It is late and I want to eat something

I should be finishing some reading but I keep telling myself I need to write and maybe I have been suffering some spiritual constipation but not relaxing more and doing… well this. Writing papers in special formats to jump through a hoop is the antithesis to my general stream of conscious style here. But hoop jumping it is until I finish the classwork or give up. Moving on….

Hunger and I am hungry.

This is a recurrent struggle of mine. Right now as I am typing this, I have hunger. I ate something earlier. I did not eat until I was full but instead to contentness. I am trying to retrain myself to enjoy the eating and not feel stuffed. My hunger signal is a bit off these days though which makes it harder. I will eat and go from content to full in two bites where I used to feel that progression and be able to stop sooner. Perhaps it is all the extra weight I put on that is tricking my brain.

Now I am trying to eat until just before content, let it linger and then slow the eating even more to see if I still want more food. For someone that relearned how to eat slowly, and slower than the people around me who seem to finish by the time I am done cutting my food, I am eating even slower.

The next part I am struggling with is to not snack so late with this hunger in my belly. I keep waiting to see if it generates an I am hungry, but I am not there yet.

This was a good distraction. I will be getting back to my reading.


Do No Harm

Do No Harm.

Three short, easy to pronounce words, but when linked, open a vast world of interpretation and consequences.

Read more: Do No Harm

Breaking down the phrase:

DO: Verb – Commanding in its tone promoting action.

NO: Adverb – Sign of a negative.

HARM: Noun – Damage or injury, both physical and mental, when related to a person.

This phrase is most often associated with medicine and is from Hippocrates. In some medical schools, students during graduation after receiving their diploma are asked to recite this or take a similar oath and follow this idea. In the Hippocratic Oath, there is a part that states, “I will use those dietary regimens which will benefit my patients according to my greatest ability and judgement, and I will do no harm or injustice to them.” From Hippocrates’ Epidemics, he says: “The physician must be able to tell the antecedents, know the present, and foretell the future – must mediate these things, and have two special objects in view with regard to disease, namely, to do good or to do no harm.” 

And to clarify, the specific phrase primum non nocere, “first, do no harm,” is not part of the Hippocratic Oath.

A physician, as a general, is not in the mindset of wanting to cause a problem. The physician is interested in helping someone to get better or improve an outcome. They do this after taking a history of the problem and of the patient, after doing an exam, and after synthesizing this information, along with tests and results, to come up with the perceived best path to bring a patient into an improved state of health and wellbeing. Perceived being the opinion of the physician and/or medical establishment.

However, to paraphrase the medieval satirist Walter Map, “No good deed goes unpunished.”

Doing good and doing harm can seem very clear, but more often is a razor thin edge. It depends on the side you look at to determine good or harm, both subjective terms, by the way. What the physician thinks is a good thing may not be what the patient or patient advocate thinks is right. The physician thinks the child has a cold and doesn’t need antibiotics, but the parent wants some. Some physicians will not prescribe the antibiotics based on general standards and some will placate the parent since “it is just antibiotics”. There are benefits and harms in both situations. In the first, the benefit is in not treating a virus with an antibiotic. The harm may be to the physician parent relationship. In the second, the benefit is a stronger relationship, but potential harm to the patient by giving antibiotics that are unnecessary. Yes, there can be harm. First, not taking the entire prescribed course can cause antibiotic resistance. You’ve killed off the weak ones but left the stronger ones behind by not taking the full dose or not for the full time. Second, there is a reinforced incorrect idea that you can treat a virus with antibiotics.

Another example is chemotherapy. These incredible potentially life saving medications take cells that are growing out of control and by taking advantage of this rapid growth, target these cells, and for all intents and purposes, eradicate the cancer from a human body. But. There are other cells that grow fast, like hair, which leads to the classic depiction of balding. Depending on the medications, the patient can have long-term permanent changes to heart, liver, kidney, and reproductive systems, and these are not positive changes. Reduce cancer and maybe heart disease? Reduce cancer and get kidney damage? Reduce cancer and you might not have children. These are more extreme, and some people do not suffer from long-term problems. There is still the risk though.

What about medical trials testing out a medicine or procedure? There can be unintended consequences. Unexpected adverse effects. Someone could get injured. And someone could die depending on the extreme of what is being tested and looked at. At the end, some people might develop problems, but the majority could be healthier, perhaps cured. The one or the many?

From not treating a cold to life saving medications, how much harm in the right way is enough to be good? Or how much good can be achieved by needing to cause harm?


Mental gymnastics

Attitude is a huge part in how one interprets the world.

For instance, while waiting for my flight to be ready to board, I was waiting in line to get some food. It was still breakfast time. When I got to the counter I was told that I could not be served because they were making a change over from breakfast to lunch and it would take 30 minutes, a length of time that wouldn’t do as i would need to board my flight. I asked if I could still order breakfast and was told no. There was a brief moment when I got angry. I was hungry, had spent a while in an airport food line and had already had to convince myself to get food instead of waiting until after landing. And at the same time I had just recently told myself to try and eat healthier and not eat as much fast food when I am traveling. Remembering this, I was thankful to the universe for this intervention on my behalf. How quickly we can turn anger into something else if we just use the correct mindset.


Recovering addict

Recently I was forced to consider that I could be a recovering addict.

Some of you know about this part of my life, but most people don’t. Some people might be upset at how I’m writing this and others will think I’m being stupid.

I would say that the first time I truly had to confront this was in college. In truth though this actually started in high school. Like many stories like this, it started with a girl… Continue reading

Small adults

This is barely a movie review of Won’t You Be My Neighbor.

It’s easy to sum up.

Tears flowed at the end. It was great. We need more people like that today.

For the reason I’m writing though is that same end statement. We need more people like that today. I know there was some controversy that he may have been some kind of seed for the millennials but I still believe the parents have their role in that. Might as well blame all the teachers for not raising those kids right.

Working with children myself but in a different way, I have told parents many times that most children I run across are probably 5 years smarter than you ever gave them credit for. Now that is a made up number but the idea is that we don’t give them enough credit.

I think it was earlier this year I had the pleasure of joining a friend and her husband with their three kids for an evening. Great kids. A pleasure to spend time with. They had strong pointed questions and I gave honest answers. For the most part I’ve always believed that if a kid has the wherewithal to actually ask the question, as an adult it is my responsibility to answer it. Not with made up kid words that we adults use to hide our own uncomfortableness or distress. To me that teaches a child that some things are less or more than other things. If you don’t use adult words if they ask about ‘private parts’ or sex and you act ashamed as you talk to them or try and pawn them off to another person or parent, do they learn that these things are ‘dirty’ and they shouldn’t talk to you about them?

Kids are not small adults, but they aren’t idiots.

Mr Rogers understood and accepted that they are individuals and should be treated with respect.

I hope that pendulum can swing back again.


icloud photos delete hint

If you’re like me and you’ve found yourself with photos in icloud and you want to delete them, apple doesn’t make it easy. They really seem to want to make you click one by one to get rid of them using the ctrl or command-click. And if you mess up and click off a photo, you have to start over. There isn’t a shift click method or a select all method. I would say this is cause you to end up in depression about clicking hundreds or thousands of photos one by one to delete and just suck it up and pay for more storage. I think apple would say it’s a design feature so you don’t inadvertently delete the photos by accident.


However, I have found a faster way, if not a complete way. On the right side of the screen when you are looking at the photos, you’ll see the share button next to a group of photos. Click on that. It’ll ask where you want to share them. Don’t click (unless you do want to share them). But you’ll see that the photos are ALL selected in that group. Now just click on the trashcan and poof. Photos gone. Repeat for each group that needs deleting and you’ll be done quicker than selecting one by one.


To the future

We really can use the holidays as the time to reflect on ourselves and others. From the religious aspect of Christmas consider that Christ probably would not have been going through Black Friday sales advertisements. He would’ve been trying to figure out how to help others. Is Christmas the time of the year that we think about greed and ourselves? What am I going to get? What am I going to give others? Why didn’t I get what I wanted instead of what someone gave me?

I would ask that you give time to others this season. Not just this season but every season. I won’t push it to every day. Give the time that you have even if it’s not the time that you want. I choose to work over these holidays because I know other people want it off to spend with family. Consider the small things that you could do. Maybe it’s cold outside and you’re going to dinner and you’ve walked by numerous homeless people huddled on the side of the street. If you don’t think you’re going to eat your whole dinner, portion some of it out ahead of time to pack away to give to someone on your way back to your warm car and home. Consider buying granola bars or easy to carry food packaged food for handing out one by one as you walk by. And while they are sugary, perhaps handing out small bottles of Gatorade.

Do you have extra blankets or even sheets, anything that could keep somebody warm? Were you planning on donating it anyway? Maybe now‘s the time to clean out that closet and hand something, even a thin something, to someone who might need a little bit more warmth. This is not a game or contest of how much or how little, it’s a matter of just doing something.

If you have kids, are they complaining about what they did or did not get for the holidays? Is that what you want for their future? Perpetuating entitlement? Ok, maybe that’s stretching things.

Enough rambling. Back to work.