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Be a Turtle!!  One Step at A Time

Turtles, Mud, Surgery & Other Stuff

Updated: Mar 7, 2019

It's been an interesting summer here in Oregonia. I had cervical spinal surgery in July and the weeks leading up to that held a number of pre-op appointments and tests. After the surgery, I spent two weeks mainly watching #Netflix and #Tubi and listening to music or the Bible.

I am about six weeks out from the surgery, and a post-surgery blah has taken hold. I find it interesting that I was prompted to write about fighting funk earlier this summer and now I am walking in one. I am not knee deep in the mire right now, but I could easily slip into the mud pit. #cervicalspine

Taking your own advice is hard! I mean - really! I keep forgetting to be a turtle - slow, steady, one step at a time.

This week saw a bit of a setback with my neck. I want to cry, but no tears come. I want to scream, but that seems an overreaction. Staying in bed has been appealing. And then I remembered three steps forward; two steps back.

It is the title of a classic Christian book about perseverance. In the final pages, author Charles Swindoll relates a conversation a friend of his had with Victor Frankl. Frankl was a concentration camp survivor from WWII who wrote a book every thinking person should read called Man’s Search for Meaning. Here is the quote he shared:

Victor Frankl to John Walvoord as told to Chuck Swindoll

This from a man who survived a concentration camp! Frankl is right. We are here to take this life journey not for our happiness as much as for our character.

Every tiny thing you go through shapes you and influences who you become. How you respond to these things will in many ways determine how your life turns out. I am not talking about the material things. Those in the end mean nothing.


How are your relationships? Are you a person of integrity? Are you authentic? Do you serve others or just take?

Ole’ Chuck reminded me of a couple of things today.

  • This journey is never a straight road.

  • There are people who are going or have gone through much worse than I and not only survived, but thrived.

  • I am responsible for my thoughts, my feelings and my reaction, no matter what prompted them.

  • I get another shot at being a turtle tomorrow...God willing.

Valerie LK Martin

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