Wall

This is a short, poignant poem written by my friend Annette A. Talbert. It really spoke to me; I hope you appreciate it as much as I did.

In Transition

We humans build walls,

to separate –

we create artificial barriers

to keep those different people

from mixing with “us.”

Walls are first created in our hearts

when we divide the human race by-

race, tribe, religion, politics, sex,

then we build a wall to keep

the “others” away.

But travel by air into space-

and notice there are no barriers

on this fragile blue planet.

©annettealaine2017

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A Different Way of Seeing

I wrote this several years ago, and it was published in the anthology entitled On Being a Pharmacist: True Stories by Pharmacists, compiled and edited by Joanna Maudlin Pangilinan and J. Aubrey Waddell. It was published by the American Pharmacists Association in 2010.

I share it now.

     Ancaro imparo means “I am still learning” and is attributed to the 87-year-old Michelangelo. Like him, I am still learning and have found that nearly every pharmacist has been able to teach me something. That’s one of the great advantages to working with so many people over the years. The mentoring process is ongoing and perhaps even subtle at times. Often, we learn to do something a better, easier way. Sometimes it’s a new technique, or it’s a more effective way to communicate with the patients we serve. At times, we even learn how best not to do something.

Once, the lesson I learned was how to be more compassionate. Lori was a technician I hired many years ago. She had a gap of nearly 5 years in her work history, and I wondered whether she would be dependable. From her interview, I found out that she was a mother of two young boys and was just reentering the workforce. Although she was on welfare, she had plans to go back to school to finish her education.

At the time, I wondered if I would be taking a gamble by hiring her. In the end, I decided to give her a try, and, boy, did that gamble pay off! She was extremely dependable, had a great work ethic, and was upbeat about everything. In her words, she was “blessed” despite the difficulties of rearing two boys, returning to school full time, working, and being on welfare. I worked with her for several years until she graduated as a nurse.

One day when we were working together, a patient on welfare came in to pick up a prescription. The prescription was written for Phospho-soda, which is an over-the-counter (OTC) medication. In the state in which I reside, OTC medications are not, for the most part, covered by Medicaid; however, prescription medications are. Thus, even if the patient has a prescription for an OTC medication, she would have to pay for it. Most patients on Medicaid cannot afford to pay for any medication that isn’t covered by their insurance, no matter how inexpensive.

In the patient’s case, this medication, being used for a procedure, was medically necessary, yet the patient did not have the money to pay for it. At that, Lori said that she would pay for it, and she did. She, who could ill afford it herself, paid for the patient’s prescription.

I admit that I was embarrassed by my lack of generosity and compassion. That I, who could easily afford it, couldn’t see that the patient’s need outweighed the cost, but Lori did.

Whether she knows it or not, that act of stewardship has forever changed the way I look at patients and their needs. I believe I have become a more caring pharmacist and have at times done the same thing for others—whether it’s a college student away from home and out of cash, a person who just can’t afford a needed antibiotic, or some other equally important reason. No, I don’t pay for everyone’s prescriptions, and I don’t do it all the time, but sometimes it is as Lori said, “Well, she needs it, doesn’t she?”

Nancy Brady, 2009

 

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Totally Nuts!

Just had to share this blog; it is totally nuts.
By the way, the bag of peanuts that is labelled for the birds doesn’t post a warning. Birds and squirrels, you are on your own.

notesfromthecupcakerescueleague

The other day I bought a bag of peanuts.

The back of the bag listed the ingredients: peanuts

and below that–

“Allergen Statement: May contain peanuts.”

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Longings

From the perspective of author Michael Seidel. Thanks for sharing your opinion and thoughts.

Michael Seidel, writer

I hate myself on days like this.

I confess, I have longings.

Some are very simple and basic. Many will claim them as impractical and idealistic, even absurd.

Like, I have longings to be young again, and to have a nice cup of coffee with a pastry or donuts without worries about its healthiness or origins, longings to walk around, preferably on a warm, pleasant beach, smiling and nodding in friendliness to other people, who simply nod and smile back in friendliness.

I have longings for success, comfort, happiness, fun, and security in all its forms.

I have longings for freedom, equality, liberty and justice.

I’ll bet those longings are shared with many others.

I bet many people on the right and left share these longings.

I bet many politicians and CEOs share these longings, along with teachers, minorities, refugees, shoppers, consumers, teenagers, the elderly, the rich and the poor.

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Immigrant…

A couple of years ago my husband and I had our genome mapped through 23andme.com. I have to say I was surprised to find out what my genes said about me (and my ethnic makeup). While I knew that I had mostly Scots-Irish ancestors based on my grandmother’s genealogy quest in the late sixties, I didn’t know much more than that.

What I found out is that I am a mutt, a Heinz 57, if you will. My genetic makeup includes sub-Saharan African ancestry, Native American ancestry, Asian ancestry, and European ancestry including 2.6% Neanderthal. In other words, I am a human being with parts from across the globe. I don’t know how all these parts came to be. I don’t know all the pieces to my genetic puzzle; I just know that based on my genetic results, I am black, brown, red, yellow, and white.

I am a United States citizen because I was born here. It’s as simple as that…for me, that is. Yet, somewhere in the past, I had ancestors who weren’t born here, who came here as immigrants and became citizens. So, by extension, I am an immigrant, too.

The question is: based upon my definition above, how many people in the United States can claim that they are not immigrants? If one is 100% Native American, then yes, that may be the exception. Otherwise, most of us are immigrants even if we haven’t had our genome mapped or genealogy checked out.

The United States was a country founded on immigrants. Many of the immigrants came here because of religious persecution. Others came for other reasons. Some came, not of their own volition, but because they were enslaved. Whatever the reason, people came to these shores and found a new home. Some could only speak their own language when they first got here, but usually in a short amount of time, they were assimilated.

Because we are a nation of immigrants, we should be willing to take a chance on people who are just like us, that is immigrants, no matter their race, creed, religion, nationality, or sexual orientation. Except now, many people are being denied the opportunity to come to this country. Our borders are being sealed off and fear and lies are being spread by our leaders. It is a scary time for all…for those who would love to come here and can’t; for those who have family both here and there; for those who have lived here all their lives, but see discrimination for those who may be different from us. (Or not so different.)

I am saddened and depressed by the vitriolic rhetoric and executive orders that are being signed that affect so many. It’s like a bad dream, and it is hard to believe this is the United States. That it has become this reality of targeting ethnic groups, targeting nationalities, targeting religions, and targeting anyone who is different. I can’t be silent about this. Who will be next? Will it be you?

I am an immigrant. Are you?

 

#IamanImmigrant

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Resistance Bread

It’s not my recipe, but I love the idea of it and intend to make it myself. And I am not much of a baker.

From the Keyboard

dscf9346

I created this tea bread so that it would be food for strength and comfort—loaded with antioxidants, yet sufficiently sweet. Indeed, my husband says he can’t think of this as bread, as it seems more like dessert to him. I, on the other other hand, eat it for breakfast. The recipe is open to improvisation. If you try it, and experiment with your own additions/changes, please share!

Preheat oven to 350º

Liberally grease an 8″ x 4″ bread pan with cultured butter.

Mix:

1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons grape seed oil or melted cultured butter
2 beaten eggs
1 grated apple
1/3-1/2 cup orange juice (pulp or no pulp, it doesn’t make a difference, just start with the smaller amount and add more if necessary)
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1/3 cup dried cranberries or cherries (I mix the two when I have both on hand)
1/2 cup coarsely…

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Resolutions, Revisited: Part 1

(Okay, to be honest, I started this post more than a week ago, but I liked the beginning so I am not changing it.)

The end of 2016 is nearly here; 2017 is just around the corner, and this pedometer geek has forgone all the monthly reports on steps taken and books read. Despite the lack of monthly blogs, the resolutions have remained ongoing, and for the most part, there were an almost equal number of successes as failures (or should that be an equal number of failures as successes…in other words, is it more positive one way or the other?).

Having said that, regarding the first resolution of putting more steps on the pedometer, here is a roundup for the year. Except for the highlight of obtaining the goal of 10,000 steps every single day in March (finally the goal was reached), there have been several months in which this pedometer geek slacked off, particularly as the year neared its end. Aerobic steps leveled off, too. (Aerobic steps are those steps of at least ten continuous minutes of walking.) Again, the high was in March. Here are the totals for the year.

January: 248,245 steps/109,406 aerobic steps

February: 291,681 steps/159,579 aerobic steps

March: 329,663 steps/185,901 aerobic steps

April: 163,976 steps/39,344 aerobic steps

May: 200,469 steps/40,528 aerobic steps

June: 167,395 steps/9,577 aerobic steps

July: 199,157 steps/13,463 aerobic steps

August: 150,609 steps/5,936 aerobic steps

September: 130,338 steps/9,074 aerobic steps

October: 144,715 steps/7,109 aerobic steps

November: 113,547 steps/5,384 aerobic steps

December: 136,870 steps/13,326 aerobic steps

With the advent of 2017, new goals (resolutions) are being set. Of course, first and foremost, the goal remains to put 10K daily on the pedometer, but this pedometer geek has decided to track mileage as well. The goal is to log 1,000 miles this year. To do so will require about three miles a day, which equates to about 10,000 steps a day based on this pedometer geek’s stride length. In other words, it will take concerted, continual effort, not just one or two months. Will it be accomplished? Time will tell.

Next post: Reading resolution roundup

 

 

 

 

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