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{SFTH}   *Rosie's Angels*  6/6/01


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Our book is now available!!  For those of you who missed the press release
we sent out last night, you can now order Straight From the Heart:
"A Celebration of Life."  We are offering to personalize and autograph your
copy at no extra charge!  For info on ordering the book via credit card,
personal check, or money order, just visit the following site:

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We thank all of you for being a part of this list! Your wonderful encouragement
has kept us going and made this book possible.  We love ya all!

Michael, Kristi, Caleb, and Connor

P.S.  I had two people write to me and let me know that they weren't able
to get the link to work.  For those of you who want to get the book by
credit card, try this direct link to Booklocker, who is hosting the author page:

We greatly appreciate the feedback, so if there is ever a problem, please
let us know.  We will forever be in your debt!

Rosie's Angels

by Irene Budzynski

Illness opens the door to an inner sanctum, allowing us to witness
multiplying fears or soaring hopes. Grown men, swaggering with pride
in their virility, are transformed into needy--no, demanding--children.
Sickness strips away power and control, leaving vulnerability in its wake,
forcing prestige to wait outside the hospital room. The focus of man makes
a U-turn from the world's adrenaline to his own mortal needs when,
suddenly, every misplaced water cup or wrinkled sheet symbolizes
disorderliness, an omen that the world is off course. The calls for instant
attention reflect the degree of apprehension simmering in one's heart. It
is not the cup or the sheet which is the offender, but rather the humility
of being forced to lie in a hard bed, and having become an unwilling
participant in a universal drama of disease.

The to-do list for caregivers in an eight hour shift is frequently insurmountable.
The stress to complete the arduous work doesn't discriminate among its
victims, but we continue our watch, fully aware that it is the human touch,
and not mandated paperwork, which heals. We are in the business of
returning patients to wellness, so we complete the documentation quickly,
opening a wider pocket of time to answer the imperious call lights.
Urgency is our companion.

Is it any wonder, then, that I feel stretched thin as a spider's web? Tough
enough to meet the demand of health care, but fragile in my humanity?
Mute, I have stood at the bedside of a man berating me as being less
than nothing because I didn't clean him to his specifications, forgetting
that I prevented him from going into respiratory distress and probable
death only the night before. My eyes had warmed with tears, the
accumulation of all the barbed comments and thoughtless words
directed to those of us who are on the front lines. The memory of that
experience is still raw, but I return again and again to the bedside,
confident that the passage of another 24 hours will have changed the
tide of frustration.

It's night, and sparkles of light catch my eye as I walk onto the hospital
floor. Pinpoint twinkles cut through the shadows, flashes I'm unable to
track, disappearing as fast as they spark. Intrigued, but unable to think
about anything but my patient assignment, I push away my curiosity.

I listen to report, taking special note of Rosie's condition. She has been
in and out of the hospital quite a bit this year, but having her is like having
an old friend visit. It's easy to see why so many of us enjoy the assignment.
Her charm belies her difficult life. Witty and uncomplaining, kindness is her
forte. No matter how many times I need to wake her, she smiles and says,
"Do what you have to do, honey. I'll be here." Her sweetness ministers to
everyone who enters her room. Refreshed by her company, spirits become
air borne, and niggling interruptions are exposed for what they are--deterrents
from the journey of healing.

Rosie's room is saved for last when I do my rounds. Not wanting to wake her,
but medication must be given, and I tiptoe into her room. She sleepily rolls
over and greets me as if it's the most natural thing in the world to be
awakened at 1 a.m. With no growls of protest or whines of inconvenience,
she knows how much we want her to be healthy again.

Rubbing her eyes, she sits up and waves for me to get a package on the
shelf. Sliding the bag across the surface and pulling out a flat tray, I gasp
when I see what is lying in it. Gold wings spread, clear stone angel pins
shimmer under the yellow glow of the wall light, jewels no bigger than a
dime. Here is the source of the flashes sparking in the hall like fireflies
winging their way through the air.

"You watch over me at night when I'm asleep. I can rest and not worry,
knowing I'm safe when you are here. Because you take such good care
of me, I want you to take a pin and wear it. You're one of my angels."

Tingling with gratitude, I'm instantly cognizant of my mission. Forgotten
by many, scorned by a few, Rosie's words impart a holiness to my work,
allowing God to dry my tears and cast off my cloak of fatigue. Her words
are describing the Great Physician. I am His hands and His feet as I tend
to the basic needs of the human body and soul, called to minister despite
insult, and to be merciful, allowing God's healing love to shine on each
person I meet. If He could suffer for me so I could enter a new life where
there are no tears, then I can certainly do what Henri Nouwen prayed, "…to
join people on their journey and to open their eyes to see you." Reckless
words can no longer strangle me with their power.

Sparks of light dance off my shoulder, a symbol of God's love in the darkness
of pain. Another one of Rosie's Angels slips back into the night.

Irene Budzynski

Copyright 2001

Send Irene an e-mail and let her know what you thought of her story!

Irene is a registered nurse on the East Coast who has written for SFTH
and Heartwarmers. 

Thought For The Day:

"Only when we have knelt before God, can we stand before men."

Verse for the Day:

"Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time." 1 Peter 5:6

Kid's Thought For The day:

"Everyone's afraid of noises at night."

Parent's Thought For The Day

"I always wondered why babies spend so much time sucking their thumbs. Then I tasted baby food." (Robert Orben)

Coach's Thought For The Day

"There is plenty enough room at the top, but not enough to sit down."
(Fred Shero, NHL coach)

Deep Thought For The Day:

"If you accidentally eat plastic fruit, do you throw up that wacky fake vomit?"



Update on the twins!

Just a quick note to let you know the latest...  Mary Therese came home today!  2 weeks and 1 day old and she's drinking from a bottle and everyone is thrilled and a little nervous to have her home.  Patrick, on the other hand, is on shakier ground.  He developed some kind of infection or inflammation of his digestive tract.  I guess with immature systems, sometimes they react adversely to being fed.  So about a week ago they stopped feeding him and put him on an IV tube for nourishment.  Until his white count lowers and his tests are normal, they won't feed him. He is responding well to treatment, though, so that's a praise. The good thing is that he had gained a few ounces before, so he has a little to work with in that area.  Please continue to keep Dave, Jeannie, Michael, Mary and Patrick in your prayers.  This is a crazy time.
Thank you,


MacKinzie Weaver, a 12 year old girl at my church has been diagnosed with Haemophilus Influenza which has gotten in her bloodstream and could cause Meningitis.  It may be in her spine and brain now but she is being seen by an infectious disease doctor, and she is top priority on his list.  Please pray for her and her parents, Rod and Melinda and sister Molly and brother Trevor.  The Lord is healing her I know as I type.  Thanks for the prayers.

Deborah L. Ramsey

\_\  /  
/_/  \    "For I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but
\_\/\ \   Christ lives in me.  The life I live in the body I live for the Son
   \_\/   of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me." Galatians 2:20 


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surprised and so touched---they really, really, really loved it.  Thanks
for helping to make it so special to us all.  My mom mentioned how
the songs were perfect for the video too!  Thanks again!"
Kelli-- College Station, TX

Let me make you a video from your pictures or home movies!
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