Welcome to Ask Gail–a place to share questions and answers about what matters to us most: family, friends, community, health, peace, books, favorite resources, what feeds our soul… Ask Gail is also where we can create and share very important information like my “Gail’s Guide to Going to the Hospital.” Stay tuned for more…
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This week is National Nurses Week, and yesterday I attended an event at Norwalk Hospital, created by my friend and dharma sister Meg Burdett. Called “Nourishing the Nurses,” Meg gathered healing arts practitioners to offer chair massage, Reiki, singing bowls, acupressure, yoga instruction, reflection & intention writing, and even a labyrinth—all to remind the nurses to practice self-care.
The most moving part of the day for me was when I stood in front of Carol Bauer and her assistant Elaine Sleath, my hands held in prayer position above a beautiful white shell-shaped bowl. Carol asked me what I do. I said I am a teacher. She then poured warm water over my hands and asked G-d to bless these hands that labor for others and shape young minds and hearts. Her words washed over my heart as the water over my hands. Her blessing was so intimate and immediate that I felt it flowing from the universe through her into the water and onto me. And I wept.
Palliative care is the umbrellas under which hospice is but one facet; palliative care is NOT hospice care.
- Palliative care is a simultaneous care model that begins with diagnosis of a serious, chronic, or terminal illness
- Curative (life-prolonging) and palliative care can exist concurrently.
- Pain IS a medical emergency and must be managed as such.
- Pain is physical, emotional, social, spiritual, and existential.
- There are only c. 3000 palliative care doctors in the US.
- There are only 4 hospitals in Fairfield county with palliative care teams.
Click here to go to the getpalliativecare.org web site.
Hadassh Medical Organization in Jerusalem is one of the few research hospitals running long-term vaccination projects using vaccines made from patients’ own tumor cells. Who knew?
Here is a voice of reason if we can stop the rhetoric and fear mongering and listen. Spending less money on often unnecessary and painful procedures in the last six months of life means paying more for hospice aides and palliative care—especially for those who want to be at home rather than in the hospital that can rob our loved ones of dignity and quality of life, and bankrupt our health care system.
Click here to read this short excellent blog post. If you have aging parents or an ill spouse or friend, get help and begin the conversation. It’s never too early but it may be too late if you wait.
Imagine table cutlery and cold cups made from corn. Or “paper” plates made from cane sugar. Well, Compostable Goods is dedicated to increasing the knowledge and availability of compostable and biodegradable products. Click here to learn more and browse the many products they sell; who knows, the next party you throw may be a “zero-waste” event!
Veterans, family members and concerned friends should know that help is only a toll-free phone call away. Through an agreement between the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the V.A. contracted with the federally financed National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK) in July 2007 to establish the nation’s first suicide hot line for American military veterans.
More than 10,000 callers a month are now using this service. It is free, confidential and available 24/7.