A Teen’s Diary

You, as a parent, teach your children to think for themselves. To learn to live independently as an adult. You teach them not to lie, steal and be untrue to themselves.

Suddenly, you notice over time that their personality is changing. They aren’t spending as much time with the family interacting. They seem to have gained new friends, but haven’t met them.

They are dressing a little different than usual and using new make-up. Are they just growing up right in front of your eyes or is something going on? After all, you did teach them to think for themselves.

Something is eating at you though. Your instincts are kicking in. This seems to run through your mind daily.

One day, you are in their room. You are putting their clothes a way and when you pull open the dresser drawer; you spot a book. You pick it up and see that it their dairy book. Do you read it? Yes or no readers?


Ever Wonder Who I Am Looks Like?

Here I am. I am the writer and photographer behind this blog. I live in Warsaw, Indiana. I have three grown children and I think, 11 grandchildren. I was a caregiver and traveled throughout Indiana for many years and then became a private caregiver for elderly and Hospice patients.

Now I have Parkinsonism/Dystonia/Ataxia. I live in a retired community building and spend my time painting, or being the photographer for the social events here. Yesterday, I was nominated for Secretary for the next year. In April I will learn whether I was voted in or not. I really don’t mind if I lose or win; I was thought of.

I am pretty quiet, but at times I can be a real chatterbox. I love to take my scooter or car and go to the lake and take photos. I love campfires, seeing the smiles on my family’s faces and making memories.

I am an Advocate for a rare illness called; Multiple System Atrophy. I have a Facebook page called Multiple System Atrophy through a caregiver’s eyes, where families, patients and caregivers can view postings that hopefully bring a smile. You may chat with me about questions you have about this rare illness.


I have published two books and am writing a third. The first book is called Dahlia. It is an uplifting story about never giving up. The second book is a general based book on Multiple System Atrophy. These two books can be purchased through Amazon or Kindle. The third book I am writing is in no holding back the truth about Multiple System Atrophy. Many readers let me know they wanted to know more. I had held back because it is such a horrifying disease; but in this third book, I will be spilling my guts. I think the name of it will be, A Hell of a Disease. We shall see if that sticks.Al_his_life_and_MSA_Cover_for_Kindle

Well, that about does it. If you have questions about who I am, talk to me.


Thou Shall Help the Ones in Need

There once was a lady from earth

Who knew nothing but how to give birth

People laughed at her lack of education

Not understanding about inflation

Then one day a kind soul stopped by

She gently wiped a tear from her eye

” I brought some books, paper and pen

I will teach you how to read and then

People won’t laugh at you anymore

Because you will be all that and much more.”

Written by,

Terry Shepherd





The Hoarder

The winds  howled. The doors creaked. Unwanted guests arrived quick; trying to find refuge. Candles danced shadows upon the walls creating scary faces that blinked eyes at you.

It was an eerie night in the house on the hill. It rested back a long, curvy lane, made of stone and gravel. Ruts formed from pouring rains, making it almost impossible for automobiles to make their way to the front door.

Naked trees with long arms, scratched their nails against each other as if fighting for their rights to stand tall and strong. Branches which couldn’t hold their own, fell hard to the ground; crumbling and breaking into many pieces.

Souls who once rested in peace in the cemetery next door, now could be seen by the most naked of eyes. White wisps of matter floated through the air as each spirit fought for a new resting ground.

Inside the house, dressed in a dingy, white, floor-length sleeping gown, a man sat at the table. A small table which held one lit candle, a dead rose in a dirty vase, a pad and a feathered pen rested on the worn tablecloth.

He picked up the pen and stuck the tip on his tongue as if pulling ideas stirring in his brain may come out into the open. He wrinkled his brow and scratched at his chin. “Come on, damn you, come out. I know you are in there.”

In his day, he had written many a word and placed the sheets in order and had created several books. No one knew that he was famous in his own right. A magician of thought, a monkey made to come to life by tugging at the strings, now sat lifeless, waiting for the brain to kick into gear.

He had sat there for hours, for days, trying to think of the first word he wanted to write down. He was about to give up and decided instead a change of pace may stir life back into him.

He slipped on his grayed slippers. He placed his over-sized, black trench coat on. Reaching for his umbrella, he opened the big, black knob and went out into the night. He walked slowly down the gravel and stood looking towards the cemetery as if pleading for someone’s help.

He shivered and pulled his coat closer to him and walked towards the spiked fence. The iron was holding back the once lived, keeping them in place until a bigger soul came to take them home.

He gazed over the tombstones looking for answers.  He suddenly became cold. He could feel ice seeping into his nostrils, following the path into the lung cavities. His body became stiff and he knew someone or something had entered his body.

He fell to the ground, grabbing at his throat, squeezing as if trying to stop what ever was invading him. He became lifeless and fell to the ground. Each thought he had ever created took over and consumed him, choking him to death.

Whispers heard, words not understood became louder and louder as his own body was eaten alive from hoarding  His mind  shut down,  his brain swelled, and he died right there amongst the thousands of thoughts and words that he had never once shared with another human being.

Painting done by,

Terry Shepherd






The Time is Near

It is the third month
The days are creeping up
Closer the calendar moves
I remember like it was yesterday
Your smile, your tears, your silence.
Brother dear, I know you left me a penny
I found it on the floor
You probably see that I am wearing your IU jacket too
It is one way I can feel close to you.
I miss you baby brother
There will never be another
With big blue eyes
The color of skies
A grin so wide
No where to hide
I saw the questions you had
When you felt so bad
I couldn’t keep it away
MSA took you that day
March 24, 2014
It was a disease so mean
No matter what I try
I still cry
I miss you brother
There will be no other.
Written by your sister for you my dear brother,
Terry Sheperd
In memory of a warrior of Multiple System Atrophy

I Have Changed

I can’t remember if I have talked about Al, my brother lately. Oh, who am I kidding; I think and talk about him to whom ever will listen and not turn their face away.

There are several MSA sites on Facebook that I belong to, so MSA is still a huge topic on my mind, even with Al up in heaven.

A friend told me once, that the pain never quite goes away. The hole in the heart closes, but never seals. The thoughts never escape, the  memories will always remain. The most important thing she expressed to me was. a person will never be quite the same.

Of course, there are parts of me that have moved on. I have fallen in love with my camera. When it and I are together, I really do close out everyone and everything in this world .I have branched out in my writing for my blog and I am writing my third book.  Al will be gone two years this March, and after this amount of time, I have never quite bounced back to the person I was.

I do believe good things happened though because of his passing. I drew closer to God, and I don’t allow myself to stray far from him. I am much more aware to the insensitivity in our world. I have more empathy for those suffering and less tolerance for those who think they will live high on the  mountain for ever.

I have learned that getting a bargain, is a bigger deal than having what is hot. If I get lucky to get a brand name, then it is icing on the cake. I have learned I am not taking anything with me when I leave this earth.

I don’t care so much about how a person looks anymore. It is what is in the heart that I see very clear. I can see when people don’t really care about what you say or think. I draw near to those who speak of inner peace and trying to live a Godly life.

I used to laugh at jokes that were under the table. Now when I hear vulgarity, it makes me sick. I don’t have the trust like I used to. I still get hurt pretty bad when people I care about hurt me, perhaps that is where the trust issue comes into play. No, I am no goody two shoes. I just know, that if Jesus stood in my door way, he wouldn’t catch me doing what I maybe used to do.

I hope that somewhere in this world, someone has noticed my change. Some can say I am depressed, some may think I am a snoot, but this is not true. I would love to spend time with more people, but I don’t want to change who I think God wants me to be in order to fit into other people’s lives.

Yes, Alvin’s death was very hard on me, but I have moved forward in many ways, although some may not recognize. It doesn’t really matter. I will continue to pray that God changes negative hearts and opens their eyes to God.  I miss you Al. I hope you are singing high on that mountain.



Chapter 1, Introduction

Have you ever felt like you have just been run over by a ton of bricks? Or maybe you  just had enough and you don’t want to get out of bed; even when the sun is shining.

This is how Mary felt as  her alarm clock went off. Hitting the snooze button three times, she wanted to throw it across the room but instead sat up and turned the alarm off. Running her hands through her tasselled hair, her first thoughts were, life sucks.

For seven years she had been in a relationship with Brian. Seven, sometimes long years were actually the best years she had experienced. Brian was a computer tech over at the local college.

She had met him when she had went to the office requiring assistance with getting a computer program to work. She couldn’t take her eyes off of those big baby-blues. His smile showed perfect, straight teeth.

After spending some time getting her answers, she turned to leave and then looked back saying, ” See you later.” His question that followed started their relationship. ” How about after your last class tomorrow?”

She remembered so well telling him, sure, and before long the two were an item. She learned that Tommy had graduated college the year before and had received a job offer from the same place  she attended, White’s College.

His parents were both white-collar workers and Brian had told her he had wanted more out of his life. Someday he wanted a business of his own, repairing computers for big businesses.

He explained his shyness in school. Pimpled-faced, braces on his teeth, not really any girlfriends to mention. He laughed as he said, ” I must have been a late bloomer because one morning I woke up, and everything seemed different. The braces were gone, the pimples disappeared. I felt different and I sure looked different.”

Mary had been so proud of him for going after his dreams. She had thrown both of her arms around him and planted a kiss on his lips. She in turn told him a little about herself.

” Nothing really special, middle child growing up. I always seemed to be in charge of things at home. My parents both worked. I did alright in school, but  in  junior year, my thoughts began to change and I knew I could do better.”

Brian and Mary dated throughout the rest of her schooling. Upon graduation the two talked about marriage; but made no real plans. Mary was content with this. She was planning on working as a nurse and wanted to return to college to get further her degree.

Friday nights was date night. Sometimes they went out to eat and to a movie. Other times they walked through the mall. They had dinner with both sets of parents. Life couldn’t be any better than this.