We as a Nation just celebrated Vietnam Veterans Day. I hope all of us took the time to thank a Vietnam era Veteran for their service and sacrifice. During the Vietnam era 2.59 million Americans served. Over 58,000 were killed and over 304,000 were wounded. 75,000 Vietnam Veterans are severely disabled. Both of my older brothers served in Vietnam, and I am very proud of them. These are pictures of brother Jim taken during his time in Vietnam.
I do worry that we spend so much time these days thanking our Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans that we downplay the importance of the service of our Vietnam Veterans. Every time I returned from combat I was greeted by grateful Americans who would stop me on the street and thank me for my service. That did not happen for our Vietnam Veterans...they literally had to change out of their uniform upon
This past weekend Sarah and I were blessed to have all three of our grandkids with us. Sarah took them down to the river to play in the sand. I am still using a cane with a walking boot so I passed on the adventure...but they did send me a picture of the great time they were having. Check out those smiles.
Why can't we all just enjoy the little things in life like kids do? We used to have that true joy in our hearts, but somehow that has escaped us. As they say life kicked in. The Bible tells us that we should rejoice in the Lord, and be joyful in God our Savior.
I for one am going to start focus on being more joyful. There are so many things that bring me joy...I am going to intentionally spend time with them. I would recommend you do
I continue to listen and learn during my recovery period from my broken ankle. Everyday things become clearer to me, probably because now I am taking the time to think…rather than just rushing to my next event. I have realized that a major piece of my therapy, in addition to my Family and Friends, are my dogs…two Labs named Bailey and Jolene. I have heard about animal therapy before, but this is the first time I have experienced it first hand.
The dogs give me unconditional love. They are accepting, comforting, and non judgmental. Being around them reduces stress and anxiety. They are great listeners (especially when I have a treat in my hand) and don't ask any questions. They seem to agree with everything I say. They are always at my side. They have been extremely helpful in my recovery.
Animal therapy has been proven to do things like reduce
Again, I have had a lot of time to reflect recently during my healing process. It has been an intense time of self reflection. During times like these, I look up to role models to see what they are doing, that I should be doing.
My buddy Gary Sinise is out on his book tour for his book Grateful American: A Journey from Self to Service. He has done many interviews and press events over the past week. I am sure you have seen many of those. As if that wasn't enough, he also took the time to play concerts for service members and their Families at both Nellis and Luke Air Force Bases. His friends event surprised him with a video thanking him for his service. See link below:
The question is obvious...how are you and I doing focusing on service, and not on self? I'll give myself about a B.
Starting the 5th week of my healing process. I know that doctors treat, but God heals. I pray to Him every day to heal my ankle. I know many of you are praying for me as well and I sincerely appreciate that. God willing, I'll be able to start putting pressure on the ankle 18 Feb and start rehab.
Yesterday we celebrated our oldest grandson's 6th birthday. Just having all the grandkids around me and giving Papa hugs and kisses helped the healing process as well. Sarah has taken amazing care of me over the past 36 years, and has been with me every step of the way thru this experience. Wouldn't get thru this without her.
Family and friends are so very important all the time, particularly during difficult times. Don't wait until something bad happens to reach out to them. In today's environment of advanced technology (cell phones,
My healing continues. Entering week #4 of the healing process. Will be able to start putting pressure on the foot in a couple of weeks and then start rehab.
There is a blessing in the fact that I now have more time to think. Less hustling and running around...more time stopping and thinking. One of the things on my mind routinely these days gratefulness. Perfect example is being able to walk. For 63 years I have taken mobility for granted. Got up every day, put my feet on the ground, and start walking. Now I find myself envious of those who can walk, and dreaming of the time when I will walk again.
There is a lesson in all of this. Pause each day and count your blessings. Cherish them and be grateful for them. And, don't make the assumption that you will always have them...because you may
I have spent the last 3 weeks either on my back with my broken leg elevated, or in a mobility device (wheelchair, stroller, walker). My cast was removed this week and the prognosis for a full recovery is good, but I'll be in a boot for the next 6 weeks followed by many months of rehab. I consider myself very lucky.
First off, the injury could have been much more severe...like many of my Armed Forces colleagues. We have had over 1600 amputations from Iraq and Afghanistan. This is not unique to service members. As we speak one in every 200 Americans have suffered a loss of limb.
Secondly, I now have an enhanced appreciation as to what it's like trying to do routine tasks in your home using a wheelchair, stroller or walker. Nothing, and I mean nothing, is easy. We all take for granted how easy it is to
Thanks for all the well wishes for the healing of my left foot. Much appreciated. Doctor says the wound is healing nicely. Lying on my back with my foot elevated gives me lots of time to think. It is ironic that I am in this situation...I should have paid attention to my own speeches and workshops. I learned as a leader to only do those things that only you can do. Someone else could have cut down that tree. I tell my audiences to develop a list of tasks that then prioritize that list using the Eisenhower Box method (based on what is urgent and what is important). Cutting down that tree was neither urgent, nor important...but I did it anyway. I will definitely be more deliberate in the future as to how I spend my time.
Lying on my back all day also gives me more time to pray
This past Monday I was excited about my six week plan. I had trips scheduled, speeches to make, workshops to conduct. It was going to be a very intense, but very enjoyable period. That was my plan.
I decided to get some exercise Monday AM by cutting down a dead tree on the ranch with my son-in-law David. We had notched the tree to ensure it fell the direction we wanted it to, and I was making the final cut when the tree fell straight down...onto my left foot. The bones were severely fractured and the ankle was dislocated. Emergency surgery by a wonderful orthopedic surgeon (Dr Eric Grenier) and my foot was put back together. Now, for the next six weeks, I have to keep my foot elevated and not put any pressure on it. This was God's plan. No trips, no speeches, no workshops.
Woody Allen says If