Originally, I was writing this week's blog about AOM's ability
to treat hand, foot and mouth disease (HFMD). I have chosen to post
that in a future blog. After the events that occurred 7/20/12, the
shooting in Colorado, I feel pulled to blog about this instead of
HFMD. I didn't personally know any of the victims, but my heart has
hurt for them and their loved ones. I have no interest in blogging
about the man who committed the heinous act, but instead, the
desire to support those whose lives have been shaken as a result of
the evil act.
I cannot begin to understand how the family members of the
victims feel at this time. I cannot imagine how the girlfriends' of
the men who died saving their lives feel. It overwhelms me to think
about how the parents and loved ones of the children who died feel.
I am unable to grasp how any of the victims struggling for life and
their loved ones feel at this time. Every life in this world
counts, regardless if another deems otherwise.
As President Obama stated in his address, this event reminds us
life is fragile and to hug our children and loved ones a bit
tighter tonight. Sadly, the families and friends who lost their
sons and daughters, spouses, best friends, and more cannot give
that extra hug we are so fortunate to do today, and for many days
to come. I feel in addition to giving our families extra love, we
should also send loving energy and prayers to those
In AOM, we are taught a form of medicine called Qi Gong. An
aspect of Qi Gong involves meditation. In one of the meditations,
we are guided to go up to Universal energy. For some, Universal
energy means God, the Dao, Divine Spirit, and so on. One's
underlying belief system can be personal to them and should not act
as a barrier to participate in the meditation. The important thing
is to go into absolute good Universal energy and meditate in it.
While meditating in this energy field, we are taught to think the
word or image of love. Once our whole being and meditation space is
filled with love, we are taught to project this love to a specific
area for the purpose of healing. I believe it would be extremely
beneficial for all of us to do this meditation daily, sending the
loving energy to those suffering from the effects of the Colorado
shooting. Since love is infinite and limitless, we are taught we
can send love to all those it is the highest good to
If you're open to it, please give this meditation a try! I
believe, even the smallest ripple affects the waves that move the
ocean. We can each be a ripple that unites for the good of
humanity! If you have any questions about the meditation, please
email me at
This week has been an important week in
my family's life. After 39 years of being an HVAC engineer at the
same location, my dad retired. My dad's retirement has come almost
exactly two years after my mom retired from being a nursing
professor at a college. My mom instructed for 30 years. Being a
part of the celebration of these events has taught me how important
it is to choose a career path in life and put 100% effort and
dedication into that path.
Over the years, I've watched my parents love their professions,
through the easy and difficult times. My mom experienced being a
lead person in a union strike while my dad was part of many company
changes. I think one of the most profound impacts observing my
parents and their careers has taught me is to stand in your dream
and stay loyal to it. My parents fell in love with their intended
career path from the moment they were in college. Funny enough,
that is also when they fell in love with each other. In a couple
weeks, my parents will be celebrating their
40th wedding anniversary!
I feel very thankful to have been modeled by two driven and
dedicated parents that base much of their morals on trust, love,
faith, and loyalty. As a result, it has taught me to do the same.
While AOM is my second career path, I feel my first career was
leading me to this path. It was the doorway to this career. I just
had some other paths to walk before being able to realize this
role, fully. In addition to being heartfelt role models, my parents
are by far, my biggest supporters in my education and goals.
After learning my dad retired, I also learned he took another
engineering position at a new location. After 39 years of dedicated
engineering, he still desires to continue in his career path, even
when he clearly has the ability to stop! I find this very
impressive! My mom also took on a new job after retiring, but it is
100% volunteer work! To me, this shows there are always more dreams
and goals to create.
It has been very moving to be in the midst of these endings and
new beginnings for my parents. It is making a powerful impact
watching my two lifelong role models venture into new chapters of
their lives. Additionally, it is very interesting to watch two
people finish more than a 30-year career path in one direction
while I am surrounded by NUHS students preparing to begin their
paths. I wonder what the future holds for all of us. I believe it
will be influential and adventurous!
This past week, I had the opportunity to present my dad as a
case study for my Senior Seminar II class. It turned out to be a
Before he came to class, I performed an intake and case history
with him. I learned that when working with family, it was a little
difficult to stay objective, as I know him well, so I had a
different perception of certain things than he. With a patient at
clinic, there is usually no outside reference point, so the
information being given is the only information the intern and
clinician learn. With family, we know what they eat, their health
history and their moods, but their perception and ours are not
always the same. I think I was supposed to let the patient be right
in this case, but since it was my dad, I found an area of grey for
us both to agree on when we saw things a little differently. I
think this was a great learning opportunity for us both.
When my dad came to the clinic, it was an interesting experience
to step back and listen to the clinician and other intern ask him
further questions and gather additional information. It was both
difficult and motivating to see my dad fully as a patient at the
clinic. Since he is my dad, I have always looked up to him, but at
the same time, would do anything for him.
Once we decided on a treatment plan, we advised my dad to go
into the treatment room and prepare for his treatment. He was a
very cooperative patient. He is rather needle-sensitive and very
in-tune to the "qi sensation" (energetic response of the needles),
but handled it very well. He informed us of how he was feeling
during the needling aspect of the treatment once we had placed all
the needles. I felt this brought an added educational benefit.
My dad reported a positive response to the treatment. He
continued to feel the benefits of the treatment the following days.
In addition to my dad's benefits and the educational aspects of
this case study, this felt like a bit of a milestone somehow for my
dad and me. It felt a bit peculiar at times to have our roles
shifted as patient and intern, but at the same time, it felt like
something expanded between us by doing so. If you have read my
previous blog from last trimester, you know that my dad and I are
very close and he joined me at the AOM pinning ceremony. Having a
moment in time where we were patient and intern instead of dad and
daughter was rather intriguing.
A fair amount of students in the AOM program have families. Some
students are married, some have children, and some are single
parents. Whatever the situation is, having a family while being a
student is usually viewed as extremely rewarding, but also a
juggling act at times. Being in school with the motivation of
family supporting you, or for single parents, to support your loved
one(s) is such a root source of motivation from my
This week I interviewed one of my best friends and fellow
students, Cynthia, who is a single mom in the program. I think she
is extremely inspiring and motivating. She is a nurse, RN, in
the AOM program. She is also pursuing her nurse practitioner degree
and working two part-time jobs while raising her son. Within just a
few minutes of meeting Cynthia, it was clear that her source
motivation for pushing herself so hard was to make the best life
possible for her son. She also has a heartfelt passion to help
others, which I think is rather clear from her career choices.
From Cynthia's Perspective:
"Being a mom and going to school requires a lot of multi
tasking. I am cooking while doing my homework as well as helping my
child while he does his homework. My work is never done. I feel
like I spend most of my time in my car with dropping and picking
him up from school, dropping and picking him up from whoever is the
sitter that day, and driving back and forth from school. It's
exhausting and I am always drained, but I never quit working
towards my goals even though sometimes I want to. I know it's
temporary and my reward in the end will be great. My child further
increases my drive to better myself because I know his life will be
better as well. By the time I'm done with school he will have been
to 3 or 4 of my college graduations!"
I think Cynthia summarizes how many parents in the program feel.
At times, being a parent, husband or wife and a full-time student
may feel overwhelming, but that overwhelming feeling is fleeting.
It cannot compete with the overall satisfaction that will come when
we have accomplished our goals and are out practicing the medicine.
We will be able to offer help to others to the best of our
abilities while having complete peace of mind that our families are
• What is AOM?
• PTSD Clinic for Veterans
• Pedatric AOM
• Learning Through Clinic
• Journey into AOM
• Hospital Residency
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