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May 21, 2017: Self-Maintenance

What happened yesterday to Shari was a wake-up call for me. Shari, my Feldenkrais/Bones for Life teacher had something going on – she wasn’t sure what. The physical signs were feeling out of it, momentary losses of lucidity. So the PA who works in the same office whisked her off the local hospital emergency room – and we four students followed.

Hospitals – all they are now are medical factories where tests are used in order to determine why the said patient isn’t functioning normally. And it begins in the emergency room admitting area, where those who admit you are behind glass. They don’t step out into the ER area – their job is to determine how you will pay for treatment and what steps might be taken in order to assist you.

There was a younger woman in a wheelchair – obviously in some sort of duress. I went to the window and said she needed an assist. They said thank you. She continued to sit there for some time. What gives? The way it now works, is you go into these places – you either walk out the front door or are carried in a body bag out the rear door. In between they take your money.

It helps to have a physician’s assistant or some other individual on hand who might do what you can’t do, which is to be proactive. Shari was lucky in that she had a PA, the woman who works in the same office with her. She knew what was going on, how to read the test results, and what the test results meant.

What troubles me is that Shari’s PA didn’t and most likely will not talk with her about making lifestyle changes. Maybe, just maybe, Shari and her PA need to talk about these things. Maybe this is needed, maybe not. It is not for me to say. Instead, what I need to do is learn from what I saw and think some about my own lifestyle. Yep, in this respect, this was a wake-up call for me.

I can make my own changes, with the goals of remaining mentally and physically fit. The time to do this not when I am less busy. Rather, the time is now. I don’t need to make radical changes, but rather small changes, for small changes lead to big changes.

I’ve already made steps in the right direction. This morning, for instance, I brushed and flossed my teeth, then massaged my gums with salt water – this is something that Ruth Avalon, the Bones for Life founder, advocates. I am going to do this now, twice a day.

I’m going to eat in a more mindful and consistent fashion. I am not cutting out chocolate, but I am going to eat less. I am eating chocolate because it contains caffeine, and I am using it to give myself an energy boost. I’m going to eat more greens – good greens will be more accessible once our garden produce starts coming in. I’m also going to eat more local foods and attend more farmers’ markets. Chicken and dairy – need another bird and we are going to get a milk goat. I’m going to eat earlier in the evenings. And I’m going to limit my portions.

I’m going to refrain from getting on the computer later at night. I am not a big cellphone user but I am going to use it even less. Best to give others my full, undivided attention.

I’m also going to do chores in a more mindful fashion. I’m not going to carry full water or manure buckets any more. Rather, I will carry them half-empty. And no more heavy lifting, ever. And I’m going to take breaks and at the very least look around when doing so.

It’s raining again. A really good day to focus on thinking about how I might continue to make lifestyle changes.

Next: 140. 5/22/17: Bones for Life Day #3

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