Articles, Caroline Sutherland

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Meeting Significant People

By: Caroline Sutherland

When he was two years old, Dan Caro was engulfed in the flames of a gasoline explosion in his family garage. The accident left him with third-degree burns over 80 percent of his body and forever altered the course of his life.

At a very early age, Dan vowed that his injuries would never determine his potential or put limits on his dreams. At the age of 12, he began playing the drums despite the loss of his hands. He uses his left thumb to grip one drumstick and attaches the other stick to his right wrist with rubber bands. With this simple device, Dan became a highly respected drummer in his home town of New Orleans. In recent years, Dan has become an inspirational speaker, sharing his personal story with audiences across the country to illustrate that the only limits we face in life are the ones we place on ourselves. Two weeks ago, I met Dan Caro at “I Can Do It!” in San Diego. Dan was speaking about his story and his latest book The Gift of Fire. If Dan can do it, I can do it and so can you. Live your dreams and passions. This article is all about people who are reaching out and making a difference.

Jamie Zimron is a champion golfer – a LPGA Golf Pro, a 5th Degree Aikido Black Belt and a sports psychologist. She is a dual USA and Israeli citizen. Like many of us Jamie has been deeply concerned about the violence in the Middle East region and wanted to parlay her skills and her heritage to make a difference. I had the privilege of interviewing Jamie to hear about her life-changing mission to foster relationships in this war-torn region. Since 2004, Jamie Zimron’s efforts are leading beyond hatred and violence to a new culture of peaceful power and constructive conflict resolution in the Middle East. The Middle East Aikido Peace project helps to unite Arabs and Jews, Israelis and Palestinians through the Martial Art of Peace which means managing life energy and fostering harmony, unity and peace through Aikido. Jamie has also established a summer camp where youth from the Middle East travel to the United States to interface with western youth from a variety of religions and ethnicities in a summer camp setting.  These camp experiences have established seeds of peace, mutual respect and accord. Jamie feels very definitely that peace is possible.

I read about Trudy Harris in Guideposts Magazine – an inspirational monthly magazine established many years ago by Norman Vincent Peale. Trudy is a hospice nurse whose latest book Glimpses of Heaven documents true stories of hope and peace at the end of life’s journey. I don’t know about you but I am not ready to die. Death is not a subject that is easily discussed. We all know that we will leave the earthly life one day. This book, which is quite religious, documents 40 stories which offer compelling certainty, that there is life beyond physical death.

On that same note, I am delighted to announce that Denys Cope also a hospice nurse has released her new book:  Dying ~ A Natural Passage.  I first met Denys in 2001. My mother was quite ill and close to dying. The universe always brings the right people into our lives at the right time. Meeting Denys helped me to understand the dying process and how I could be more observant and indeed more helpful as my mother prepared to leave this plane of existence. Denys described the process of how the dying patient moves in and out of consciousness as if preparing to make the transition. This process can last many months. I observed this in my mother. It was as if she was moving in and out of a different plane of existence, readying herself to go to the other side. I am grateful to Denys. Take a look at her small and potent book. It will help you to understand this important life chapter and open your eyes to the spiritual process and the wisdom that is inherent in the dying process. Here’s a great article about this remarkable woman. 

I hope by now you are inspired. Everyone has something to give. Everyone has time or a talent to share. If you want to get healthy, give to others. Fulfillment comes from helping others. Finally I would like to introduce you to another remarkable person, Janet Trinkaus who founded The Rise N’ Shine foundation in 1988. At that time, Janet recognized  a glaring need for children affected by AIDS and she decided to create a foundation -  Rise n' Shine, which has been providing emotional support programs, stability, advocacy, and AIDS education for children and teens affected by HIV/AIDS. This includes children and teens who have been orphaned by the disease, children and teens who live with a parent or other close family member with HIV/AIDS, and those who are infected themselves. Rise n’ Shine is an organization that I have supported for many years and in fact it was Janet who encouraged me to launch my project. Since 1990, these little healing angels and story music CD’s have not only helped Rise n’ Shine children but hundreds of little ones around the world. Now it’s your turn to reflect. Think about how you can be an inspiration in your community and around the world?

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