Good, bad, it's always changing...

Gratitude has been on my mind a lot lately this past week. Two Sundays ago, there was a large fire (1200 acres) out in the nearby town where David and Carol (my ex and the girls' stepmom) recently moved. It was only a few miles from their new house and we spent some harrowing moments on the phone while they were in the car, heading for the smoke, with me looking up news and maps and phone numbers for the sheriff's office.

It was only because the wind turned that the fire headed in the opposite direction. Phew!

Unfortunately, 28 other families weren't so lucky. They lost everything.

Gratitude...

and compassion for those who were suddenly surprised by life's varying whims...

 

I'm also blown away by what can happen when a community of women comes together, such as Ike-a-saurus.

What's Ike-a-saurus? I'm glad you asked!

A very talented writer in my longtime writers group, Kari Anne Roy (she writes rocking books on haiku AND science fiction for kids), is dealing with some harrowing situations herself. Her infant son, Baby Ike, is suffering from some pretty serious health problems that have stymied doctors, and he just had surgery a few weeks ago.

As if that weren't enough, everyone in her husband's department was recently laid off.She's handling everything with grace and good humor.

They're keeping COBRA for Ike's treatment, but we all know how medical costs go, even with insurance.

If you can help her husband, Steven Roy, find a job (tons of experience in high-tech), here's a link for more info. Or if you feel inspired to make a purchase or donation to help them out, they would be greatly appreciative.

Kari's been posting updates on Issac on her blog, Haiku of the Day, and this post made my heart jump to my throat:

We were only on the intermediate floor for minutes. I put him in the crib in the room and as soon as I put him down, his stats dropped, his heart rate dropped and he turned gray. He was crying and wheezing and there were so many people around the bed. They couldn't get his o2 levels above 60, even when they were bagging him. So they pushed the bed out of the room towards ICU. We ran down the hall and they told me they were going to have to intubate. The last thing I saw was his blue/gray body, covered in wires and people's hands, with the bagging mask over his face. I could still hear him crying. That's when they made me go to the waiting room.

Finally, some good news for their family: Ike is coming home! He still faces medical treatments and careful monitoring in the future, but for now, I'm sure they're thrilled to have their little one at home, close. Here's some homecoming haiku by Kari Anne:

Buckled into seat Riding home on a sunbeam? Cam'ra so hopeful

 

Yet one more thing to be grateful for, amidst all the upheaval and financial fear....

So what are you grateful for in your life? What bullets have you dodged? What's stable and consistent to the point of boring?

If things are bad, at least you know they'll always eventually get better.

And if they're good, be glad!

© 2008 Jennifer Newcomb Marine All Rights Reserved

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