Silver Linings

   It doesn’t seem to matter, every time I start to feel discouraged about a situation, something always comes along to remind me how fortunate I am. I will start this week’s story with an incident that happened at Jamba Juice the other morning.

   Before we get into the story, I need to give you some background. Occasionally, Cassidy will send me a text asking me if I could bring her something to the school. For example; “G-Pa, could you bring me a Chai Tea Freeze from Java?” or “G-Pa, could you bring me some Watermelon Sour Patch Candy?” Then my favorite was “G-Pa, could you bring me a Venti Passion Ice Tea from Starbucks?” When I picked up the last order at Starbucks, I read it off my phone and explained it’s for my Granddaughter. Just a precaution so they don’t take away my man card. She always makes sure to say “If you can’t, that’s okay” and “Love you G-Pa.” I make sure she knows I love to being able to do it.

   So, the other morning I got a text asking me if I could stop and pick up an Island Pitaya bowl from Jamba. “I’d love to” I replied. When I walked into Jamba, there was a guy standing in line that looked familiar. He turned around and asked me if I was going to basketball. Then I remembered. A few years ago, he used to come to morning basketball. I told him we had stopped playing during the week, but we still played on Saturdays. “I had to quit, after what happened to me” he said. I asked him what happened and he said “I had some complications during a routine surgery that caused some blood clots.” Then he showed me how they had to cut off all the fingers on his left hand at the knuckle, and three on his right hand. “I had just retired from the INL and was looking forward to doing so many things, but all of that has changed now” he said. He told me a little more detail about how it happened, and then he said “I’m just thankful this was all that happened, because it could have been much worse. I got Cassidy’s order and wished him the best of luck. As I was driving, it reminded me how I had been feeling sorry for myself that my shoulder wasn’t healing as fast as I wanted it to. It was another teaching lesson for me.

   Now I would like to tell you about my good friends Bob and Lisa Hale and their tremendously strong daughter Hannah. She is 17 years old and in those years, she has had to endure several open-heart surgeries and other severe medical procedures. She has been in several life and death situations and has spent more time in the ICU than anyone should ever have to. Right now, she is at Primary Children’s Hospital recovering from a stroke caused by lack of oxygen during surgery and is looking at several weeks of therapy. I have known Bob and Lisa for several years, and there is no way to know how hard this has been on them. But their family has always stuck together with love and support. I have always admired how strong they are for each other. They have always been an inspiration to all of us. And as far as Hannah is concerned, I have never seen a stronger, confident, and lovable girl as her. Even though she is going through some tough times right now, she somehow manages to have that beautiful smile that could melt an iceberg. She has proven to everyone she’s a fighter and to never count her out. I can’t help but feel blessed for everything in my life when I realize what this family has gone through, and how they keep a positive attitude. They always let us all know how grateful they are for all their blessings.

   In my stories, I have tried very hard not to tell people what to do, but this week I would like to ask all of you to keep Hannah and her family in your thoughts and prayers. I know my Angel Shannon is watching over them. I will always LOVE AND MISS YOU sweetheart.

Next week: The Home and Garden Show