Saturday, January 15, 2011

Even "Peg Leg Pirates" go on with their lives...

Strange coincidences
in their family ties.

Being a “pirate” was part of the recuperation process for Tim Wynne after he lost a leg due to complications due to diabetes. Also helping was the unique and touching experience of having grown up in the household of Ray and Mariellen Wynne of Cannon Falls.
Hereʼs their story...

Tim and his Dad, Ray, both have artificial legs. Tim had surgery last August to remove the lower part of one leg and Ray had lost two legs due to an accident 25 years before. To show the spirit and “grit” of this family in times of tragedy, Timʼs wife, Valerie, decided that since real pirates may lose a leg and still go on living, she would throw a “Pirate Party” for him! So Tim put on a black eye patch and showed off his newly acquired “peg leg”!
This positive attitude has helped the family as they dealt with the stress of pain, grief and fear. And, Tim explained, “It made everything easier to know what Dad had gone through... so I knew I could.”

Similarities between the two men.

The coincidences between Ray and Tim are fascinating. Ray was born in August and lost his legs in February when he was 54 1/2 years old. Reverse the months and you have Tim born in February and losing his leg in August when he was 54 1/2 years old. Ray had a pulmonary embolism in the main artery of his heart. Tim had one too.
As a side note, Ray recalled that when he was in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) at the hospital he hadnʼt been told much about his case. So he carefully watched from his bed as a doctor looked at his chart and proceeded to give a whistle! Ray figured then that something was really wrong. Another doctor explained to him, “They know youʼre here but you shouldnʼt be!”
Timʼs problem came after he had complications with diabetes. He ended up having part of his leg cut off so he might save the rest of it.

“Phantom pain.”

Both men know the feeling of phantom pain. Tim explained, “Thereʼs a lot of pain - you have to build up your tolerance. And yes, sometimes it feels like I still have pain in my ankle... but my ankle isnʼt there.” Ray said this feeling of pain was explained to him, “that the part of the body was connected to you and your brain is still trying to send signals to it.” Sometimes it feels like a tingling to him - almost a ʻbuzz”.
Recently Tim has been getting used to his prothesis and practicing to get his balance back. Ray commented, “After a while you donʼt think about it - itʼs your leg.

Filling in the gaps...

Though both men do amazingly well, their wives have had to step in to fill the gaps. Valerie had to drive their car, mow the lawn, and she added, many little things that Tim canʼt do - like picking up the soap in the shower if it falls out of his grasp. Mariellen recalled how Ray will get everything organized in the morning to get dressed and go sit down only to find that he has forgotten to get the socks out of thedrawer. Then he calls her for help.
But both families know they can rely on each other and the bonding of shared experiences.


These “pirates” kept going on with their lives. Tim Wynne and his Dad, Ray, take a moment to show their “peg legs”. Ray encouraged Tim that heʼll get adjusted to using it. “After a while you donʼt think about it - itʼs your leg.”

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

This puts a different look on it.

When wondering if you should try for a new job...
or do something differently...
but you're worried that you will
feel really dumb if it doesn't work out...

Well, I recently did something like that.

But a man gave me some good advice...

He said,
if you don't do it,
you will get the same result
as if you had been turned down.

So I might as well try it.


Saturday, January 8, 2011

A hunch...

or a message from God?

Maybe we should pay more attention to “hunches”... and maybe sometimes they really could be a message from God.

Even if they are just “little things” - not important.

We were invited out to a dinner party and I thought it would be nice to bring a little gift for the hostess.

But then my next thought was: “I don’t think she likes anything I bring so why bother?”

Followed by this response: “But it’s the nice thing to do... and maybe sometime I’ll pick the right gift!” You know how the pattern goes.

Picking the gift...

One thought kept repeating in my mind - “get flowers”. And another one was... “not chocolate.” Well, this didn’t seem too difficult - although I love chocolate.

These thoughts kept circling in my mind like a merry-go-round that doesn’t stop... “flowers - not chocolate - flowers - not chocolate”, etc.

Finally it was time to go and I figured I had it settled. On the way we’d get flowers.

The store had some beautiful cut flowers and plants. But either they did not seem right, had few blossoms or they were too expensive.

I didn’t have time to waste making the decision and then I saw sitting near the flowers some fancy chocolates! I took them. (I know - one of the thoughts in my head had been “Not chocolates.” But that thought was probably not right. Right?)

A warning here?

I took the box to the check-out counter. The cashier took a look at it and said something about it being nice and then she read the tiny warning on the label suggesting that people should be careful if they are allergic to pine nuts. Now how many times does a cashier read the warning to you? I’d never had this happen before. But I just chalked it up as interesting and bought the chocolates.

We arrived at our destination and walked into a lovely atmosphere of festivities. I gave my gift to the hostess and joined the other guests in conversation.

It was a half hour or so later that I accidentally overheard the hostess say to someone that she was allergic to “pine nuts”. I don’t know why I overheard that particular piece of information since I was several feet away listening to another conversation.

But then I realized that I had again brought the wrong gift!

I left my group and went to explain to her that she had better not eat the chocolates I had brought. Her husband grinned and said not to worry, he would!

How many warnings?

So, did I learn a lesson?

Well... how often do you get a hunch that says not to do something followed by a person reading a warning to you?

I hope I listen better next time.