Tag Archives: hope

Gina’s Heavenly Dance

6 Dec

by Gina Falvo  (Gina was a writer in the Words Wide Open workshop at Second Sense: beyond vision loss.  She is a breast cancer survivor and this is what she thought might be if she hadn’t beat her cancer.)

I knocked on the door and it opened. I looked around and saw what I searched for. I felt so happy I did a little victory dance; suddenly the door closed.  I froze, thinking I went the other direction.  I didn’t fight the cancer.  I couldn’t handle taking care of mom.  This is the real hell, I’ve arrived.  I guess my life on earth wasn’t the hell I always thought it was.  I’ve arrived to meet the devil.

I put my hand on my left breast. The lump I felt on earth was gone.  

Mom did tell me there is hope.  Hope is the four letter word I treasure.  I heard laughter, music coming toward me in all directions.  It was white light I saw and I saw further than I’ve ever imagined I could see. I spotted my father talking with his buddies, laughing like he did on earth.  My Aunt Connie, the person I love the most was with her parents, Grandma and Grandpa Sinopoli.  When Mom spoke about her parents, I wished I could meet them.  Grandpa and Grandma Falvo spoke to me in Italian and I understood every word.  I felt a lick on my hand; I looked down and saw a pit bull wagging his tail.  I didn’t feel afraid.  Lassie came up to me; She led me through a forest filled with wild animals who weren’t wild.  I petted a lion.  

I haven’t felt this good since I learned how to cross the street without getting killed.  I couldn’t believe I could actually see.  I wasn’t wearing my glasses.  I saw my favorite celebrities.  I shook hands with Dick Clark who wasn’t slurring from his stroke.  Bob Hope told me a joke and I laughed.  Elizabeth Taylor told me I was as beautiful as her.  Wow, I never had that compliment on earth.  I heard Dean Martin singing.  My mother’s friends were there listening. I kept on going.

I saw my friend, Arnesia, who still had the laughter in her voice. “We both can see better now.”  She said, “No Lighthouse for the Blind here in heaven.”  

“This is heaven, oh, thank God!” I shouted and began my victory dance.  Arnesia grabbed me and we both were dancing.  I brushed against a man in white as I twirled.  

It was Pope John Paul II.  He held me and said, “Gina, you made it.  No more worries.  This is only the beginning of eternal happiness for you.”  

“I’d like to see God,” I asked. “I’d like to know why I always felt like he was punishing me on earth.  I’d like to apologize to God for not wanting to stay on earth until he called me.”  

“You never have to apologize to God, Gina.  God forgave you a long time ago.  Rest now; you’ve ended your journey.  The door will never shut behind you.”



13 Dec

by Fred Nickl

Hope springs eternal they say, but what does that mean?

When I was a child I hoped for that special toy, it never came.

When I was a teen ager, I hoped for a date with the prettiest girls that never happened either.

When I was in Vietnam, I hoped to survive another night. That happened physically but I’m not so sure about it happening mentally.

When I was a driver and woke up in the dark and heard someone say probably a DOA, I hoped it wasn’t true. That wasn’t true either but sometimes I wish it had been.

When I was told I would never see again, I hoped it wasn’t true.  Of course that one was true.

When I was in rehab they told me everything was going to work out for me, I hoped it was true. That wasn’t true for me either.

When I was stepped on and pushed aside as a blind man, I hoped it would get better. It didn’t but I learned to push back.

When after decades of fighting desperation and loneliness I still hoped for something better, it never came.

When as an old man I entered this nursing home, I hoped at last for some peace, I think I finally found it.

When you ask how, it’s hard to explain. The feeling that has come over me is nothing short of a miracle.  I look back and don’t see hope not working for me but me not understanding what hope has done for me.  Sure there were many disappointments in my life but I survived and made a life for myself and along the way I gave hope to others in my situation.  Being an example for others is not a simple thing to do.  I never let my disappointment show.    Something inside me made me fight through every roadblock life put in my way.

I was never a success financially, emotionally, spiritually or even as a father.

Reflecting on my life now it doesn’t seem as desperate as it did at the time.  Now as the true darkness starts to engulf me, I feel hope for that what’s to come is better then what has passed.

Fred Nickl, Sr. is 69 years old and has fun writing.  He lost his sight when he was a young adult but has never let that stop him from being a good dad, grandfather, friend, advocate for the blind and generally nice guy.  Blindness has also never stopped his love for adventure – sky diving being his latest feat!

Shore of Hope

21 Sep

by Jamie Marks

When day is done
The setting sun
may not be something feared
with slender sures
and moving floors
a hopeful path appears
Certain waves
come crashing in
cresting minutes into years
it isn’t then
but if and when
that salt brings
Better tears
So once again
we come with friends
to meet on sanded boards
and hand in hand
Join gazes forward
we walk until the end
Hope is the shore of reality when we set our sights forward.

 Jamie Marks 45 years old and orginally from Brooklyn- Atlanta-Pennsylvania.  She is one of six generations of Retinitis Pigmentosa- including her great-great aunt, great grandmother, grandfather, mother, herself- her two children- Kayla-16, and Joshua- age 11.  Jamie taught special education for 15 years and just finished her second graduate degree in Vision Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT).  She and her family are very involved in the research and fundraising of Foundation Fighting blindness and have worked with doctors and researchers at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the University of Pennsylvania.  They have been able to identify their family gene, participate in specialized genetic studies, and contribute valuable date for future clinical trials.  To learn more, go to: http://www.fightblindness.org/goto/jamie12