Breaking News! Glimpse of Sunlight has been named a Royal Palm Literary Award winner! The title is also a Readers’ Favorite 5*Star Review recipient and has been designated a Shelf UnBound Notable Book in the page-turner category. I love transparency so let me share with you the rest of the story. Our novel was overlooked at the 10/25/14 RPLA Awards Banquet. 3 weeks later we received our rubrics indicating our entry scores exceeded the 160 point qualifier for the top 3 prizes. Remembering 2 awards weren’t issued in the historic category, I knew a mistake had been made!” BOOHOO for GE & I, since the banquet is long past, we won’t have the red carpet Hollywood-style fanfare, no photos, no RPLA published book signing, no 400 of our peers glad-clapping to celebrate our accomplishments, but our trophy will be mailed to us. Chris Coward – the Florida Writers Assn President- said, “Please accept our belated congratulations that Glimpse of Sunlight has earned second place for Historical Fiction… I am so sorry this happened. I am glad you persevered and that you will receive the award you deserve. I know I’m not alone in saying how proud I am of you and Glenn. We wish you all success with your book.” Real Palm Literary Award submitters,check your rubric scores !! …Leona DeRosa Bodie
GE with friend and mentor Samantha Shad, (Professor, Hollywood Attorney & Author of 1991 Smash Hit ‘Class Action,‘ Starring Gene Hackman
Steve Witucki, creator of the art for Jonathan Dickinson Odyssey has released much of the Glimpse of Sunlight, art for sale. Steve is a nationally acclaimed artist whose clients include a popular Nascar driver, song writers , national breweries and a Vice-President of the United States. You can purchase it on Black Friday, just in time for the Holidays.
by J. Alford
There are many risk factors for a stroke, some controllable and some uncontrollable. No one is immune from strokes, meaning it can happen to you or any of your loved ones. So how do you prevent it? Unfortunately sometimes you can’t. Educate yourself on the controllable risks such as diabetes, high blood pressure, tobacco use, alcohol use and obesity. Take care of your health and your body. See a doctor regularly to decrease your risks. If you smoke; stop, if you consume a lot of alcohol; don’t and if your out of shape; work out. Working out on a regular basis helps your blood circulation allowing blood to move more efficiently reducing your risk for plaque or blood clots. Eating healthy and drinking a lot of water helps keep the toxins or unfavorable fats out of your system. It is all about balance. Even if the risk is a medical risk such as diabetes there are still ways to control it. Here is a website that describes the risk factors: Stroke Risk Factors – Am I at Risk for a Stroke? – National Stroke Association
If you are a stroke survivor or feel you are at risk of a stroke we urge you to take a look at the Stroke Risk Scorecard: http://www.stroke.org/site/DocServer/Scorecard.Q._08.pdf?docID=601
People typically identify a stroke as asymmetrical weakness or paralysis, slurring of speech and face droop. These are not the only signs of strokes. Strokes can have symptoms as simple as a headache. Headaches can present many symptoms, light sensitivity, dizziness, blurred vision, etc. It is important that you recognize the difference. Light sensitivity is different from vision loss, being light headed is different from being dizzy and having a loss of balance when standing up is different from being unable to stand overtime with no change. Strokes can be tricky and can appear as other illnesses. If you feel as though you may have had a stroke it is important to get emergency help. It is better to be safe than sorry. For more signs and symptoms visit: Stroke Symptoms – National Stroke Association
by GE Gardiner
Three months prior to my stroke I was diagnosed with high blood pressure and given a prescription of 10mg of blood pressure medicine, which I was to take once a day. I cannot remember the name of the medication. The day-after Christmas, I took my family on a week-long ski vacation at slops located in western Maryland. During our journey to the resort, I realized that I had forgotten my blood pressure medicine. Having recently been diagnosed, I didn’t understand the seriousness of my condition.
December 28, 1996, was a warm day. The snow was beginning to melt. By noon, I felt sweat running down my back. I unzipped my one-piece snowsuit and tied it to my waist.
I learned to ski in Norway, in 1965. Never a great skier, I rarely fell as long as I skied on intermediate trails. Then something started to happen that concerned me. I began to have difficulty balancing myself on my skis. I cannot recall having a headache, just a lack of balance and a hot feeling that radiated throughout my body. It was lunchtime and I was hungry. The thought of skiing to the bottom of the steep slope seemed threatening. I decided to make my way to the top of the chair lift, then ride down with the other fainthearted novices. The upper end of the he chair lift was only about 30 yards across the crest of the mountain, yet getting there took some effort. Luckily, for me, it wasn’t far from the bottom the lift to the restaurant.
An ice cold coke felt good as it slid down my throat. When I finished a slice of pizza, I felt as bad as I did on top the mountain. Something was wrong, I needed to see a medical professional. The distance from the restaurant to the first aid hut was short. I tried to walk, but ended up crawling most of the way. No one offered to help. The snow was so wet that everyone focused on their own journey through the slush.
When I arrived at the first aid station, I asked the nurse to take my blood pressure. My explanation of not taking my blood pressure medicine, for several days, made her frown. She wrapped a cuff over my arm and began pumping it with air. Suddenly, she looked frustrated, removed it from my arm, and said it was broken. She retrieved another one and began the process over. Her eyes widened as she stared at the dial. My memory is not good, but I think I remember her saying that my blood pressure was 170/200. Then, with a somber look on her face, she asked the doctor to double check my pressure. He was busy helping a patient into an ambulance. After the doctor finished with the blood pressure cuff, he told his assistant and the nurse to get me on a gurney and into the ambulance.
I sat in the emergency-room at Garrett County Memorial Hospital, with my wife at my side, waiting for a doctor to return with the results of my CAT scan. We expected the doctor to tell us that I was dehydrated and needed some liquids. When he approached us with the news, we were astonished. He stated that I had suffered a small Hemorrhagic Pontine Brain-Stem Stroke, but that it was in a critical location in my brain. He wanted to keep me overnight for observation. My wife left to check on our children, and I fell asleep.
Sometime during the night I woke to the sound of voices. There was a male and female doing something to me. My eyes were closed. The bright light from the emergency room shinned thru my eyelids and burned my eyes. I tried to move my fingers, but nothing happened. I tried to speak, again nothing happened. The nurse asked me a question. Her question went unanswered. I remember her saying, “is he faking?”. I felt pressure under my fingernail. “Dr., he’s not,” she exclaimed. Several additional voices became audible. Additional medical personnel were rushing into the room. I fell asleep or slipped into unconsciousness. The next day, I awaked with a full bladder. My blurred vision cleared enough to see the bathroom. I sat up and placed my feet on the ground. As I stood, my legs buckled, and I began to fall. Someone caught me and the next thing I knew a male nurse was sliding a catheter into me. When a nurse said, “Stay in bed. You almost pulled the IV from your arm” I realized that I was in trouble.
Excerpt from “Behavior Changes After Stroke,” appearing in the Stroke Connection Magazine January/February 2005
Of all the areas of life that stroke affects, its impact on the survivor’s personality may be the most difficult for family and friends to understand and become accustomed to. “Emotional changes are typical after any type of stroke,” says Dr. Janet Spradlin, a rehabilitation psychologist at St. Anthony Rehabilitation Center in Oklahoma City. “Depression is very common after any life-changing health challenge, especially if it means a loss of independence.”
While depression is the most common emotional change after stroke, other psychological changes can be equally debilitating or frustrating.
Cognitive deficits are changes in thinking, like difficulty solving problems. This category also includes dementia and memory problems, as well as many kinds of communication challenges. Read more about cognitive challenges.
Some survivors experience apathy and don’t seem to care about anything. “People often mistake this for depression because survivors are content to sit and stare at the wall all day,” says Dr. Spradlin. “The best response is to get them active and moving. Give them a choice of what to do or where to go, but make it clear they have to choose to do something, they can’t just lie in bed.” Read more about personality changes.
Behavior Intervention Tips
Contributed by Dr. Janet Spradlin, St. Anthony Rehabilitation Center, Oklahoma City
Guidelines to help the stroke survivor who may be demonstrating inappropriate or unsafe behaviors:
Always treat the person with respect and listen to his or her side of the story
Offer praise when the person is exhibiting appropriate and safe behaviors (e.g., “You really handled that situation well, I’m so glad you decided to take the bus rather than drive…..”).
Allow the person to choose among appropriate and safe choices (e.g., “Do you want me to drive you, or would you rather take a cab?”).
Be assertive and set necessary limits. Explain your concerns and feelings in a supportive way (e.g., “I know you want to use your power tools, but I care too much about you to let you use them at this time.”).