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June 17, 2008



My father died when I was eight years old, so we didn't have a very long relationship in the physical world. I remember feeling very close to him, but not much else. But I believe life to be eternal, and we have had a continuing relationship these past 50 years. In contrast to "there is no do over", I think we get to do it again and again until we get it right - kind of like the movie "Groundhog Day". I'm sure both Sam and your dad have been with you during this time - after all, they have been in your thoughts!!!

Lauren Strouse

What a beautiful photograph - it is absolutely stunning! The love reflected between father and son literally radiates from this little black and white frozen moment in time. I think this is one of the loveliest columns you have ever written Sheila. I thank you for sharing so much of yourself and providing such meaningful "food for thought."

Sheila Finkelstein


Thank you so much for your thoughtful response. I appreciate the feedback am glad that you have, in some way, continued to have a relationship with your father.

The "do over" to which I was particularly referring were some very angry words with which I had battered Sam. Though they were reactive, in frustration with the impact of Parkinson's on him and he understood, I still found it inexcusable that I did this. I felt really sad when I heard a replay on an unintentional recording - words and tones that could not be erased, though the MP3 could be.

And, for me, the consolation I have, is that no matter how I treated him, Sam would always respond to my, "I love you" with his own, "I love you" back. He was truly a special man!

Sheila Finkelstein


Thank you for your kind, warm and generous comments about the photo of Sam and Joe and on my writing.

I deeply appreciate your words, feelings and acknowledgment.

Morgine Jurdan

My father died when my daughter was about 2 1/2 and my son about 6 months old, about 37 years ago. He left me many gifts. He was an artist and creator. He taught industrial design: how to design a new car, a stereo, a mixer ... and then re-design everything inside to fit the new outside! He turned down some lucrative jobs because he would have had to give up teaching which was his passion and he refused to give that up. He spent most of his time involved in his work because it nourished him. I am just beginning, at 58 to learn the importance of this lesson When I would ask a question, he always asked me what I had already tried first. He wanted me to experiment with things until I become stuck He was not ready with pat answers. He told me I could learn anything I wanted as long as I could read and have a library card He taught himself many things this way, and invented other things. He did not give up easily. He also felt women could do just about anything a man could and taught my sister and mother and I how to make our own stepping stones from cement, do cement work and make walls and stairs, paint, work on cars .. back in the 50's. He gave me a thirst for knowledge and learning. He had physical challenges of psoriasis and bursitis which the doctors had nothing for and often he was in pain and itching and would drink and become drunk. Yet despite the pain of those moments, I most remember all the rest, which still is serving me today. THANKS for the reminders!
Love, Morgine

Shellie G Fraddin

Dearest Sheila, We've been friends since I moved to FL and we shared a seminar together. Yet, you never cease to impress me with the depth of your feelings and insights. You are a gift to me.
This photo of Sam and Joe moved me to tears, as does your poignant writing. This photo touched my heart deeply to see Sam and Joe together that way, and I felt their mutual love and your overwhelming energy around them.
Thank you for continuing to share your joys, your grief and your introspection with all of us. Your words and photos are truly provocative, inspiring and deeply touching me. Thank you for being my friend. Can't wait to spend time in Sedona together. Much love always, Shellie

Dean Evans

Dear Sheila,

Thanks for stopping by the other day and getting me back on track with your Picture's to Ponder. This one of your husband Sam, your son's father, and my patient, was a beautiful reminder of the wonderful mystery and blessing we have in relationships. We develop from God's thought, through our parent's desire, and by the miracle of birth, to infant, child, man, father, all the while being drawn to learn and reflect the perfect and unconditional love of our heavenly Father. What greater opportunity than in family.
God bless.

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