Monthly Archives: January 2016

Amending Newton’s Law

A sometimes overwhelming sense of fatigue is one of the most familiar symptoms of many chronic illnesses. It may be caused by any one or a combination of factors, such as muscle weakness, spasticity, medication, depression, infection, or rise in … Continue reading

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Why is it so hard to do what the doctor recommends?

We do that which we should not,and do not that which we should…St.Augustine on sin I was reluctant twenty years ago to try the first medication I was prescribed for MS and I stopped after a couple of weeks because … Continue reading

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Feeling Old

Today my physical therapist remarked about her peculiar experience over the weekend. She said she came home with a peculiar look and her husband asked, “are you okay?”. “Today,” she said, “was the first time I felt old.” She’s thirty … Continue reading

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Transubstantiation

Imagine chronic illness is a way of being, a local world like deafness or blindness. Think of the stiff gait of a person with Parkinson’s, the labored breathing of one with emphysema, the explosive bursts of speech and twitches from … Continue reading

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So Glad to Cry

Forty years ago I was one of the first clinicians at the newly established mental health unit at the local children’s hospital. Most of the kids I saw were from economically disadvantaged families in great distress. What could I offer … Continue reading

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Wholly breathe, holy spirit

It is said that after taking leave of his palace, Buddha spent many years on the road, following numerous practices, both as individual and as member of various groups. Disappointed with his efforts to awaken from his suffering, he simply … Continue reading

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In the villa of Ormen stands a solitary candle…

What is there about music and musicians that is so powerful and leads us to grieve so much upon their deaths? I’m reminded of that today with the news of the passing of David Bowie from cancer a couple of … Continue reading

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What she bears, with grace

Shortly after the post from Sheila’s dissertation on the “well spouse”, a reader asked whatever happened to the suggestion that caregiver syndrome be classified as a reimbursable “ psychiatric” diagnosis. In fact, there is a code: F43.0 Acute stress reaction … Continue reading

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When we walk a dog, we worship a god

Devotion, faithfulness, a great comfort, these are all qualities we attribute to our dogs. But they are as well, the characteristics of a worshipper toward his or her god. Strange as it may sound, I think there is something of the … Continue reading

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There is no map for grief, there is only memoir and it is tattooed onto the body.

There is no map for grief, there is only memoir and it is tattooed onto the body. Mourning is a profoundly upsetting physical experience, as well as felt emotion. Our hearts are broken, the loss is tearing us apart, it … Continue reading

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