Quit worrying

worriedDo you want to worry? I am sure if you try hard enough you can find something. I know that I can. I am having some medical issues that may be nothing or something. That is enough for me to stress about. Logic goes out the window.

I will, however, step back and remember the things I need to do to keep the worry in check. When it comes to health no amount of worry can change anything so it is wasted time. Will everything else going on time wasting is not an option.

Stop-Worrying

Soooo back to meditation, positive thinking, prayer and spending time with those I love. What works for you when you are worried?

The insurance fog

Insurance companies are so much fun. They approve claims unless…… somewhere in the fine print they don’t. The policies are difficult to read and parse the intangibles. I am sure it is deliberate. In the case of property etc it is aggravating enough but in medical issues it can be life and death.

aggravations (1)

When I worked as a Case Manager I had to be able to read and understand the policies. One of the best things I learned in my life. I can’t do it with property but I can read through the details on medical insurance and find the little catches that are used to avoid approving things. So very useful in today’s world.

onward

As in most things it is the squeaking wheel that gets action but doing that can take time and much aggravation. Confusion is one of the tools used to make us think there is no way through the fog. Usually there is but finding it is tricky. If you are struggling with a problem like this see if you can find an advocate who understands the system and can help. Sometimes physician’s office staff can help.

Testing and worry

I hate medical tests! I don’t care if they are simple or not. The thing is they are finding out if there is something wrong with you. Apprehension is the name of the game. There is also the thing that the medical community can be so slow on reporting the results. You sweat and worry only to find out there was nothing. I may do this worse than others since I am a nurse. However, testing is done and I will more on from there. These were routine and I can check it off my list.

web3-woman-praying-waiting-room-hospital-medical-health-shutterstock.jpg

Medicine is certainly not set up to help anxiety. Some tests require extensive time for results and that can’t be helped but for others there must be a better way. It is hard to watch someone who had tests for recurrent cancer have to wait a week to find out the results. The people doing most things like MRI’s and CT’s have instant results. The delay is getting it read by a physician and reporting the results to the ordering physician and then to the patient. Surely we can find a way to streamline this process.

waiting for test

 

Maybe they will report the results in my autopsy.

 

 

 

 

My daughter goes to a clinic that does Mammograms, Bone Density Studies, X-rays, etc all in the clinic. You have those done and then see the physician who ordered them right after. What a great system. We need more of this! I think I will move to where she is!

 

Searching medical information

searching-for-medical-information-1-638

The doctor’s office put me on a new medication for IBSD. It really seemed to help but now I have been fighting some symptoms that disturbed me. I looked up the drug for side effects and discovered that the problems I am having are related to the drug so I have stopped it.

It is so important to pay attention when starting a new drug for you may discover that even though it works for the initial problem you may have problems that seem unrelated. Make use of the internet but be careful that you reach a web site is one that you can trust.

When I a curious about a medical issue the first place that I look is the web site belonging to the Mayo Clinic. In my experience they have the most accessible site and you know their information is correct.

When looking up drugs if you have any doubt about the information you are finding search the site for the manufacturer. I may be somewhat harder to get through but you can skip a lot of things and just hunt what you need.

searching-for-medical-information-7-638

It has been my experience that doctors can’t read all the information on every drug. There are just too many and each of us is different and responds to things differently.

As a nurse patient advocate if anyone need help finding information I would be glad to do what I can.

We are a whole not parts

It has been two weeks since I was so sick with IBSD. I have been so well in general that the episode completely blind-sided me. Now I am experiencing the hangover. Since these particular episodes always occur between 9 and 10 in the evening I get anxious each night around that time.

The irony is that this kind of episode only crops up, at the most, once a year. It will take weeks for it to fade from my mind and then I will be fine.

journey-to-wholeness

It is so amazing what we can do to ourselves. I am fine physically but my mind clings to the latest event. So what to do? I have increased my prayer and quiet time, continued my regular routine and let that event become a memory that will fade. Learning and using coping skills is such a critical piece to our health and wholeness. We must remember that we were created as whole beings….not separate parts. Everything that we do affects our entire being.

One of the problems with out medical systems today is that we are not see this way but as different parts managed by different physicians. Not only do they not see beyond their specialty but they seldom communicate with each other.

wholeness2

 

We must learn to be our own advocates. Even if a physician ignores or puts you down for your concerns and conclusions about your care remember who sees the end result. Don’t ever be afraid to speak your mind and if you have someone who can’t accept that change to someone else. Never let a caregiver dismiss you. Each of us is just a important as the person caring for us. Never forget it.

New York abortion law?

(I hope in the following I will be able to talk about the new law as I have heard it. I have no intention of discussing opposing views on the topic. I am just trying to wrap my brain around what I have heard. It seems that politics has now invaded medical ethics.)

(There are moral side issues that influence the issue such as rape and mother/fetus problems. These are not the ones I am addressing.)

new_law_2016

A hot topic is in the news again (and again)…abortion. I am going to try to talk about this from my perspective as a nurse. If I understood how the law in New York is phrased an abortion may be performed up to and including labor. If this is correct then it seems we have totally gone off the rails.

There are many people opposed to abortion in its entirety. They see conception as the creation of a being and that happening the moment a sperm and a cell join.

Others feel that it is not a life until it is viable…usually after at least 12 weeks. My recollections of earlier abortion ideas are there would be no abortions after 12 weeks except for extreme reasons. If a fetus is not old enough to survive outside the uterus it could be aborted.

Those seem to be the two sides previously as far as I can tell.

Now it seems that abortions can be performed on those old enough to survive outside the womb. Even to the point that the “baby” is about to be born. I find this idea unbelievable. I cannot imagine why anyone who could want an abortion would want to carry until labor and then decide to end a life. Are we talking about a “full term” infant? As a nurse I could not stand by and see that life snuffed out. Why would you not just give the baby up for adoption?

Am I understanding this law correctly?

Am I in the twilight zone or does this sound the least bit rational?

No matter my stance on abortion in general (not for discussion on Word Press) taking the life of a child while mother is in labor with a baby considered full term surely must be murder. P.E.R.I.O.D/

Our emphasis  has for too long been on political views and some sane alternatives are not being addressed.

PREVENTION-is-key-image

We have to reach the understanding that attention must be placed on preventing unwanted pregnancies. Prevention is the key. Practically little money or interest is on the necessary methods of pregnancy prevention. Help must be easily accessible to everyone and free. Education must begin early and be offered freely.

It seems to me that this is the only way to begin to address the problem no matter your position on the topic.  This will not be easy or quick but we have to start now making this a priority.

 

Question: Do I understand this law correctly?

Core values and end of life

medical_business_partners_core_valuesThere are times when I reflect on someone else’s life and wonder how they manage. There are so many tragic stories out there. I have wondered how I would react if asked to live life as a paraplegic…if I could not longer feel anything but my face. What would be my reaction to being trapped in my body with only a mind to make me feel alive? Would I cope or would I seek to end my life?

How would I react if my husband required 24/day care and I didn’t have the money to hire someone to help?

In life there can be some living nightmares. Scenarios that we not only wouldn’t want to be in but also wouldn’t wish on someone else.

It is an ethical dilemma to make decisions when things like this happen. Would you be willing to help someone die? (Assuming of course that their life was full of nothing but pain and imminent death.)

These are core questions. The kind that we hope we never have to come up against but they are real.

What are your core values? If faced with this kind of decision how would you decide?  It can be difficult to envision this ever happening to you but this kind of thinking does help you to understand deep moral questions. For those of us with a faith underpinning we hope that we would turn to that for guidance.

decisionIn my time as a nurse I have seen families struggle with decisions that can tax their moral ground. I have seen them divided over the answers and sometimes torn apart by it. Many times we would like for the doctors to tell us what to do but that is not their decision to make. Most of them will avoid giving an opinion which makes it harder.

If you have never considered having a living will to take the burden off of those around you please think about this. We tend to think that this sort of thing is for older people but the worst struggles come when something happens to someone young. You are never too young to fill out this important document. It seems morbid but it is important.

If you don’t know how to get an advanced directive leave a comment and I will answer.

Are we too clean?

It is interesting where our search for complete cleanliness has led us. We have gone too far. Doctors are now recommending that we stop using antibacterial soap except in places where it is really needed. We have created a society of people who are actually to clean.

eatapeckofdirt1

I grew up with a grandmother who was born in the 19th century. One of her adages was “You have to eat a peck of dirt before you die.” Turns our she was on target. A recent article by a British physician who has studied childhood leukemia for the last 30 years has come to the conclusion that our immune system has to be kick started by, you guessed it, infection. He has found that lack of push to the immune system linked with several other factors is what is increasing the number of children diagnosed with this disease.

all.png

This is no fly by night physician but a newly knighted doctor named Mel Greaves.  If you would like to read the article you can find it at

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/dec/30/children-leukaemia-mel-greaves-microbes-protection-against-disease?CMP=share_btn_link

It is an eye opener. I suppose that my great grandson, who is in day care and exposed to everything, may be safe from this dread childhood disease. At least I hope that there is some benefit from being exposed at an early age.

cancer

God willing, this physician and those who work with him will continue to explore this lead and find a way to stop the increase in this disease.

 

The best day?

patients-quote

Today seemed like it was not going to be the best day. We arose at 5 AM to travel to Mayo Clinic for my husband’s appointment. I HATE getting up in the dark! There was no problem with the drive but at the appointment we got the news that the physician wants to do another procedure for my husband to make sure he has the best possible outcome. (God bless the Mayo Clinic for caring so much!) This is not bad news except it requires another trip and additional two nights at the clinic. Unfortunately this has to be done as soon as they can schedule and it looks like Dec. 19th for tests, 20th for procedure and 21st for therapy. Yikes! This is the week before Christmas but it will be worth it.

I am the grandmother. I am not the mother of young children with an all out Christmas to plan. I have to remind myself of that. Everyone around me will deal with it and if Christmas is not as planned…Oh well. It will still come….and go.

good-friends-like-stars-you-260nw-619768490My friend has offered us her RV (not huge and easy to drive) so that we can save the expense of hotel and dog sitters. We hope to do that and take the dogs with us. I will rotate between keeping dogs and being with my husband. (He would rather me be with the dogs since they are more important than me! LOL!) God bless good friends!

So instead of feeling stressed about all of this I am feeling grateful. Grateful for caring physicians and good friends. Grateful for loving family who will be happy that we are still around. All in all, not a bad day but a blessed one.

cookie-monster-wisdom

The ARANGELS

too much stress

The last few months have been filled with such stress that it has been hard to keep focused. It hasn’t been one thing but the combination of things. Friends sick, husbands sick, travel, whatever. It is time to get my focus back and to remember an event from last week.

Wednesday of last week i realized how sick I was and decided that I must go to my doctor. It was in the morning and while I was trying to make a logical decision the phone rang and it was my doctor’s office. They called to let me know that they had called in a refill for some routine medicine. This is not how their system works. They never call to let me know about that I just get a text from the pharmacy when it is ready. Their system has been skewed due to some doctors moving and the office being understaffed at the moment so this was not the usual person. While I had her on the phone I asked if I could see my physician that day and she managed an appointment for that afternoon. Absolutely amazing. That would never have happened at any other time!

angels-at-work-2014-becky-jaine

Madeleine L’Engle says “a miracle is a coincidence where God prefers to remain anonymous.” People say miracles don’t happen and this was just nothing but it didn’t feel that way to me. I have a friend who says “the ARANGELS were at work” and I agree. For me this was a miracle and due to that visit I am now better.

Yes! the ARANGELS were at work!