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Angels’ Voices

Poem from Dad

I wrote the poem below for my two children, Amanda, 17 and Sarah, 13. It was late June, 2010. My hearing loss had just worsened profoundly and permanently. I could no longer discern the sound of either daughter’s voice and I wanted to offer reassurance.

First my world went silent,  then my sleeping dreams and now my memories–no sound. Nada.

Now, well over a year later, my memory of sound is also slipping. It’s weird. Lyrics to familiar songs remain firmly memorialized in my brain. I can recite the words. But I can’t hum the tune. I forget the melody. In the same way, I know the girl’s voices. None are more familiar. I just can’t recall the sound of their voices. This is a new phenomenon.  See, it’s been a gradual process. First my world went silent, then my sleeping dreams and now my memories–no sound. Nada. This is a very sad development of course.

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The Dream Still Lives!

Dreams Awake

19th Century Great Ones

Henry David Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau

Our truest life is when we are in our dreams awake. Henry David Thoreau, the great Transcendentalist, penned that. Awesome stuff. The 19th Century Great ones –Thoreau, Emerson, Lincoln, Twain– these are among my heroes of literature, social integrity and leadership. Of course, most of we motivational speaker-types love these guys! And why not? Together, in their Golden Day, they collectively redefined great speakers, great minds and just plain greatness. That’s why we wordsmith types delight to quote these literary masters in our own presentations and essays. Nothing like world-famous wit and wisdom to substantiate our own talking points!  My quotes may not be memorable; but when Henry David Thoreau has something to say about it, people listen! Read more

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Full Minds, Pure Hearts

Full Minds, Pure Hearts

FaceBook Inspiration

I was on Facebook today and was inspired by the oddest combination of Wall appearances. The first was a comment from a young relative.  She–not yet 20 years old– said, “…its about time this shitty summer has ended.” Excuse the language; it’s not my quote. She’s a good kid and her Mom, also a dear close loved one, has recently taken seriously ill.  So it’s been a rough time for the entire family.

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Resilience vs. Happy Horse S#$%!

Heady Stuff

Many motivational gurus insist that “optimism” is the critical attribute required to overcome adversity. A positive attitude, they proclaim, is the stuff that fuels our troubled hearts to nevertheless drive onward when faced with seemingly insurmountable crisis or personal tragedy.  The deluge of  happy-yap spewed by these positive spinsters has several common themes that appeal to the hopeful masses:

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Sung by Precious Hands of Children

The following story is taken largely from an email that I sent to friends and loved ones when first dealing with my hearing loss. Here goes:

I knew nothing about American Sign Language (ASL) when my hearing problems first started.  My indifference did not stop a dear friend from taking the initiative to begin learning ASL on her own. This friend also happens to be a third grade teacher at a great school district in Bucks County.  So she began her proactive quest to learn a little sign language, including sharing her new found skills with her 8-year-old students. The children also seemed to take to it with some enthusiasm. The teacher explained to her students that she had a friend (me) who recently suffered sudden hearing loss and that’s why she wanted to learn sign.

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