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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Last four days of Health Activist Writer's Month Challenge!

Okay ... Four days in one, dead ahead. I need to close this month of health activist blogs, as I'll be off line for the next few days. So here we go:

Day 27 Five Challenges and Five Small Victories of dealing with an MS diagnosis and treatment:
  1. Very difficult to diagnosis
  2. Unknown individual prognosis
  3. Unknown cause of disease
  4. Painful, iffy treatment
  5. No Cure
Small Victories:
  1. Choosing healthier menu
  2. Losing weight
  3. Treating chronic depression
  4. Meeting others who share
  5. "But we look so good!"
Day 28  The First Time ... What was it like, and what did you learn?
The first time I had a mammogram redone and learned there was something that needed to be biopsied, and the biopsy had to be done two weeks later when the doctor returned, and first I'd have to meet with a surgeon to plan how to respond if the biopsy was positive ... and I told the surgeon I would not seek treatment of cancer, that I'd lost many friends despite horrendous treatments, and he asked me why I had had a mammogram if I didn't want to treat anything found? I thanked him for giving me permission to make my own decision rather than simply following everyone else's "recommendations."  The biopsy was negative.

Day 29  Tell a six sentence story:
Once upon a time there was a family doctor who treated her patients with common sense. Rather than prescribing medications for a stuffy nose, she would recommend spending time in a steamy shower. Instead of using cortisone creams that would have side effects of their own when a patient had shingles, she recommended sea water compresses. When she retired, choosing a new family doctor meant looking for one with a similar style. And when one was found nearby, the patient had to be very honest in expressing reluctance to go overboard with medications, preferring to treat things naturally, so that their relationship could be as mutually supportive as had the earlier one.

Day 30  Make a word cloud, with tree branches, using a thesaurus to extend it. (no, choosing to take this as my second 'cut.'  I'm left brained, not right, (which is why I skipped the Pinterest challenge on day 16.)

Ta Daa!   Finis!  Complete!  I will now adjourn, be away for a few days, and when I return, it will be with another book review!   Thank you for staying with me this month. I felt the Health Activist Writer's Month was a worthy challenge ... am not sure I've done it justice, but I gave it my best shot.

Now, off to NIH in Bethesda for a true Health Activist effort ... taking part in the patient study seeking biomarkers for earlier Parkinson's Disease diagnosis. It is, after all, what I expected as a diagnosis, and believe is still ahead. As Terry Garr wrote in her book, Speedbumps: MS is just a bump in the road of life. It surely slowed me down in my final years of teaching, and sped up my retirement. But I haven't let it stop me from donating blood to the Red Cross (I did finally reach the eight gallon, 64 pint mark), and I won't let it stop me from participating in the PD 7 year study. Those who are studying MS do not yet know what direction to look in, and while I wish them well with their studies, I feel more confident in participating in this one. I've jumped ship on the DMD belief, and joined the Metabolic disorder group ... treating with healthy food choices rather than with chemicals and injections that hurt.

Be well, everyone! Take good care of yourselves!


  1. Love your posts and your blog. Stopping by from HAWMC.

  2. Happy you stopped by and enjoyed the blog!

  3. Cool, you completed the writing challenge. I am no where near disiplined enough to find time to write every day for a month. I am lucky if I can keep a post a week on my blog pace.

    Hope all is going well at NIH.

    1. All went well. Testing completed, results coming in a week or so. Thanks for reading here!


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