Me in the Middle of Memories ~ Candy Stripers

Candy Stripers

candy-striper-iii
Teenage girls in the 50’s, who were thinking about becoming nurses, could volunteer at the hospital as a Candy Striper.  I came across my service badge ~ Holy Name Hospital (Our Lady’s Service).  It sparked a lot of memories for me …….. so long ago …….. and so many changes since then.
 
Badge Candy Striper 1950s

Photo by mlq

I remember well the day that I received the badge!  We were all gathered in the auditorium at Holy Name for the Service Ceremony …….. and Pat Boone, the 50’s pop singer, gave each of us our badge and a rose.  He and his family lived in Teaneck where the hospital was located.  We all wore pink and white striped pinafores which is where the name Candy Striper came from.

Pat Boone ~ April Love

(I was a Rick Nelson fan, myself.  😉 )

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The responsibilities I was given as a volunteer included sterilizing the baby bottles in the autoclave,and cleaning the circumcision boards and baby bassinets after each use.  I would string the alphabet beads on elastic cord to make the ID bracelets for mother and baby.  The Maternity Ward was a happy place for a fifteen-year-old Candy Striper as she went about refilling water pitchers with fresh water and delivering flowers and mail to the new moms.  More than any hope of becoming a nurse, I dreamed of one day holding my own newborn.

Maternity Ward Candy Striper

*Images by Pixabay*

Me in the Middle of Inktober 2018

I Survived Inktober 2018

This month has been an eventful month!

I had a medical set-back that sent me to the emergency room a few months back and was soon diagnosed with AVNRT which is a form of Supraventricular Tachycardia.  A Cardiac Ablation was scheduled for October 15th and while waiting for that date, my activity level took a nose dive.

Then I heard about Inktober 2018 and decided it would be a great way to pass the time and fight the boredom.  It would calm my pre-surgery fears and also give me a buffer-zone against the ugly, stressful developments in our country’s politics.  The challenge is to come up with an ink-sketching idea based on a daily prompt.  Here’s the video that explains Inktober much better than I could:

How to Do Inktober

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So all went well with the Cardiac Ablation and I’m just completing my recovery with a good report from the doctor.  I also finished all 31 days of Inktober and feel pretty good about it.  Take a look at my sketches.  Maybe you’ll join us next year for Inktober 2019?

Week One ~ Oct 1st thru 7th

 

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Week Two ~ Oct 8th thru 14th

 

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Week Three ~ Oct. 15th thru 21st

 

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Week Four ~ Oct. 22nd thru Oct 30th

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And HAPPY HALLOWEEN ~ Enjoy a Margarita on me!! 

(I’d love to know which sketch you liked the best!  Leave your choice in comments!)

Day 31 Slice #3

Me In The Middle of Being a Single Mom

 

DSCN3199 (6)

© Mary Lou Q

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“Everything comes to us that belongs to us, if we create the capacity to receive it.”

~ Rabindranath Tagore ~

This path of mine has brought me to and through so much that has given my life meaning, richness and purpose.  I want to apply all that I’ve learned ~ I want to create within myself the capacity to receive all that belongs to me with open arms and open heart.

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One of my sons shared with me a memory of when he was a teenager.  He told me that when he saw the movie ~ E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial, ‘the Mom from E.T.’ reminded him of me.

I remembered the movie and how the message captivated all of us during the early Eighties.

“Turn on your heartlight.  Let it shine wherever you go.”

Click here to listen ♥ :  Heartlight ~ Neil Diamond ~ E.T.

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“The Mom from E.T.” was a single mom raising her children during that time just as I was.  So I googled to refresh my memory and learn more about her.  It was a time for me when building a sense of safety and security for my family was very important to me and E.T. touched my heart.

What I found in my google search was a video of an interview with Dee Wallace (The Mom from E.T.) reflecting back thirty years and how the movie continued to touch the hearts of people down through the years.  What I loved is how she sees the movie as a call to Love instead of Fear and Hate.  Speaking of how 9/11 has affected all of us, she expressed her own desire to see us recapture that belief that there’s more goodness in the world than there is evil:

“If we continue to live in the fear and the protecting that it made us build up, we stop creating who we are… we shut all our light down… and then love isn’t prevalent …. and then we literally begin creating the world we don’t want.  If you want a world of love, you’ve got to be love.”

I see this as true at both a national level and at a personal level.  It was the conclusion I came to as a single mom facing the challenges ahead of me and recovering from abandonment that made things look very hopeless.  If I continued to live in the fear and the protecting that it made me build up, I would have stopped creating who I was… shutting down my light… and love wouldn’t have prevailed.  Instead of creating a sense of love and support within my family, it would have begun to create a world I didn’t want.  I wanted my children to come through with a sense of acceptance and belonging which they deserved, and not a sense of being outcasts because they weren’t in a ‘whole’ family.

So. as I stand upon this mountaintop overlooking the possibilities ahead of me at this time in my life, I recall the message of E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial.   I hope to be able to have the courage to speak and act in a way that truly represents what I’ve come to believe.    

“Turn on your heartlight ~ Open your heart ~ Keep the light on ~ You are the light.” 

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Me In The Middle of Life

114 - White Water Rafting

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I will not die an unlived life.
I will not live in fear
of falling or catching fire.
I choose to inhabit my days,
to allow my living to open me,
to make me less afraid,
more accessible,
to loosen my heart
until it becomes a wing,
a torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance;
to live so that which came to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom
and that which came to me as blossom,
goes on as fruit.


(Dawna Markova, b. 1942)

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Nelson County Sketch #5

(c) mlq

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One-Word Inspiration and A Story In A Single Image

Choice

CHOICE

What does it mean to have a choice?

Does a child have a choice in what family they are born into?

And do we have a choice in how we are taught?

Does a child have a choice in the body they are given?

in the country they’re born into?

Or the religion (or no religion) they are raised in?

A child comes into the world trusting.

Can that child be the person they were created to be?

Or will that child be limited in the choices available to them?

It’s a wonderful, expansive world  with so many choices both good and bad.

Are we letting those we love have the freedom to learn and grow?

Or are we binding them with narrow walls that attempt to keep them

within our own small world?

Choices ~ how to teach a child to think and follow their own path…

to believe in themselves.

How to help them make the best choices for themselves.

How to let go of them and let them take that leap!

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Choice ~ Take that Leap

This post is a combination of two assignments for Writing 101.  We had a choice out of six words to pick one that spoke to us and that we wanted to write about.  The other assignment was to pick a single image that inspired us.  So I picked “Choice” as my one word and two images that I felt represented what I wrote.  Be well and be happy!