independent contractor for a few years. He was the last negative engraver to do it by hand. Everyone else was using a computer. He did his job perfectly and could draw a straight line without a ruler. It was crazy. He saved every piece of paper he ever received from his job and I spent about four hours looking through all of them. I came to the conclusion my dad was an excellent employee, was well liked and received many awards and bonus’s for his work. I also have a resume he submitted when he upgraded his job. Now I know that a lot of my sisters and I work ethic comes from him as well as my mother. He never once mentioned an award or anything.

As for my grandmas thoughts she was wrong about all of it. He was far more than a secretary. After all once we started the Iraq war my father told he knew it was coming based on what he was doing at work. My father also had top security clearance for a long time. He also saved his reapplications for security clearance. These had a wealth of information in them including addresses for my grandparents, his second wife, and his brothers houses in the past. My father also married, not once but three times. She not only lived long enough to see him graduate from high school but also my sister and I, as well as my graduation from nursing school. She obviously worried too much!

I was at work on May 26 and at 10:25 my phone rang and it was some weird name I had never seen so I ignored it. This person left a voice mail which was really weird. It was from a cop calling on behalf of his wife. I thought this is a trick and then I thought what if its not so I shot her a text and she said it was real it was about my father. So I said let me finish this colonoscopy and I will call you in-between cases. So I dropped the patient off and went into our break room. I was not prepared for what I heard that day. She told me that she had went to Target and when she came home my father had shot and killed himself. I went into shock. I walked out of the break room almost straight into Dr. Heavey. I repeated this to him and he put his arm around me and told me he was sorry and he would take me wherever I wanted to go. I said take me to Chris so he did. I eventually called Brian’s parents and asked them to pick me up because I was in no shape to drive. I called Brian and my mother. On the way home I bossed Brian’s parents around and said please stop at the gas station, I need cigarettes and do not judge me. My sister had spoken to the cop and knew he had died but not how. His wife asked me to tell my sister before she arrived. I told my sister who was driving to pull over but she didn’t listen to me. She did eventually pull over. So she arrived at my dads house before they had taken his body away. He had taken the riding lawn mower down to the woods and went where you couldn’t see him to end his life. Just like my dad not to make a mess in the house or in his perfect yard. I was not mad at my dad for this at all because as usual there is more to the story.

When the medical community first started seeing post polio syndrome my father said to me “If I ever need to be in a wheelchair because I cannot walk anymore, I want you to shoot me.” I was in my teenager years and I knew he was serious. He did not want to live if he could not walk and be independent. Covid hit in March of 2020 and the last time I ever saw him was Christmas of 2019. Because of his wife’s health issues they were locked in their house and went no where except to the doctors office. They had everything delivered. During this time his mobility began to really go downhill. It got to the point that he would only go to the mailbox after dark so his neighbors wouldn’t see him fall. He no longer slept under Grandma Carty’s quilt because it was too heavy for him to move his legs. He also experienced skin cancer on his face during the lockdown and was told he couldn’t really be outside anymore. He loved the outdoors and was always messing around in his yard. Then the final blow came when he had a colonoscopy and was diagnosed with a form of ulcerative colitis and was told he would have diarrhea for the rest of his life. The medicine they put him on to control it made his feet swell and he barely could walk. He told my sister it was a death sentence and was gone a week later. I totally understand why he said F this and went to be with Jesus. I mean if he were a dog we would have put him to sleep. I know this may sound really harsh but its the truth.

After he died I knew I wanted a tattoo of his signature. My sister surprised me and got one of a bike. My dad rode a bike all his life. His brothers bought him his first bike when he was little. He use to pop wheelies in front of my Grandma just to make her have a fit that he was going to get hurt. He did the moonlight ramble for many years. He also rode the Katy trail for miles on end. He never ever wore shorts and I only saw his legs once. He was trying to care a tire down the basement steps and fell and broke his leg. He came to Mercy’s emergency room so I came down and stayed with him. He really did not have much leg muscles at all. I totally understood why he wore jeans his entire life even to bike ride for miles on end. So my mom who swore she would disown me if I got one more tattoo said I should have a Corvette with his name because he loved Corvettes all of his life. So finally right before Christmas I found his signature on the reapplication for security clearance and a picture of his corvette and took it to All Star Tattoo. It turned out amazing. I really wanted it on my foot but wouldn’t have been able to wear shoes for two weeks so I said ok forearm works for me.

My parents divorced when I was five. Everyone said my sister and I were ruined because of it. However my parents remained great friends throughout my fathers life and I think we would have been ruined if they stayed married. They were better off as friends than as spouses. My father remarried for the second time just a few years later. His second wife also had two daughters close to my sisters and mine ages. As time went on the wife became increasingly jealous of all three of us and eventually gave my father an ultimatum “me or your kids”. He chose us and divorced her. I am not sure if he ever got totally over her and I still have pictures of her and her kids and her with my father. When i was in high school my mom wanted to take my sister and I to Disney World. She called and told my dad and he said why don’t i come with you. So ten plus years after their divorce we took a family vacation. I will always remember riding Space Mountain with him and conning my mother into riding it. She talks about it to this day as she is not even a roller coaster fan. He also use to take my sister and I to Six Flags every summer. I can remember him riding the Screaming Eagle over and over with us. As an adult I don’t know how he did it. Maybe it wasn’t as rough when it opened back in 1976. He and I rode it the year it opened but my sister was too short to ride. He also use to take us on float trips and I will never forget the very last one. I was in nursing school and it was October. I was trying to pull the boat up on shore and dumped my sister and him in the water. He cannot swim but it wasn’t over his head. However he was stuck wearing wet jeans the rest of the float. I always thought this is why we never went again. I was convinced he was going to kill me but surprisingly he wasn’t mad at all.

When my mom threatened to throw me out of her will, I laughed and said dad is way richer than you and I am in his will. I remember telling my dad that and he cracked up. However the laugh last was on me! I never really cared about his money and was only curious how much he was worth. I will never know and that is ok. My father had an incredible life and I just wanted to share part of his story. He was the last Carty in his family line. His older brother adopted a son who sadly has passed and never had children and his other brother and wife never could have children. So the only Carty’s left are my mom, my sister and I.

Mole Moral ~ Death always reveals peoples true colors!


Goodbye Yellow Rose Bush

Brian and I moved into our house in 1990. I cannot remember if we planted the rose bush that year or the next. Anyway I picked yellow at my moms suggestion as it was her dads favorite. I never really took great care of it which really annoyed my mom because it was amazing. A few years back Brian and I started saying when it died we were getting divorced. He would also say he peed on it every night and it just wouldn’t die.

At the end of last summer my rose bush looked dead so I cut it back super short and contacted a lawyer. Just kidding. This spring it has not come back. I looked up average life span of rose bushes and it said 30-35 years. So I certainly did something right.

My dad died almost a year ago so I started thinking about what color rosebush I would replace this one with. Maybe because my house is burnt orange and my brick has some black in it, I thought about black. With the internet it makes it easy to find. So I researched them and found two really cool ones. Of course no plants are available until next year but seeds are. So I decided I will grow from seeds. I researched how to do this and after planting the seeds they go in refrigerator for 6-8 weeks for stratification. After that they need grow lights for warmth. So I ordered the seeds today. I have enlisted Brians help because after he took over the Christmas cactus from his moms plant, it made a bloom. Of course he moved it to a different window with better light but I need his help.

So it looks like the rosebush is dead but our marriage lives on. Who knows maybe my next career will be growing rosebushes and selling them.

Mole Moral ~ Death is inevitable but from it new life springs!


Tell Me How to get to Disney World

It seems as if anything I try and plan turns into a comedy of errors. The start of this trip to Disney for the fiftieth anniversary is no exception. I scheduled this week because it is typically when the parks are the least crowded. Sadly, it didn’t dawn on me that in February that the weather had a mind of its own.

Naively after the snowstorm hit I thought MODOT and the airport would have their act together. We awoke on Friday to an email that our flight had been delayed. As the morning went on it was delayed more and more to the point we’d never make our connecting flight. There option was to leave on Saturday and arrive at eight at night.

So I attempted to call the airline. I was on hold for two hours and accidentally hung up. My good friend Gary advised us to go to airport and talk to agent at the desk. So we drove up there with the roads still pretty crappy. It was quickly apparent we were not leaving today after all the previous flights that had cancelled and had been rebooked. So we were put on a flight for six am this morning.

I check my email as we arrived and I thought they had changed our flight going home which would still work but we did need to reprint tickets. So we do and I thought it was odd only Chicago printed but it’s five in the morning and I’m not awake. Well the flight was delayed because they did not have a flight attendant. The one they were expecting was on mandatory rest. While waiting for her it dawns on me that our connecting flight was not happening and they wanted us to reschedule for tomorrow and arrive at 8pm again. This would mean both days at universal missed with non refundable tickets. So I sprint to another gate to see a red phone that goes straight to customer service.

The gal looks around and tells me there is nothing. I said look we will fly to LAX at this point. So she says what about flying into Tampa. I’m like yes we will do that as it is only about an hour and fifteen minute drive. At this time the plane is boarding and she’s having computer issues. Finally she says go get on plane, I’ll get a hold of help and confirm this for you. I sprint to the gate and before take off I get flight confirmation. I inform the family we will be flying to Chicago, then Nashville, then Tampa. Driving to Orlando switching rental cars and hopefully arriving at hotel by eleven. They have now missed an entire day at universal. So I say look if you all want second day you can go over there while Emily Micheal and I go to Disney. Emily is currently working on a ride plan for them. They mostly want to do all of the Harry potter stuff.

Since I just did universal I’m skipping it to go see friends. I was suppose to meet up with Rose who I met on the cruise Kayla and I went on but that was today so I did not get to see her. She has the cutest grandson I have ever saw with the most incredible eyes and hair. Tomorrow I’m going to see Gary and Linda again. Gary was in the burn unit back in 1991. He took over burns recovered support group and he and Linda started Missouri Childrens Burn Camp. They are wonderful people and Linda has just published a Childress book. More about that in the next blog.

Mole Moral ~ If you travel with me be prepared for everything that could happen to happen. It will be the craziest trip of your life!!


A visit to Salem to celebrate my father.

Only my sister and I could turn what should be a sad day into a comedy of chaos.

Our dad would have turned eighty today on the shortest day of the year. He always commented on how he hated winter between the cold and dark and being born on winter solace. He had shared his wishes that he be cremated and have his ashes spread between his brothers. About six years ago my dad took Emily and I down to Salem to visit the cemetery, the farm he grew up on, his parents house they moved too after they retired from cattle farming and his brothers house.

My father was cremated but Brenda expressed she couldn’t part with his ashes. We were fine with that. My creepy sister wanted a necklace with some of his ashes so the funeral home gave us some in a small bag. I almost forgot to grab them this morning. We decided we would spread these.

So we head out at 6:30 swearing Salem was a three hour drive but instead was a short two hours. We drove to house first since we went there a lot when we were young. The carport had been turned into a garage. The back of the house had a sliding glass door and a deck. However the propane tank still in the backyard and I could still envision the trellis that was up that had the climbing roses on them. I could also still see grandmas close line and garden.

We then headed over to Uncle Bobs house. I was one number off of the address and I swear the house didn’t look the same as it did five years ago and the yard seemed much smaller than when I was a kid. The senior apartment center my grandma lived in next was right next door. We drove around trying to remember which was hers and which was our Aunt Gracie’s. I had an address and I was like oh it’s her apartment number. When we drove to the recreation building I was like oh yeah I looked it up on the internet.

Then it was time to go to the cemetery. I mean how big can the place be. Karen had found on a gravesite locator website they were in section B. We couldn’t even find section B so we asked a worker who was clueless. He gave us the number to the county clerk. We finally find section B and are wandering all over the section. I finally say call that lady we are never going to find it. So she calls and the lady takes her number so she can go look it up. As we are walking to the car to warm up I’m like stop, look it’s right there. If we would have only parked in front of the B sign we would have seen it right then.

Karen brought some stuff to leave and I was so distracted I almost forgot the entire reason for the trip. I notice the order of graves is Uncle Tom, Aunt Margie, Aunt Ruth and then Uncle Bob. Now how exactly was I suppose to spread them between his brothers when the wives were in the way. Thanks dad for not thinking this through. Bahahaha. So I spread a little over his two brothers and then his parents.

In the meantime Karen has her crafting glue out and is making a very nice display to add to the grave marker. She was annoyed she only had one memorial card but decided to glue the words side out. She also picked up a hot wheel Camaro that was half blue and half green to represent both his cameros. After she gets it all glued I say too bad we didn’t laminate it because the rain will ruin the memorial card. So she gets all finished and screams happy birthday John Carty and gets in the car.

All of a sudden she remembers she has her laminator in the car. She also has an electrical outlet in the car so we go to the gas station to use the restroom while she also finds laminator sheets. We get back to the gravesite and she now has to carefully peel his memorial card off that she stuck on with gorilla glue. She plugs in the laminator and it’s too much voltage and blows the circuit. So not to be deterred she slides the card in the pouch and cuts it down to size with her straight edge paper cutter. I said it was a good thing she had that as our dad could draw a straight line without a ruler and always had picture edges perfectly straight. She did a perfect job and glued it back to the headstone and it’s now safe in the rain. I wish I could say the rest of the day was uneventful but we were off to find the farm.

There is no written address for the farm. Back in 1962 the address was The Carty’s Doss Missouri. Luckily at some point I think my grandparents saved the newspaper clipping that announced the farm had been sold (it was in the Carty family for almost one hundred years) and said it was located on a highway next to a bridge. (I knew which highway and the name of the bridge but the entire world does not need this information). So off we go. We come to a bridge and I see the house but I’m like I thought it was white so we keep driving. Now I did take pictures of it five years ago which are uploaded to Walgreens. The actual farmhouse burned to the ground sometime in the seventies I think. I remember Aunt Ruth Uncle Bob and grandma talking about it and we even drove out there at that time. So I’m like wait maybe that’s the house and I’m thinking of the white farmhouse. I’m like I’ll look on Walgreens except we are in middle of nowhere with no cell service. So my sister says why didn’t you screen shot the picture. Thanks genius. We go back and I’m like that has to be it except the barn is now gone as it was near collapse six years ago. So my fathers entire family is gone, his childhood home and the barn he did homework all gone. So I snapped a picture, did not see a for sale sign, and we decided to drive over to licking to see the house my uncle grew up in.

The house was as I remembered once we looked at the address correctly. I don’t remember houses being in the back of them. I did remember if you turn left out of driveway a short distance on right was a gravel road or you could keep going straight. Throughout my life I would dream I would turn down the road and it went on and on to a scary place. Guess what I learned it’s just a short distance to a main road. We also went straight and that road goes on forever. So hopefully those stupid dreams are gone forever. The roads seemed much scarier when I was a kid. We drove over to the high school and said I wonder where moms house was that was close to Judy Ellis. She will probably say that was the house but I don’t think so. However I have zero sense of direction so who knows.

We finished our day by stopping into our cousins cafe in Sullivan. Both of our cousins were there so we got to see them for a bit and had a wonderful lunch. It was an ending to a very nice day.

Mole Moral ~ Only a mole could walk all over a graveyard stomping on people when the grave was literally right next to the road. Rest assured I dropped a pin on my map app to be able to find the grave easier the next time.


Pepsi Cola Hits the Spot

I went on another traveling adventure these past four days. I had not seen my Uncle Larry or Cousin Eddie (yes his name is really Eddie) since Emily and I went to visit in January of 2016. I was shocked when Eddie pointed it out.

I cannot go anywhere without looking on my Roadside America app and seeing what bizarre things I can find along the way. When I saw the drugstore where Pepsi was created was still in business I had to go to New Bern North Carolina to see it. The store was cute with all Pepsi stuff and my sister and I enjoyed looking at it.

We ended up staying to find more roadside America stuff

As the sun dropped all the Christmas lights came on and a band was playing Christmas music. It was seventy degrees outside and I thought to myself this is how warm Christmas should be. Forget snow. Hahaha. So we walked around looking in all the little shops. It was a quaint little town that I’d recommend visiting if you are ever in the area.

Mole Moral ~ Diet Dr. Pepper is actually the best soda. Hmm sounds like it’s time to plan another trip.


A Diamond in the Rough

If you have ever traveled with me you already know that I have a bad habit of either picking shady hotels or even worse booking two for the same night. I refuse to divulge how many times this has happened. So when I was booking hotels for this trip I was very careful. I purposefully didn’t pick the cheapest on the list either. I had purchased an itinerary guide and it listed what cities and how many nights to stay. It was very helpful and I was so proud of myself. I was batting a thousand until Zion.

I used booking and put the app on my phone to make it easier to keep track of. I made sure all the places had good reviews and at least eight of ten rating. So we are driving to Zions bed and breakfast and I realize two things. First we aren’t even close to Zion and two we are pulling up to someone’s house. My first thought was thank God it was our actual anniversary so Brian can’t off me right here right now. He and I are not airbnb people much less staying in a strangers house. So we both say here goes nothing. The lady that greeted us was super nice and the minute we walked in we were greeted by three awesome dogs and I looked over to the right to see a quilting room. The quilts are amazing and spectacular. I was blown away.

Behind the quilt with the green edges is like quilt batting. You can place your quilt blocks on it and it sticks to see how quilt will look before you piece it together. So freaking cool.

I didn’t notice right away but I’m sure Brian did there were all sorts of animals mounted and hanging on the walls as well as antlers. I told him do not be getting any ideas. She showed us around and then made sure we were ok staying there and then charged us. I felt strangely at home.

Her house has both central heat and wood heat. This was her house growing up. She had an old stove from like the late eighteen hundreds that was cool. She also had a player piano and showed us how that worked. She had a few rolls (the music which makes it play) and said you can still find them on the internet. I knew my mom would love this.

The next morning all the pieces came together when she asked Brian if he knew where he was at. He was like no. She said he was in Colorado City. He was like not ringing a bell. She then asked if he ever heard of Warren Jeffs. I certainly had as I love ID channel. He kind of did and then she went on to explain polygamy. Yes she and her family were in but her father only had one wife. She shared that she was married to the oldest of 52 kids I believe. I have no idea for how long and I don’t ask personal questions. She and her sister did get out of the cult as she called it. She recently moved back to her parents house when it went up for sale and started the bed and breakfast.

As we were driving to Zion that morning he said to me I knew she was Mormon. She fits the look that you see on TV. I said it explains the quilting skills. She also told us the back way into the park so we could see the checkerboard rock formation and the mile long tunnel. Also if we were going to do the hike up the slot canyon with the water to rent the equipment. She said other guests refused because they were too cheap and ended up injured and costing more than the rental equipment. A hotel clerk would not have told us any of it.

Would you look at this detail. These squares are tiny and she has made nine blocks and will be joining them. I just wanted to swipe all of them.

Brian did try to harass me about picking this place until I finally said I really think this is a God thing. He wanted us to be here and meet her so that’s enough. It was pretty awesome to drop in on a totally different culture and to catch a glimpse of the old ways. This gal made home made bread which was yummy. Her cinnamon rolls were very, very good. Her biscuits were almost as good as Grandma Miller’s. I only ate two but could have easily eaten four. I behaved myself.

We are almost home as I’m finishing this blog up. This was probably the most favorite part of my trip. Such nice and interesting people. I’m glad I screwed up on this one (although I blame God) because it makes for even more wonderful memories.

Mole Moral ~ Jumping out of ones comfort zone can turn into a huge blessing.


An Amazing Friend

Since it has been over two years since I parted ways with Mercy, I can finally write this blog. Mercy has rules about not becoming friends with patients and not allowed to be friends on Facebook. I obviously broke that rule and it was a good one to break.

Nine years ago this November Women’s Health was moving from fifth floor to second floor. I came in that day to do what I always did, take new surgeries and admits. Others came in extra to help move the patients to their new rooms. At some point one of my coworkers said Dr. V is on the phone and wants to talk to you. I was like fuck what did I screw up. He never called people while he was in surgery and would get annoyed if nurses called him during a case as it would deflect his attention from operating and wouldn’t you want his full attention. So since I couldn’t pretend I wasn’t working I picked up the phone. He said to me “I want you to go talk to my patient in 2316.” He’s a man of few words so I said ok and that was it.

Everyone was like what did he want. I wasn’t kidding when I said he never calls from surgery. So I said he wants me to talk to 16 so let me at least see what her name is. I’m pretty sure I walked into Melynda’s room and said hi I’m Rachel a nurse here and Dr V just told me to come talk to you but didn’t say what about. I immediately liked her but I don’t remember how long we talked for. She was the first person moved down to the new floor.

Anytime I talk about mesh or mesh removal most of what I learned has come from Melynda. She is extremely smart and very knowledgeable about this subject and many others. I was horrified to learn that training to put this stuff in was a weekend conference using cadavers. Also that doctors that put it in would get a kickback commission for every single one they placed from the mesh manufacturers. So take poor training and combine with greed and disaster ensues. One of the other shocking things about the FDA is their 501k program in which a company can develop a similar device that is already on the market and be approved without clinical trails. Lastly, the hidden database to report complications that wasn’t available to the public until recently. I could go on and on about mesh as the Dr. V patients are about the only thing I miss about Mercy.

So I visited Melynda a few times before she was discharged and we became friends on Facebook before mercy made that rule. Once they did I was suppose to delete her but that wasn’t happening. She’s been back a couple times to see Dr. V and we’ve made sure to see each other. She lived in Florida for quite some time but I never had time during camp to get together. Within the year she moved back to Utah where her extended family is. So once Brian and I decided to visit Utah, I knew we must meet up. We had a wonderful but too short visit so we need to come back sooner rather than later.

If you know me, you will most likely think I am not shy but I am. It takes a lot to just walk up to someone and start a conversation but it was by far the best thing I’ve ever done. I’ve thanked Dr. V. more than once for calling me that day and freaking me out.

Mole Moral ~ Amazing people are out there if one just opens their eyes and their heart!