Monthly Archives: June 2015

Post-polio. Carried to Wholeness

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(conclusion of three-part piece – the Matter of Sister Opaline) We’ll carry you. Like we did in the winter times, Mrs. Opaline. Please stay. Keep teaching here.               Her students adored her, the auburn-haired teacher of Geometry, Shorthand and English. At times during the winter, icy patches lined a critical high school passageway. It was a short outdoor walk linking classroom…

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Opaline. Interior Design

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The visiting minister opened his Bible. Taking it up he preached on believing faith. And on healing. He then invited any person desiring God’s healing touch to come forward for prayer. Several people with varied ailments entered the center aisle. They started toward the front. It was like a mini-pilgrimage for the hopeful. The regulars of the church turned to…

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The Matter of Sister Opaline

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When the Sun-glint from her brace caught my eye that Summer day I wondered. About Opaline and her story. When yet a toddler her body was attacked by the same disabling illness that redirected my own world. For Opaline, however, the impact was evident; dramatically so. Not for months, but years. In short-order polio wrenched strength and mobility from her…

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Standing already. Why Not?

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You did what?  My body, settled in the wheelchair, jumped a little. The doctor’s tone was sharp. He was not pleased. Who told you to stand up? It was Monday in what would become my final month at Hillcrest Hospital. I had been at our Okmulgee home for a rare weekend visit. Sunday afternoon I rested on a living room…

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Terriers – Friends – Wheelchairs – Smiles

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Nurse Deborah discovered me. How, I’m not sure. She wasn’t assigned to my care. I’m glad she appeared. One night, finishing her shift, Nurse Deborah dropped by. The visit launched a routine that I kept a lookout for. Her short pop-ins at the door consoled me. And I probably had a crush for her. The door edged open. Her nursing-capped-head…

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Prescription – Pain. Somber Prediction

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 Mom’s fly swatter instruction of past times over my use of bad words met with failure in Hillcrest Hospital’s therapy room.  Hold his hip firm against the table. Steady now. Here we go – Up with the right leg. Two people in white – a spindly man and a large-boned woman – stood opposite each another at the therapy bench….

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