Te Toca A Ti – It’s Your Turn

People say it differently around the world: It’s Karma, Life’s a *itch, Murphy’s Law — but I’ll just sum it up in “Te Toca a Ti”TeTocaaTi

It’s your turn.

The issue is with health issues, you’re never planning for WHEN “it’s your turn”.   For somethings in life, ‘unplanned’ items might be great – like a bonus at work, a winning lottery ticket, great report cards, and an awesome come-from-behind-win.  But I’ve really never heard anyone say “It’s my turn to get lung cancer!” or “It’s my turn to get diabetes!”  It just doesn’t happen – or at least not around people that I know.

So if health issues always crop up when unexpected, how do we function in the moment they arise?

 1. Build your lifelines in advance.  Know of your friends who has your back – who can grab the kids from school? who can runs some errands? who can sit with you at the doctor’s office? who will deal with your mail?  As adults, I trust you’ve encountered enough people to know who has your back!

2. Build your networks in advance. I’m not saying know everyone in the world. As we learned from “6 Degrees of Separation from Kevin Bacon…” – it’s not many connections needed to get from a question or issue you have to someone who knows the answer.   On Healthcare Twitter world, we’ve been known to say “You don’t know Jack” – “You have to meet Jack” (hint: google pancreatic jack).  Then reach out to him, because you gotta know Jack!  The point is, it’s a small world. Use Twitter to help you, as Regina Holliday and ePatient Dave  and others did this weekend to help group-think healthcare solutions.

3. Get ready for a ride. I never wished Alexis’ experience on anyone, because I knew it was a tough road. I can’t say my road was tougher than others, because in some ways – I believe it’s easier. I might have been mentality exhausted, but it was really Alexis’ body doing the fighting. I was also lucky that a lot of Alexis’ struggles were during NICU time when there is a lot of support — doctors, nurses, social workers, other parents, NICU graduates. And we could see the path ahead, we knew what success looked like – a NICU grad. Alexis’ experience and our transformation from that shapes who we are today, the decisions we make, the priorities we take – for me, the job I do. I don’t know how the ride will change you, but I can assure you – it will, will you let it?

I was interviewed in my college newspaper in 1996, saying:  “I don’t want to make my life impossible, but I like a challenge.”

Since we all will encounter a healthcare challenge sometime, try to see the possible in the impossible!

Catherine

P.S. One of my ancient Spanish text books was either called Te Toca a Ti or had sections in it called “Te Toca a Ti” (hence the reference).  It’s one of my favorite phrases that I like to say, and of course stop myself from saying because I’m not surrounded by Spanish-speaking people.)

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Posted on 11/04, in Pain Points, Preparation, Reaching to Others and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. epatientdave

    This is a terrific post, Catherine. It ought to be PRIMARY advice for people on how to deal with such things. Including, preparing in advance.

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