Born a Miracle: The Story of a Man

By Kevin Ishimwe | Featured Contributor


1994 was the year…
All odds stacked against me,
mother in agony

my future seemed so uncertain
she wondered if I will ever live
to tell my story.

Determined to pacify the fear
hovering my beloved country,

She found delight in the Most High
to get her through her darkest moments
clinging on to faith,
she followed the path set before her

to bring me into this world
by any means necessary.
Her dream realized, she called me
Miracle of the Most High.

So now I’m living my life
like I’m on the clock

Making the most
of every moment

Grateful for the purpose
laid out before me

Rising to every knock,
before my clock runs out

Like I’m on my last go around

Just to let her know that her birth pains were worth it.

Continue reading “Born a Miracle: The Story of a Man”

Lights – A Poem

By Sharon Jeremiah Anuye | Featured Contributor


Sunlight blinding my sight
Skin glowing like diamonds
The trees swaying side to side
With the cool breeze blowing
Thinking out loud about
Where I was before.

It’s crazy everything went by
So fast, clearly I’ve lost some time
I just need to realign and design
Voices in my head thoughts rushing in
And out.

So I have to act fast, that’s why I write
So I don’t forget the necessary
And get my memories all right
I have so much plans, don’t know where
To start.

But I know deep down within my heart
That the Light is all I need…

To make my future bright.

Continue reading “Lights – A Poem”

Promote Your Blog [closed]

Dear Friends,

Happy August! This weekend, I again open up PhoebeMD.com for another Meet & Greet event. Remember, this is your moment to shine! This was originally started on PhoebeMD.com as a dedicated time for you all to come together to share blogs and favorite posts, make new connections, and expand your blog audiences.

The guidelines, like always, are very simple…

Continue reading “Promote Your Blog [closed]”

The Broken Mind: Living with Bipolar Disorder

By Dre from Jerz | Featured Contributor


As a man in his early 40’s, coping with bipolar disorder and manic depression has been a major struggle. But through an open understanding and a willingness to learn, mental health issues can become manageable.

It all started in my late twenties. I was sitting on my twin-sized bed listening to one of my favorite hip hop CD’s. After a breakup with a young lady at the time and in between menial jobs, my mind was in a fragile state. I would play this particular CD on repeat from evening to morning. Not realizing it at the time, but internally I had snapped to the point my brainwaves shifted into an altered phase.

Continue reading “The Broken Mind: Living with Bipolar Disorder”

Feeling ‘Hangry?’ – Hypoglycemia, Mental Health, and the Importance of Diet

By Barbara Leonhard | Featured Contributor


Depression is a complex weave, and I have explored it in various articles on Phoebe, MD. The grief of watching my mom decline with Alzheimer’s and the grief of infertility. However, did you know that some symptoms of depression can also result from a diet high in sugar and simple carbohydrates, which in some people can lead to postprandial hypoglycemia (extremely low blood sugar after a meal)? This has been another life challenge for me.

Continue reading “Feeling ‘Hangry?’ – Hypoglycemia, Mental Health, and the Importance of Diet”

Climb In

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Contributor


Come float with me, dear one.
Climb into my boat.
I will grab your hand
and lift you in.
We can ride this out together.
The current will take us in its way
but we can see a new shore
over there.

If we work together,
we can point the boat
and use our muscles
to reach that new
and beautiful land.
The journey may be hard –
but inch by inch,
wave by wave,
we will make it.

So, climb in.
The invitation is clear.
Together we are safe.
We can make it
because we are strong.
Float with me.

Let’s rise above the current.

Continue reading “Climb In”

Suicide: A Personal Journey from Trauma to Triumph

By John Gregory Evans | Featured Contributor


Life can be quite demanding.

One may find themselves trying to overcome childhood sexual abuse and jump from the frying pan into the fire by volunteering with the USMC during the Vietnam War from 1971 to 1972; subsequently, sexually molested by a mid-level NCO while serving active duty through Combat Training. As well, with combat related scenarios one may also be injured upon a field training exercise after three consecutive explosive blasts are detonated, hurling an M-60 spent cartridge to its potential target, a young seventeen – year-old male’s cervical spine, thus, inducing a permanent nerve damage that could potentially one day paralyze him from the neck down, including the larynx. Hence, my patriotic chore that led a confused, dazed, and mystified young man to serious suicidal attempts and further ideation. This continued for many years.

Will there ever be relief?

Will the suffering end?

The answer to this is yes. Give yourself time.

Continue reading “Suicide: A Personal Journey from Trauma to Triumph”

A Note From Above

By Navnidhi Vyas | Featured Contributor


I was enjoying life
with a secure future,
when suddenly
a dense darkness

came from nowhere,
turned everything
upside down,

and left me
with a lifeless life,
a future with a question mark.

Forced me to write a letter
to the creator of all
with an obvious shame-
where was this thought
when I had it all?

A very long letter
with countless words,
limitless questions,
an exaggeration of misery
was posted to heaven,
expecting a reply
with patience and surprise.

I received a reply.
A note from God
with only two magical words.

Trust Me.

And I looked up at the sky
and held my head high.

Continue reading “A Note From Above”

Why Dating a Woman With a Chronic Illness Is the Best Decision Your Heart Can Make

By Klyn Elsbury | Featured Contributor


I can have a conversation with you about your stressful day while infusing antibiotics straight into my heart through a port-a-cath. I pay attention to your every word when nausea kicks in, asking intelligent follow-up questions, and when you’re relaxed after your stressful day, just ask that you hold my hand. Bonus points if you can bring me a Starbucks en route to the hospital.

I am 32-years-old and have been hospitalized 67 times, ranging in length from one day to six months. The diagnosis is cystic fibrosis and diabetes. The prognosis? Nobody really knows.

I am happily engaged to a healthy man. In fact, he’s so healthy I don’t know if in five years I’ve seen him eat a vegetable that I didn’t force him into. And yet, dating was extremely difficult for me as I grappled with questions on when to tell him about my condition, navigating extended hospitalizations, and yes, even losing my bowels without warning one night.

It’s not uncommon for those with chronic illnesses to be shunned from the dating community. Many have given up entirely and left to feel like ‘used goods’. Even as I researched the article, polling my friends with chronic illnesses, many were reluctant to share their names because if a guy on an app googled them, they would face rejection before they felt it was time to disclose. And I couldn’t help but remember what it was like for me the moment the hot guy I was getting to know decided to type my name into Google, and decided if he was up for the adventure.

Our love story lasts and here are five other reasons that if you’ve been given the news or been contemplating taking the next step with someone with a chronic condition, to give it a go!

Continue reading “Why Dating a Woman With a Chronic Illness Is the Best Decision Your Heart Can Make”

Thirteen Years of Training For A Pandemic

By Don P. | Guest Contributor


On April 28, 2007, my life as I knew it came to an abrupt halt and turned 180 degrees. I had a massive heart attack that day, and a triple bypass surgery the following day. To really make my story special, I then flat-lined over a hundred times during the next twelve or so days, and followed that with a very high drama heart transplant and a five day stint on ECMO (Extracorporeal membrane oxygenation) and was conscious (to a degree) while on a ventilator—the single worst memory in my lifetime. (ECMO is a machine that is basically an artificial lung to oxygenate your blood while your lungs rest/heal).

A week after my heart transplant, I regained consciousness and started to rebuild my body and my life, and unbeknownst to me, I was placed in training for this coronavirus pandemic

Continue reading “Thirteen Years of Training For A Pandemic”

Promote Your Blog! [closed]

Dear Friends,

Happy June! This weekend, I again open up PhoebeMD.com for another Meet & Greet event. Remember, this is your moment to shine! This was originally started on PhoebeMD as a dedicated time for you all to come together to share blogs and favorite posts, make new connections, and expand your blog audiences.

The guidelines, like always, are very simple…

Continue reading “Promote Your Blog! [closed]”

Weather

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Contributor


When fear is everywhere,
take a breath.
Remind yourself that
as real as the fear feels,
it is a passing storm.
You can see it but
you don’t belong to it.
Remember that you
are not the weather.

You are the sky.

We can choose to be blown away
and knocked off our feet…
or we can choose
to have the compassionate
and wise view from above.

We can be observant
while holding on to
who we really are.
Only by holding fast
to the good in us –

our expansive being –
can we truly be helpful
or even present.

So, keep your eyes open
while patiently riding it out.
Don’t allow yourself to get knocked over
or sucked into the whirlwind.
Be ever-present and calm
just like the blue sky
which endures every storm.

Thank you, Cynthia, for these beautiful and timely words.

Wishing everyone a blessed day.

🌷

 

We Are Needed

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Contributor


It takes just a moment
to pause and let go –
to notice.
Presence always waits
patiently for us.
She is found
in the smallest of things…

The slow drip of water
off a rock
which holds
the riverbank in place…
Presence is there.

The thought that gives birth
to the word that spawns a tear…
Yes. There.

In that moment between
the reach of your hand
to the lifting of another –

Or when the homeless man
catches your eye and
a generous smile blooms…
There!

How short our time is.
We squander Presence
like we waste water…
We forget to look,
to hear the slow drip,
to speak the unspoken word.

We get lonely
in this poverty
of connection.

Continue reading “We Are Needed”

To Not Lose Hope

We have highs and we have lows
The power is in our hands
We can dance or
We can cry
It’s up to us
To make the right decision.

Yes it’s hard
Like pushing a wall
That doesn’t seem to move
But once you look back
You’ll see you’ve come so far.

So don’t lose hope
When things are bad
Just hang in there
You are bound to reach
The top of the hill soon.

Victoria Abah

Thank you, Victoria, for these encouraging words.
Let us never lose hope.

Wishing you all a restful weekend.
🌷

Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 3)

By Barbara Leonhard | Featured Contributor


[Click for Part 1 and Part 2]

The bandage torn
From new flesh
Releases wails
The wound still
Imbibes air
The scab hides
deep repair
Let it rest. Wait
In time the scar
Records a fate

I learned that healing is a deep process. We may heal a physical wound, but to become whole, we need to heal emotionally, spiritually, and mentally. We need to dig into the old grout of our deep being. Moreover, we must trust help is available.

Continue reading “Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 3)”

Keeping the Faith

By Pam Kimmell | Featured Blogger


The road that we each travel
Is full of twists and turns
There are detours and temptations
Lessons each of us must learn.

If life was always perfect
And we never faced the bad
We’d have no real reflection
Of the happy times we’ve had.

Adversity brings the challenge
Of working towards new goals
Finding new solutions
Is balm for weary souls.

God never gives us more to handle
Than he knows we can take on
Remember following the darkest times
God provides a bright new dawn.

Continue reading “Keeping the Faith”

You are Free

Just let it go,
let the emotions flow,
Lift your hands
high up in the sky,
and hold so tight,
Move your head
with the wind,
with closed eyes,
Just let it fly away,

You are free.

Felix Odhiambo

Thank you, Felix, for these lovely words.

Wishing everyone a beautiful week.

💙

 

The Beauty We Miss

Stop and smell the roses,
Smell that sweet aroma,
Admire the dew
on each crimson petal,
Simple pleasures
to let sink in and settle.

The beauty that you miss,
can truly be bliss.

Wake up to a gallery
of wonders every morning,
Marvel in every little detail,
it is ever so revitalizing,
In this busy world which we live,
we must remember one thing,

Slow down…life is for savoring.

Duncan Hookey

Thank you, Duncan, for this beautifully penned, timely reminder.

Wishing everyone a lovely day.

🌷

Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 2)

By Barbara Leonhard | Featured Contributor


[Click here for Part 1]

Depression developed and flourished because I grieved so much over loss of fertility.

Women who are childless miss out on a great deal. They never feel what it is like to have a life growing, kicking and wiggling inside of them; to cry out during the birth of a baby (a rite of passage to celebrate with girlfriends); to watch over and even to grow with a child through sickness and health, all the milestones of birthdays, graduations, marriage, and the births of grandchildren. I have even grieved not being able to be the tooth fairy, help my kids find Easter eggs, read them bedtime stories, take them to the zoo.

Feeling apart from and not a part of the tribe still saddens me. I find I am left out of conversations about all those life passages women around me have. I feel I have little to contribute. I have attended and hosted many baby showers, but my mind always wanders to my losses, making it difficult to be fully present to the joy young mothers feel. Women form strong bonds with each other and share in all the rituals around birthing and raising children. I feel like an outsider at times, like I am more an observer than a participant in these sacred passages.

Continue reading “Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 2)”

Just a Man

By Colin Chappell | Featured Author


He listened;
He understood;
He befriended;
He cared.

All the courage he gave me,
By just being there,
Made me feel like
I wanted to live.
He gave me so much
Yet… had so little to give…
But his time.

I realized later
There was so much more.
I was indebted to that man
And… what’s more,
To experience the caring
of someone unknown

made me wonder.
Who else was out there alone?

Continue reading “Just a Man”

The Key Within

Try something new and
you’ll feel like a bird,
locked in a box
closed with fear
not knowing
where the key is.

But just like the magic trick,
the key is inside the box.

Your courage is the key.

Kajal Agarwal

Wishing you a beautiful day.
💙

Let Us Be Those

When all are in trial,
When all are in denial,
Let me be the one
to share a smile.
Let me be the one
to share a dance.
Let it be an advance,
to be enhanced,
when all are weary,
let me be the one
to share thinking clearly,
to share being ever so cheery.

This is what I ask.
Because I don’t want us to wear a mask.
So let us join hand-in-hand, for this to be our task.

Autumn H.

Lovely words by Autumn reminding us to always encourage and uplift each other.

May we be those willing to share a smile…even from a distance.

Wishing you all a beautiful weekend.

💙

Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 1)

By Barbara Leonhard | Featured Contributor


As we grow and develop, we learn how to identify with many labels or roles, such as daughter/son, aunt/uncle, mother/father, and grandmother/grandfather, to name a few. It seems as though our stories are written before we are born to conform to these labels. In a way, these roles become rituals that comfort us as we agree to them and even expect our lives to go “as planned” based on our social codes and blueprints for survival.

I know I certainly expected my life to unfold much like my mother’s life did with marriage and family. She had seven children, and being the second oldest and oldest girl, I was able to help with all the babies she had. It never occurred to me that I would never be able to have my own children. Little did I know that my helping her at the ages of 9 and 10 with my youngest siblings would be my only times to experience at least part of what a mother does for her kids. I am not sure I appreciated this time because as much as I loved playing mommy, I also wanted to be with my friends.

Continue reading “Broken Womb, Shattered Soul: Living with Infertility (part 1)”

Spinal Con-fusion: A Poem by a Survivor

By John Gregory Evans | Featured Author


There remains
a deadened,
freezing,
almost an anesthetizing
sense of dread
upon my fingertips and hands,
reaching deep into my leg’s nerves,
shattered spinal cord,
peeled away
as one peels an orange.

Walking,
now a challenge,
con-fusion of the fusion,
cervical cord,
Ruptured and bruised,
arrogance of the humanity factor.

Pain
within the eyes
like lightning fingers
to the crown
of God.

Continue reading “Spinal Con-fusion: A Poem by a Survivor”

Respite from a Pandemic

By Cynthia Cady Stanton | Featured Author


When in isolation,
and the feeling overwhelms,
remember the love within you.
Look to your heart
and the fullness there,
the fullness that swells
with your sweet attention to it.

You are not alone.

You are the branch
which stretches and shades
from every tree you have sat under.
You are the sea spray
that has kissed your face
from every stroll on the beach.
You are the joy
of your beloved pet
who always blesses you
with pure affection.
You are the song
that the morning bird sings.
You are even the touch
of every hand held
and every embrace shared.

Continue reading “Respite from a Pandemic”

Embracing a New Day

Every sunrise gives you
a new beginning
and a new ending.
Let this morning
be a new beginning
to a better relationship
and a new ending
to the bad memories.
It’s an opportunity
to enjoy life,
breathe freely,
think and
love.

-Nortan Juster

Wishing everyone a beautiful start to a new week.
💙

Share Your Blog [closed]

Dear Friends,

Happy May! This weekend, I again open up PhoebeMD.com for another Meet & Greet event. Remember, this is your moment to shine! This was originally started on PhoebeMD as a dedicated time for you all to come together to share blogs and favorite posts, make new connections, and expand your blog audiences.

The guidelines, like always, are very simple…

Continue reading “Share Your Blog [closed]”

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