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Archive for February, 2009

I have a theory. If each one of us took the time to consider the consequences of our actions before we said or did something, we could create a really happy life for ourselves. I came to this conclusion recently as I contemplated how to best handle a rather sticky situation with which I am currently dealing. Quickly stated, I recently had a consultation with a doctor to whom I had been referred by the medical group in which I am enrolled. At the end of the consultation, I was a bit uncomfortable with the way he had chosen to address the matter under discussion and as a result of his subsequent actions I had decided that I did not have the trust in him to perform a surgery that I would need. But then I started to second guess myself. After all, I am not a doctor. What do I know about this procedure? But, I just could not shake the feeling that there was something wrong and that perhaps part of the hesitancy on my part was that I didn’t want to confront the matter.

Then I became extremely uncomfortable about having to confront this situation but I knew in my gut that I could not just let the matter go. I knew that I did not want to create any type of a bad situation for this doctor. After all, he just wasn’t the right one for me but I am sure that there are plenty of other individuals who have been very pleased with him. I needed to find another doctor but I wasn’t sure how I should do that. I considered asking my primary care physician but I had called her and asked for a recommendation before I made the appointment for the consultation and she indicated that any one of three within the group was fine. So, now I have eliminated my PCP. In addition, I don’t think that I would have been comfortable walking into the same office to see either of the other two doctors that were in the same practice after “firing” their partner.

The situation was growing. This surgery was to be one of a two part surgery being done by two different surgeons. I had discussed the matter with the other surgeon before my consultation and he indicated that he knew the other surgeon and he even addressed the matter with him directly before my consultation. After the consultation the two doctors spoke again and the consulting doctor indicated to the second doctor that he did not want to do the combo surgery and after hearing his explanation, the second doctor called me and indicated that he was fine with doing them separately.

I called my second doctor back and am waiting to hear from him. As I wait for a call back, I keep running over and over in my mind how I want to explain the situation without coming off “wrong”. I wake up during the night trying to figure out exactly what I want to say and then I can’t go back to sleep. I am getting nervous with the anticipation. But finally this afternoon, I decided that enough is enough. I have taken into consideration all of the information with which I have to work. I have researched the names of some other doctors who meet the criteria that I need and plan to ask for a recommendation from my doctor when he calls. And if he doesn’t have a recommendation, I will just have a consultation with one of the other choices and make a decision when I have met with a doctor with whom I am comfortable. After all, this is my surgery and I must first consider what is best for me and take responsibility for my choices. It doesn’t really matter what another doctor may think about those choices. This is my life and I need to be comfortable and in a positive frame of mind in order to expect the best outcome. And that applies to every aspect of my life. Now I have a smile back on my face!

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In case you are not aware, the American worker puts in more hours on the job each week than the employees of any other country. And if you are fortunate enough to have been able to retain your job in this current financial situation, then you are probably like so many others who are afraid to take vacation time even if you are able to afford to do so. There is a fear that if you take time off, you might lose your job to someone else who is more dedicated.

I took a look at my own situation and realized that I have already accumulated 5 weeks of vacation and that number is growing. But I don’t feel like I can afford to take time off either financially or if I wish to take a chance at keeping my job in the long term. Therefore, I have come up with my own idea on how to best utilize that vacation time in these financially trying times.

Do you remember when you were a kid and you took a day off on a Saturday to sleep in – all day if you wanted? Or you took the time to lounge around and read and choose to do nothing else unless you wanted? I remember sleeping in, getting up around noon having a bite to eat and going back to bed for the rest of the afternoon. Then I would get up and shower and go out with some friends for the evening. Well, that is what I am proposing to do now and suggest that you do the same.

I have decided that we all deserve a break. We need to take a day off and do nothing. If you have children, perhaps you can arrange with a friend to watch the kids while you do nothing and then in exchange you will watch their children and give them a day off to do the same. It doesn’t have to cost anything as far as money is concerned but a day of mental health where you do absolutely nothing or relax or do something that you really enjoy for one entire day can’t be beat. Sleep in, read, crochet or knit, have a relaxing bubble bath, read, watch TV, walk around the mall, go to a movie, etc. but just give yourself a day off. You will be shocked at what a difference that break will make in your life.

If you are married or have a significant other, spend the day with that person. You don’t have to go anywhere. Sleep in and enjoy each other’s company all day long removed from the computers and cell phone and all interruptions. Share breakfast in bed and maybe order a little delivery of food from a local restaurant. Or plan ahead and secure all the items that you need to prepare a wonderfully romantic dinner together. You can’t ask for a better day.

The most important thing to keep in mind is to share a wonderful day with those that you love most. It doesn’t have to cost you money. A family can go to the park nearby and play together and take a picnic along to share. You can all stay at home and pop some popcorn and watch a movie together. You can play games in the yard and do a cookout. There are endless options where you can all share a fun day together and you will soon realize that there is nothing that is more relaxing and stress reducing than a day of play.

No matter what you do or not do and no matter with whom you share the time or if you spend it all by yourself, you need to take a break from everyone else and everything else and enjoy a vacation every now and then. And if you can afford to take a couple of days or a week, by all means, do so. You won’t regret it and will go back to your job all relaxed and refreshed.

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Although the final count is not tallied, the Crespi Carmelite High School male lacrosse team raised more than $44,000.00 by the start of their premiere event that was held yesterday at the school. What an awesome result in only two months!

The guys will be sponsoring a variety of other events in their effort to raise $140,000.00 by the end of the year. They are also looking forward to meeting up with three other lacrosse teams in New York City on April 9th and walking the last 6.98 miles of their total goal of 5,500 miles which is the distance from the Brooklyn side of the Brooklyn Bridge to Time Square where they want to present a check to Robin Roberts on “Good Morning America”.

For those who missed it, the team had a very special last minute walker join their them.

Now despite all of his hard work, Guy was not successful in raising so much as a single dollar for his efforts. So he has decided to keep on walking and walking and walking until such time as he sees some positive results and can collect some funds in his name in support of this cause.

As soon as he is rested and can begin the next step on this journey, we will post more videos on his behalf so that you can see the progress that he is making.

If you care to donate some funds on behalf of Guy, please let me know by writing to letlifehappen@gmail.com and we will make the necessary arrangements for acceptance of your contribution. And if you would like to follow the progress of the team and their continued fund raising efforts, please log on to the website at www.crespi.dojiggy.com. This is only the beginning of the Coach’s Challenge where high school athletic teams throughout the country are being enlisted to join in this cause.

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Walk Like A man

Walk Like A man

Last week I wrote an open letter to the Crespi Carmelite High School lacrosse team members. I asked the girl who had involved me in this project whether she would provide a copy of the letter for each of the team members and have the team coaches hand them out to the guys. She agreed to do so and I was so happy that they would know how much all of their hard work and efforts meant to me and to the women who would benefit from all of their hard work.

I received an e-mail from my friend to whom I had made the initial request. She informed me that the coach read my letter to his players at practice. They were so moved by what I had to say that they upped the ante and although they have already raised $35,000.00 in less than two months, they challenged themselves to reach $50,000.00 by the time the event takes place next Saturday on February 14th.

Can you believe that? Most high school guys would have responded by resting on their laurels and thinking about how great they were. These men understood the message and stepped up to the plate to push themselves that much harder to set a tough goal for themselves.

Okay, that is why I am begging all of you to please help out in any way that you can. Please make a contribution to the cause if you can. Purchase some merchandise if you are able to do so. But if you are unable to do anything financially, I would really appreciate it if you would log on to the coach’s e-mail at joswaks@crespi.org and let them know how awesome they are for taking on this challenge and giving back to their community in such a big way.

This coach and his coaching staff and every member of the committee that put together this event and every member of the team that is raising money for the cause are our special angels. They have all literally been giving themselves to this cause to make it an unbridled success and are truly the angels in our community.

I have been checking the weather reports and there is nothing but rain in the forecast for next weekend. I know that everyone will still show up and do their part regardless but please, please help them and support them. I will be there myself come rain or shine so please feel free to send a message to me for them if you wish and I will be sure to pass it to them.

I can be reached at letlifehappen@gmail.com and would appreciate it if you would help all of us. And if you can make a contribution to the cause, please log on to the website at http://www.crespi.dojiggy.com and help in any way that you can. Your contributions will be appreciated more than you will ever know. I will update you on the results from this event in my blog next Sunday. Please, we need your support.

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AN OPEN LETTER TO THE MEMBERS OF THE
CRESPI HIGH SCHOOL MALE LACROSSE TEAM

You don’t know me but you are my heroes. And if you are wondering why, I will tell you. I know about your great efforts to walk and to raise money for the “Walk Like A Man” Walk-a-thon for Breast Cancer Testing and Research. I know what it is like to have to devote so much of your time and effort to meet the challenges that have been given to you by your coaches for this project. And you have to do all of this in addition to your regular school work, your lacrosse practices and all of the responsibilities that you have at home and in other aspects of your personal life!

Well, that is what makes you special. That is what makes you heroes to those that you don’t know but who will be the recipients of the results of your special efforts. For the funds that you raise will be used to continue research and provide testing for those who otherwise would not be able to afford those tests.

I am a breast cancer survivor who was fortunate enough to have medical insurance that provided the testing that I needed. But I want you to know that it is not the surgeries that were the hard part of my experience. It was the not knowing what to do that was the hardest. As a result of being able to have the necessary testing, cancer patients, in conjunction with their medical doctors, have the information that they need in order to make educated choices about the best courses of treatment.

So when the going gets tough out there and it gets harder and harder to reach your goals, please remember that there are lots of us out here in your community who need you. Please remember that it is your efforts that will help to save our lives and many more lives in the future. And when you go to bed at night, you will know that there are people who look to you as heroes because you helped to save their lives. I think that you will be able to rest assured that although it may have been tough to do what was expected of you for this walk, it was all worthwhile knowing that you made such a huge difference. Your efforts are appreciated more than you will ever know.

I will be at your walk on February 14th and it is my goal to meet each one of you personally. I want to shake your hand and thank you and let you know what a privilege it is to meet such awesome guys who are such a positive representation of the hope for the future of this country.

For those of you who may be reading this letter who are not members of this team and are willing to help with this cause, please let me know at letlifehappen@gmail.com or go to the school’s website at http://www.crespi.dojiggy.com. Please help me to acknowledge the wonderful work that is being done by these young people by letting them know how much it is appreciated.

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