Posts Tagged With: The Longwood Medical area

Day 3671: Knowledge

Today’s Daily Bitch Calendar reminds me of sayings about knowledge like “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing” and “ignorance is bliss.”

I do know what I’m talking about when it comes to living your whole life with a rare heart condition, and it hasn’t always been easy. Yesterday, when I went for an echocardiogram, I was uneasy with the knowledge that the September echo I had in Georgia (when I had a T.I.A. or a “mini-stroke) had indicated there was “severe regurgitation” from my mechanical valve. My long-time cardiologist, Dr. Deeb Salem (who has lots of knowledge), told me that might mean the valve needed to be replaced or that a clot, since dissolved, might have caused temporary regurgitation.

Yesterday I made sure the echocardiogram sonographer had the knowledge about that earlier echo. Based on my experience in medical systems, I had the knowledge that she couldn’t really tell me the results yesterday. I knew I wouldn’t receive the official knowledge of whether or not I needed a new valve and another open heart surgery until later, after somebody with more knowledge had interpreted and documented the results. However, I really wanted reassuring knowledge yesterday after holding this scary knowledge for a while, so while watching and listening to her perform the echo and not having the knowledge to interpret the results as they were happening, I carefully said this: “What would it look like if there were severe regurgitation around a mechanical valve?” and I got the knowledge I wanted when she replied, “Not like what we’re seeing here.”

That knowledge made me very, very happy.

What knowledge is there in my other images for today?

I’m definitely going to celebrate today (with popcorn) my latest good news and the knowledge that I’ve really beaten the odds of life expectancy for my heart condition. When I see Dr. Salem next month, I’m going to ask him what it was like to be my doctor, starting when I was 27, having knowledge like this (which I just found when I googled my heart condition):

Dr. Salem, in all our years of working together, never conveyed that knowledge to me and here I am, about to turn 70! Also, I have the knowledge that some people with CCTGA have made it into their 90s and why shouldn’t I be one of those?

Here’s what I find when I look for “knowledge” on YouTube.

Thanks to all who help me share knowledge through these daily posts, including YOU!

Categories: heart condition, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Day 3641: Blessings

I often find it a challenge to focus on blessings instead of calamities, and I know I’m not alone in that.

Yesterday, when I was walking to work and focusing on everything that could possibly go wrong, I gave myself this blessing: “If you’re going to think about every danger that exists, you could also think about what’s safe.” And the blessing is that I immediately felt better.

I also asked myself this question: “If you knew that this was your last day in earth, how would you spend it?” and it was a blessing to realize that I would still go to work and facilitate groups.

Do you see blessings in my images for today?

Should we let the Daily Bitch have the last word about blessings today?

Here’s what I find when I search YouTube for “blessings.”


Thanks to all those who are blessings to me, including YOU.

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

Day 3599: What I’m watching

Here and now, I’m watching the lunar eclipse through my window. As I watch the moon disappear, I know it will reappear again. I wish I felt that confident about eroding rights in the USA.

Later today, I’ll be watching people in remote therapy sessions and at my local polling place. In the evening, I’ll be watching the news after the polling places close. Depending upon the results, I might take a mental health break by watching Joan, who seems to spend a lot of time watching me.


Here are other things I’ve been watching lately:


I’m hoping that many Daily Bitches (like me) are voting in this election.

Here’s the first thing that shows up when I search YouTube for “what I’m watching.”


I’m watching those I love with gratitude, including you.

Categories: life in the USA, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments

Day 3592: The scariest

For some people, the scariest month of the year is October because, duh, Halloween. For those people, there’s probably relief that we’re now in November.

For me, the scariest month is November because

  • duh, Election Day,
  • President John F. Kennedy was assassinated on November 22, 1963, and
  • on that same day, I underwent my scariest heart surgery at age 10 to get my first cardiac pacemaker, which was scary enormous.

What’s the scariest is a matter of personal experience, perspective, and attitude. What’s the scariest image in today’s blog post?


Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “the scariest.”

Now I can breathe easier. Thanks to all who helped me create “The Scariest” post, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Day 3578: Stronger together

If I didn’t believe that we’re stronger together than on our own, I wouldn’t be such a passionate proponent of the healing power of groups.

Yesterday, when people were stronger together in the first in-person Coping and Healing group since the beginning of COVID, I saw many stronger-together images.


We are stronger together with scientists and researchers who keep seeking important answers.

Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “stronger together.”


I am stronger together with you!

Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Day 3484: What Helps

In my office at the hospital, I have two giant lists of What Helps.

What helps me is remembering facilitating therapy groups in that room years ago and continually adding to that list of “What Helps.”

What helps is to know that people in groups can be creative, supportive, and resilient despite trauma, losses, and diagnoses like anxiety, depression, PTSD, and other “disorders.”

What helps in my other images for today?

What helps is knowing that I don’t have to pretend to give a shit (because I love my work so much).

Here’s what I find on YouTube when I search for “what helps.”


Pema Chödrön definitely helps me. What helps you?

What also helps is expressing gratitude and appreciation, so thanks to all who help, including YOU.

Categories: group therapy, life in the USA, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments

Day 3470: What cheers me up

What cheers me up includes:

  • blogging daily,
  • people I love,
  • work I love,
  • knowing I’m not alone,
  • cats,
  • games,
  • positive reframes,
  • group therapy,
  • self care,
  • good weather,
  • fond memories,
  • making new memories,
  • learning new things,
  • reconnecting with an old friend, and
  • finding out what cheers up other people.

What does NOT cheer me up is doom-and-gloom news, including some unasked-for news alerts on my phone I’d like to block.


Taking action cheers me up, too, and so does sharing photos with you.

National Simplicity Day and Cow Appreciation Day are both cheering me up, here and now.

Music cheers me up and here’s some great music from somebody with different colored eyes:

What cheers you up?

Thanks to all who cheer me up, including YOU.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Day 3393: Wanna bet?

Over the years, I’ve won cookies and cash by saying “wanna bet?” at propitious times.

When my son Aaron was very young, I said “wanna bet?” to somebody who was very sure about who was playing a jazz tune featured on a local radio station. Aaron tried to warn this person by saying, “Don’t bet with Mama.” However, this guy was so certain that he ignored Aaron and bet me $20.

When he paid up, he delivered the $20 in a beautiful frame that included the legend “Don’t bet with Mama.”

I bet that framed $20 is in a box in the basement right now.

Last night, Aaron, my husband Michael, and I were watching The Great Pottery Throwdown and we were discussing who we thought might be going home. When I looked at what people were planning on making (I’ll bet you wouldn’t guess they had to make urinals, but they did), I got a very strong feeling that one of the best potters was miscalculating her strategy and I said I thought she’d be gone at the end of the episode. Perhaps because I know almost nothing about pottery, Michael strongly disagreed.

I said, “Wanna bet?”

Aaron was concerned I’d be breaking my long streak of successful bets, but I don’t want successes to get in the way of taking risks with potentially big payoffs.

Michael proposed $20 for our bet and we watched the show. It looked very bad for me when the potter in question WON the secondary challenge, but when her urinal leaked, I knew I had won again.

I bet that $20 is in my wallet, right now.

Wanna bet that there will be something about bets in my images for today?

Wanna bet what I’m going to be celebrating today?

This is what I find on YouTube when I search for “wanna bet?”

Wanna bet that there will be lots of gratitude at the end of this post for everyone who helps me blog every day, including you?

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, quotes | Tags: , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Day 3382: Anger

Decades ago, I learned that anger was the natural human reaction to not getting one’s needs met.

Because so many people disown, stuff, and fear their own anger, I once gave people at a psychiatric day treatment program the assignment of making a badge that said “I ❤️ my anger.”

In therapy groups, I sometimes ask people who their role models are for expressing anger, and often they can’t name anybody.

Obviously, a lot of us still have work to do regarding anger.

Do you see anger in my images for today?

I wonder if there’s going to be any anger because there are (1) so many National days today or (2) no pictures of Joan in this blog.

One of those issues I can fix.

Here’s an interesting TED talk about anger:

Feel free to express anger or any other feelings in the comments section below.

Thanks to all who do their best to deal with anger, including YOU.

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

Day 2801: Tell about something beautiful

I want to tell about something beautiful that happened yesterday, when I went to a doctor’s appointment at one Boston hospital and then went to another Boston hospital for the first time since February to retrieve some beautiful items from my office and to see some beautiful co-workers.   The main beautiful item I wanted to retrieve from my office was a collection of beautiful questions a beautiful person had put together for my Coping and Healing groups. After I got back to my beautiful home, I realized that the beautiful bag I had placed my beautiful items in had a big, beautiful hole in it, and that beautiful  collection of questions was gone.

Then, I had a beautiful decision to make: should I take up more time during my beautiful vacation to look for those beautiful questions or just beautifully accept that my time with them was over?

I called the beautiful Lost and Found department of the big beautiful hospital, remembering that I had lost several beautiful items over the years (including my favorite beautiful red jacket) that had never been found.  I struggled to come up with a beautiful description of the lost item: “It’s a collection of small rectangles with questions on them, held together with a silver ring.”  The beautiful person on the phone said, “Wait a minute” and then returned with this answer, “Nothing like that has been turned in.” I asked, “Should I call again tomorrow?” and the beautiful person said, “Sure.”

Then, I spent more beautiful minutes trying to decide what to do next.  I really didn’t want to get back into my beautiful car and drive in lots of beautiful traffic to retrace my steps.  My beautiful husband could tell that I was very sad that I had lost those beautiful questions.  He said, “Maybe it will turn up.”  I told my beautiful son, who was ready to go on a beautiful walk with me, “I’m going back to try to find what I lost.”

When I got into my beautiful car, I realized that my beautiful Scream mask was also missing. I had put that beautiful mask in the beautiful bag with the big beautiful hole when beautiful people at the beautiful hospitals had told me I needed to wear the beautiful masks they were providing to their beautiful patients to keep them beautifully safe during this very unbeautiful pandemic.

When I parked my beautiful yellow car in the same beautiful place near a beautiful church in beautiful Brookline, Massachusetts, I saw my beautiful Scream mask on the ground, almost immediately.  Then, I had beautiful hopes that I would find my beautiful collection of beautiful questions.

I retraced my steps with beautiful accuracy, looking everywhere for the collection of beautiful questions.  I went back to the beautiful hospital where I work, returned to my beautiful office, took more beautiful photos, retrieved more beautiful items from my office, and met more beautiful co-workers. I talked to several beautiful people who I thought might be able to help me in my beautiful search,  trying to share more beautiful descriptions of what I had lost.  At one point, I said, “It’s a ring – no, not a jewelry ring, but a big silver ring holding together rectangles that have questions on them.”  Everybody tried their beautiful best to understand my stumbling attempts to describe what I had lost, but nobody had seen or could find my beautiful questions.  Knowing I had searched everywhere, I decided that some beautiful person had probably picked up the questions and might put them to beautiful use.

On my beautiful walk back to my beautiful car, I had beautiful thoughts about how we all deal with loss.  Then, much to my beautiful surprise, I saw what I was seeking, as plain as the beautiful day, lying on a beautiful spot on the beautiful sidewalk where lots of beautiful people were walking.  I knew that it had NOT been there when I had walked by that same beautiful spot before. I picked up the Lost and Found item with beautiful speed, placed it on a beautiful wall, and took this beautiful photo:


I am doing my beautiful best to follow the beautiful directions on that beautiful card: “Tell about something beautiful.”

My beautiful readers might notice that my description of the lost item was beautifully imperfect.

Ready to see my other beautiful photos from my beautiful day?  Brace your beautiful self— there’s about a hundred of them.

If you want to expand any of those beautiful pictures, like this one …


… or this one ….


… or this one …


… or this one ….


… or this one …


… or  this one …


… or this one …


… just give it a beautiful click.

What beautiful song should I share in this beautiful moment?

Here‘s “Something Beautiful” performed by Trombone Shorty with Lenny Kravtiz.

Tell about something beautiful, if you choose, in the comments section below.

Thanks to all who help me tell about something beautiful every day, including YOU.

Categories: life during the pandemic, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments

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