Lesson 1: If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at will change.
I have been working in the emergency room practicing medicine for over 10 years. You need different personality traits to be able to think quick and act quick in life or death situations. And let me tell you that PERSPECTIVE is one of those traits that I value highly, not only for my job but also for all things in life!
You know that male that presented to my ER complaining of sore throat and was told at 2 other hospitals he had a throat infection? Well…he didn’t! I knew I needed a new perspective, a new angle to get to the bottom of all his pain, his high fever, and his inability to eat. It occurred to me to get an x-ray. Lo and behold this poor man had swallowed his own dentures!!! They were lodged in his esophagus. He did remember falling asleep with them, and thought they got lost in the house. Because of course, how can a man swallow his own dentures? Good ending to his story, I transferred him to GI service to get those dentures removed by endoscopy. Pain in his throat disappeared. And he got his teeth back : )
But there is another story that actually encouraged me to write this blog post (and it has nothing to do with teeth)! This story also speaks about perspective.
So…We were hiking in the jungle in Costa Rica. I was wearing flip flops (this sounds as ridiculous as swallowing you own dentures, but hey, there was clearly no planning going on this day!). It was scorching hot, and I mean CALIENTE for real. I am certain there were jaguars roaming about (okay, maybe my son made that up, but I was kinda freaked out after he suggested it). Hiking on the “quick” side, I stabbed my foot on something, that caused A LOT of pain. I resourced to techniques I used during childbirth: “each contraction brings me closer to my baby”, only this affirmation sounded like “each step brings me farther away from the jaguar”. But meeting your baby can’t be compared to encountering a most likely imaginary jaguar. So I decided to stop and take a look at my foot to see what was causing so much pain. But I didn’t see anything on my foot. Nothing. Nada. Nult. I put my flip flop back on and continued with the hike, only to find that with each step, I had the certainty I had a massive puncture wound in my foot despite not having seen anything in it. When the noise from baby jaguars in the jungle stopped (okay, it COULD have been the howler monkeys) I decided to take off my flip flop again as at this point this hike was complete agony. I was sure this time I would find my foot cut in half, on the verge of a massive hemorrhage and this would explain the crazy pain. But again, looking into my foot I found nothing. I didn’t want to continue walking and I had resigned myself to better be eaten by a jaguar (imaginary) rather than hemorrhage from a stab wound to the foot (at this point imaginary as well).
Lesson 2: Teaching affirmations to you children pays off. So the conversation with my 8 year old son went like this:
Nico: mom, get up and walk, its hot, we are hungry, we have to make our way back. We never give up!
Me: its just so weird the pain I have on my foot and I can’t see anything in it!
Nico: I got it mom! I flipped your flip flop and there was a giant thorn stuck in it. I took it off. Lets go.!
8 years old. No medical school training. Clearly more common sense than me and a change in perspective found the cause of all my agony. The problem was never in my foot. It was in the sole of my shoe, so every time I would take a step this thorn would puncture my skin.
So many times in life, we look at things from one angle only. And in healthcare, I can’t count how many of these stories would be having a happy ending if we were open minded to a change in perspective and a new way to look at them.
Think about how many kids are switched from one drug to the next to treat their ear infections? Its approaching the same problem with a same perspective; that this child is lacking the correct prescription to be healthy. Drugs should be the last resort for a common problem that #1 can be easily prevented and #2 can be easily treated with a more natural approach and less side effects.
Listen, you are preaching to the choir if you tell me that modern medicine is the bomb! In an emergency room setting, I am so grateful we can treat so many ailments like victims of grave car accidents, or humans that swallow their own teeth! ha! But we all know that our kids are the sickest kids in the developing world and take the most amount of drugs. It is time for us to look at how we are raising our kids from a different perspective!
They do say that “THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY IS DOING THE SAME THING OVER AND OVER AGAIN”.
So i invite you to become sane.
Change your perspective.
I promise you it will change your life and your families life!
Chiropractic FIRST, not LAST.