Frankie Manning has passed.

Frankie Manning was one of the original Lindy Hoppers back in the 1930’s.  He was still dancing into his 90’s!

http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/news.php?id=34851

To be a Woman in Medicine

What is a woman’s role if she is not beautiful?  No one’s girlfriend/wife?  No one’s mother?

A good friend told me that woman often have less self-confidence than men and this is especially obvious in the field of medicine.  I’m working with a man who I consider to be the best family practice DO I have ever met.  There’s nothing to criticize in this experience except myself, so why do I do that?  Why can’t I just soak up the experience for what it is, learn what I can and forever have this magnificent example of an ideal osteopathic family practice?

Woman are natural nurturers.  Medicine is very paternalistic: either grow some balls or get out!  I receive so many compliments that I’m going to be a great doctor and all I can think to myself is that I can’t wait to pay of my loans so I can run away to a nunnery, a Buddhist nunnery of course.

Shim Sham in Maine!!

On the lighter side, here’s avideo clip of a number of friends doing the shim sham in Maine for Frankie Manning’s 95th birthday!! 😀

Obama Deception??

Now, I’m not a huge fan of propaganda, but I’ve matured to the point that I will consider other viewpoints.  I read Obama’s “Audacity of Hope” before he became the democratic nominee and I was ecstatic throughout the campaign, the final election, inauguration and even the first week or so hearing “President Obama” on the radio made me smile.  Also, Obama happens to be in southern California today/tomorrow.

Recently I started getting tired of hearing the same old stuff from him, wishing he could say what was really on his mind and stop passing these ridiculous financial packages.  Today I found a video explaining some of my frustration.  It may be a little overzealous, but I sense a certain amount of truth in it, namely, that Obama is simply a salesman telling the American people what they want to hear in order for the corporations to pass legislation that will ultimately benefit them, creating the World Bank and a new world order.  They compared it to Hitler, Stalin and some Chinese dictator I’ve never heard of before.  It concerns me, but I’m still not sure what I can do, so I give you the link to watch the movie for yourself.  It is almost 2 hours longs, so settle in.  Let me know what you think

Cranky Designs

I have to brag about how cool my friends are.  One of my good friend’s company was featured in Media Life Magazine.  She and her husband own Cranky Designs, which is an innovative way to advertise through wrapping (cars, elevators, port-a-potties).  They’ve been featured in a number of articles, have top-name clients and even get to travel to do their work.  I just shake my head in disbelief and smile whenever I hear something new coming along for them.  I’ve never liked advertising, but they bring it to a whole new level filled with energy and inspiration!  You can see the most recent article by following the link below.

Media Life Magazine

Dharma Punx by Noah Levine

This was my latest book.  The most unique part is I have attended a few of the meditation sessions LA and I bought the book directly from Noah and his organization.  The first time I went, Noah was there, but 2 other people led the meditation and dharma talk.  I hadn’t read his book yet and I was too nervous to speak to him.  Then this week he wasn’t there.  Booo, (learning to accept the way things are and not wanting then to be different).  I’m looking forward to hearing him talk.  I’ve listened to some of his talks online (againstthestream), but it’s different in person.  The few things he said the first week I went resonated with me deeply even though they were just “house keeping” words.  He has a profound quality of beingness and humility.  Now that I’ve read his book (Dharma Punx) I…I…I’m not sure what I’d say to him.  His book was amazing.  The writing itself was relatively immature, but the content more than made up for it.  I bought 2 more copies this week to give to friends and family.  The book is his memoir of growing up in pain, wanting to die since age 5 and then discovering drugs, alcohol and punk rock as ways to kill the pain and let out his aggression.  Amazingly, he was able to turn himself around, starting at 17yo.  His efforts are so sincere and his emotions are so raw, I cried numerous times while reading the book.  Now he’s a psychological, Buddhist counselor and I believe he’s still working with inmates.  It will be an honor to meet him.

I’ll be in the LA area for 2 more weekends.  My sister will be here the last weekend and if I still haven’t spoken to him, she coming with me!!

Motivation

What motivates me?? That question makes me LOL because my motives have changed throughout the years and sometimes sound a little ludicrous to me. 🙂 Initially, I was motivated to go to undergrad both out of ideal beliefs that I could save the environment from the soils of society. I was motivated out of fear, believing if I didn’t go to college, I wouldn’t be happy , have enough money. And I went to college simply because “It was what I was supposed to do” since I was always in the college-prep classes in high school due to my “exemplary intelligence”. I quit college after 2.5 years, motivated by fear and discontent and intrigued by the thought that I COULD quit and steer my life in any direction I wanted. During the winter after I quit school, I worked at Pinkham Notch and met J. After a year in “the working world” aka working at Pinkham notch, on a farm, cafe and greenhouse, I did one semester of adult education at Vermont College, realizing how much I LOVED organic chemistry (I had one semester of it before quiting) and that Vermont College was not were I was going to satisfy my nerdy desires. 6 months later I was enrolled at UNH for a degree in Biochemistry and my eventual disillusionment of the scientific community as the place where all questions could be answered. It was also at UNH where I learned about osteopathic medicine and I thought it was the perfect combination of medical knowledge/practice and an openness to the more spiritual side of healing. Today, my motivations include

1. A desire for basic medical competence to gain/maintain respect by my peers, my patients and my educators as well as for me to feel grounded in the workings of medical practice

2. Enhance my palpation and osteopathic treatment skills to boost my confidence and ultimately help to alleviate the suffering of my patients

3. learn as much as I can about myself and my own health in order to assist others to fully realize their own health. This includes spiritual and physical health.

Medicare study

Okay.  Medicare did a study trying to decrease cost and hospitalizations of elderly patients with chronic health care problems.  They specifically studied programs where patients, “got more intensive, coordinated care. That often involved nurses who acted as go-betweens, helping doctors give patients clear, appropriate advice; counseling patients on changing bad habits and recognizing worrisome symptoms. The nurses were available on a regular basis by phone or in person to answer patients’ questions.”

Apparently  a few patients benefited who took the advice to exercise and eat better, but otherwise patients and doctors were too stubborn to change.  This is a perfect example of insanity.  They are doing the same thing and expecting a different result, the only difference is that the care was more intensive.  They are not addressing the underlying issues preventing patients from changing and doctors, well, some doctors are hopelessly stubborn.

My study would include group meetings where we would not only discuss healthy eating and effective strategies to start exercising, but we would also discuss what it means to live, patient’s religious or spiritual beliefs, and I would include non-secular Buddhist teachings.  These discussions would also include the topic of death: patient’s personal experiences with death, how they feel about dying, what level of intervention they would want, etc.  I would also provide specific exercise opportunities- walking groups, Tai Chi or yoga classes and swing dance lessons!  And ideally I would facilitate shopping/cooking classes that make eating healthy easy, fun and tasty.  And THEN I would make sure all patients received OMT either as outpatients or after being admitted to the hospital.  🙂  I’m such an idealist…

Residency, sights and authors, Oh my!!

It is confirmed.  I matched to do my residency in Neuromuscular Medicine (a euphemism for Osteopathic manipulation) in Southampton!!  I think I might take up surfing…

It has been raining for 4 days here in southern California and this afternoon the sun came out and I saw snow on the distant mountains.  As corny as this sounds, it was one of the most spectacular scenes I’ve ever seen!

I saw 2 authors in person this weekend.  One was Noah Levine, the founder of Dharma Punx, an American Buddhist Society that arose out of the punk rock era.  It is also the name of his first book.  I bought the book and hope to have it autographed before I leave LA, preferably after I read it!  Secondly, I saw Eric Pearl, DC who wrote “The Reconnection”.  I read this book about 2 years ago.  He was a good, grounded and funny speaker, even if I’m still a little skeptical…He presents some bizarre concepts.  I’m neither completely turned off by him nor am I jumping on his band wagon with both feet.  I need to do some experimenting.

Self-love

I believe honesty is at the heart of love – love to self and others.  I don’t want to be one of those people who outwardly professes to have complete self-love and contentedness.  Inevitably there are going to be times when I get frustrated with myself or find myself slipping back into feelings of self-loathing.   However, I am in the process of going through a honest shift or perspective.  Thanks to the many hours of driving and listening “The Art of Happiness” with the Dalai Lama and “The New Earth” by Eckhart Tolle, the wisdom of these books have embedded themselves into my daily consciousness.  I’ll be talking about different aspects of my life and relaying the teachings as I incorporate them into my life.  This entry is about self-love.

The Dalai Lama was shocked to discover there is such a concept as self-loathing when he talked with psychiatrists and psychologists from western culture.  It amazed him so much because the discipline found in Buddhism is there to keep buddhist desires in check because they love themselves too much.  He goes on to conclude that even people who have self-loathing, in fact, love themselves by following the argument: we want people we love to be happy (i.e. not to suffer) and we want ourselves to be happy, therefore we must love ourselves.  I’ve also heard from another source years ago that depression is actually selfish.  In fact, it is down right ridiculous.  If we want ourselves to be happy, why do we become depressed?  A very good friend says it is part of the corporate monsters that control our lives and I wouldn’t be surprised if that was the primary cause.  HOWEVER, we can still be happy if we:

1. Realize depression is selfish- it is helping no one and makes other people suffer because they see how sad you are and want to help, but don’t know how.

2. Find a goal outside of ourselves to pursue and achieve.  It is best if the goal is to help others rather pursuit of other selfish gains like money.  Although money is of importance, it should not be the primary goal.  If you live to help, the world will help you.

3.  Be comfortable with who you are.  Body image can  play a huge role in diminishing self-confidence.  I have been playing this game for 20 years (1st ten years don’t count).  I realize I’m never going to have a perfect body, but I can take care of the one I have.

4.  Have gentle discipline with yourself.  Having no discipline (couch potato) is almost as bad as having too much (burn-out). Excessive goals (running a marathon after never exercising) are unrealistic.  Small goals have the power to transform you (jogging 1 mile almost every day).   Relaxing with friends or family or meditating is just as important as studying.  It is amazing that sometimes I feel like I do not have enough time, but when I relax, I realize time is a bizarre concept.  Like Eckhart Tolle likes to say, “All we have is right now”.  No fretting over the past, no worries about the future.  NOW.  Live completely in the now, doing quality work and preparations for the future will take care of themselves.  Once you’ve fixed the problems that occurred in the past when you were not living in the now, you no longer have to worry about the past because living fully in the present makes the past obsolete.

Sigh.  Life is good.  I hope for the same enlightenment to dawn on all suffering people.

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