Saturday, September 28, 2013

Back in Texas

I'm in Houston, in no small part to the heroic efforts of family and friends who are stepping up and in while I am away. If you want to see how you will look when you are 80, get up at 3:30 in the morning and ride a couple of vans and a plane to travel out of state. Then talk to 37 health care providers on a Friday who are contemplating discharging your mother without a solid plan in place. Finally, FaceTime your kids that night with your chin tucked into your neck so the camera angle captures all possible folds.

Make no mistake, there are two health care systems in this country: one for patients with resources, one for patients without. Our family is lucky but even in a great hospital, you have to advocate for appropriate treatment. In between tracking down doctors, making and receiving calls yesterday I thought about the fate of the patients who were in that same hospital alone.

I find it a bit ironic that I am in the state that is producing the jackass that is trying to take down universal healthcare at the same time I'm realizing we need even more. I was proud to hear my mom issue a tirade to that effect even in the midst of her pain yesterday.

The good news is that my lack of sleep has not made me surly:)

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Friday, September 20, 2013

Headed back

Good news on the Cancer front:  Mom came through a 10 hour surgery and the docs assure us that they got it all.  I'm headed out in a few days to help in the recovery process and to get "boots on the ground."

I started hearing that phrase as Congress and the President lobbied back and forth about what to do in Syria.  I am so very tired of the idea that surgical strikes can only harm the bad guys.  There must be a place we can evolve into that doesn't involve killing people.  Surgeons work for 10 hours in teams to save a life and  yet we talk so casually about taking others.  I sometimes wonder if my political beliefs are sagging just like my.....well, other parts.

So I ponder the metaphysics of it all....which life is worth saving and which is expendable.  Which lives I would give my life for and I think back to the dharma talk I attended a couple of months ago.  Geishe Dondup told his audience that we achieve enlightenment when we feel about everyone in the world the same way we feel about our children.  When we are willing to sacrifice everything for the solider on the other side of the world we have never met.

Meanwhile, I rolled my eyes at 4 people today (2 of which deserved it, 2 of which it's just reflexive now) and I stopped speaking to my husband when he played soccer on a night I wanted to chat.  I have to start smaller.

So I'm homeward bound.  Bound we are, indeed.