Posts Tagged With: self soothing

Day 769: Wait!

Wait!  Guess how many blog posts I’ve written with the title “Wait” over the last two years!

I’ll wait while you think of a number, between zero and seven hundred and sixty-eight.

Hmmmmm. I’m not sure how you feel about guessing games. Are you OK?  And what number did you come up with?

Do you want me to tell you the answer now, or would you like to wait?*

I don’t know about you, but waiting is not one of my favorite activities.

For example, about ten days ago, after waiting for months to find out whether and when I’m going to need major heart surgery, I got this email from somebody on my vast team of heart specialists, spread out over several Boston-area hospitals ….

Wait!  When I just checked my work emails, I found this new one, instead:

Current weather forecasts call for 12 – 18 inches of snow to fall throughout the Boston area beginning Saturday night and continuing through Monday evening, Feb. 9. The worst of the snow is expected during the day Monday.

Please give yourself extra time so you can travel and commute safely.

Although we have not yet been informed of a travel ban associated with this storm, please remember you must have your ID badge with you to show to authorities if there are any restrictions going forward.

Please also know that the most important factor for you to consider is the safety of you and your family during the storm. Please review and share with staff the information below about arrangements under way at the medical center.

Now you know what New England is waiting for, today and tomorrow. Please wait while I look for that heart-related email, again.

Wait!  That email didn’t go to my work address.

Please wait while I check my home email.

Thanks for waiting.  Here’s that email, dated 1/30/15:

We will get back to you next week after we have been able to review everything.

I waited. Nobody got back to me.

Other things got back to me last week. Those included:

IMG_5284 IMG_5286

  • my son, with this birthday gift

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When I am waiting for others, here’s what I do (wait for it) ….

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I distract myself. For example, guess how many times I listened to this video I posted yesterday!

I won’t make you wait for THAT answer, OK?

I lost count of how many times I played that yesterday, as a way to self-soothe and distract.

Wait!  Why did I listen to Glee‘s version of Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal” over and over again, yesterday, instead of something else?

Wait, please, while I figure that out.

Wait!  I think I’ve found a good-enough answer to that.

Since I’ve been a child, dealing with my congenital heart condition, lots of people have been asking me, in verbal and non-verbal ways, “Ann(ie), are you OK?” After waiting my whole life, I finally found a song that somehow captures the essence of that life-long experience.

Wait!  Did that make sense to you?

Wait!  It makes sense to me.

Wait!  A few more things, before I publish this post.  After waiting for years (I assume), other people with congenital heart conditions convinced the powers-that-be to declare this coming week …

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(If you don’t want to wait, you can find that image here, at another blog.)

Wait!  That image, above, tells me that Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week has been waiting for me to find out about it, for a while. My first awareness of it was yesterday, but now I know it’s been around at least since 2011.

I’m still waiting for a word I like better, though, instead of “Defect.”

Wait!  I think I’ve seen some CHD images, where “D” stands for something else  (like “Disease”) (which is also not one of my favorite words).  Wait while I check Google Images for “CHD Awareness Week”:

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Wait!  The D-word there is slightly different (“Defects”), but I don’t like that word any better.

be-aware

“Defect” is still the word, in that image found here.

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Wait!  When I read that last one (found here), I THOUGHT IT SAID “CONGENITAL HEART PERFECT AWARENESS WEEK!”  I was going to write, just now:

That last image was worth waiting for.

I guess we see what we’ve been waiting to see, sometimes.

Anyway, I’m not going to wait for somebody else to replace the word “defect” in CHD with something else. Here are my suggestions:

  • Perfect (see above, but that’s not perfect because it should be a “D” word, for “CHD”).
  • Condition (see above, blah blah blah blah blah).

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Wait.  I can NOT, here and now, think of another D-word, that fits.  Can you?

I’ll wait.

WAIT! How about this?!?!?

I don’t have a Congenital Heart Defect. I have a Congenital Heart Distraction.

Wait!  Have you been waiting for songs about waiting?

(“Waiting on the World to Change” by John Mayer found here on YouTube.)

(“She’s Waiting” by Eric Clapton found here on YouTube.)

(“Wait” by the Beatles found here on YouTube.)

I can’t wait any more!  I have to publish this post!

Many thanks to all who have ever waited for anything in their lives, including you (of course!).


* Thanks for waiting. The number of posts I’ve written with the word “Wait” in the title is exactly

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zero (according to WordPress).**

** Wait!  I don’t want WordPress to get the last word!

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 37 Comments

Day 243: Freaked-out-nomics

I’ve been freaked out lately, even while I’ve been trying to keep my pledge of “no worries” for 10 days.

Why?

Lots of reasons.

  1. There was a “perfect storm” of circumstances where I live, which resulted in some significant water damage.

  2. I thought I had picked up an ailment on my trip. (I had not.)

  3.  I am going even more public — including where I work — about my being the longest surviving person in the world with a cardiac pacemaker*, as I am participating in an American Heart Association charitable walk.  (Of course, I’m going more public about my pacemaker world record by doing this blog, too.)

  4.  This morning, I spent many hours trying to create and send e-mails asking for contributions for this charitable walk, and at different times it looked like (1) none of the e-mails had gone through AGAIN!!! and (2) the e-mails had all gone through and were going to bombard people with the same request many times.

Some of the reasons I listed above may seem more minor than others.

But when I get freaked out, many things can feel like Life or Death situations.

There are very few situations that are Life or Death, but sometimes my perspective gets out of whack.

At times in my life, I’ve dealt with life-threatening situations very calmly.

At other times, I’ve dealt with non-life-threatening situations with all my alarm systems blaring, full blast — Danger, Danger, Danger!

During times of Full Blown Freak Out, I’ve encouraged myself — and others — to ask these questions:

What is hurting me right now?

What danger exists to me, here and now?

Hold on. I’m going to breathe, sit quietly for a few seconds, and ask myself those two questions.

The answers are:

Nothing.

None.

Better.

Thanks for reading today.


* In 2014, I found out that I am NOT the longest surviving person in the world with a pacemaker. See here for more about that.

Categories: personal growth | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

Day 228: Self soothing (decisions, decisions)

As I’ve blogged about previously, I tend to look at the Friday of a vacation before I return to work as … The Last Real Vacation Day.

As I’ve blogged about previously, I have trouble making decisions, some times.

So how to spend this day?

I know this: I want to focus on self-care and self-soothing.

Okay!  So now I know what question to ask.

Which self-care option should I choose, on this fine summer day?

  1. Try out my new meditation chair.Image
  2. Go for a walk, somewhere nearby.Image
  3. Take a bath, with something I brought back with me from Edinburgh:Image
  4. Go back to sleep.

So what’s the correct answer?

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. 4
  5. 1 and 2
  6. 1 and 3
  7. 1 and 4
  8. 2 and 3
  9. 2 and 4
  10. 3 and 4
  11. 1, 2, and 3
  12. 1, 3 and 4
  13. 2, 3, and 4
  14. All of the above
  15. None of the above
  16. Some of the above and others not listed
  17. There is no right or wrong answer

I just realized something. 17 is my lucky number.

Okay!

Thanks to self-soothers, decision-makers, mathematicians, jet-laggers, and test-takers everywhere, and to you, of course, for reading today.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

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