It may have been easier if Pete had not shared with Louise the dark reality he had been carrying “Why Archer and not me?” “It should have been me and not Archer”. Brutal thoughts. But real thoughts. These thoughts at one end hanging in an almost stagnant state of exhausted optimism countered with a friend’s hope-filled experience of Archer, “He started squeezing my hand and held it for 20 minutes.” Hope can transform a stark reality. Hope is not optimism. Hope is when we put our trust in someone trustworthy. In these moments, Louise had her hope in Shirley, and God. These she knew she could trust. Hope requires far more courage than optimism. Rabbi Jonathan Sacks teaches, “Optimism is the belief that the world is changing for the better; hope is the belief that, together, we can make the world better.” Having a gateway to hope can lead the way through a gateway to healing.
Join Louise for this episode of Blink of an Eye: Episode 18 Gateway to Hope August 7. DAY 3.
In this episode, you will hear interview excerpts from
In this episode you will hear from:
Pete Senft, Louise's oldest son, and one of Archer’s older brothers, who was 21 at the time of Archer’s accident and is today a civil engineer at Whiting Turner and lives in Baltimore.
Paula Senft Easton, Louise’s eldest child, and only daughter, and Archer’s older sister, who was 24 at the time of Archer’s accident and is today the Associate Director of Admissions for the Friends School in Baltimore.
Dr. Kris Radcliff, a spinal surgeon with the Rothman Institute in Philadelphia and Archer’s neck surgeon at Atlanticare in 2015.
Shirley Davis Rawson, a family friend of the Senft’s, the Sacristan at the Cathedral of Mary Our Queen Catholic Church in Baltimore, 1996-2016, and a retired police officer with Baltimore County Police Department.
It’s not that we aren’t appreciative of the offer of help from others, but sometimes you just want to scream, “STOP ASKING ME QUESTIONS!” What about the innocent question, “Is there anything I can do to help?” and similar questions when we or our loved one is in an intensive care unit, or in the throws of early trauma. Caring people don’t realize the stress that chit-chat big everyday questions add. What is demanding and what is not? And Louise looks harder at the, “Oh, it’s a blessing” reply when a loved one who was suffering dies, no matter how old. Intended to be consoling, but is it? Many of these words fall under the heading, “What not to text.” Louise explores the kind of texts that are soothing to someone in trauma, and she begins an unfolding explanation of how we can understand trauma more fully.
Join Louise for this episode of Blink of an Eye: Episode 14 Soothing Texts -- What (Not) to Text
August 7. DAY 3.
In this episode, you will hear interview excerpts from
Dr. Kris Radcliff, a spinal surgeon with the Rothman Institute in Philadelphia and Archer’s neck surgeon at Atlanticare in 2015
Mary Lou Healy, a middle school math teacher at the Cathedral School in Baltimore in 2015 at the time of Archer’s accident, and now teaching at Calvert Hall High School.
Louise begged to know, “Will he get his hands back? He needs his hands because he’s an artist and a cook!” Truth is devastating and tough to swallow. The response was no different, “Not likely.” Sometimes people hold information that we are owed. They try to protect us by tucking it away until “the right time” or a better time to share it with us. They also withhold hope when the answer isn’t truly concrete and based in fact. There is not a good time to hear bad news. Sometimes you have to dig deep to find the truth and combine it from several sources, weigh it against what you want to believe and hope for, and what is factual. But it can be delivered with gentility, compassion, and love.
Join Louise for this episode of Blink of an Eye: Episode 7 The Whole Truth and Nothing But the Truth August 6. DAY 2. In this episode, you will hear interview excerpts from
Dr. Kris Radcliffe, a spinal surgeon with the Rothman Institute in Philadelphia. In August 2015, Dr. Radcliff was an associate professor of orthopedic surgery with a joint appointment in neurological surgery. On August 5, 2015, he was Archer’s neck surgeon
Lisa Melancon, family friend and mother of one of Louise’s son Dutch’s best friends in Baltimore
Dr. Kelly Willham at AtlantiCare, New Jersey, a trauma surgeon in the ICU
It’s an uncomfortable room. The chairs are heavy, the air is still, and all eyes are on Dr. Kris Radcliff. This was a family meeting no one would ever forget. Louise knew that a Family Meeting with Archer’s surgeon was her family’s chance to be together to ask questions. Like most of their other Family Meetings, it was an opportunity to discuss the good, the bad, and the ugly. But this time was different. It was far from their typical family meetings and would have a lasting impact. Through two interviews, Episode 4 explores this moment from both sides: through the eyes of Dr. Kris Radcliff, who performed Archer’s initial neck surgery, and from the perspective of Archer’s big sister, Paula Senft Easton. And, you’ll hear parts of a voice memo that was recently recovered from the night itself.
Join Louise for this episode of Blink of an Eye: Episode 6 The Woulda, Coulda, Shoulda’s August 6. DAY 2. In this episode, you will hear interview excerpts from
Paula Senft Easton, Louise’s eldest child, and only daughter who was 24 at the time of Archer’s accident and is today almost 30 and Associate Director of Admissions for the Friends School in Baltimore
Dr. Kris Radcliff, a spinal surgeon from the Rothman Institute in Philadelphia, and Archer’s initial neck surgeon at Atlanticare
Tunnel Vision can happen when we are in trauma. As part of a survival instinct, our brain locks us into tunnel vision to stay focused on what is most essential at that moment. We have blinders on to all around us, including those who are trying to help. It's nothing personal, we are in love survival mode. But, even in Tunnel Vision, we can be aware enough to see the angels put in our path. In this episode of Blink of an Eye, Louise visits with several people who have first-hand experience with Tunnel Vision. She also talks about what if’s for hospitals.
Join Louise for this episode of Blink of an Eye: Episode 3 Tunnel Vision August 5. DAY 1. In this episode, you will hear interview excerpts from
Dewey Senft, Louise’s son who is 24 years old, and at the time of Archer’s accident was 19 in college. Dewey is now a fund accountant in Boston.
Sue Wunder, a special ed teacher for 30 years in the Cape May County Special Services School District, New Jersey. Sue is also the mother of Robbie Wunder, a quadriplegic.
Mary Lou Healy, a middle school math teacher at the Cathedral School and now Calvert Hall in Baltimore.
Dr. Kris Radcliffe, a spinal surgeon with the Rothman Institute in Philadelphia and Archer’s neck surgeon at Atlanticare