Tuesday, December 28, 2004

April 1985

In April 1985 I was 22. I worked in a small convienance
store just outside Ft Smith, Ark. It was on the hwy
pretty much by it's self. I worked 2nd shift and had
to close alone. I carried a small hand gun that attached
to my jeans pocket.

On this day I forgot my gun at home. The girl leaving
offered to leave her's. I told her I would be fine. We
changed shifts at 2:00pm.

I was starting out to be a normal day. All the regular
folks coming in. There was a few folks that I did not
know, but being on a main hwy that was not unusual.
But what would happen next was would be unusual.

A small man about 5'7" dark hair 145lbs with a plaid
shirt and jeans, put a 6pk of beer on the counter. I
put the paper down I was looking at. When I turned to
ring it up, he had a gun in my face.

Now this is not something you have to practice for. My
arms new exactly what to do. They reached for the sky!
It took some coaxing to get them down to put the money
in the bag, like the man was telling me to do.

I was shaking like a drunk without a drink. I had just
finished putting all the money in the bag and was handing
it to this man with the gun. This gun by the way looked
like a cap gun out of a toy box. But sure the heck was
not going to question him about it.

The door opened and Ronald came walking in. It was his
normal routine to stop on the way to the factory. The
man turned to him pointing the gun at him. "get in the
back of the store" was what the gun bearing man said.

Ronald for what ever reason thought it was a joke. I
can not imagine why my colorless face was not evidence
enough. The man then turned to Ronald who now had his
hand on a coke box to open it.

The sound was like a firecracker on the 4th of July. But
by the look on Ronald's face it was unmistakable. He went
white instantly. Then went into the back room with out a
word. The bullet missed his head by no more than 2 or 3 inches.

The gunman then turned to me and told me to get back there with
him. I did as quickly as I could. I was scared, mad, and worried
all at the same time. There were lots of adverbs coming out of
my mouth.

Then I heard it the bell on the front door. I told Ronald I did
not know what he was even driving. I peeked my head out. He was
gone. I ran up the side of the store to the front window.

I got there just in time to see his truck driving out the back.
I wrote his tag # down. Then tried to call the police. Since we
were not in the city limits. The local town I called did not
want to take my call.

"I have just been robbed with shots fired do you think you
might be able to pass that along even if it is not in your city"
I said. I did not have much patience with him. But he finally
said he would. I still did have to call the county sheriff.

I called my boss. Then I called my parents ( who had heard the
call on there scanner that a hysterical girl had been robbed)
Now I was not hysterical at that point. Maybe back in the
back room with all those adverbs coming out.

The man with the gun was caught at 6th and Garrison in Ft Smith.
He had money, and beer. But no gun, but we had the bullet.

Turns out this man had only been out of prison a few months. He
had done a lot of not so nice things including killing a man in
a bar.

The next morning the local paper had a not so lovely picture of
me on one side and him being arrested on the other side.

When we went to the pilminary hearing, Ronald and I were just a
little nervous. Ronald asked when we had testified if he had
stared at me. I told him no, why? Ronald said he stared at him
the whole time he was on the stand. "Well the local paper didn't
give him a picture of you to post on his cell wall"

Our gun man plead guilty on the day we were to go to trail. It
was reduced from Armed robbery, felon in possession of a fire arm,
and shooting with intent to kill. To Armed robbery, felon in
possession, and shooting with intent to injure. He got 3 20yr sentences.

I did not sleep for 2 days after this happened. I almost
shot some little old lady digging in her purse. The district
attorney called me after he pled guilty. Said my testimony
was the reason. I had described him almost perfectly. I missed
his weight by 5lbs his height by 1 in. Had his clothes and truck.

I try not to think of this to much any more. It scared the
poop out of me. More so when I realized all he had done before.

Just a day in my life

The tv is playing a modern version of cartoons. I personally
do not get them. The house is a mess, remnants of Christmas
paper on the floor, Christmas toys everywhere, half built
log houses.

There are 3 cats Snow ball (solid white daughter's baby) princess
(long haired striped annoying) Oliver Wendell Douglas (solid black
cat son'safter Green Acres fame) 2 puppies the biggest
chocolate (son's big boy)smallest chocolate (daughter's
Rose Grace) All 5 of these are running, playing, chasing
one another.

I wonder when the mess will be cleaned up. Not for at least
12 yrs. That should be when the youngest should go off to
college. So between now and then I will do my best to make
sure that the mess is a controlled mess.

I think I fell into that June Cleaver illusion. I really thought
that when I had a family. We would have a clean home, play well
together, get home work done. You know just like on tv.

Boy have I had a rude awakening. My house is never clean even
on the day when I work my butt off to get it clean. And I
never remember Beaver and Wally screaming at each other.
Ripping things from one another, slamming doors and
crying. I can deal with the crying for a scrapped knee.
But the crying for he said she said is not so easy.

And just who the heck did her laundry? I never remember
seeing her doing laundry. There was 4 of them, there is
4 of us. The laundry is a never ending, ever growing
heaping pile.

I guess after hearing ER talk about his baby bird. 12 yrs
is not all that long. They are big enough to at least
carry those heaping piles of laundry to the laundry room

And one just stopped by to hug and kiss me. What the
heck am I complaining about. I have the good life.

Friday, December 10, 2004

The most anticipated shower of my life

I had surgery on Nov 11. This surgery was to take off
the part of my abdomen that was making it's way to my
knees. I did not intend to share all the gory details
with you all.

The afternoon after my surgery. I could tell already
that my life was going to be alot more pleasant. My
legs finally had relief from the weight that had been
bearing on them for so long. Every time I took a step
my leg had to push it up to go forward. Sitting in a
chair was not much better. They weight would cut the
blood flow and put my legs to sleep.

It did not matter if I lost weight. This was not going
away. So after years I finally had the money to do it.

I did very well the first few days. Then infection set
up. I was so sick, I almost called the funeral home to
make my arrangements. I am just now finishing up the 3rd

They removed the last of 4 drains that I went home with
today. I feel free finally. I do still have a little stuff
draining off of my incision. But it is so much better than
it was.

As the nurse removed the drain today. She said I guess you
know what this means. I CAN TAKE A SHOWER!!!! I have never
in my life gone a month with out a bath or shower.

Sponge baths are just not the same. I could sit on the side
of the tub wash and shave my legs. Do the rest at the sink.
I still have to wait until tomorrow morning. 24hours after
the drain is removed.

I can not wait to feel that hot water on my body. She told
me I could not stay in the shower to long. I don't care just
a few minutes will be the best shower of my life.

I will say this. Even though I have been so sick. I would do
this again. Just for the physical benefits. They took 13 pounds
off. I can reach my toes again. I can shave my legs without
having to be a acrobat. My back thinks it has died and gone
to heaven. My legs feel as if they have been loosed.

I am hoping that one day I can run again. I have not been able
to run for at least 20 yrs. I dream of running. I know that
is silly. But I used to love just running.

Hope all of you are doing well. Sorry it has been so long.

Thursday, December 02, 2004


This is not going to be any great story.
I am still mending. I find out tomorrow if
I have to go back for another surgery.

But I couldn't say a way forever. Even if
my mind is still running on half cylinders.

I have always loved Christmas. I know what
a wonderful gift it was. But I also loved
Santa. My children found out last year that
Santa was not real.

This came with mixed emotions for me. They
are very much aware that Christ's birth is
the reason we celebrate Christmas.

But I will miss the surprise and excitement
of Christmas morning. We never put a present
under the tree until Christmas morning.

One Christmas eve we would read the story of
Santa, put out cookies and milk, and we even
went out side to put down reindeer dust.
This would help Santa find us.

Then on Christmas morning, I would hear those
little feet hit the floor running. Then stop
dead in there tracks. A great gasp would come
from each of them.

Then they would run to our room screaming he
has been here! Get up, Get up!

There is not much in the world that compares
with the joy and excitement on the face of a

So this year since they already know we are Santa.
I told them I would put presents under the tree as
I get them.

My husband did the good deed of being at Walmart at
6:00am the day after Christmas. I was still down and
could not go. The prize we were after was a trampoline.

So it has been in the back of his explorer with a sheet
over it. I told him he better get it in the house.
Yesterday he had to come home to help me move puppies.
So he brought it in.

I got it wrapped with a few other things. The kids were
so excited to see presents. We were sitting at the supper
table. When my daughter said, You know that big one looks
just like that trampoline in the back of dad's truck.

My son yelled at her, "you were not supposed to say anything".
I had a very hard time keeping my composure. So much for

Hope you all have a Blessed and happy Christmas holiday.