I am Strong Because I have a Shield of Love

Don’t ever tell yourself, “I got it made” or “Life is a piece of cake.” I swear as soon as you say that; you will be shut down.

This has been a rotten week. I am glad this is Friday. Hoping for a new week with less stress and sadness.


I was with my family during the loss of a family member. A viewing one day, the funeral the next day.

I have  had issues with a family member also. It is plum crazy when the issues arise and for the love of God; I don’t know what the problem is. The other party won’t open up and therefore I am left with a feeling of being helpless and lost.

I also lost a very close friend to the same disease that took my brother; Multiple System Atrophy. I tell you; she was one strong fighter. She carried hope and a bright spirit to the end.


I wasn’t expecting it and my emotions ran a muck. Maybe with a prior funeral and then this major loss, I went over the top with my tears. I will miss you forever and ever Bonnie.

I am a pretty emotional person. With the final encounter; I found my blood pressure rising, my neck was  hurting along with my head. My stomach ached and I felt like I had been tossed to the wind.

My girlfriend has been helping me through this. She has reminded me of how to take issues I can not fix and give them over to the Lord. I am doing this and I have found myself calmer and now laughing again. The problem isn’t fixed but knowing God has this covered and will fix it; I can go about my life.

She told me something that I really like repeating over and over in my head.

Lord, let me see through your eyes. Let me hear through your ears. Let me love through your heart.

She also gave me a precious song to listen to and I play it often. It brings me comfort.



So although this week has been a big blow to my spirit; I have also learned I am strong because I am protected by a shield of love.

The Long Month of January

Hello my friends. Well the holidays are over. No more stuffing ourselves with Thanksgiving. The change purse is dry from Christmas and now we here in the northern part of Indiana wait.


What are we waiting for? Well, some are waiting for the usual snow we have plenty of by now; but it  hasn’t arrived. I’m sorry, but for me, less is more. Now that I am older, snow is my enemy unless I’m sitting inside and watching the flakes fall.


There are lots of comments being made. No snow in December or January is a promise of over-load in February and March. I don’t know the future. I will have to deal with what is given me; but for now; I am fine.


January is the longest month of the year for me. It always has been. Maybe it is because it is long and boring. No real holidays in it. The back to the normal groove thing returns and the days tick down until a lot of people get their tax refunds. At this point of the government shutdown, who knows when those tax returns will happen.


I saw a post on my Facebook a bit ago which stated,”Count the Mondays.” I got it immediately. I suppose if you live in the southern part of the country,  you may not understand but up here, if you can count the Mondays in the long month of January, it will promise to get you closer to Spring.


February is a time when I will be thinking more of Spring. The farmer commercials will be posting on the television. This is a good sign that Spring is coming. I will be starting to watch for the Robins to reappear. When they arrive, it means that there will not be so much snow that they won’t be able to find food and shelter and Spring is near.


Animals say a lot about your weather. Have you ever watched the squirrels gather nuts for winter? On bad winters, you will still see the squirrels in early December, storing nuts. The Catapillars, the ones who crawl so slow and have beautiful colors, these creatures turn a dark black if our winter here in Indiana is going to be a vicious one.


As for me, I have been fighting something for four days now. I don’t have a temperature or aches and pains, but instead, I am nauseated anytime I eat. This circle includes a trip to the Ladies room no matter how little or much food I put into my mouth. I have lost four pounds in four days. I am glad I am experiencing this during our winter months.


I don’t get out much in the winter time. It’s too cold. Aged skin cracks and burns. Eyes sting, and the thoughts of playing in the snow are exchanged for will my walker get through the snow and ice. Here where I live, that is doubtful. There is not sufficient cleaning in the parking lot so there are many grooves of ice. I just don’t want to fall down at this point in my life. I do go out if it isn’t too cold or snowing and go to my volunteer job. I try to go twice a week during the winter and I will go at least three times per week or more in the warmer weather.


I didn’t go to church today. This matter of my stomach is just a little too much to deal with during a church service. I do have one thing to look forward to in the month of January, 2019. My daughter is coming for a visit. It’s been quite a while since I have seen her and am looking forward to a visit.


Another thing I am looking forward to is; my insurance is covering the expenses for me to have Life Alert for my falls. It will bring me comfort knowing I am now not alone here in the apartment, or too far away from a pull light, or definitely when I am taking a shower. It will be worn on my wrist and if I fall it triggers the alarm company. If I don’t answer the second chime, this tells the company that I am not alert. I believe from what the company said, is that I will receive my wrist band and plug in box in five to ten days.

I know this is not a big deal to most but for someone as unsteady as me and who lives alone; this can be a real life savor.

What about you? How do you get through the long month of January?


Doctor’s Visit

Today I had a doctor’s appointment. It was a check-up from the labs I had drawn yesterday. We go over the report and he makes suggestions as to what I can do to help myself.

All the numbers on those LD’s etc were in normal ranges. I was happy. My sugars had come down a little with having added five units of insulin these past few months but he wants them to where they were several years ago, I think, so he added five more units of insulin.

It was my turn to make suggestions this visit. I had a full memory list of what I wanted to ask but got shot down on all of my questions. He explained why this and that and I understood what he was saying, until we got to my last question.

I told him about my Dystonia causing my arch to hurt most days from my toes curling. I explained that my weeble-wobble was becoming more of a daily issue now. He said, there wasn’t anything to FIX ME.

I guess I knew it inside from belonging to so many support groups on FB. What his suggestion was as he was opening the door to leave was; “Probably time to consider using a walker full-time and get a wheelchair.”

I said nothing. He said nothing. He gave me a pat on the shoulder and smiled then left to see the next patient. I stood and stared at him as he walked away. It has been four hours since that talk and I still don’t want to believe it.

I told one of my friends about it and expressed I was not ready to sit in a wheelchair, even part-time. They asked me, “Falls and hospitals or safe and at home?”


Humble Thyself


  1. 1.
    having or showing a modest or low estimate of one’s own importance.
    “he was humble about his stature as one of rock history’s most influential guitarists”
    synonyms: meekdeferentialrespectfulsubmissivediffidentself-effacingunassertiveMore

  2. 2.
    of low social, administrative, or political rank.
    “she came from a humble, unprivileged background”
    synonyms: lowly, working-class, lower-class, poorundistinguishedmeanmodestignoblelow-bornplebeianunderprivilegedMore

  1. 1.
    lower (someone) in dignity or importance.
    “I knew he had humbled himself to ask for my help”
    synonyms: humiliateabasedemeanlowerdegradedebaseMore


Today at church was so humbling to me. It had been a while since I went to church because of winter weather. With me having unsteadiness, snow and ice scare me. It felt good to be back among positive people.

I am so glad I went because there was a guest speaker and he was awesome! He is from Cambodia. His name is, Chhinho Saing. He has a beautiful family also. He spoke of his world from growing up to what he does today.

It touched my heart when he said he cried and cried every day because his mother was killed. He spoke about the Killing Fields and how it affected his  life. Have you ever seen this movie? I placed the Trailer of the movie below. Also, here is a family photo of him and his family.

He made me realize how spoiled and ungrateful I am at times. I have a roof over my head. I have freedom to make my own choices. I can choose what foods I like. The more he spoke, the more I thanked God for my gifts.

Chhinho is building churches in Cambodia. He is a believer of God and realizes God’s importance in our lives. He is also a blogger here at WordPress. If you would like to follow him, here is his blog address. I am so grateful for what I have and thankful that I have the sense to realize I have much to yet learn in my life.


Facebook address; Chhinho Saing

Please join me in prayer as I pray for him to continue spreading the word of Jesus Christ.



Two Short Stories in One

The joy for some comes easy. Growing old, pop sitting in the recliner, mom rocking in her rocker. The TV on, a show playing, lunch over.

Pop closing his eyes while mom watches him, thanking God for these many blessed years she has been given him to share life with. Rose closes her eyes. She opens them when she hears Pop coughing.

He clears his throat and continues on with his nap. The doorbell knocker is heard. She raises up from her rocker and quietly walks over to the door. Opening it up, there standing is the youngest daughter.

Mom invites her in but not without giving the hush sound, pointing at Pop sleeping. Sara goes into the kitchen and grabs two cups of hot coffee. Taking the lead, she goes out onto the sun room, where they both sit and enjoy a few sips.

Sara ask about Pop and how he is doing. She asks if there is anything the two need. The conversation bounces around from that point to how nice the weather is. Sara talks about her vacation coming up and how she is anxious to not set the alarm.

The two visit for about half-an-hour. Sara looks at her watch, stating she must be heading out, that she has one more errand to run before returning back to work. The two stand up and they hug each other. Sara plants a kiss on Mom’s cheek, telling her she loves her.

The two head for the living room. Looking at Pop, they both think how peaceful he looks. Sara holds her breath. She walks over to him and feels his hand. Cold to the touch. While the women were talking, Pop went to be with the Lord with a smile on his face.

Story 2

The joy for some comes hard. Ruth and Eddie had a good life, or so they thought. They both met during the war. He was a soldier and she was a nurse. After the war was over, the two got married.

Within a year, their first son was born. About six months later Eddie started having bad headaches. He had terrible nightmares that woke him up drenched in sweat or sometimes screaming.

By this time, they had also learned that baby two was on the way. Night after night, Eddie suffered. Memories of the war popping up constantly.

They went to the VA many times and were told the same thing. This is caused from the war. There is nothing that can be done. He was given prescriptions for pain and some narcotic pills to try to calm him down.

The job that he had at the local hardware store was put to a halt. He was told by the boss, they just couldn’t afford to keep having him show up late or go home early. They liked him and all, but this was life.

Eddie stayed home. Ruth tried some babysitting but Eddie couldn’t stand the noise. She then turned to doing some housecleaning for others, but only on a part-time basis, because Eddie’s symptoms worsened with time, and he needed her help.

Christmas was gloomy at times. They did the best they could, but it wasn’t much. There just wasn’t enough money. Winters were the worst. High heat bills, and beating down church doors for donations to help pay the bills and put enough food on the table.

When the kids were old enough; they wanted out. They knew they could have a better life away from home. Eddie and Ruth managed to do for themselves without the kids being there, but life was lonely and frustrating.

The two grew old together, clinging close to each other. Sometimes there was a visitor. A minister, or a girl scout knocking at the door selling cookies.

The streets were quiet. Snow was falling softly outside, covering everything. Eddie and Ruth laid in their bed together, using each other for extra warmth. Morning never returned for these two.

Written by,
Terry Shepherd.

photo taken by Terry Shepherd

lines 9

What Is Gentle, but Strong

What is gentle, but strong?
Is it spewing words as swords?
Is it knowing you are right?
Is it proving your point?

Is it knowing you are from
God’s creation, in his eyes
Being confident in his word
Having no doubts…….

Maybe it is your faith
That sets you free
Realizing you can keep quiet
Because you trust in him.

Would our world be better?
Would bickering stop?
Petty arguing and name calling
Would come to a halt?

Being gentle is strong
Firm in belief
Lending a hand
Supporting others.

Give uplifting words
Ask God for guidance
Pray for all others
Being gentle is strong.

Written by,
Terry Shepherd



First Day of Magnet Fishing

Magnet fishing is something I learned about from our lady who serves our lunches here. It is quite fun and easy. I got excited at the hope of finds we would bring in from the waters.

It was our fist day and we found a piece of the original bridge here in our local area. We found odds and ends of things. I was excited but am in hope of finding the biggie! LOL. Who knows, we may get lucky. The good thing was I spent time with family. We laughed, got excited, I enjoyed watching the kids and of course, taking photos.

boat 12boat 13boat 17

Accepting As It Is Given

What does it really matter
Where this darn illness splatters.

I thought I needed to know
Which way it was to go.

The truth is; it is who I am
I am a true Ataxian.

Along with Distonia too
Parkinson’s, really? boo hoo.

I will shake when I’m anxious
I will tremor like a speeding bus.

Swallowing can be difficult
Choking is all up and out.

Falling is my expertise
Please don’t touch me; if you please.

If I don’t smile when I walk around
It’s because I don’t want to fall to the ground.

So I guess life will be what it will be
I have support and family around me.

Support groups; I run to a lot
I can cry and whine like a snot.

Forgive me for being my new me
The old one was tossed out to sea.

Just let me know you are still my friend
Because for you; my ears and love I still give.

Written by my feelings,
Terry Shepherd

Photo taken by myself.

art 8

Our Babies, We Loved You So Much

Hello friends. Do you have a topic that you have interest in, that you would like to see in a poem or short story vision?
I am looking for new ideas to write about. Please take note that what I write will be made public to the world. I also will credit your name for idea creation.
Silver Blatt ;Another proud parent Relationship between a parent and adult child. Love, companionship, friendship. When that Parent looks back and doesn’t realize when that relationship changed, yet as all parents know, they are always our babies.
Growing up in a rural area is a good thing if you want to have a good chance of raising kids who appreciate our earth, but for some kids, this isn’t so cool.
This is what happened to Jill and Jason, a set of twins.
As kids; they were taught how to milk a cow, hoe the weeds, clean their rooms and not sass their elders. Life seemed good all around until the twins reached their teen years.
High school introduced Jill and her brother to different cultures.Their lives seemed so much more fun than what they were used to.
The twins parents noticed the changes immediately. Attitudes changed. The parents heard some words they had not heard before. They tried getting their children involved more with church; but the kids bucked at the idea.
Many a night, if you were a fly on the wall, you could see the tears flowing and hear the words being prayed. This set of parents wanted children so bad. They were never fortunate enough to have their own; so they sought out adoption, and that is how Jason and Jill came to live with the Owens family.
It was the twins 18th birthday. Mr. and Mrs. Owens had planned a small party of intimate friends and close family. Mom made the cake and together, mom and dad, had colorful envelopes filled with cash birthday gifts.
The party was at 3:00. The clock ticked at 2 and the twins has still not arrived home for their own party. 3 o’clock arrived and went. People were beginning to whisper. Some looked at their watches and wondered if they should leave or stay.
It was almost 4 p.m. when the knock came at the front door. Mr. Owens opened it to see a tall, thin man dressed in a navy blue uniform. On his shirt was a shiny, gold badge, which read police.
He let the cop in and everyone became quiet. All were staring at the officer.” Could we talk in the kitchen, Mr. and Mrs. Owens?”
The two showed him to a chair at the table. The officer took Mrs. Owens hands in his. “I’m sorry to have to come here on business; but I need to inform you that there was a terrible accident on Route 33. Your son and daughter were killed instantly.”
You could hear a pin drop. Not a word was said. The officer took back his hand and showed himself to the door after asking if he could be of any help. The two shook their heads.
The funeral was planned. Visitation was open. Flowers were delivered. The cars followed one another to the grave site. Everyone softly chatted at the funeral dinner. The rooms emptied. The silence was astounding.
Two weeks later, the parents went to their children’s grave site. So many flowers still sat, but wilting. Dad put his arm around his wife. The two wept. They looked at the tombstone which had been already placed.
It read; Our Babies, We Loved You So Much.
Written by,
Terry Shepherd
Silver Blatt
Photo taken by,
Terry Shepherd
art 2

After the Storm

Hello friends. Do you have a topic that you have interest in, that you would like to see in a poem or short story vision?
I am looking for new ideas to write about. Please take note that what I write will be made public to the world. I also will credit your name for idea creation
Joseph Arnold wants something written about “After the storm.”
It had been an amazing day. Sally was able to wash some windows, hang her clothes out on the line and sit in her rocker on her front porch.
She loved sitting on the front porch. She watched the deer and birds. She saw the breeze moving the trees. It was as if they were waving at her. She raised her hand; waving back.
The sun was being replaced by clouds which had a tint of gray in them in the late afternoon. Sally decided to bring the clothes in; in case it decided to rain.
Her area needed rain. They hadn’t had much rain this summer in Nebraska. She didn’t much care for it. It kept her indoors when what she really loved, was breathing in the country air.
She grabbed the last few pieces from the line and a blast of wind tore at her skirt. It almost picked it up and whipped it over her head.
She finished quick and walked as fast as she could to reach inside. A storm surely was coming. She shut the windows and then turned her portable radio on.
She heard the announcement for a big thunderstorm coming her way. She collected her lantern and candles. She grabbed some matches.
She walked outdoors and checked the skies. About two miles north, she saw black, violent skies. It scared her and she went back inside and locked the doors. She made sure her cat, Sophie was safe.
The windows began to rattle. Inside, Sally was shaking. She walked over to her couch and carefully got down on her knees. She prayed,”Dear God, a storm is coming. I don’t want to lose what I have. You know dear Lord; I don’t have much of anything, but what’s here in this house. If you can grant me this; please keep me safe. Amen.”
She stood up and brushed her skirt down. She grabbed the blanket from the back of the couch. Walking towards her rocker which sat near the window; she sat down. She covered herself with her blanket and prayed and waited.
The windows were rattling with robust. The door was shaking as if someone was trying to enter. She heard the howling of the winds. It reminded her of a train roaring near by.
She continued to pray. “Dear Lord, keep me safe, keep me safe, if it be thy will.”
Her cat appeared and jumped onto her lap. She covered her up also and the two waited for what seemed hours. Within minutes the storm flew by. Life calmed, winds whispered, windows at peace.
She removed her blanket and the cat jumped down as if she was tired of the visit. She went back to her bed. Sally looked outside, then opened the door.
The fresh smell of rain; she inhaled. Some of her outdoor furniture was overturned. She scanned her land and the areas around her. Everything looked fine. She was safe. God granted her favor throughout and after the storm.
Written by,
Terry Shepherd