The Daily Quote: Opportunity, Being Sexy, & Living Life

I don’t recall what my family & I were doing on the evening of August 11, 2013. We may have been having a movie night on the sofa, or an evening bike ride through the neighborhood. We might have been swimming & enjoying a summer cook out. Little did I know that a celebrity was on stage at an award show dropping some serious knowledge on kids all over the nation. Advice that I had yet to put into words for my 4 & 7 year olds. It was profound advice, even for me, at the age of 33.

 After revealing that his real name is ‘Chris,’ he told the audience that he had learned a lot of important things back when he was ‘Chris.’ Here is what he said:
“I believe that opportunity looks a lot like hard work.  When I was 13 I had my first job with my dad carrying shingles up to the roof.  And then I got a job washing dishes at a restaurant.  And then I got a job in a grocery store deli.  And then I got a job in a factory sweeping cheerio dust off the ground.  And I’ve never had a job in my life that I was better than.  I was always just lucky to have a job.  And every job I had was a steppingstone to my next job, and I never quit my job until I had my next job.  And so opportunities look a lot like work.”

“The sexiest thing in the entire world is being really smart. And being thoughtful. And being generous. Everything else is crap! I promise you! It’s just crap that people try to sell to you to make you feel like less. So don’t buy it.”

“When you grow up you tend to get told that the world is the way that it is and that your life is to live your life inside the world and try not to get in too much trouble and maybe get an education and get a job and make some money and have a family. But life can be a lot broader than that when you realize one simple thing and that is that everything around us that we call life was made up by people that are no smarter than you.”

“And you can build your own things.  You can build your own life that other people can live in.  So build a life.  Don’t live one, build one.  Find your opportunities, and always be sexy.”

The Daily Quote: A Diamond

“A Diamond is just a piece of Charcoal that handled Stress exceptionally well.” -Unknown

I’ve been spinning my wheels lately. I’m completely burnt out. Physically, mentally, emotionally, creatively, & even spiritually.

I do not feel like a diamond. I am neither sharp nor polished. I feel frazzled. Rough. Sluggish. Foggy. Sad. Tired. I am working so hard, but accomplishing very little because I can’t seem to give 100% toward anything.

“Have you ever felt like your life is just on auto pilot and you’re just constantly doing and going and moving and working and accomplishing and basically sacrificing your thoughts for constant activity? If that’s you, then you need to stop. You need to pause. You need to breathe. You need to think about the things you’re doing.”

I stumbled across this article about burn out. So if you are going through it, too, I highly encourage the read.

Source: Of Health: Taking A Mental Break

The Daily Quote: Snort, Sniffle, Sneeze…No Antibiotics, Please!

It’s that time again – cold & flu season!

As a school nurse, I treat a variety of illnesses & injuries on a daily basis. My door has been a turnstile of ick, sick, & yuck lately. Seasonal allergies, indoor allergies, & cold & flu viruses are rearing their ugly heads…all at once!

My students (and teachers) are miserable. And to tell you the truth…so am I. Sneezing. Sniffling. Runny noses, sinus pressure & headaches, ear aches, coughing, mucus, wheezing, rumbly tummies, chills & fevers, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea…the list goes on.

One important fact remains…

Any and/or ALL of these symptoms can be caused by viruses. Why is that so important?

Because antibiotics do NOT work on viruses.

slapping-batman-virus-meme

Examples of illnesses caused by viruses are:

  • Influenza (the flu)
  • Gastroenteritis (stomach flu)
  • RSV
  • Croup
  • Chickenpox
  • Most rashes
  • Many coughs

Antibiotics do not kill viruses. Treating these illnesses with antibiotics is ineffective & leads to antibiotic resistance. Some viruses, like the flu, pneumonia, & chickenpox can be prevented by getting vaccines.

Some illnesses that do require antibiotic treatment include:

  • Strep throat
  • Pneumonia
  • Many ear infections
  • Urinary tract infections
  • Sinus infections

How do we treat viruses, if we can’t kill them with antibiotics???

We treat the symptoms while the virus runs its course.

  • Rest – your body may need extra sleep and/or naps while it is fighting an infection.
  • Hydrate – drink plenty of fluids (non-sugary/non-caffeinated).
  • Treat fever, pain, and/or inflammation – Medications like Ibuprofen can treat all 3 of these symptoms. Read packaging & instructions carefully, as some over the counter medications contain more than one medicine.
  • Treat cough & mucus – a different cough medicine should be used for productive cough, to help clear mucus from the airways. A cool-mist humidifier will also help keep mucus thin & soothe irritated nasal passages & throat.

Click here for different types of cough medications & when to use what

  • Treat nausea/vomiting/diarrhea – Replenish electrolytes with Pedialyte or a similar electrolyte solution. Drink water & other clear liquids. Eat light until your stomach feels right. 
  • For the flu, your doctor may recommend you start taking Tamiflu as a treatment, to possibly lessen symptoms & shorten the course of the virus.
  • Non-medicinal treatments – There are a variety of ways to alleviate symptoms that involve no medication at all.
    • Warm compresses – for ear pain, stiff neck, head ache, & body aches
    • Warm soak – for body aches
    • Salt water gargle – for sore throat
    • Ginger root tea (honey optional) – for sore throat, cold, flu, & inflammation
    • Turmeric milk tea – calming, creamy, warm drink, thought to be effective in treating cold & flu symptoms. Turmeric & the flu.

 

Here’s a cute video released by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) just for fun:

The Daily Quote: Hope and Faith

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“Hope is definitely not the same thing as optimism. Hope is not the conviction that something will turn out well, but the certainty that something makes sense, regardless of how it turns out.” – Vaclav Havel

I find this quote to be incredibly true. Along with a passage from the Bible that became a cherished source of comfort & strength for me seven years ago today.

“Now Faith is being sure of what we Hope for and certain of what we do not see.” – Hebrews 11:1.

These two quotes completely explain a mentality that I have by the grace of God learned & developed over the past seven years, as the Mother of a Micro-preemie.

Today marks my first-born child’s seventh birthday. 🙂 Seven years and 1 month ago, I was pregnant for the first time. At almost 20 weeks pregnant, I was excited, looking forward to finding out the gender of my baby. Sevettn years and 1 month ago, my water broke too soon. I was admitted to the hospital where I spent days & nights wondering if the life inside of me would end, what I might have done to cause it, & praying for her to be given a chance to live. My daughter came 4 weeks later, weighing 1 pound 4 ounces. She was so tiny & fragile, but in my eyes, she was absolutely spectacular. Miraculous. Beautiful. A gift from my Creator.

Several times before her birth, I sat in the hospital room, trying to swallow oceans of information, statistics, emotions, & advice from Doctors, faced with the decision to terminate my pregnancy. The specialists did not expect her to live, and should she happen to survive, they predicted she would suffer with multiple lifelong disabilities and face little chance of walking, talking, or living a normal life.

After she was born, we weren’t able to hold her for the first month. She began having seizures, was sedated, and we were again faced with the decision of ending her care (turning off life support). It was that day that God truly tested me; teaching me & proving to me the meaning & power of Faith and Hope.

I had Hope that my Daughter would pull through if it was within God’s plan. That Hope also encompassed the possibility that she would not, & that God would allow me comfort & understanding in His divine plan & reason for her short life. Hope meant that no matter which way the cards fell, that it would make sense & become clear. That was what Hope meant to me.

I was profoundly tested in my declaration of Faith in the Almighty God. In my choices to hang on by my fingernails, over this cliff of uncertainty, as my daughter’s tiny, short life hung in the balance. As I had watched her survive & struggle to live, all at once I realized that nothing really ever hung in the balance. Faith, as I finally understood it, as it concretely unfolded before me, truly was a sense of certainty in that which I could not see. I had blessed assurance that my baby‘s life was not hanging in the balance, but resting securely in the beautiful, perfect, divine plan of the Almighty. There existed not one speck of insecurity or uncertainty in her situation, but that which existed within Me.

I chose to shed it. Toss it. Let it go.

And I have seen miracles every day ever since. ❤

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The Daily Quote: Change

“Be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Mahatma Gandhi

BeTheChange_Gandhi

This quote by spiritual & political leader, Mahatma Gandhi, has long been one of my favorites. Alongside the Serenity Prayer & many quotes by the amazing Author & Poet Mchaya Angelou, these words have inspired & moved me to change my own condition, to perpetually grow & improve, & to be a positive & uplifting influence to others.

These influential people taught me, during some of the most difficult times in my life; as an adolescent walking the fine balance between obedience & independence, that I was not powerless & at the mercy of abuse, oppression, & hopelessness.

I learned to be the change in my world. I learned that I had the power within me to change how the negative aspects of my life affected me.

  • I wished adults had been patient with me; I chose to embody patience. I tried harder to listen & understand people before reacting. I tried hard not to become a carbon copy of the people who had hurt me.
  • So often as a child, I wished someone would notice how much I was hurting. As I grew up, I chose to reach out when I saw other kids sad or hurt. I often listened & comforted others, & it began to heal my own wounds.

That which I could not change, began to foster changes in my attitude.

  • I awoke at an early age to the perception that there were others who were less fortunate than me. I saw other kids who came to school hungry, dirty, & sad.
  • I chose to embrace Gratitude, & to discipline myself to stop complaining.
  • I tried to feel compassion for those who were angry & hurtful. I began to see that their actions were caused by pain, & I understood pain.

It is still a daily practice of discipline for me, as an adult, working to embody the changes I wish to see in my world. I work every day to be what I once so desperately needed as a child – for my own children & as a school nurse, for my patients.

  • I needed patience; I must be patient.
  • I needed respect; I must be respectful & teach my children self-respect.
  • I needed support; I must be encouraging & supportive. I must be aware of the needs of my children, & be open when they come to me.
  • I needed love; I must be loving. Kind. Patient. Understanding. Non-judgmental. Unconditionally loving.
  • I needed someone to smile at me & show me that my world would not always be this dark, scary place. It is my goal to always smile at children. At my children, at my patients, at children in the supermarket, & wherever I see them. Always, always offer a smile. You may be the only one who does.

❤ Peace & Blessings,

Angela

The Daily Quote: Gratitude

“To be grateful is to recognize the Love of God in everything He has given us – and He has given us everything. Every breath we draw is a gift of His love, every moment of existence is a grace, for it brings with it immense graces from Him.
Gratitude therefore takes nothing for granted, is never unresponsive, is constantly awakening to new wonder and to praise of the goodness of God.

-Thomas Merton

With thoughts of the Thanksgiving holiday coming up, I spotted what I think is an excellent new tradition for my family. We don’t always get pumpkins & when we do, there’s always the question of what to do with them after Halloween is over. Here’s an excellent idea. Each day for the month of November, have each family member add something they are thankful for. At the end of the month, it’s a beautiful reminder of all of the reasons we are grateful & blessed. ❤

Thankful Pumpkin