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How Doctors Die

Thursday, March 29, 2012

It turns out that Ed has a wife and a couple of daughters with him, and doesn't need any outside help. He just decided after a few months in bead the "he's ready," which is the same words used by Elve (a full time RV'er from Arkansas, with lung cancer) and the captain of my high school football team (with bone cancer and a good friend). It's about what I felt when I was diagnosed with kidney cancer and waited for about 12 days to find out if it had spread. The good news was that you didn't have to worry about chemo and radiation, and the bad news was that neither of them did any good, so after two years only two per cent of the patients are alive.

These guys didn't use Dr. Kevorkian's approach, and look sort of like the doctors. There was an article, "how doctors die" in the Tampa Bay Times

which is pretty sobering for the survivors. It does sort of put Ed's approach in a little different light - not as unusual as it first seemed to me.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DJ4HEALTH 3/29/2012 9:39PM

    Don't want all those machines either.

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BLUE42DOWN 3/29/2012 7:20PM

    This is much the way I'd want to go. Quality of life is far more important than quantity. I don't want to live to be 103 sitting in a chair in a nursing home, drooling on myself - or even to 77 popping more pills than food to stay alive. I'd rather live well and die when my time arrives knowing I lived it well.

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Nosey or Caring - Which?

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

In 1997 I had a problem with our one ton van, and a mechanic at McBee's garage spent six or seven hours getting the right parts and making the brakes work right because another mechanic had put the wrong part in the truck. His name is Ed, an ex-Airforce mechanic and certified auto technician. All of the guys at McBee's are certified, and they always take care of any problem we have with a car without causing another problem or failing to correctly repair the car. Ed is one of my favorite guys in the world, but not a close personal friend.

Today I took the BW's car in for an oil change, which was the second day because they were short handed and I didn't leave it yesterday but told Rick I could come back today. I asked Tom if Ed was sick because I hadn't seen him the last several times I had been in - not for several months. Tom said, Yes - he quit eating last week. He can't lift his arms any more." I asked what was wrong, and Ed has cancer. He's at home. Later I asked Rick when he got back if Diane was still working there, because she was not in several times, but was there sometimes. Rick said that she does work there when she comes in. Rick also said the Ed is 69 years old.

I now suspect the Diane is Ed's wife.

I wish now that I had been nosey and asked about Ed sooner, and because the BW's car needs a valve cover seal and a new brake master cylinder, I'm going back tomorrow. I will try to get Diane's phone number and see if we can at least do some care-taker relief if it's not too late.

I thought I was being courteous, but should have asked questions a lot sooner. Ed's a relatively young guy but obviously a short-timer, and there's nothing I can do about it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TUDI4480 3/30/2012 10:37PM

    I appreciate your kind heart. We never know what lies in store for ourselves or for those around us. There is a community memorial at the village "commons" tomorrow for a kind, loving man who died after a shoulder surgery. He had great doctors, great care. was recovering and was out of the hospital. His wife left him sleeping for just a little while. When she came back...he was gone. There was an autopsy, of course. No heart attack, no stroke, no infection, no reason why he just quit breathing. He would have been 59 y.o. in a day or two. What a shock. What a shame. What a good person he was. He and his soul-mate wife met late in life. They were planning their retirement lives together. One never knows what's just around the corner. But, I love your idea of reaching out. I believe it really is the thought that counts. The thought leads to the action. Kindness always makes the world just that much better. Take care. Have a good weekend.

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WOOFGANG 3/28/2012 11:07PM

    You have a good heart and you have to do what's in that heart. How kind you are to want to offer help.

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KNITTINGNAN 3/28/2012 3:19PM

  How compassionate you are. Just having somebody show interest during an illness provides strength to a family. My thoughts and prayers are with you as you reach out to help relieve their burden.

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More Good Advice

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MS.ELENI 3/27/2012 4:29PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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The Latest Advice

Monday, March 26, 2012

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

THINRONNA 3/27/2012 3:22AM

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MS.ELENI 3/26/2012 2:40PM

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Cool Shirts"

Sunday, March 25, 2012

I walked the dogs this morning, but didn't start until 7:50, so the sun was just barely up. It was like one of the old atomic disaster movies, where we were the only people moving. I only took them a mile and a half, but we didn't see anyone or anything moving until we were nearly home, and then there was one car on Nebraska. I guess it was too early for church, and too early to leave the house for most people. There were a lot of newspapers laying outside, and you can pick yours up no later than six, so probably a lot of people were sleeping in.

I guess that's what it's like to be an old guy - you get up early when you don't have to do it. St. Petersburg was once known as "God's waiting room" but it has sort of outgrown that. Sometimes I still feel like that's where we are.

Since Dr. Sola told me to get cool long sleeved shirts and quit wearing short sleeves, we went down to one of his recommended sources - West Marine. I did find a "cool" shirt, priced at $90. Then I kept shopping and found one on sale for only $60, and finally one for $50. Of course, for $50 you get a lot heavier material, which I'm pretty sure isn't all that cool.

After thinking about it, I realized I have one long sleeved shirt that I wear when I cut grass in the summer. It is 100 per cent cotton, but much thinner than the oxford cloth shirts and the other work shirts I have - both plaid patterns and the fuzzy, winter ones.

On the way home, the BW steered me to a thrift store and I found five thin long sleeved shirts of various materials and markings. One is oxford cloth, 100 per cent cotton and another is just 100 per cent cotton, one is 55 per cent cotton and 45 per cent polyester, one is 35 per cent cotton and 65 per cent polyester, and one is 80 per cent rayon and 20 per cent polyester. All are much thinner than the other long sleeved shirts I have, so I'll see how they work out and refine my criteria when I look for more. The BW tells me that rayon isn't hot, so I bought one to try. It's already a task to find shirts that are the right size and made of thin cloth - maybe the materil itself is important.

I do have one of the "cool" shirts with the cape and netting back which feels about like the $50 shirt, and I know it's not really cool, so I bought five shirts for $20 instead of one for $50 or $60 or $90. I'm just not a $90 dollar shirt kind of guy.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    It's important to keep your arms shaded from the sun--esp. with your tendencies and history. I'm glad you found a few long-sleeved shirts that will keep you safe when you're outside walking and mowing and working in the yard. I wish hubby would take it that seriously. He had melanoma five years ago, is a red-head and is very careless about keeping covered up when he's out in the sun.

I have to keep my upper arms covered too, not so much because of the sun, although that is a factor too--let's face it--at our age, we need to avoid the sun hitting our skin as much as possible, heck, that's true at any age! My problem is the loose flabby skin on my upper arms. It's horrendous and I always keep it covered! I make sure everything I buy has sleeves that come at least to my elbows. Sometimes it's hard to find anything with sleeves that long, especially in the summer. Swimming suits are such a problem for me. I have one, but it's really hard for me to wear it out in public, as I also have lots of loose flabby skin on my upper legs too. It's devastating what 30 years of being morbidly obese did to my body. Really I'm amazed it snapped back as good as it did. When I cover up with clothes (long sleeves, long pants) I feel almost normal.

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THINRONNA 3/27/2012 3:31AM

    I know what you mean...I would much rather go to a thrift store than pay 90 USD for a shirt. Of course here in Norway everything is expensive even the few second had stores.

Your description of the quiet morning with no people around reminded me on one Sunday when I was living in Chicago and was out at that same time of day. It was like there were no people...only tall buildings and pavement. It was really eerie.

Good luck with those shirts!

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MS.ELENI 3/25/2012 5:41PM

    Bill has started wearing a lot of long sleeve shirts too. Makes it hard when it gets so hot here

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