Sunday, August 14, 2011

Random thoughts

Remember the times when you were a kid many adults treat you as if you were invisible? The times when you line up at your favourite 'nasi ayam' stall and in the end a 'busy hurrying' adult cuts the line by saying she is in a rush and you ended waiting an extra 10 minutes because the so-called rushing adult had to have 10 packets of rice to go. Or the times when you asked someone whats going on and the answer is "you are a kid, you won't understand". Well, I sort of remembered the feeling when such a thing happened to me and hence I appreciate all those adults that makes me feel like an equal when such situation presented itself. One example of my favourite adult was the Hospital Kuala Lumpur rojak man (link).

Therefore, when my four-year old niece wanted to help out bathing my son and change his diaper I let her. She helped me with squirting the bath foam unto my hands, applying talcum powder all over baby Azry's body, helped to chose his outfit and also apply lotion on his limbs. She was grinning ear to ear when he was all ready and smelling so fresh and nice and proudly announced to everyone 'Kakak Aida tolong Azry mandi'.

Seeing her so happy makes me feel elated. Yes, kids have feelings too and by allowing her to help out makes her feel responsible and is part of the family.

Note: Not all is well as there was a bit of cleaning up to do after that; as although the talcum powder was meant to be on the baby loads ended up on the bed. That's the price I paid to get that cute grin and also cut a bit on the 'sibling-rivalry' (or should I say'cousin-rivalry) that she has been showing to the baby.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Modern Day Fountain of Youth?

The fountain of youth was a legendary spring that supposedly restores the youth of anyone who drink its waters. So many aspiring immortals and explorers in history set out to discover the location of this spring. The idea of just drinking a miracle water to keep oneself healthy and young without doing anything else is just too hard to resist. In this modern day such idea is still capturing the minds of many but in a different form. Today, instead of exploring the thick jungle of the Amazon the so-called fountain of youth presents itself at your doorstep in a nice expensive packaging with terms like the 'ultimate anti-oxidants'; 'anti-cancer'; miracle drink etcetera.

Being healthy is not just looking good externally i.e. it is not just being thin- though that is the main aim of many who purchase these expensive dietary drinks or supplements. Being healthy to me is being able to climb five flight of stairs without even breaking a sweat. Being healthy is able to run after your kid in the house without huffing and puffing away. It is the cardiovascular health that is important; the health of the pump that helps to sustain our life from the 4th weeks of life as a foetus till the last beat of our death. No amount of 'miracle water' or supplement can keep the heart healthy if it does not get it fair amount of exercise.

The 20minutes of exercise three times a week is the minimal effort that is needed to keep your heart in top condition. However, the thought of spending your precious time for yourself is so daunting that people rather go in throngs to establishment that advertise " injections, no exercise needed...". To the doctor the standard answer to a suggestion of exercise is " No time la doctor". Uh...duh!

Another aspect of healthy living is eating well. Supplements are only needed if you do not get sufficient amounts from your diet. Knowing your food and its health content is essential aspect of keeping yourself healthy; and knowing your portions and the healthier way of cooking is essential in preventing obesity. All of this requires effort which many are not willing to undertake. Takeout counters are much easier than making your own sandwich.However, I must admit I too love the occasional McDonald drivethru excursions especially after a long day in the operating theatre... I am only human after all.

Lastly, no amount of rejuvenating anti-oxidant drinks could counter the ill effects of smoking and alcohol. So if you are thinking of purchasing the expensive bottles of some miracle berries to offset your nicotine and ethanol intake, don't. It is better to just stop smoking and drinking; and it is cheaper too, it doesn't cost you a cent.

So to those who are thinking of asking me how to keep oneself healthy and vibrant and expects a shortcut way, please don't. Just go and watch the Biggest Loser and exercise with Jillian Micheals/Bob Harper. As they say in the show there are no shortcuts.

(Note: this is written as a response to my non medical friends who keep bugging me for some secret to keep oneself thin and healthy; and then annoying me by not following my advice and then asking me about some miracle drinks or supplements that they spent hundreds purchasing)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Business as usual

Next Monday I will be back at work after 4 months of leave (3 months maternity and one month of my accumulated leaves from last year). It is of mixed feelings going back but I actually miss working and operating. I will miss waking up late with my boy; I will miss the afternoon naps I have while feeding him; I will miss watching all the re-runs on the telly and so much more. It has been a good break after working for 12 years.

However, I am eager to get back into the OT. My fingers and hands have been itching to fix something or more accurately someone who is broken. It has been a long time since I truely operated as an orthopod. It has been a year. Ever since I got pregnant I have been on 'light duty' and I had to stay away from the usual trauma cases. This is because majority of the 'usual' orthopaedic surgeries requires image intensifier (II) which uses radiation, which may be detrimental to a developing foetus. In cases which I had to come in, it became a bit more lengthy as I had to leave the OR when it was time to use the II. And in other cases like hip and knee surgeries which required brute strength, my concerned boss would ask me to just assist as he is worried my gynae Mei Lin would scold him if the exertion causes premature contractions or worst case scenario an abortion. So for the past 1 year I end up supervising the MOs doing local cases; did most of the ward rounds and the paper work; and stayed more in the clinics.

So come Monday, it will be back to the usual business and oh boy... I would have loads of patients in the clinic - so many people have been waiting for me to come back and has been postponing their appointments since 4 months ago.Oh boy!