Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Clinton Co-inky Dink

Wayyyyyy back in 1997, I went to a country style restaurant in downtown Raleigh to support a presidential candidate whose wife was going to make an appearance. To my delight, I somehow managed to not only see but talk briefly and shake the hand of none other than Hillary Rodham Clinton. It was a thrilling moment for me and I remember joking to my friend that I would never wash my hand again.

Well, a lot has changed since that day. I have washed my hand many times and have changed my political affiliation. My faith and my priorities have been completely transformed since that time as well. Still, I will admit I think that was a pretty cool thing especially in light of my OS's recent encounter. 

Nate is a member of the Domestic Affairs Forum (DAF) at West Point and he too, has had a brush with some pretty famous people. The DAF focuses on politics from a national, local and state level and the club took a trip to New York City. According to Nate, joining a group at West Point is "money" and this trip to NYC is one he will not soon forget and here's why. 

The cadets toured ABC News and met with Bob Woodruff. You may recall that he was the reporter who was seriously injured when hit by an IED while embedded with the Army in Iraq. They visited New York Times newspaper and nearly 20 cadets met with the very loquacious Ted Sorenson, speech writer for President John F. Kennedy. 

They saw President Theodore Roosevelt's home in New York. TR is one of Nate's heroes. 

Those things are certifiably "legit" but the trip got even better one evening when the cadets attended the David Letterman Show

Not officially on the itinerary, nearly 20 cadets arrived at the show around 4:30 pm, pulled a few strings and landed some tickets. I thought the David Letterman Show was done live at 11:30 pm, untrue, it's actually filmed in the late afternoon. 

We received a call from Nate who told us to look for him on the show. Although I don't like DL nor do I find him particularly amusing, Dave did gain two new temporary viewers as the Hubs and I actually tuned in to watch. Tom Hanks was a guest and he made mention of the cadets in the audience and how much his dad hated the Navy. Far more importantly; however, we saw our OS seven times! I do believe he should be getting several movie or modeling contracts as my cadet looked so handsome! And he was smiling. Ask any WP mom and we all agree, it is wonderful to see a smiling cadet.

But you want to hear the ironic connection? Remember my brief encounter with Hillary Clinton? Well, my OS got to meet her husband! That's right, Nate met President Clinton! They met him in a swanky hotel while Clinton was in town raising money for Haiti. Initially "Bill" as we like to call him (HA!) was only going to pose for a photo op but he actually met with the cadets for about 10 minutes. While there Nate approached the former President, introduced himself and shook his hand. Like mother, like son.

Personally, between you and me, I think they probably wanted to bring Nate up and interview him but didn't want to hurt the other cadets' feelings. He would have been a very engaging "celebrity" if I do say so myself. 

Check out this clip and you will see my OS for yourself. How cool is that? In a mere nine seconds, Nate appears on the screen for the world to enjoy! Gaa!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Getting back to me

There's nothing that gets me more in the writing mood than sitting in a doctor's office waiting for a person who's having a colonoscopy! Not sure what about this experience is inspiring me but to hear my fingers tapping away on the keyboard feels good. The chair I'm sitting in is ridiculously uncomfortable so I need something to get my mind off of the 90 minutes I'll be here. I mean, there's only so much tv I can watch and I've read the entire paper. I've checked facebook too many times already, so I thought I'd do something productive.

Since my last post, I have debated whether to write much about what I've been doing. I haven't wanted my blog to be medical or pitiful but I have been struggling with health issues lately. One has been fibromyalgia (a new diagnosis), the other is depression (a recurrent battle). Not sure which one came first but after dealing with ongoing pain and feeling utterly hopeless, I dragged my sad self to the rheumatologist and started crying. I was at the point of terrible despair and when I left her office, I felt like I had a chance at a normal (whatever that is) life. I began some medication, made critical lifestyle changes and those things have helped me tremendously.

During this time, I asked the Hubs to pray for me. I know he has. He has asked others to pray for me and I'm sure he's felt clueless on how to help me. When I wasn't sure how much lower I could go and spent wayyyyyy too much time on the couch, I started to feel afraid that I was going to break my foot again. I felt unstable on my feet and envisioned another injury. I would hang onto a chair railing or the Hubs for fear of falling. Literally, I have found myself leaning on the Hubs. He, along with the Lord, have been my strength. He has made me laugh, supported me in every way, I love him dearly.

It's been about three weeks since my doctor appointment and I was overjoyed when recently, I found myself bounding effortlessly up the stairs. Part of "me" has been coming back. I am walking without fear emotionally and physically!

And I have been exercising. I learned that it is absolutely critical for me to stay physically active. My doctor recommended this DVD and I began doing it immediately. Although it is a little cheesy, I have been faithfully using it and noticing the results. If you are looking for an exercise program that is adaptable and encouraging, I think these are great! Exercising in the comfort and privacy of my own home has been a better choice for me than the gym at least for right now.

Recently I was talking to my oldest OS and in previous conversations, I shared with him that I had really been struggling. Since he's a young, busy man with his own life, I wasn't sure if he recognized his mama's plight.

But I was wrong.

We were talking on the phone recently and I said, "Nathan, I have something to tell you..." My OS made a dry-witted, West Point tough comment and I interrupted him, "Seriously, Nathan, listen to me. I want you to hear this. I am feeling better." Then I heard words I wasn't expecting.

"That's great, Mom. I've been praying for you." Oh, dear friends, I nearly dropped to the ground with thankfulness. He said something else to me also. "I've had some of my buddies praying for you too."

The only thing sweeter to me than the thought of a group of Soldiers/Cadets praying for me is the image of my precious OS sitting around with his buddies and caring enough to ask for his friends to do so.

About the same time that I had seen the doctor and began implementing changes, my boy was lifting his struggling mama up to the Lord. I'm sure the things I have improved in my health but I also know that God's Word is true.

Matthew 18:19-21 (New International Version)

 19"Again, I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. 20For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them."

The colonoscopy is over, things went well. I need to go walk a couple of miles in my bedroom but it feels good to be back and sharing. More later on Nate's television "appearance" and other life events.