I am very fortunate to have a pretty darn epic drive home.
Often I will take the back roads from Mullum, through the rolling, green farmlands of Myocum, popping out at the new highway interchange and heading back onto the now nearly deserted old highway—the Hinterland Way.
It’s a very fun drive.
Curves, dips, hills.
Sure there are a bunch of potholes but, hey, if its one thing Byron Bay is known for outside of its beaches, its the Shire’s potholes.
It takes me about 25 minutes from leaving work to pull into the street I live in, drive down my driveway and come home.
Now, while this time is a fun drive; an opportunity to listen to a podcast or two or just chill, there is one important task to do.
And that is to ask myself the question—Are there any patients I am still thinking about?
Is there something tugging at my awareness that today, in some shape or form, something unusual happened in a consult.
Did I promise something I didn’t do?
Did I give in to...
So today I finally got to record some videos I have been trying to make for about 2 weeks…
Slides were done.
Computers set up.
Screenflow software ready.
Zoom software ready.
Haircut yesterday, looking sharp.
The first recording… No worries at all.
Second recording… all good.
Third recording—halfway through and I get a warning on one of the computers… “Your internet connection is unstable”
Perhaps Telstra was doing some upgrade work.
Perhaps the internet fairies were on strike.
Either way, the outcome for me was that one of the video feeds dropped out completely.
I try again.
The same thing happens.
I try a third time.
The fourth time, I get it to work, but I have no idea whether the gaps can be fixed in editing or it’s just going to look very average.
I was on fire when presenting too, and so to have this happen really, really annoyed me.
So much so that I was actually considering getting another office...
I just completed the second quarter of my year.
And in doing so I am reviewing how did I go?
I had a three-month plan and overall I did ok.
From 1 April, my target was to do 3 unassisted chin ups… DONE.
My target was to have my daughter sleep in her bed… DONE.
My target was to be performing a regular kirtan… NOT DONE.
My target was to have a weekend away with my wife… NOT DONE.
As you can see… some got done. Some did not.
So I am creating my next 3 month targets.
And a critical step is to actually look not at what got done and what did not…
But: Where am I now?
This is the first critical step.
If I skip this and just go ahead and create my next targets, then it becomes far more difficult because the journey from where I think I am and where I actually am, are two very different experiences.
And if I run with where I think I am, suddenly my chances of actually completing my targets decreases substantially because I am living in a fantasy,...
Today I had a medical student for both sessions of GP.
She’s ultra keen and it is fun to have her enthusiasm in the room.
Everything is new to her.
Everything interesting and fascinating.
It is the benefit of the beginner’s mind…
And I recognized myself as her back in 2000.
Except I wasn’t anywhere near as enthusiastic.
Some of the time I was barely keeping my eyes open.
This may have been through decreased sleep or through a particular sensitivity, I have to carbohydrates inducing sleep in me, especially if I was just passively watching.
One of the outcomes of these experiences has been to greatly value giving my medical students the opportunity at the earliest to start consulting.
As they quickly find out, there is a world of difference between watching a consult and doing a consult.
Suddenly, what was easy to watch become difficult to do.
One case today we examined the ear tympanic membranes.
The patient had a popping and crackling sensation in the left...
I finished up with Hamish at soccer this morning and had a phone call with Emma…
Could I pick up strawberries, passionfruit, and cream for the pavlova?
“Sure!” I said.
I went and got them, headed back home.
I walked into the kitchen and gave her the ingredients.
Oh… The dishwasher needs loading.
Can you do that too?
I jump in with Hamish and we load the dishwasher.
“Oh, actually, the pavlova isn’t enough” she said.
Can you cook a Tarte Tartin?
And you need to change your shorts, they are dirty.
And, the cream needs whipping… can you do that?
And, oh, one more thing… “I bought a new hammock kit for the cottage, can you put that up too?”
I said… “I’ll do the Tarte Tartin, cream and change my shorts…
But the hammock is going to have to wait. I won’t get that done in time”.
So I had another option.
Just say no to all of these requests.
Have a massive fight with Em.
And then deal...
Last night it ticked over to 9 PM.
Both boys were on Fortnite.
They had been playing from about 7, so a good 2 hours.
I went into FamilyZone and moved both devices onto “Sleep” mode…
Sam did ok with it…
Hamish, however, did not cope so well…
He had been sick for the previous 3 days and I did not give them any warning that Fortnite was about to stop.
I basically induced a rapid exit out of the game world, back into this reality.
He was not a happy camper.
Suddenly he was angry and distressed.
He was not happy about brushing his teeth.
He was not happy about going to bed.
Even once I got him into bed, he could not sleep.
He had his “angry breathing” going on.
I gave him a back rub.
Got him a glass of water.
I ended up jumping into bed to comfort him and at least 30 minutes of moderately challenging parenting later, he fell asleep…
I took from this that this could have been handled better.
I should have set the expectations at the...
So it started easily enough.
My son Hamish asked if he could put Clash Royale on my phone.
If you are not familiar with the game, you have to try to take out an opponent’s three towers by strategically choosing and placing different characters on the screen.
It has many, many variables, an upgrade system and I have already had problems with being addicted to it in the past.
I don’t remember choosing to open the game the first time.
I do remember when I got in, it had a whole host of bonuses and freebies…
Just what was required to restart my addiction.
And it kicked in quickly.
Pretty soon I was saying to myself “Ok, this is the last game”, only to find myself playing again.
Having been to this place many times before, I recognized the addiction.
And I knew the treatment.
Interestingly it has shown up at a period of high stress in my life…
And, it definitely gave me a distinct feeling of accomplishment.
Winning a battle.
Losing a battle...
This morning my alarm went off at 5 am.
And I found myself in bed with the bed temperature absolutely perfect.
I don’t know if you have had this experience, but it is where the bed enters the perfect feeling of warmth as if I was being cuddled by angels.
Outside of this experience was a cold house.
I live in a Queenslander house, so there are literally gaps in places in the floorboards where I can look down and see the ground below.
It is definitely not a sealed house.
So it is cold.
Not Melbourne or Tasmania cold, but still, it is cold.
So faced with this dilemma, I chose to meditate in bed.
Inhale love, exhale gratitude.
As you can imagine if you have done meditation, this leads me back into a dream/sleep state and finally, at 5.51am I managed to get myself out of bed.
Having “lost” 51 minutes of my morning I then proceeded to quickly step through the rest of routine…
An angry stack instead of a mega stack, a messenger text to my brother instead of a...
Today Hamish is home with me.
He has been sick for about 36 hours.
He has symptoms of mild fever, sore throat, poor sleep, all being worse at night.
He has been seeking water, and panadol definitely makes it better.
The last time he was sick was roughly 2 years ago, and I consulted with him sitting in my GP room.
He did pretty well with a phone and a box of tissues and my patients actually seemed to appreciate meeting him and knowing I have kids.
But today, luckily, I can work from home and he is just sitting quietly watching people play games on youtube.
However, the question did come this from my wife…
Perhaps, if we had had an RDO for him last week, then he would not be sick.
Just taking some time out of school, even though he was not sick may have recharged his batteries and protected him against this illness.
We could have gone to the beach, explored the rock pools, had a picnic or hung out at home and done gardening…
It sounds like a pretty good day for my...