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Sunshine Story Per Brenda’s Prompt

I'm interested in social issues, relationships, problems of daily living, jobs, exercise, poems and fiction, plus safer living conditions.



Tom is a tall, good-looking man with dark curly hair and green eyes. He is a computer programmer and works from home most of the time. He refers to his wife, Susan, as Sunshine. He also has a four year old golden retriever that he named Charlie. Charlie is well-trained and stays close to Tom most of the time.

Susan is a petite woman with blond hair and pale blue eyes. Tom and Susan have been married six years when Tom was just diagnosed with multiple sclerosis.

Tom has always been a strong man, but this diagnosis sent him reeling into anger and self-pity. He often has a fever and chills, along with a headache. He has numbness and weakness in his arms and legs also, plus he has lost interest in making love to Susan.

Susan is a nurse, working in an intensive care unit at the hospital on the first shift. While Susan is driving home tears are dripping down her cheeks as she remembers their plans for starting a family soon, and they have only been in their new home for six months. She is also worried about taking care of Tom. She dries her cheeks after pulling into their driveway, and she wonders how Tom has made it through the day.

As Susan walks in the door Tom calls out to her. “Susan, is that you?”

Susan sighed, “Just who else would it be? Haha! How are you doing today?”

“How do you think I’m doing? You don’t know anything. You aren’t sick, and you can go to work every day. I don't have anything to laugh about!” He was lying on their bed and Charlie was lying close by on the floor.

“Sweetheart, I know you are suffering. I am here for you. I am going to make you something good to eat.” Susan had never seen Tom act the way he had lately. Normally he was in good spirits, and he didn’t raise his voice before the diagnosis.

Susan went into the kitchen and started cooking a dinner with salmon, which was Tom’s favorite. She took the dinner plate to Tom with a smile on her face. Tom was still lying in bed, but he had dozed off, so Susan sat down and watched him sleep with tears running down her face again.

Tom woke up and said, “Why are you sitting there watching me?”

Susan quickly wiped the tears off of her face. “I brought you dinner up to you, and it’s getting cold.”

“Give it to me, and I will try to eat, but I’m not hungry.”`

Tom took the plate and took a couple of bites. “That is all I can do, Sunshine.”

Susan looked at the plate and saw that he had only taken a very few bites.

“If you want to live Tom, you have to eat.”

“I can’t just force myself to be hungry!” Tom said in a loud voice.

Tom, I want you to live. I understand your frustration, but I love you and want you to live, We have a good life together.” she said again as she walked over to Tom and held his hand.

“Then, why in the hell did I have to get a disease that has no cure?”

“I do understand, but Tom you're still walking. We’ll see what the doctor has to say next Thursday. Have you contacted that psychologist he recommended?”

Tom just rolled over and said nothing else.

Susan has spent time researching multiple sclerosis as she wants to learn everything she can about the disease. Her girlfriend, Julie, called her that evening.

“Susan, we need a girl’s night, ” said Julie.

“That’s a little hard right now Julie. Tom needs so much support.”

“I understand Susan, but if you don’t take care of yourself, how are you going to be able to take care of him?”

“You make a good point, but just give me another week or two. Maybe Tom and I can get into some type of better routine. I hope he will start to accept that having multiple sclerosis isn’t the end of his life.”

“Well, keep in touch with me,” said Julie.



Two Month Later

Susan walked in the front door carrying bags of groceries and headed for the kitchen. Surprisingly Tom was sitting at the table reading a magazine while drinking a soda. Susan smiled at him. Of course, Charlie was lying at Tom’s feet.

Tom smiled at Susan and said, “Hi Sunshine. I love the way you always smile at me.”

Susan was surprised at his comment since most of his recent comments were negative. When they were first married and up until his diagnosis, they were often laughing. They had also been very affectionate.

Susan walked over and sat down at the table. “Tom, are you feeling better?”

“Not really, but I know I don’t want to feel miserable all the time. I know I will end up in a wheelchair, but that could take twenty years. In the meantime, I have prayed and I have talked to a psychologist several times. She has Helped me to take a look at my own behavior, and I didn’t like what I saw. We have had virtual visits.”

“Oh Tom. I didn’t know you had talked to a psychologist or that you talked to God. Haha! I am so happy you are not feeling as miserable now.”

“Look Susan. This doesn’t mean I will always be cheerful or even calm, but I am going to try.”

“Oh Tom, I love you so much, and I am so happy.”

“We are going to live each day to the best of our abilities. You are the sunshine of my life Susan.’ Tom smiled and arose from his chair. “Come here Sunshine. I need a kiss!”


Sunshine be with me forever

Until the very end of time

No one else would ever do

Susan won this heart of mine

Hang on to my hand oh so tight

I love your smile, it does shine

No one makes me smile like you

Every smile is sunshine from you

Stevie Wonder You Are The Sunshine Of My Life

© 2021 Pamela Oglesby


Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 29, 2021:

Hi Flourish,

I fully agree with you about Tom. He does need to learn much more and MS can be such a difficult disease. I appreciate your comments, Flourish.

FlourishAnyway from USA on May 28, 2021:

I'm glad Tom has a support person. He needs to do a lot of research about MS and make changes to his life. Hopefully, his MS will have a benign course. I really like the acrostic poem too!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 28, 2021:

Hi Peace,

I am glad you like the story and think it is a good response to the prompt.

I appreciate your comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 28, 2021:

Hi Nithya,

I agree. Life is tough sometimes, but we do need to face it with courage and strength. Thank you for reading and commenting.

Peace Tobe Dike from Delta State, Nigeria. on May 27, 2021:

This is a very interesting story and a great response to the prompt. You did an amazing job. Well done!

Nithya Venkat from Dubai on May 27, 2021:

A beautiful story and poem. Life can get tough but with a little sunshine, things can get better. Susan is so patient and kind with Tom and is his pillar of support. She is Tom's sunshine. We need to face life with courage and strength.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 27, 2021:

Hi Audrey,

I am glad you enjoyed the story. I appreciate your comments, as always.

Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on May 26, 2021:

Your heart-touching story is a beautiful response to Brenda's prompt. Susan's name, "Sunshine," fits and magnifies her patience and good nature despite her husband's difficulty. Thank you, Pamela.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Vidya,

I appreciate you very nice comments. I am glad you consider this an excellent response to Brenda's prompt.

Stay healthy and safe!

VIDYA D SAGAR on May 26, 2021:

A beautiful and heart warming story Pamela, and the acrostic poem went so well with the story. An excellent response to Brenda's prompt. Have a great day.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Brenda, I obviously reacted to this issue also. It is very difficult to get a serious disease that changes your life permanently. Thank you so much for your comment.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on May 26, 2021:

Trust me, I could relate with your story on so many levels.

This is indeed what happens as the person is taken by shock with an illness.

I'm so glad he found comfort.

I like happy endings too.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Benda,

I am glad you liked the theme of the story and the poem. I thought this prompt was difficult, but eventually I decided to write a story. I like happy endings, help with negative reactions and certainly prayer.

Thank you so much for your comments. They are always much appreciated.

Stay healthy and safe.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on May 26, 2021:


Your story "Sunshine" is so moving and heartfelt.

I'm so glad he talked with God and had those virtual visits.

Your story shows us to trust in God, to keep on living and not give up.

There is always a little sunshine waiting for you.

Fantastic work, Pamela.

I love how your poem fits right in with your story.

No one else will ever do

She is the sunshine he wants until the end of time.

I will post a link in the word prompt article.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Misbah,

I found this word prompt to be a little more difficult for some reason, then I started writing the story and it fell into place. I am glad you enjoyed the story.

I appreciate your nice comments. I pray you stay safe and happy also.

Blessings and love!

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Shauna,

I think negativity does make an illness worse, and certainly relationships. I am glad you think the poem ties in well with the story as that was my goal.

Thank you so much for your thoughtful comments.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Peggy,

Attitude is so important in life and with illnesses too. I thought this gave us a happy ending to the story.

I appreciate your comments, Peggy.

Misbah Sheikh from The World of Poets on May 26, 2021:

Pamela, You did an Excellent job with Brenda's word prompt. I enjoyed reading the story and the poem as well. Brilliant work!! I am touched.

Thanks a lot. Stay safe and happy

Blessings and Love

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on May 26, 2021:

Pamela, your acrostic poem ties in beautifully with Tom and Susan's story. I'm so glad he decided to banish the negative thoughts and actions from his being. Had Tom continued with his negativity, it would not only adversely affect their marriage, but his disease would undoubtedly progress at a quicker rate.

Nice response to Brenda's challenge, Pamela.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on May 26, 2021:

What a nice ending to this short story, Pamela. At least the time they still have together will be more pleasant instead of dreading things to come.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Bill,

I am glad that you are healthy except for some arthritic pain. I had some difficulty with this prompt so a story with a happy ending is it.

I appreciate your nice comments, my friend. I hope you are having a good week.

Bill Holland from Olympia, WA on May 26, 2021:

So many people struggling with illnesses. Your story just makes me so happy that I have been spared so far. Well done, Pamela! Nice response to the challenge.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Liz,

Of course, I always have at least a somewhat happy ending. Mental health counseling and prayer make a difference in my opinion.

Thank you so much for your comments,

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Devika,

I appreciate your very sweet comments, as always.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi Rosina,

I am so glad you liked my response to Brenda's prompt. Thank you so much for your comments.

I hope you stay very healthy, Rosina.

Pamela Oglesby (author) from Sunny Florida on May 26, 2021:

Hi John,

I struggled with this prompt too, which is why I wrote a story. I appreciate your comments. Stay healthy and safe!

Liz Westwood from UK on May 26, 2021:

This is a very poignant tale. It tackles a very difficult situation in a sensitive way, turning negativity into positivity by the end. It also highlights the importance of faith and mental health care.

Devika Primić from Dubrovnik, Croatia on May 26, 2021:

Beautiful as ever! Pamela this is such a great write of yours. Sunshine is great and feels wonderful.

Rosina S Khan on May 26, 2021:

Beautiful short story about lady being the sunshine for his man. I loved the acrostic poem very much as well, a continuation of the story. You did a good job with Brenda's word prompt this week. Very commendable. Thank you for the outstanding share, Pamela.

John Hansen from Gondwana Land on May 26, 2021:

Pamela, I love the touching story and the poem that goes with it. Very well done on the "sunshine" prompt. I have to admit I am struggling with it.

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