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Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days…Bad Days With Maureen Pratt

Good Days...Bad Days With Maureen Pratt Archives

TLC Tuesday: It’s All Right

posted by mpratt

Is there a Teddy Bear in your closet? On a shelf in your living room? Or, (horrible thought) in a box in storage? You know what? It’s time. Maybe past time. It’s all right to let that Teddy Bear out! […]

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A Praying Spirit: Fair Weather Prayer

posted by mpratt

Have you ever prayed beneath the bright blue sky of God’s creation? Or knelt on soft grass and given thanks to its Creator? We might pray for rain, or for warm days to come after a hard winter. But besides […]

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Chronic Pain and Illness: Who Is By Your Side?

posted by mpratt

Long days of illness can wear on us, and often make us feel as if we are navigating choppy waters in a leaky boat all by ourselves. How well I know the feeling when I’m especially ill of the hours […]

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A Praying Spirit: Praying Praise

posted by mpratt

Happy Easter – again and again! I’m just digging out of a really bad bug – one of those things that flattens you out and makes you truly appreciate the days when you’re not battling…a really bad bug! So, today, […]

A Praying Spirit: Praying Love

posted by mpratt

Today, as we celebrate love in all it’s forms, I encourage you to “pray love.” What do I mean by this? First, pray that God’s love may cover all those whom you hold dear, including yourself. Ask that His goodness […]

TLC Tuesday: Strengthen Your Weakness

posted by mpratt

We try to hide them, deny them, and, when we cannot ignore them, we try to get away from them as quickly as possible. They are our weaknesses, and many of us may find them so very embarrassing that these […]

Joy to the World!

posted by mpratt

Through the darkness, a light shines. It is the light of God’s love, the light of our Lord, Jesus Christ! Today, Christmas, may this glorious light illuminate your heart and soul, bring peace ot you and your loved ones, and […]

A Praying Spirit: Advent Week Three

posted by mpratt

When we enter a darkened room, what do we do? Turn on a light. There’s an often complicated set of actions that takes place “behind the scenes” that we probably don’t think about – switches and wiring and lamps and […]

Chronic Illness: Too Tired Too Soon?

posted by mpratt

Wow, I am behind. Behind in decorating, doing, and all else having to do with the holidays.  Too soon this Season, I’m feeling that bone-deep fatigue that comes with lupus, anemia (just found out about that), and activity.  Steer me […]

Food for Thought: The Theory of Everything, Part Two

posted by mpratt

The movie, “The Theory of Everything,” about the early and mid-lives of Stephen Hawking and his wife, Jane, stirs up a lot of discussion about love, commitment, and life, especially marriage, where one spouse has a serious, life-altering, illness. As […]

A Praying Spirit: Do you forget, sometimes?

posted by mpratt

I was looking forward to the day ahead. The sun was shining, my usual aches and pains were at a minimum. I started my morning routine, all happy and uplifted. And then, wham! I realized I’d forgotten to say my […]

Chronic Pain: Lost and Found

posted by mpratt

Somewhere, amid the pain and the frustration we feel over lost health and today’s health trials, there are bright, uplifting memories we’ve lost track of, times when life was easier or days when we heard and enjoyed laughter, did good […]

Chronic Illness: Embracing smooth sailing!

posted by mpratt

Like the calm before the storm, or the comfort before the next flare, the period of relatively “smooth sailing” can be a bit nerve-wracking. We know that “chronic” means ongoing, and have had flares rise up unexpectedly in the past. […]

Chronic Pain: For the Birds!

posted by mpratt

Seagulls regularly land on my skylights and attempt to crack open shells. Invariably, they make a ruckus! But they also tend to lose their footing rather quicky and slide down, making a screeching noise reminiscent of fingers on chalkboard. Does […]

TLC Tuesday: Gently, Gently

posted by mpratt

A harsh word, a sudden move, an angry outburst – we’ve all made them and felt them from others. Not uplifting or comforting, these brusk and sometimes brutal actions. For today’s TLC Tuesday, the word and action is “gently.” Gently […]

Chronic Pain: Are you a camel?

posted by mpratt

Some days, I just hurt. I hurt so badly that it’s difficult to tell where the pain is coming from, let alone what to do to make it better. Some days, there’s no easy way around or through it. We […]

New Weekly Feature: TLC Tuesdays!

posted by mpratt

Tuesday can be a neglected day of the week. Most of the others have some kind of identity, but poor little Tuesday can be left out. Beginning today, each Tuesday will be “TLC Tuesday” on my blog. No matter if […]

Prayer for Missionary Healthcare Workers

posted by mpratt

The headlines about the ebola outbreak bring to the forefront how courageous and giving missionary healthcare workers, and all other medical personnel, are, risking their own lives to save others. Although they may be far away from us, we cannot […]

Chronic Pain: Help for the Directionally Challenged

posted by mpratt

It’s better. It’s worse. It moved. It’s stable. It’s sharp. It’s dull. It’s pain. And it is a pain, your pain. Well, it’s affecting you, but you can’t say you actually possess it, because it seems to have a mind – and a […]

This is the day

posted by mpratt

Imagine if you gave a good friend a present, all wrapped up and shining in the light. What if that friend, instead of opening the package, set it aside. He or she tells you, “Oh, thanks. But I’ll get to […]

Vietnam War: A Memory for Today

posted by mpratt

Tucked in a box amid other QSL cards that I found after my father’s death last year is a single, fading reminder of a powerful way to pray today. If you’re not familiar with what they are, a QSL card […]

Chronic Illness: Faith and the Future

posted by mpratt

Fifty years ago, or perhaps even less, someone with a diagnosis of lupus could not expect a “normal”  lifespan. There was so little understanding of the disease, and few ways to treat the symptoms and flares, proctively or otherwise. Today […]

Stress buster: A thankful spirit

posted by mpratt

How often do you give thanks each day? I try to sprinkle liberal doses of thanks throughout mine. And, besides the obvious – that thanks is a prayer to God that I am grateful for even the smallest thing in my […]

Chronic Pain Coping: Naming Your Pain

posted by mpratt

Okay, I confess to a bit of juvenile fun. Plants, fish, even the hummingbird that visits each year – I have a name for them all. Even if it is “Silly” or “Birdie,” each flitting, swimming, and growing thing gets […]

Illness: Is God Punishing You?

posted by mpratt

Early on in my journey with lupus, a Christian said to me, “You’re not cured because you’re not faithful enough.” When I challenged her on this, she said that she though God was punishing me for my “lack of belief!” […]

Lupus: Is Celebrating the Survivors Unrealistic?

posted by mpratt

I was once told by a person in a responsible position in a patient advocacy organization to “be positive, let them know that lupus isn’t all that bad. Don’t be negative.” The message this well-meaning person seemed to want was […]

Why Centering Prayer Is So Important

posted by mpratt

If you’re like me, you find that your prayer list gets longer each day. World problems, individual petitions, personal prayers – we skip around this globe quite a lot when we sit down to have our quiet time with God. […]

The Best Easter Ever Is Today

posted by mpratt

Oh, no, you might be thinking. Isn’t she a week or so off? Didn’t Easter already happen? Is she calendar-challenged? Not at all! I know that April 20 was Easter Sunday. But the best Easter is today. And tomorrow. And the […]

Easter Monday: What Next?

posted by mpratt

A hoarse voice from all that praiseful singing, a stray foil wrapper without the chocolate egg, hosiery with the beginning of a run, achy joints from wearing Sunday-best shoes a little too long… It’s Easter Monday, and we’ve celebrated the […]

Reminder: No Two Snowflakes Are Alike!

posted by mpratt

This was one of the first things I heard when I was diagnosed with lupus. “Lupies are like snowflakes – no two are alike.” It’s turned out to be a truly wise statement, in myriad ways. And it’s good to […]

Lazarus and us

posted by mpratt

What a powerful story of love and God’s power is the story of Jesus raising Lazarus from the dead! And what a blessing that, in Scripture, we have more than just a paragraph of the account. In John, for example, […]

Signs of God’s Love

posted by mpratt

“Would you like some apple juice?” The nurse’s assistant was new to my doctor’s office, and I had only just met her. But as she helped the phlebotomist draw more than 11 tubes of blood from my arm, she could […]

Christmas Dawns!

posted by mpratt

It doesn’t matter how much there is still left to do, nor how much will go undone.  It doesn’t matter that the Christmas cake is a little over-cooked, nor that the casserole doesn’t taste exactly like grandmother’s did. Ingredients omitted, […]

Active Peace

posted by mpratt

We’re almost halfway through Advent, nearly two weeks away from once again welcoming the Prince of Peace. How is your peace? Are you frazzled from all the activity of the Season, yet? Feeling buffeted by family squabbles that have a […]

Derailed at Holiday Time?

posted by mpratt

Advent. Christmas. New Year’s. Every year, they come around once a year. And we plan carefully, putting activities into narrow windows, packing them into our schedules.But often, for those of us with chronic illness and pain, we can be derailed. […]

The greater the cheer, the greater the pain?

posted by mpratt

If you have felt great loss this year, or if your health challenges are weighing heavily upon your spirit and life, the “cheer” that accompanies this season can be particularly difficult to be around.  In fact, the great the cheer […]

Feeling Like a Failure?

posted by mpratt

At some point in a life with chronic illness and pain, we feel as if we’ve failed. Failed at keeping healthier. Failed at following doctor’s orders. Failed at relationships. Failed at life. No matter how many reassurances we get from […]

When the Storms Don’t Come

posted by mpratt

I’ve heard that it is a particularly quiet hurricane season this year. There is a storm in the gulf (Tropical Storm Karen, I believe), that might cause substantial damage. But there has been nothing like last year’s catastrophe along the […]

Inspiration for the Underdog

posted by mpratt

So often, when we’re battling symptoms or snags in our healthcare, or just having a bad day, we feel as if life is stacked up against us. Yes, we feel like the underdog, not favored to win or even, perhaps, […]

Don’t Let Anyone Ruin Your Good Day!

posted by mpratt

We have all encountered the wet blanket. The person who seems to revel in stopping our good mood, or our good day, in its tracks. Perhaps the conversation goes something like this: “The sky is blue! Isn’t it lovely?” “See […]

Chronic Illness: One Size (Often) Does Not Fit All

posted by mpratt

Have you ever had someone tell you you “must” do something for your illness, but your doctor has advised against it? Or, had someone say, “I know someone with [your illness], and he/she is really healthy.” [implying, “what’s wrong with […]

Even with Pain, Even with Illness, Alleluia!

posted by mpratt

Holiday celebrations can sometimes be forced affairs. A date on a calendar is hardly reason of itself to raise spirits and feel emotions that the holiday evokes. Living with a serious illness or debilitating pain can certainly overshadow any “happy” […]

Chronic Pain: Bad Day, Bad Mood, Better Response

posted by mpratt

We’ve all done it – and probably felt even worse afterward. Done what? Taken out our frustration and anger about our pain on ourselves or someone else. The physical weight of the pain coupled with the ever-growing sense of being […]

Advent 2012: A Week Away, a World Away?

posted by mpratt

Advent Day 16: A week away, a world away? If Christmas Eve is only one week away, why does it seem like a world away? We’re in the thick of the Advent season, now. Perhaps it is increasingly difficult to […]

How to Find Words When Words Won’t Work?

posted by mpratt

How can you communicate with someone whose mind and personality have changed so much that you do not recognize them any longer? How do you find the words? Or, are words necessary? Pamela Lazor is a Chaplain at Cedars-Sinai Medical […]

Previous Posts

Happy Fourth of July!
I have always loved the Fourth of July. As a student of Early American History, I especially like revisiting the events surrounding the Declaration of Independence and framing of the U.S. Constitution, as well as the remarkable men and women who ...

posted 1:34:55am Jul. 04, 2015 | read full post »

Chronic Illness: What If You Didn't Have God?
Sometimes, when we're very ill or our pain is overwhelming, we might get to the point where God seems to not exist actively in ...

posted 11:34:47pm Jul. 03, 2015 | read full post »

It Doesn't Take Much to Care
Martyrs and missionaries make astounding sacrifices each day to bring the Gospel and God's love to others. They commit themselves to monumental tasks, knowing that they are giving their lives over to serving and, sometimes, dying for others and ...

posted 7:34:08pm Jun. 27, 2015 | read full post »

Chronic Illness and Pain: Discerning Who to Tell What
As we journey through our lives with chronic pain and illness, we undoubtedly will come across people who ask us "How are you?" Some are truly caring and want to be empathetic and/or reach out with help. Others are being polite, but might not be ...

posted 7:21:50pm Jun. 24, 2015 | read full post »

Chronic Pain: Freshening up the Daily Routine
Like many of you, my days begin with much of the same routine, mostly involving health activity. Stretching, medications, setting up for the day ahead (sun protective clothing or not?) - it can feel as if each day begins with the same old thing. ...

posted 1:16:47am Jun. 23, 2015 | read full post »

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