Posts Tagged ‘courage’

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Deep Survival

February 20, 2010

I just finished “reading” a new book.  I discovered books on CD!  So, actually I listened to a new book this week on my way to and from work.  I’m completely addicted and will be visiting the library this afternoon to pick up the next book on CD.

The book was Deep Survival who lives, who dies and why by Laurence Gonzales.  In the past I’ve read a few survival stories.  I’ve read, Adrift and Into The Wild.  Both books detailed the experience of a man in extreme circumstances.  One lived and one died.  I had never thought about the two stories in comparison because one I read in high school and had all but forgotten about and the other within the last two years or so.  Gonzales’ book compares not just these two stories but many stories in which the central figures find themselves in a situation of survival or death.  The first part of the book discusses functions of the brain in depth and it was over my head.  I think I picked up the general ideas but, I’m sure that if I’d paid more attention in Biology or continued on to Anatomy I would have gotten more out of it.    The main idea seemed to be that people are governed by a small amount of rational control and a large amount of emotion.  The people who live through their ordeals are able to use both in just the right ways. 

The second part of the book detailed out several stories of survival and pointed out how the survivors made it out alive and why the ones who didn’t died.  He used the experience of Steven Callahan, who wrote the book Adrift, to define the perfect survivor.  Steve was alone at sea in a 6 man raft for 76 days.  Steven was able to survive because he used his rational brain to observe his environment and come up with a plan for his survival.  Observing and planning played a big part in not only Steven’s survival but also many others who found themselves is similar situations.  Another key seemed to be taking responsibility for ones own situation and survival.  Many of the people who’ve died did so because they gave up or just waited without action for rescue.  Gonzales mentioned that rule followers do not do as well in survival situations because they aren’t willing or able to let go of the plan when things go wrong.  Survivors are constantly having to adjust to changing environments and circumstances.

I had a difficult time with this book because the author was overly poetic for my taste.  I think if I had been actually reading it I wouldn’t have gotten all the way through it.  However, I’m really glad I did finish it because I found so many inspirations in it.  The spirit of seeing beauty in the world and your situation no matter how extreme and, the ability of people to never give up no matter how discouraging the circumstances were two themes that I was specifically moved by.

There is a show that comes on Animal Planet called I Shouldn’t Be Alive.  The show interviews people who have lived through an extreme ordeal.  I had never seen it before I started reading Deep Survival but, now when I watch it I think I get so much more from their stories than the viewer who has not read Deep Survival. 

Gonzales does mentioned that he has found that may times someone who has all the perfect attributes of a survivor can be overtaken by circumstances and die.  Also people with no survival skills can get lucky and live.  But, I was really drawn to the stories of the survivors especially when they would make a decision to take a risk and either live or “die well”.

So much to think about…..what would I do in an extreme environment?  Would I be a survivor?

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A few videos

May 12, 2009

Today when I got home from Kroger I put away all the groceries and I was going to start some laundry when I noticed something unusual.  Two Toes had a sticker on his face.  I had to get a quick video.  He is so funny.  It was the sticker they put on the items too big for a bag.  It says, “I’ve been Krogering”.

Here is a video of me giving fluids to Cosmo.  He has to get them every night due to his kidney failure.  Its a long video.  I’m want to keep video taping this event every night until I get a good one then maybe it can help other people who have to give their pet fluids.  I remember when I first started doing it for him I would shake and cry and really freak out for an hour before hand.  It is difficult to get over the mental block of not wanting to stick my cat with a needle.  My neighbors used to come over and distract me for a while and then help me with Cosmo.  They are GREAT neighbors.  Whooo Hooo Mike and Dale!!!!

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The Haircut!

March 15, 2008

I did it!  It was scary and I still don’t recognize myself in the mirror.  I am so afraid of what my husband is going to say when he sees it.  I think it turned out a bit shorter than we discussed. 

The stylist, Sidney, started off by cutting off all the long stuff.  Hair was flying in all directions!! (If you click on the pictures you can see them bigger)

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Then he bleached it and I had to sit and process under the dryer.  Then he applied a toner to get it a normal shade of blonde.  Then he cut it for real.  Here are some pictures of the finished product.  Please be honest when you let me know what you think.

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More hair stuff

March 14, 2008

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Here are a few more pictures of me pre-pixie cut.  The big day is tomorrow.  I’m excited and scared.  Please, please don’t let this haircut make my nose look any bigger!!!

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Hair documents

March 12, 2008

hair-do-004.jpgSo, Here is a picture of me with my current hair-do.  On Satuday, I’m getting it all chopped off.  I’m going to do the pixie cut!  I’ve wanted to do this for years and have never had the courage.  I’m also going very blonde.  I’ll be going to mariemariesalon.com check it out!  Any advice?