Health and Fitness

Happy Thanksgiving

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned 2020 into a difficult and stressful year, particularly for those of us working in the healthcare field. It has left many of us feeling isolated, discouraged, and saddened by many great losses.

But on the other hand, it has brought some good. It has reinforced the fact that instead of taking things for granted, we should take them with gratitude; And when we take time to give thanks and count our blessings, we realize how blessed and lucky we truly are.

I found a great quote by writer Melody Beattie. She said “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and create a vision for tomorrow.“

Admittedly, it is harder to feel thankful and grateful this year. We’ve been instructed to spent Thanksgiving separated from our families and loved ones due to the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus. Although this is depressing, there is always something to be thankful for. I’ve come to realize that the more thankful I am, the more I have to be thankful for.

For me I am thankful for my health, a warm home, good food, my family my friends and a career that I am passionate about. By holding these blessings in my heart and mind, it will make a great Thanksgiving meal.

Stay well!!

Health and Fitness

Charity

This past weekend, my kids’high school, Canton Central Catholic, held a virtual auction. It was titled “You make a difference“ I thought it was a great title and a great reminder that all of us can make a positive difference.

The auction helps the school to offer the best possible student-centered experience by providing the funds necessary for special projects, scholarships, and facility enhancements.

The Miriam-Webster dictionary defines charity as “generosity and helpfulness, especially toward the needy or suffering. Also: aid given to those in need and: benevolent goodwill toward or love of humanity.

Winston Churchill stated that “We make a living by what we get… But we make a life by what we give.“ By coming together and generously working on such a worthy project, our students learn that our destinies are bound together and that we have responsibilities as well as rights, and that they should practice love and charity.

Stay well !!

Health and Fitness

Believe

I have to admit I am a great fan of Lance Armstrong. Admittedly, he cheated and refused to admit it for many years. This is no way, however, should overshadow the great things he did and the countless lives that he saved.

Looking back on his cancer diagnosis and impending brain surgery, he wrote about how his thoughts and beliefs affected his reality and helped him to survive. He realized that nothing can cure the briefness of this life and there is no remedy for our basic mortality so he chose to “Livestrong“.

He wrote that “I believed in belief, for its own shining sake. To believe in the face of utter hopelessness, every article of evidence to the contrary, to ignore apparent catastrophe, what other choice was there?” We do this every day. We are so much stronger than we imagine, and belief is one of the most valued and long-lived human characteristics.

He created the Livestrong foundation to inspire and empower people affected by cancer. It offers diet and nutrition and fitness tips for a healthier lifestyle. More than that, it encourage people to believe in themselves. Believe in the goodness of the world and whatever you choose to believe in. With what we’ve endured with our protracted pandemic and the contentious election, this advice can help put it all into perspective.

Just believe.

Stay well!

Health and Fitness

Politics and Pragmatism

It’s been said that “if you’re in medicine, you’re in politics.“ Throughout my day I deal with a wide variety of people. They are of different ages, religions, and political persuasions.

Because of this, I choose to be pragmatic in my discussions and evaluations of politicians and the political leanings of my patients. By dealing with things sensibly and realistically in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations, it is easy to find common ground and mutual respect.

2020 may go down as the most divided political year in history. People have become anxious, excited and passionate about many political issues including the COVID-19 pandemic, the economy, and the political styles of the candidates. In the end, our hopes and dreams for ourselves and our families are much more similar than we’d ever like to admit.

The AMA Code of Ethics addresses the physician’s role in politics in several different ways. It states that “A physician shall respect the law and also recognize a responsibility to seek changes in those requirements which are contrary to the best interest of the patient. It further states that “A physician shall recognize a responsibility to participate in activities contributing to the improvement of the community and the betterment of public health.“ Lastly, it says “A physician shall advocate for social, economic, educational, and political changes that ameliorate suffering and contribute to human well-being.“

These principles state, better than I ever could, why I have always remained active at the local and state level in my Osteopathic medical societies. In the end, it is all about contributing to a positive change in the lives of our patients.

Stay well!

Health and Fitness

Doing the Best We Can in the Time We Have

As a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation Physician, I work everyday with patients that have suffered heartbreaking traumatic injuries and life-changing medical events. Unfortunately, at times, it can leave you feeling helpless and discouraged.

Our goal in physical rehabilitation is to get as many people as possible home at the highest possible functioning level. As Mother Theresa said in one of her many great Instagram posts, “It is not important how we live, but how well we live. Hopefully we can help add meaning to our patient’s lives every day.

Often times, our young therapists will get saddened and frustrated by discharge conditions that are less than ideal. When they begin to feel this way, I remind them that all we can do is the best that we can in the time that we have. No single person can save the whole world. One of my favorite 20th century philosophers Fred Rogers, a.k.a. Mr. Rogers took it one step further and said that doing what we can with what we have is the most we should expect of ourselves or anyone else.

Stay well!!