Hunkering down

Like most of us these days I am concerned about Corona Virus. You would have to have your head stuck in the sad to not be aware of the danger around us. Since my husband and I are in the vulnerable group we do have to be careful.

I think this is the first time in my life where I have felt anxious about being at risk. When we are young we think nothing can hurt us. As we grow older we can see the pit falls that could harm us but to some degree feel they happen to other people.

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The thought of being quarantined in the house for weeks is daunting. I am an extrovert and enjoy people. I will miss my interactions with others but I will manage. When I think about it I can feel my anxiety pulling at me and I am holding fast to my ways to avoid any problems. If one of us get the virus then I will be panicked so we will hold the fort at  home as much as possible.

I have written about this happening before so I am not surprised that it is happening. After the two other viruses (Mers and Sars) it was like waiting for the other shoe to drop. Thank God, although serious enough, it is not more serious than it is. I pray we don’t have another anytime soon.

National Emergency

Well today we have been told that this is a National Emergency. This virus has awakened people to the danger of illnesses arising that can cause major havoc. I think many have seen this coming but no one wanted to believe it. I am sure that all of us are worried and anxious about what the next weeks will bring.

I am hoping that the measures outlined today by the president and others will help this pandemic to fade quickly. Maybe it will help us to have measures in place to react more quickly.

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The next while we will see some logical responses and some idiotic ones. Who would have thought there would be a run on toilet paper? I hope that everyone is covered and there will not be a toilet paper panic.

I am so sorry for those whose lives will be ripped apart by this pandemic. I hope everyone will be able to manage during this time and not be devastatingly impacted. Prayers for all those who suffer from the virus whether physically or economically.

Lifestyle and health

As I was out walking today I thought about how many of our illnesses are caused by our lifestyle. Heart disease, some cancers, COPD, and many others are directly linked to how we live.

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I was reminded of a friend of mine who smoked. Each year she stopped smoking for Lent and then started back up after Easter. What a crazy thing to do.

Image result for healthy lifestyle and mental healthSome problems arise because of our mental health. Anger can be linked to stroke and high blood pressure. Anxiety and depression can lead to suicide. I don’t think we cause those problems ourselves but they may be, and frequently are, linked to our childhood. Our parents were responsible for how we were treated as children. In some cases this was good and in others not. It can be a major struggle to overcome childhood trauma and it does affect lifestyle which in turn affects health.

More and more we are learning about the link to our lifestyle and our health issues. I hope that we are able to make better decisions for ourselves as we learn and especially for our children. Maybe the more we learn the healthier we will be.

Who will win?

For the last few days I have been suffering with what I thought was the beginnings of a bad cold. Runny, runny, runny nose, sneezing, coughing and feeling bad. That started three days ago. Today I feel better. Makes no sense. It it were a cold I would still be coughing etc. for at least another week. I am grateful but also a little confused. It is like waiting for the other shoe to drop. I hope I continue feeling better.

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It’s funny how starting something like a cold can mess up our thinking. With Coronavirus out there we are more aware than usual of what a virus can do. My husband and I are older and this is the first time that it has made me feel more vulnerable. I am not used to that. I am a healthy active person and am seldom sick. It feels weird to be in a group that is more at risk.

This virus scare has awakened all of us to how vulnerable we humans are. We have lived with the idea that we are supreme. There is nothing out there tougher than we are. Well, guess what? Something that can only be seen with an electron microscope can take us out.

It certainly puts things into perspective. A while ago someone said that the insects will outlive us. Now it sounds like it may the viruses. We don’t take care of ourselves and the earth around us. We eat poorly, don’t exercise, abuse our bodies and then wonder why we are not well.

It’s time to rethink things. We have to pay attention to ourselves, others (animals, insects, bacteria, whatever) and understand the consequences of our mistreatment of everything.

Drugs and Devices

My husband is scheduled in April for the implantation of a device to prevent clots. This started me thinking about such devices and prescription drugs.

The FDA regulates drugs and devices used in the US. In general this is a good thing but there are some holes in the system.

If a device is very similar to another device it can be approved without as much testing as the original. This can be used by companies to slide in products that have not had the extensive testing required by the original. For example, there is not just one heart valve replacement on the market and they may not all be considered equal.

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There are similar issues with drugs although the problem can present in a different way. Has anyone wondered why the company that raised Insulin prices astronomically was able to do that? A small change in the medication made it able to considered a different drug and was therefore allowed a different patent allowing the price gouging. Insulin was originally given away by its creator in order to help mankind. Look what has happened now.

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We have so many problems with our medical system and these are ones not always at the forefront. If only we could all care about the patient and not all the outliers how wonderful the system could be.

Pay attention to health

This week I have been asked to do one mediation and 2 community conferences. I wanted to start back but wow! They have cases that must be done asap and someone has the flu. it will be a challenge but also interesting.

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I am also taking control of my health after the surgery and the shift of not having a thyroid. It is taking some rethinking on my part but I have realized that I have been taking my health for granted.  I am now watching my diet and getting back to eating well…back to walking the dogs for exercise for all of us. They even seemed tired after walking today. I guess we all need to get back to reality.

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It is so easy to slip and let important things get away from you. The holiday season didn’t help but really it was up to me. We have to pay attention and not let the things that keep us well be ignored.

Can legislating over medicating work?

From my own experience in the hospital recently and now with my granddaughter’s stay it is interesting how things have changed. Following my surgery the doctor was reluctant to give me any pain medication that could be addictive. The same thing was true with my granddaughter. The government has cracked down so hard that it is causing problems for patients who genuinely need some help following surgery. That is the problem with doing things that give little discretion to the people involved.

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I know we have serious drug issues here but I’m not sure that what is being done will solve the issue. I don’t know that legislation can solve the drug problems in the US. The problem is to complex for that. People who want to abuse drugs will get them elsewhere. Admittedly physicians overused RX’s in the past and people became addicted but I hope that trend is past.

Somehow there has to be a happy medium.

Keep going

Believe-1-575x675If there is one thing I have learned in the last week it is that a 79 year old does not bounce back. My husband has had several surgeries in the last few years…mostly from jumping out of airplanes in the army. I have had none. I have always been supportive of him during his recoveries but I am not sure I have appreciated just how hard it is to get back to your best you can be.

He has been so supportive and kind to me with this surgery which was not a bad one (as surgeries go), I guess experience is the best teacher.

I have no complaints today other than being tired. I am usually the energizer bunny but have had to listen to my body and rest. I am grateful that everything went so well.

I have always spent a lot of time crossing bridges before getting to them. This time I was better than usual. I think the time I have spent learning new habits and applying the needed skills did make a difference. My journey to be “worryless” is advancing. I’m not at the end but making progress. We can get better but it does take work. Seeing this improvement encourages me to continue my efforts and keep going.

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I think that it is easy to get discouraged when we can’t see progress but it will come with time. Just work your way through one day before considering the next. Things can change.

? The Death Panel?

choices medicalI have been out of the loop for several days. Had thyroid surgery on Friday and am feeling good…just tired. After a fall season of chaos I hope we are moving into a winter season of rest and joy. I now have to catch up on reading everything that I missed.

I hadn’t been involved in the hospital system for a while and had forgotten how dehumanizing it can be. The hospital was good, care was good it is just how the system operates. It is so easy to feel like someone out of one of the dystopian novels. Especially the older ones like 1984 and Soylent Green. It is easy to imagine yourself discovering that the light embedded in your arm has just lit up and it is time for you to go and be floated up to bliss.

It has been under discussion and very much under wraps having a Death Panel decide who will be left to die. The majority of money is spent on end of life care. Sometimes the kind where life is extended but not necessarily for the better.However, judgement needs to be made based on health and choice. If we are lucky the medical system will continue to allow us to make out own choices and not force the elderly but active to be told that nothing is allowed at their age.

Terrible topic. So sorry. It is just something that I know could come if we don’t have a say about what happens.

I promise more pleasant topic tomorrow.

Always something new

Today I find myself leaning on my faith. I have some medical issues which may resolve…or not. Time will tell. This news did not send me into a panic…at least not yet. I have high hopes that this will be an easy fix and life will go on pretty much as normal.

In the meantime I will continue my routines and keep my anxiety at bay. I am grateful that I have some tools that I have made a habit and can actually count on them to help.

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Life is always interesting and challenges us in many ways but it is worth cherishing. Keep me in your thought and prayers as I travel into this joourney.