Mt Pleasant News
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Neighbors Growing Together | Jul 28, 2014

Always looking for a silver lining

Jan 03, 2014

By BROOKS TAYLOR

Mt. Pleasant News

A long time ago, I heard a friend define a problem as nothing more than a disguised opportunity.

At the time, the remark was one of those “in one ear, out the other” scenarios, barely registering.

Over the years, however, problems have taken me back to the definition and have found the definition holds a lot of truth.

Along those same lines, I firmly believe that there is a silver lining in nearly every unfortunate experience.

As some of you know, I had an unfortunate experience recently.

The silver linings were the byproducts of the experience. Resulting from the misfortune was a nine-day stay at the Henry County Health Center followed by eight days at Arbor Court in Mt. Pleasant.

While I am not a stranger to hospital stays, this was my first experience in a nursing home; and no, nursing home residency was not on my bucket list.

My silver lining was not the time off work. That became old very fast. Daytime television is nearly as thought-provoking as Sunday night’s lineup. Can you really take a program that has Jennifer McCarthy as a host seriously?

Kelly Ripa and former New York Giants gridder Michael Strahan’s morning show provided entertainment for about three days and the “People’s Court,” “Divorce Court” and whatever court programs they shove at you had their moments albeit, moments that were few and far between.

The silver lining I saw were the doctors, nurses, housekeepers, dietary aides and therapists I brushed shoulders with for the final half of December 2013.

Because I have two daughters who are headed for nursing careers, I have a soft spot in my heart for health-care workers. Too often, they are the messengers, feeling the wrath of patients even though they had nothing to do with the perceived problem.

Housekeepers and dietary workers, too, are an under-appreciated lot. All patients expect to be in clean, sterile surroundings and be served top-notch food. Neither happens with the wave of a magic wand.

Those who took care of me and aided my recovery during those dark days were the best of the bunch as far as I am concerned. Reflecting back on my past hospitalization experience, it is rather easy to see what health-care professionals are passionate and which ones treat it merely as a job.

Perhaps I was lucky, but I doubt that. I experienced kind, compassionate care at both places, and I know that greatly helped my recovery. It is comforting to know that places proclaiming to give compassionate care are not providing lip service but can and do deliver on that pledge.

Had enough winter?

If not, you can take delight in the advance forecast. If you have, you are like me — scratching your head and wondering what keeps you in the Midwest.

I think I heard something before winter that Farmer’s Almanac predicted a hard one. I didn’t pay much attention because the Almanac is bats about .500 on its predictions.

During a conversation of Virgil Schmitt, Iowa State University Extension agronomist, Schmitt said the 90-day National Weather Service’s advance forecast (through January 2014) called for above normal temperatures.

Hmmm. I took more stock in the NWS prediction. I am beginning to think I put the saddle on the wrong horse.

Oh well, this, too, shall pass….hopefully before April.

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