Drug testing

Pieces of Time and Pivotal Moments

Life is comprised of pieces of time sprinkled with pivotal moments. Sometimes these moments have immediate impact. Other times, they are slow to manifest and reveal their importance. But if you listen closely to the soft whispers of life, they will guide you on an unexpected journey filled with beauty, understanding and fulfillment. One such moment occurred for me about eight years ago.

On this particular day, I was helping my mom redo her bedroom. We rearranged the furniture, cleaned, polished and changed the curtains and bedding. Then out came the new floral arrangements, potpourri and matching candles. Proudly, we stepped back to admire our work. That's when Mom decided we needed a little atmosphere and she lit the candles.

Evidently, there was a residue of cleaning solution on her hands, because the moment she flicked the lighter, flames burst in the air. Large blisters instantly formed on her hands and she began to shake. As the tears rolled down her face, she looked up at me and whispered, "The children."

Those were her first words, not a cry, not a scream, not a curse ? "the children". I panicked. I though she was in shock. I hurried her into the bathroom to tend to her wounds but the blisters were so large she couldn't move her fingers. I realized I would have to take her to the doctor; I was also concerned about her state of mind. Her response seemed so strange. "Mom, what do you mean, the children?" I asked.

She looked up at me with the sweetest, most sympathetic tear-filled eyes I had ever seen. "The poor children who get burnt." Then she continued to explain, "I saw it on Oprah. If this is painful for me, how much pain would a child be in? I feel so sorry for them?what they must go through."

That was her answer. My mom had second and third degree burns, her hands were swollen, blistered and shaking, but her tears were for the children. Children she saw on Oprah. My thoughts were less pure. At that moment, I didn't care about anyone but her.

Four years ago this October, I lost my mom to cancer. True to her nature, she never complained during her illness. Not once. Even in her suffering, she taught me valuable lessons. One of these lessons came when we were in her hospital room waiting for test results. The doctor finally arrived, flew into the room, delivered his devastating news and then abruptly left.

I was shocked, hurt and angry all at the same time. I turned to my mother and said, "I hate him." She looked at me with her beautiful blue eyes and said, "That's not nice. He was just doing his job. Can you imagine how hard it must be for him to have to tell his patients bad news like that?"

Oh, Mom, you certainly were something.

In the years since I lost my mom, things have changed in many ways. There are sorrows and bittersweet longings, but her gentle lessons continue to touch my life and guide me.

Mom would be proud to know that my husband John and I recently published our first children's book. Although we originally set out to write an entertaining story about a boy with school troubles, I soon discovered that John was the victim of a school bully. He had buried the hurt and humiliation deep inside, but as we stepped further into the writing process, the impact of his experience was evident.

My mother's lessons taught me to listen closely to the soft whispers of life. This perspective helped me to realize that a message emerged from our collaboration, beyond the pages of our book. This knowledge changed the direction of our lives.

Our children's book became the basis for an anti-bullying program. The program, filled with stories, songs and practical advice, teaches children about the consequences of bullying and helps to provide a safe and healthy learning environment.

Today, as John and I speak at schools and community events, I pray that our pieces of time sprinkled with pivotal moments serve to help the children. Because now, I understand.

AWARENESS

Necks crane as innocent eyes follow my every move


Silent, enthralled children,


A captive audience


In the wake of their hushed response,


I hear the echo of my own words.


Anticipation looms


Awaiting an answer


A solution, an explanation,


I cannot provide.


I have let them down


For I can only share my story,


Not repair the social injustice that has befallen them.


They are victims,


As once was I


With only my experience to offer,


I silently pray to ease their anguish,


Whilst knowing I cannot.

About The Author

Patricia Gatto and John De Angelis are the authors of MILTON'S DILEMMA, the tale of a lonely boy's magical journey to friendship and self-acceptance. As advocates for literacy and children's rights, the authors speak at schools and community events to foster awareness and provide children with a safe and healthy learning environment. For more information, please visit Joyful Productions at http://www.joyfulproductions.com

pgatto@ptd.net

In The News:

Beachgoers in Bonita Spring, Florida were treated to a strange sight last week: an alligator going for a swim.
A remarkable map created in space over 50 years ago could lead a modern-day explorer to the sites of treasure-laden shipwrecks in the Bahamas.
Scientists studying bones unearthed from an ancient tomb in China’s Shaanxi Province have discovered the remains of a new but totally extinct species of ape.
Mars may be known as the Red Planet, but it's a "blue dune" image NASA has released that's got everyone talking.
Experts in Italy say they have found the earliest surviving work by Leonardo da Vinci.
Microsoft founder Bill Gates is pouring £3million ($4 million) into a project to create killer mosquitoes that destroy each other through sex.
Bedrock under Antarctica is rising more swiftly than ever recorded — about 1.6 inches (41 millimeters) upward per year. And thinning ice in Antarctica may be responsible.
A new study validates Einstein's theory of general relativity in a distant galaxy for the first time.
On Mars, the sky is dust.
A small moon rock gifted to Cambodia by the United States amid the Vietnam War has resurfaced after being all but lost to time and strife.

Top Three Ways To Communicate With Your Child

Although many parents become frustrated as they try to maintain... Read More

Who Wants To Date Their Mother?

Do any other reality TV junkies remember a show on... Read More

Why Scrapbooking Moms are the Secret Weapon in the War on Terror

There is a front line and a back end to... Read More

ADHD: Dialogue with a Non-Believer, Part Four

Dear Sir, It was with some interest that I read... Read More

Parents Dealing with Worry and Fear

Dear Vijay,I worry about not being a good parent. My... Read More

Is Your Behavioural Change Strategy Working?

'How can I start getting my children to help out... Read More

Lifebooks: Every Adopted Child Needs One

Information is gold when you are adopted. Every tiny piece... Read More

The Challenges of Single Parenting

Having worked with parents for the last 35 years and... Read More

Parenting Styles - Overcoming Your Differences

If you spend any time in the parenting section of... Read More

Educational Toys And Childrens Books - A Must For Optimal Childhood Development

The brightly colored plastic mobile dangles lazily overhead in the... Read More

Teaching Preschool Color and Shapes with Family Games

My kids just can't get enough of playing games with... Read More

Grandparents --- Homeschool Your Grandchildren and Feel Younger

Grandparents, what better way to stay close to your grown... Read More

Im a Mom, Shes a Mom: Being an Adult with Your Parents

On one of her quarterly visits to see her grandson,... Read More

Kids Party Etiquette for Parents

Ever feel like you're out of the loop when it... Read More

Nanny 911 and Disciplining Your Child

Nanny 911 Interview with Montel WilliamsI saw an interview with... Read More

Teaching Your Child Safety

Q. What is the best way to teach safety awareness... Read More

Advocating for Your Child with LD

Advocate: you've probably heard the term before. But what does... Read More

The Three Best Alternative Treatments for ADHD

There are a LOT of alternative treatments for sale out... Read More

Alias: Aptitude

Be aware. You may become totally overwhelmed when you get... Read More

Nurtured by Love or Matured by Nature?

"There is nothing new under the sun," states Ecclesiastes 1:9.... Read More

How Fathers Can Step Up to Fathering

When our oldest son was 2, my wife went out... Read More

From Go Fast Kids to Calm Kids

How excited do kids get with the start of school... Read More

Promote Physical Fitness for Your Child

If your child is to derive the benefits of physical... Read More

Playing Safe

Do you really want your child to enjoy playing with... Read More

How to Take Charge of the TV

Many children enjoy TV, and they can learn from it.... Read More

led parking lot light fixtures street lighting Pete's produce ..