My Sjogren’s Escape

If Only For A Minute or Two..

My son giving John Kerry the  Rome Italy Embassy Coin

My son giving John Kerry the Rome Italy Embassy Coin

My dear Sjoggie-Mates, I will ask you to bear with me as I post something totally unrelated to my daily journey with Sjogren’s Syndrome. Well, not totally unrelated. We Sjoggies are all in search of the right meds and therapies to help us function and feel our best each day. Occasionally, that comes in the form of good news or happy family events. It is with unabashed enjoyment that SjoDry, in blatant, “Braggy Mom” mode, shares one (or two) of those “bursting with pride”      parental moments.

My son, Jon, an active duty Marine, recently completed a very difficult & challenging program to become a U.S. Embassy Security Guard. Currently, he is assigned to the first of his 3 consecutive, year-long assignments.  To his and all of our surprise, his first assignment (without any hints or twisting of arms from his Sjoggie mother) happened to be Rome, Italy.  During his assignment there, Jon will be tasked with providing security to Embassy personnel, documents and dignitaries. Yesterday, Jon had the honor & privilege of meeting and protecting our Secretary of State, John Kerry. Jon was able to share a specially designed Rome Italy Embassy Coin with Mr. Kerry as is customary for all visiting dignitaries and VIP’s.

I suppose that part of me is feeling a bit like a groupie on the sidelines, since the whole thing is just cool. But more than that, it is a reminder that each time we see our kids in a successful moment in their lives, it feels like we made it to the finish line as parents. Do you know what I mean? I may not have licked (or ever lick) this Sjogren’s anchor in my life. But by golly, Sjogren’s didn’t keep me from helping to grow our kids into happy, independent and successful people. And that’s the goal, right?

Kelsey (right) with her music student

Kelsey (right) with her music student

I am equally as proud of our multi-talented daughter. Kelsey, is a talented & dynamic Music Teacher in Ohio. Not only does she possess the gifts of a beautiful voice and piano playing ability, she was meant to touch the lives of young children every day with the blessing of teaching them music.

As we scurry, or maybe more appropriately, drag ourselves around trying to meet all of our holiday demands, take time to reflect on what Sjogren’s has not taken from your lives. The abundance of blessings;  people; and relationships and their therapeutic impact on our lives cannot be measured. But they can be appreciated.

Thanks for indulging my prescription for a happy escape with you.

May you all be filled with smiles!

Sjoproud and smiling 🙂






About vitalsignspgh

Sandy Burkett is the Creative Engineer, President and Owner of Vital Signs. Vital Signs is a certified Native American/Woman-Owned custom sign and graphics company located in Carnegie, PA.
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3 Responses to My Sjogren’s Escape

  1. C. Furukawa says:

    So true, wonderful moments have a therapeutic affect! Congrats and thanks for sharing.

  2. Jazzcat says:

    What a great news !! Congrats to him (and to the family) I hope you will be able to visit him there.

    • vitalsignspgh says:

      Thank you Jazzcat. We are planning a trip to Rome in June..if SjoDry’s health holds out. Today, our son is headed to the Swiss Alps for the World Economic Forum (where Andrea Pucelli will perform & Matt Damon will receive an award). It is fun as a Mom to see him have these experiences.

      Take Care.

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