Be in the Pink

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If your heart groans

Under worry

And your belly

Plays acid songs,

Don’t despair:

Life’s still there.

If your head spins

With confusion

In realities

Beyond compare,

Don’t give up:

There’s repair.

If your muscles

Clench with anger

And anxiety

Sheds your hair,

Don’t give in

To what’s not fair.

If your color

Lost its luster

And your spirit’s

Pale and bare,

Don’t lose heart:

We’ve hope to spare.

If the dark nights

Press your innards

And your lungs

Beg for calm air,

Don’t forget:

Love’s everywhere.

 

 

For The Daily Post

Heat-wave

Met a neighbor downstairs yesterday. She was sitting on the stoop with her dog by her feet. My neighbor is usually quite peppy. She looked wilted and a little green around the gills. Sweaty. Bleary eyed.

I asked it she was okay, and she shook her head.

“I feel like I’m going to throw up,” she said. “Got dizzy. Maybe it’s the heat.”

I gave her a cold water bottle. Asked the café next door for a towel moistened with ice-water and wrapped that around her neck. I’d have helped her to my air-conditioned apartment but I didn’t think she should climb several flights of stairs.

She didn’t want me to call 911. Said she’d just sit on the shady (but steamy) stoop and rest. I offered to help her into the café next door instead. Had her sit down in the air-conditioned space. The dog could not enter but the waiter understood and let us sneak the leash out through a crack in the door so she can still keep hold of the pooch.

I asked again if to call 911. Didn’t want to scare her, and indeed it could be heat-exhaustion, but heart-attack in women rarely displays the classic ‘clasp your chest’ as in men. It could be something else …

She shook her head. “I don’t need 911. I’m taking this new medication and maybe it made me more sensitive to the heat. I think there was something about it on the label. I’ll be okay.”

She said the cool air already had her feeling better. So we sat. I watched her, ready to call 911 if she got worse. She didn’t. She took small sips of her water. The waiter brought another cool rag to replace the one that already warmed. She took deep breaths.

Her coloring improved. The dog, who’d been standing vigil by the door and anxiously observing her, finally lapped the water we’d placed for him, then lay down with head calmly on front paws. His reaction reassured me. It reassured my neighbor, too. She smiled and took a deeper breath. The dog lifted eyes to her and his tail slapped the ground in return greeting. Both relieved.

We sat a little longer. When my neighbor felt like herself again, we thanked the café workers and I walked her home. She was going to take it easy the rest of the day. Hydrate. Stay indoors.

Summer is lovely, but it can be tricky for many. Medications are often not taken into account, yet should.

I can be a certifiable momma hen … so, bear with me. … It’s been hot yesterday and it is hotter still today. A heat index of 109F or so. Life doesn’t need to stop, but know the signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Don’t ignore them. Take precautions, check your medications for heat-sensitivity warnings, and take good care of you, of young and old or people who are in any way infirm or vulnerable to heat. Be mindful of pets, check on neighbors. Keep hydrated. Keep cool. Keep well.

SacramentoReady.org heatstroke

Nadine Burke Harris on: How Childhood Trauma Affects Health Across a Lifetime

What if there is an exposure that affects health and development dramatically and is more prevalent than HIV, cancer, and Hepatitis combined and yet most doctors do not screen for it? What if you knew of an exposure that increases the risk for heart disease, diabetes, early death, inflammatory diseases, premature birth, metabolic syndrome, depression, anxiety, suicide, and more? What if that exposure was at the base of many learning disabilities, attention issues, and behavior issues and if there was a lot to do to help reduce this risk?

Wouldn’t you want to know about it?

Wouldn’t you want it to be treated as a priority in healthcare and public interest? I know I would, and do. Nadine Burke Harris is sure, too. Listen to her amazing Ted Talk–this is a brief talk that you’ll want to pass along!

Onward, Ice-world. Here I come!

When the Universe’s retrograde is retrograding, hang on for the ride…

Day in point:
I had to get to a medical appointment today. Knowing I’d be rather low-energy before it, I had pre-ordered car-service. Received a call that the car broke down and they won’t have a replacement in time. Nothing for it, but try to get a cab.

Ha! No chance. Half the city was waving hands at a handful of, obviously full, taxis. However, I’m a determined (read: desperate and wobbly) girl. So I froze. Waited. Tried the other corner. The far corner. Across the street. No luck. Figured there’s no way, gave in, took the bus crosstown (which included getting over the ice without adding to the tally of ‘wrist cases’ in local ERs) with the hope I’d maybe get a taxi there the rest of the way.

Joke’s on me–the same handful of taxis were still, well…full. Can’t blame them. I figured, if I got a taxi, I won’t be giving it up, either, if I were me… Nothing for it but to take the downtown bus, which of course picks up passengers not where it is plowed but on the unplowed side. It would be adventurous crossing on a regular snow-ice-mush day (even with a cane with an ‘ice-grip’ extension) but especially today when I was a bit vertically challenged already. Owee for my back, but yay for me, I did it. Stood there and froze with my fellow non-taxi-worthy-New-Yorkers. Finally a bus came that did not have a “next bus please” on it. We all of us levitated (um…not exactly) over the mountains of ice and ice-rinks into the bus which moved, sort of. SLOW SLOW, downtown.

I was of course late to my appointment, not to mention used up more energy than I did not have to begin with. But, I did it. Got through it all. All is okay now.

It wiped me out and was no fun BUT, in the tally of lessons
I did get to:
1.experience the full marvel of -10 windchill (it is especially poignant after a few minutes–for best effect, try more than 10 while standing on ice in a corner where the wind is amplified by tunnel-effect).
2. practice management of feelings of extreme jealousy when a lucky hand-waiver two blocks up from me managed to snatch the one available taxi in the whole town. The feeling was exquisite, shared by the people around me, and I think is generally magnified in direct opposite correlation to the temperature outside.
3. bond in an unspoken way with my fellow bundled up New Yorkers–we really ARE all the same, above all those layers (you can’t tell who’s who anyway…).
4. exercise my body’s frost-defrost-frost cycle (of which I had a preparatory course the day before when the heat broke in my building and we had indoor arctic chill–I did not even know I was getting get-to-doctor-bootcamp! See how everything happens for a reason?…)
5. put my new found learning into immediate action by instructing my pick-you-up-after friend to UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCES to leave the taxi she was coming in. Wobbly or not, I was going to come down to her instead–no way I was giving up a taxi I knew was half-mine…

Total tally for the day: Universe 10, Na’ama 5 (but hey, five is more than none!) 😉

Onward, ice-world. Here I come!