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Friday, March 23, 2012

Jack Jablonski and Justin Quale Benilde St. Margaret's Hockey Players

Benilde St. Margaret’s hockey player and Perspectives’ volunteer Justin Quale, reflects on what the state hockey win felt like to him and his fellow teammates. Justin is a volunteer in our charming café on Tuesday nights this semester.  I recruit Benilde students each semester to volunteer in our Kids Connection program to work with our at risk k-5th grade students.
 In December of this year, a Benilde Hockey player Jack Jablonski, better known as Jabby, sustained serious spinal cord injuries during a game.  Winning the state championship in hockey was a surreal feeling on so many levels Justin Quale stated.  The team was so bound and determined to “do it” for Jabby.
 Scrolling over the Kids café video screen was the bright Red Knight Win Congratulations from Perspectives staff.  “Congratulations on the big state win over Minnetonka, Justin. What was it like winning that game since the year was such an emotional journey for the team? “  
“It was an amazing night and season.  Knowing that Jabby was watching the games from his hospital room made us all the more determined to fight as hard as we could, just like Jabby.  The night of the game, Jabby was able to watch the game on the sidelines and even lifted his arm up when he knew we won. The spirit of community was something none of us will ever forget.  Jack was able to come out on the ice with us and celebrate the win.” 

Sincere congratulations to Justin and the Benilde St. Margaret’s hockey team for taking the state championship. I think I can say for the common person who has watched this emotional season that the love for their teammate Jablonski was awe inspiring. It has taught us about adversity and the power of attitude.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Twin Shenanigans- GBE2

OK. You asked to hear some shenanigans, I'll give you shenanigans, but only one story of many. In my writing group GBE2 they asked us to talk or write about some shenanigans story, but I will tell you a twin shenanigan story.  It's an identical twins prerogative you know.

Well my story starts out on a beautiful autumn morning like any other at my house on Lake Minnetonka. I am five years old.  Mom dresses my twin sister Linda and I in a red and blue jumper with a white blouse underneath. We both have on white tights and white patent leather shoes. We feel ready for our first day of kindergarten. Watch out world the Rogers' twins are coming.

Out at the bus stop right in front of our house, Kodak pictures- click click click. Mom and good friend are there to capture every moment. Screech, the bus stops in front of us as our eyes open wide with excitement. We wave goodbye and set off into our seat next to each other.  We both comment on how wonderful the new bus smells.

Little did mom know what we twinners were concocting on the way. How could young five year old's already know how to pull a prank? Let's just say we were the youngest of five kids, so we learned from our siblings. Holding hands walking down that school hallway we had the plan down pat. "Linda, your teacher is Ms. Weebush and my teacher is Palmer. You go in that room and I will go into yours."

Giggling as we walked down to the first door, I said  "that is your room.  You go in that room and I am right next door.  We will talk after school and I will see you on the bus."  As I look back on this I giggle now because I have always been the alpha twin. Linda is two minutes older than me, but I always took the reigns. She still has to call me out on this trait now.  We live together so she has plenty of opportunities to put me in my place.

We sure had a lot to talk about as we met in the hallway after school.  We never closed our mouths the entire bus ride home.  As silly as it seems, we are still like this.  Our friends say, what on earth could you two be talking about since you have only been apart for two hours.  Well, lesson on twins, we always have something to talk about and we usually finish each others sentences.  Then we snort the same, say something like "Oh No", then make the same hand gesture in the air, roll our eyes the same and end up saying the same full sentence or more.  I know right?  It is what it is...

I am going to keep you curious about what happened that day inside the classrooms, but that is for another day and another post.  So Toodles.  Let's just say, we got away with our prank and nobody was the wiser. It was like our prank 101 Class.   Hee Hee.....

Are you kidding me?

Why why why?  Last Friday I had to go downtown for a volunteer training. I was aghast with the amount of people on their cell phones ready to rear end me. I am not perfect but really? What the heck are people thinking? So many lives have been lost because of distracted driving. Teens are most likely to die because of texting while driving.

I don't get riled easily, but I was miffed. I mean, here is this guy behind me talking on his cell phone in really difficult rush hour traffic. His other hand is flying threw the air perfect for non verbal communication Not in a car. I don't know how anyone can drive and text or be on their cell while in this type of situation.

Perhaps I am more appalled by this because I have hands free in my car, so I am not tempted. I so had the urge to call 911. Maybe next time I will because there were countless times he got way to close to my car. I also think I was miffed because just three weeks earlier I had to get my car fixed because someone drove right into my car in a parking lot. Over $400 dollars later.  Yes, insurance picked up 80% but still I had to pay the remainder and rental car fees.  My insurance agent tells me these days it is very rare for someone to leave a note on your dash board after hitting you.

Moral of the story is don't do distracted driving, it's not worth it. Let's role model this for our teens that are now driving or the grand kids that are out on the road.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

GBE2- Confrontation

Ewwwww, that ugly word called "Confrontation." My take on this word is quite different now that I have lived and endured. Years ago when my dad went into treatment, confrontation was the way they dealt with addicts. I know why I went into the mental health field. I wanted to fix what was sorely broken.

I was only a kid, probably fifth grade, when my dad went in the first time. Each of us children had to "Confront the Addict."  They almost made me hate my dad who I loved dearly. We healed the pain after some years but wow! I learned first hand how people in the mental health field can really "F" up.

One time, the leader in the small group told my twin and I to confront this older guy, because he could tell  he was making us feel uncomfortable and frustrated.  Well, I learned a lesson that day.  "If you confront, you may end up hurt." It still pisses me off to this day that they knew so little and put us in that dangerous situation. The guy that we confronted, stood up from his chair and came over to us swinging.  We had to run out of the room!  What? why would I be afraid to confront?

It's kind of eery because I look at the incident that day in the treatment center and feel like an omen occurred.  See, the man I ended up confronting, treated his wife like crap. He was extremely verbally abusive and it made my skin crawl. I told him so- I mean, talk about out of the mouths of babes.  I ended up marrying someone that did this to me. He treated me and my kids like crap. I'm actually putting it lightly. He was an abusive monster!

Well, one fateful and life changing day, confrontation became my friend. Once the sun of a "B" started doing the severe mind control numbers on  my kids, like he had done to me for years, that's when the light went off.  Don't "F" with a mamma's cubs lest you want to face me head on into Mama Territory.  Roar! My days of hiding this shitty existence was NO MORE. I no longer cared about keeping "the secret."

Needless to say, I got out of the hellish relationship with the gift of my wonderful kids in toe. I was reborn in a sense that no one was gonna  "F" with me anymore.  I found the power within me from the help of my faith, friends and family. I don't usually talk like this but I have to keep it real.  I remember the day I stood up to him not knowing what he would do to me. I said, looking him straight in the eye- "Your a slimy "F" and I am serving you papers." I said this as I threw my hands into the air. In an empowered cheer, I  screamed, "yes", no more violence." I know it may sound simple to you, but it was a huge mile-stone in my healing journey. From that day forward, I had no more fear. In fact, I feel sad for him and his sorry existence. I will deal with his shenanigans for the rest of my life because of our beautiful children. The difference with our interactions now is that he knows he can no longer scare me.

He just lost one more amazing woman in his life because of the same horrid cycle of abuse. God help the women  who cross his path. He is a wolf in sheep's clothing.

BFF 173- Toy Story

Toys and kids. What a lovely combination. Who doesn't remember their favorite toy as a child? I think we all do. The child within is something I am very in touch with. As a psycho-therapist by trade, I loved learning all the great information on and around childhood and family of origin. As a woman, I feel like I inhabit  a child's psyche. Of course I remember my favorite toy. Drowsy.

Baby drowsy,  ah, I still get goose bumps thinking of her. Her soft tan skin and chubby fingers. Red tiny lips perfect for kissing. Shush don't tell. I still remember her smell. Her shiny soft hair, good for brushing. The funny things that came out of her mouth like," Mommy, kiss me good night," "I wanna drink of water,"or the desperate cry, "Ahahahahah."

My doll brought me through so much. She was always there for me. Yes, she let me cling to her pink polka dotted Jammie's. She was so warm and fuzzy. Life wasn't always easy at my house, so I projected all the love I needed and wanted, onto her.  Yeah, she did a good job.

Dolls, it's what's for squeezing.