Archive for the ‘My Family’ Category
So long, it’s been good to know you…
This blog might seem a bit morbid and gross, but precious and few are the moments we share. In my earlier blog, I wrote about what would you do when faced with your own mortality. If you haven’t read it, I encourage you to do so. The entire blog is on my webpage http://klorraine.com.
By being mortal, we are susceptible to death by aging, sickness, injury, or wound. While immortal is not susceptible to death; living forever; never dying.
Mortal means we are human. A human is susceptible to death while immortal is one who is not susceptible to death.
Mortality, versus immortal is something we normally don’t think about. If we did, we surely would go insane.
I posted my earlier blog on FanStory. I’ve been rather overtaken by current events and I’ve not written anything lately. But, I thought it was a way to say, “So long, it’s been good to know you.”
The following are a few comments from some members who read my story. I’m humbled by their response.
This was beyond awesome. There are times when I think that it takes a brave person to write as you did. But then in your case it was brave, but more so it was truthful. Sometimes it is difficult to write about your losses or your faults if you have them. But it is also very rewarding. It allows your readers to see reality, to see your pain, to see your grief. I wish you luck with your treatment, I wish you happiness, I wish you the best. Thank you for sharing.
I knew four people who died from pancreatic cancer. May God walk with you through your journey. Comment Written 15-Jun-2017 by Phyllis Stewart
I read this with a lump in my throat. You are an amazing writer. And I take this opportunity to wish you happiness from the depth of my heart. Thank you for all the inspiration and may God bless you abundantly. Comment Written 14-Jun-2017 by Leena
Blessings to you, Lorraine. You are quite a lady and I enjoyed reading this post despite what you have shared. God leads us down our own private path and you are in my prayers. Marilyn. Comment Written 13-Jun-2017 by BeasPeas
I returned to my oncologist yesterday for the discussion about what to do next. The doctor showed us the film from my recent PET scan. The internal organs didn’t mean much to us at first. But when he pointed to the pancreas, my eyes opened wide.
The entire organ was shaded in gray, and a white half moon shape was visible. I thought the white spot was the tumor. The doctor’s eyes glazed over and he said, “I’m sorry dear. The gray is the tumor. And the white spot is the blood vessel.”
I gasped and commented, “It’s mammoth.”
I think you should get the picture…
The tumor measured 4.7 centimeters. And it is inoperable. The doctor said, “There is nothing that I can do. To put it bluntly, the reason you’re losing weight so rapidly is because of the tumor.”
The growth is an evil monster. It’s hungry. And it is consuming everything in sight. It is feeding on the nutrients from inside the body. It is depleting the blood cells. It is eating me alive from the inside out.
There isn’t any treatment plan that will save my life. I’ve been given three to six months to get my affairs in order.
No-one knows what God plans for us. He is the only one who knows the day of our birth and the day of our death.
The doctor has ordered home hospice care for me.
I’m asking that you keep me in your prayers. And please help me to reach my goal of 10,000 visits to my webpage. http://klorraine.com. The counter is currently at 9,439.
So long, it’s been good to know you.
Posted in Commentaries, Farewell, Friendship, k lorraine books, K. Lorraine, My Family | Comments (0)
Ed and I wanted to thank everyone who came together yesterday and made his 80th birthday special. It’s nice to know we have so many friends. Many of you from Sanford, Michigan did this out of your friendship for me. And it was nice to hear from our Florida friends. I hadn’t prepared a blog for this week because I needed a break. During Halloween week, I put together eight scary story blogs and I needed a breather.
I wrote this Fanstory story a year ago, and thought it might make a nice follow-up birthday blog.
I remember the day when I got a response from the newspaper personal column. I admit that I was skeptical about putting myself ‘out there,’ so to speak. I had gone through a rough divorce and it was an uncertain time in my life. August, 5 1991, was the date of the letter.
Dear Miss #3951
“Hi, my name is Ed and I read your singles only ad… thought I would reply.”
“In your ad you mentioned you had answered 12 ads with four telephone conversations. It sounds like maybe eight men may have made an error in judgement, not to snatch you up.”
“I’m serious about finding someone who I can share my life with. I’m a 54 year old man with average looks and I’m a non smoker. I’m divorced over seven years now. I’m an employed appliance service technician for a large company in Saginaw.”
“I like to dance, travel, and restore old cars. I like trying new things and I am looking for a special woman to meet. If you would like to talk, please call me at 000-000-0000 after six P.M. If I’m not home, please leave a message, your name and phone number on my answering machine and I’ll call you back.”
I hope to hear from you soon, Ed.
I read the letter several times and I thought about calling. I was hesitant because I had kissed a dozen frogs and so far, none had turned into a prince. But, after talking it over with a girlfriend, I thought, okay, I’d give it another try. This time, he might just be your prince charming.
I finally found the courage and looked past my insecurities. The phone rang several times and a woman answered. I wasn’t sure whether to hang up or leave my name and number. So I swallowed hard and left my message, just as a precaution that the woman was a daughter or the housekeeper.
“Hello, my name is Kay and I am returning a call from Ed. He will know who I am and what this is about. Will you please write my phone number down, it is 111-111-1111. Thank you, I appreciate it.”
She’ didn’t give me anything to go on. It was evident in her tone of voice, that I was a ‘female’ of interest to Ed. I waited several weeks for Ed to return my call. I admit, the phone call surprised me. I thought it was a lost cause.
I answered, “Hello, this is Kay.”
The man’s panicked voice said, “This is Ed. Please don’t hang up. I’m sorry that it has taken me so long to return your phone call. If you will listen, I do have an honest reason for the woman who answered my phone and the delay in getting back to you.”
“Okay,” I said, “But it better be good.”
“Kay, first let me explain about the woman. She was my former girlfriend who had stopped over to pick up some of her stuff that she left behind.”
My heart was pounding when I said, “Ed, it’s not okay if I’m wasting my time on a gigolo. It appears that this former woman has been a live in and maybe, she’s not on her way out. I think that perhaps, I should make my exit.”
“Please Kay, no, it’s not like that. I haven’t seen her in months. She just happened to choose the day that you called to pick up some things left behind when she moved out. I’m sorry that she answered instead of letting the machine pick up.”
“Okay, Ed, let’s say that I somewhat believe you. Tell me, why did you wait so long to call me? My girlfriend said that I should give you a chance before casting you aside. I might be wrong with my assumption, but I don’t think it’s funny to be trolling for a new partner.”
“Kay, I understand why you don’t trust me. I wouldn’t trust me either. But my old girlfriend didn’t write your phone number down correctly. I knew that I couldn’t find you in the phone book, because I didn’t have a name. I called the newspaper, but they weren’t cooperative. I finally convinced them that you called me and left your number, but the number I had wasn’t correct. When I mentioned that my former girlfriend had sabotaged me, the woman in the newspaper office became sympathetic. I swear, Kay, this is the truth.”
Ed called me several times over the course of about two weeks before I agreed to meet him. I chose an expensive restaurant. And the humorous tales of trial and error have continued since that night. We became engaged six months later and married almost on the date in August when we first met. I kept the letter all these years. It’s one of my most cherished mementos. We have been happily married for twenty-five years.
The following is the first of many poems that I wrote to Ed…
I have a secret hideaway,
It’s tucked far away from view…
My inner self is happiest there,
And it can be reached only by you.
Happy day after birthday, Ed, and may God grant you many more.
Posted in Commentaries, Current Events, Florida, Friendship, k lorraine books, K. Lorraine, My Family, romance, short story | Comments (0)
POSTED A DAY LATE, BUT IT’S THE THOUGHT THAT COUNTS…
Do you remember where you were 15 years ago on 9/11/2001?
My husband and I had flown into the Saginaw, Michigan airport a few days prior to 9/11/2001 to attend our son, Eric Michael’s wedding to Kellie. We were staying in Caro with Ed’s son Michael, our daughter-in-law Shelley and three year old grandson Jesse. The wedding was on Saturday, September 9th.
The day was beautiful and the wedding, as all weddings are – was lovely. We were to fly home to Ft. Myers, FL. September 14, but all air traffic was still grounded. Eric and Kellie were stranded in Las Vegas, where they had gone on their honeymoon.
There is no doubt that I would have remembered the week spent in mid-Michigan with family and friends, but because of the horrific act of terrorism that took place upon our country, I doubt there is any American who has forgotten where you were and what you were doing when the planes crashed into the New York Trade Center buildings.
May God continue to bless the souls lost 15 years ago on this day, 9/11/2001.
May God bless the families whose lives were changed and forever embrace them in his loving arms.
May God bless American today and every day until the end day of time.
May God bring peace to the world…
Posted in American History, Commentaries, Florida, k lorraine books, K. Lorraine, My Family | Comments (0)
All life is precious…
I imagine everyone knows the lyrics to the Twelve Days of Christmas. I’ve taken creative license and decided to use the song lyric, modified of course, as a basis to begin writing about my life. In this part of the story, I will write about the first four fragments of my life.
My parents made their marital home in Long Lake, Michigan. It was a small house that belonged to my mother’s brother, a CPA in Toledo, Ohio.
I am the second child in the birth order that grew in number to a total of nine of us. My life began in late October; the 25th day to be exact. I was the only child belonging to Albert and Rita who was born at home. I was too young to know the difference, but, as the years passed, I learned of the freak snow storm that came about on the day when I decided it was time to see first handed what this thing called life was all about.
To write this chapter, I did an internet search to find some information about the snow storm that blanketed the Harrison area with the white stuff. I’ll paraphrase the story that I found. 1947 was a vintage year for weather, and not just a little bit, but a massive dose of meteorological events to break all previous records.
If I have the story straight, my aunt Anna, Mom’s sister, came to Michigan from Toledo to help out with the new baby. She would also be able to drive my very pregnant mother to the hospital in Clare if Dad was at work. I think the hospital was about thirty miles from Long Lake, and my dad’s job was at least sixty miles from where they were living.
Anna was able to walk the half mile to a corner gas station where the doctor was called. The roads were nearly impossible, but he said that he would try to get to the cottage in time to deliver the baby. The doctor eventually did arrive, but little did aunt Anna know that she was about to become a midwife.
It was a small lakefront cottage, that didn’t offer many modern conveniences. The small house had running water, but the facility of the time was an outhouse fifty yards away from the back door.
On the second day of my life, God had now sent Albert and Rita two children. I became a sister to an older brother, Jim. Two years separated us in Mother Nature’s life-cycle plan. I only have stories from my family of the manifestations that I experienced in the first few years at the cottage.
The one story that I especially enjoyed hearing happened one summer day when I stepped off the end of the dock and plunged into the lake. I guess that I was about two years old, and Mom had taken Jim and me to wade in the shallow water along the shore.
So, it would seem that I wanted to test the water in greater complexity, and I submerged my entire body into four feet of water. I had broken loose from my mother’s grip, I ran the full length of the dock, and I basically walked off the end. The story concluded with Mom jumping into the water fully clothed, but to her surprise, I bobbed up to the surface and giggled as if I was a fish with her water wings.
I was a climber. I’ve been told that I loved to challenge my parents. I wasn’t content to sit on the floor and play with brother or toys. I defied the law of gravity and clambered my way to the counter top or bathed myself in the kitchen sink.
I was a child who didn’t crawl. I’ve seen pictures of me with one leg tucked beneath my bottom and I mopped the floor with my well padded bottom. I was nearing my second birthday when my parents noticed that I found ways to accomplish things different from my older sibling. It was off to the see the doctor to ascertain my malady.
The doctor agreed that I was afflicted with an undetermined disorder. I was tested for various conditions such as polio and a few additional Neuro-Muscular diseases known about in the pre 1950’s. The only thing gained from the medical assessments, was that I needed eye glasses. The doctor suggested that my parents observe new or troubling symptoms and changes.
On the third year of my life, the stork dropped off a new bundle of joy wrapped in a pink blanket. Sibling number three, Marcia, joined the ranks in our rapidly growing family. She was two years younger than me, but at my age of going on three years old, life was just a blur.
My artistic prowess was discovered early in life, but it was in August, 2012 when I became a serious artist. Although art has been a passion of mine since my grandmother discovered this talent in me at seven years old, my appetite for drawing and painting continued through the decades that followed.
In the fall of 2012, I was dying and the doctors didn’t know why. All I know was that my body had become so weak that I could hardly hold my head up straight. I was never considered a very large person, but soon, I weighed less than 100 pounds. I lived on chocolate ice cream mixed with milk and dried, boxed chicken noodle soup mix. My life was going sideways, and this was when miracle number one happened.
The Lord whispered in my ear and said, “Don’t fear; I hold you in my loving embrace. Your earthly life isn’t finished yet. I have given you a specific number of ideas and I want you to paint them.”
The number of images that I painted in a three month period was twelve. I believe that Jesus assigned the number twelve, because there were twelve apostles. I prayed and asked God the Father, How do You expect me to hold a pencil, or a paintbrush to accomplish this deed, when I can barely hold a spoon to feed myself?
His answer was, “Don’t worry child, rest your hand and arm on mine, and together we will triumph.”
The Lord provided me with an unusual technique to zealously sketch and enthusiastically capture the images from my mind’s eye onto the canvas. I actually rested my head on my drawing table and painted the renderings UP SIDE DOWN.
It was time for my annual office visit with the Oncologist. I told him that I felt my life was slipping away, and I explained the symptoms. He ordered some lab work and moved my office check-up appointment to an earlier date. My husband drove me to see the doctor.
I feared that I had a form of leukemia and I think the doctor suspected the same thing. However, he confirmed that the blood tests didn’t show any signs of cancer. But, the prognosis wasn’t good. “I don’t know exactly what is causing your health condition.” The doctor said.
Within a half hour, I had been admitted into the ICU. A team of six specialists tried every test in the medical books, and a logical cause for my condition couldn’t be found. I was literally on death’s door, when miracle number two happened unexpectedly.
The lead doctor explained that my blood was completely void of white and red blood cells. My potassium level was through the roof. Generally, the potassium will be on the low side. He said, “Your body is getting nourishment by eating itself from the inside out, and the only hope for survival was a blood transfusion.”
Hesitant and scared, I was given two pints of blood. And some bed rest topped off my prescription for a new lease on life. It is four years later and I still pray for the team of excellent doctors, and the blood donor who saved my life. And I thank Jesus for the opportunity to give back for the blessings and the special gift of artistic talent that He bequeathed me.
A life that was UPSIDE DOWN for half a year, was now upright. I have been married to a wonderful man named Ed for twenty-five years. We have a blended family of five adult children and six beautiful grandchildren. I have studied art all of my life and I have used my talent professionally and as a hobby.
I am currently expressing myself as an Author, but it’s been a vision of mine for several years, to use my artistic talent and my writing skills, and purpose them as the basis for a coffee table book. I have now turned my efforts back to God who has led me to amass my literary talents along with my artistic prowess into a coffee table book titled: UPSIDE DOWN.
I’ve decided it was time to share the other side of my personality and showcase my artistic ability. The selections of images featured, are offered in various mediums. All life is precious and valuable… What happens when an author with Spinal Muscular Atrophy falls ill and no one knows why? Read more about her life altering changes at http://klorraine.com and find out what makes her story UPSIDE DOWN remarkable.
Posted in Coffee Table Art Books, Commentaries, Inspirational, k lorraine books, K. Lorraine, mothers, My Family | Comments (0)
The Artist in Me
A continuation from an earlier blog…
Going back to our youth can be a special place to visit. If you read my blog dated 7/20/2016, you’ll remember that I had found a box filled with treasures. The previous piece was about my early days as a journalist for a small Mid-Michigan town. Well, there is another side of me that a lot of folks know about, but most of my blog audience has not learned yet.
I’d like to consider myself a student of the arts. There are many forms of art, but the two that I excel in are the fine arts (drawing and painting) in several different mediums and the other, obviously is writing.
I had continued my search to the bottom of the box and found a hard-sided notebook. The kind that we had when the baby boomers were in school. The type of notebook that had centerfold rings and push tabs at both ends, and when pressed, snapped the notepad open and closed, often pinching fingers in the process. Ouch! Remember those?
It was Christmas morning all over again as I leafed through the personal organizer. And to my surprise, I hit gold. Maybe not gold, to you, but it was a flash from my past. This brought a broad grin across my face from ear-to-ear, and tears formed in my eyes. I couldn’t wait to show my husband the pot of gold that I found.
Carefully guarded by the cellophane sleeves, were two pencil drawings. The first one was a classroom art project from 1960. I was thirteen years old and in the seventh grade. The assignment was a self portrait, sketched from a photograph. This drawing was worth a fortune to me. I felt like I was a famed pirate sailing the seven seas and I had just plundered a merchant ship and absconded with a fortune in booty. In a million and one years, I never guessed that this early portrayal of me had survived fifty-six years. I gave the original portrait— Title: “Blue eyed angel tugging on ear,”– a recent face lift by using Microsoft paint.
So, I turned the page and I came face-to-face with another picture. This one was dated 1988. I was still living in Breckenridge with my family and decided to take an adult enrichment class. I was satisfying my need to write by using my skills as the volunteer editor for the Breckenridge District school newsletter.
I also dabbled in using my artistic skills and helped the art teacher. But I felt the need to be around adults, so I joined the adult education program and took an art class. One of the assignments was a portrait of someone that I knew, and the medium was charcoal pencil. I convinced my son, Eric to be my model subject, (title) ERIC. If my math is correct, he would have been twelve or thirteen years old and probably in the seventh grade. I say, “What goes around, comes around.”
The reason that I was so excited to find these drawings, is that my husband and I had gone through four Florida hurricanes in 2004. Sadly, I thought that I had lost all of my original artwork. Especially, my earlier work from elementary school through my college years. The two portraits were not doodles for me, they were part of my identity and my soul.
I hope you enjoyed this snippet of my life and liked my unearthed treasure of childhood art.
Until next time,
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