Two Sides of a Coin

Prepare for the unexpected – disability and bucket list

Two sides of a coin – be prepared for a change in income – and still have income to have fun! Disability insurance – you can have personal policies and a group policy. Here are some features to check in your policy (s): Paid by post tax dollars, own occupation, cost of living adjustments, qualifying events, and ability to increase amount of insurance as your income increases.

Two sides of a coin – be prepared for a change in income – and still have income to have fun! Disability insurance – you can have personal policies and a group policy. Here are some features to check in your policy (s): Paid by post tax dollars, own occupation, cost of living adjustments, qualifying events, and ability to increase amount of insurance as your income increases. I have two podcasts with Dr. Yerrington about disability and a bonus third for females. Follow this link if you are interested Now planning for fun! Bucket List – if you don’t have one – get one! Here is a wheel of life Brainstorm10 items in each category and then decide which are the most important. If you do this with a friend, you may find they have some fun items you want to include yourself! My first items on my bucket list related to travel – because if I couldn’t travel due to a recurrence of cancer – I wanted to make sure I had memories. I travelled to Africa, Alaska, and Galapagos. And I was able to bring one or more of the children along – who are all now young adults!

Five years of experience and fatigue

Sunset in Tucson

It is coming up on 5 years since my recurrence of ovarian cancer journey began. My level of energy has been up and down over the last five years providing a physical and mental challenge. So much research says activity helps mood and especially during chemotherapy. Also, research on healthy subjects, shows the incremental gains that can be made from consistent and increasing levels of endurance or strength training. I have found that trying to increase anything seems counterproductive and leaves me in a worse place the following day or two. My family can vouch for this and frequently ask me to slow down or not do something that my mind wants to do and my body is a bit reluctant. I found two articles this week particularly helpful in explaining why. One is an internal technique in planning out what someone with chronic fatigue can do to manage their energy. This is relevant for anyone that has fatigue from chemo, long CoVID, or other chronic disease. The technique is called pacing. This is planning out minimal energy usage each day, evaluating along the way, and only adding activity as energy allows. Being aware of one’s energy is the most important part and mindfulness will help in evaluating your energy level. “Powering through” is not helpful, is hurtful, and in the long run adds to a lower level of activity.

The second article is a way to talk to someone about their level of fatigue so everyone is on the same page of understanding. Spoons serve as an analogy to energy level. The number of spoons it takes to do an activity can vary by day.

Hope this helps if you have the issue or someone you care about has this issue.

Today is your Lucky Day!

Amazon has released a best seller! Get your copy now! Kindle version on sale through Wednesday! Sara Shikhman, attorney, and Carol Clinton, physician, discuss the key to opening, scaling and exiting a MedSpa business. This is a model that can be applied across healthcare start ups. This book is a foundational text for the MedSpa industry. Although full of seriously valuable information, presented in a cohesive and comprehensive format, the book is very readable, has a great conversational tone, and scenes from Carol and Sara’s lives are so emotionally poignant that they have readers alternately laughing and crying–sometimes on the same page. I think some of the most profound chapters are “Exit Strategies” and “The University”: teaching a generation of elite practitioners is not just a good idea–it is one of the best ways to create value for your business. Another big idea about investing in innovation is that, “a tech company in the aesthetics space is much more valuable than an aesthetics business that uses technology.” Listen to the podcast and see the value this book can bring to you.

The power of faith, John Kennedy shares his experience

John and Eileen Kennedy in St Thomas at the Church’s memorial garden

John Kennedy is the father of one of my other podcast interviewees, Maureen Kennedy. John was on the brink of leaving this world with advanced cancer when Maureen was quite young. He shares his experience of healing as he received grace and mercy on what he thought was a final trip with his wife. The photo here shows you he made it much longer than just that trip. Throughout medical school, he sent Maureen information frequently on advances in medicine. But this inspiring story shows that there is power in believing.

Why and How to Enter a Clinical Trial

This was an educational process for me to understand clinical trials and where it might fit into my course of treatment. I think my journey may help you or if you ever need to help someone else go through the process.

Why do I personally want the best care? Well, I want to go back to Disney with this crazy family, as adults, and with their families, and be able to go to a Disney breakfast! And to create lots of other memories as well!

I really like this article too – as it helps one to understand if you are not asked to weigh in on treatment plans – what is helpful to say. I know this is about grief. It also holds true for a serious illness.

Recalibrating your Life – Maureen Kennedy

Meet some of my classmates from OSU Class of Medicine 1990, Geri Hewitt, Anne Taylor, Maureen Kennedy and myself. Maureen tells her story of making a bold change – after having invested her 20s in going to medical school and residency. Once she started a family and in private practice, her life course took her in a different direction. She shares her hopes and fears. And she discovers her fears were not as she thought and by being vulnerable to those that meant the most to her, she carved out the life she wanted to lead. Here is to living the life that has the most meaning to you.

And a quick update on me: I am through the fourth cycle of my year long clinical trial. The treatment is very tiring and I do the best I can with the energy I have. I know this will be behind me some day. I am just learning how to honor the fatigue. I am able to take a brief walk most days and read a bit. I am grateful when I have the energy for family and friends. And on this beautiful fall day, I am grateful for sunshine and cool weather as well!

I love hearing from you. My nephew sent this story to me this week that made me laugh. And grateful, that by the time I had children, I had a bit more sense and did not let them climb on the roof, like I did when I babysat Michael. I was a 12 year old babysitter and he was a 5 year old boy. I let him play outside, alone, while I was inside with his sister. The neighbor came over and asked if it was ok if Michael was playing on the roof. He had pulled a swingset up to the side of the house, which was a ranch, and climbed up and was on the roof. Here is a similar adventure of someone else:

Getting to Fearless

Well here we are again. Another year – another round of treatment. I am so grateful there are so many options. A year ago, when my cancer recurred for the first time, there were so many more options. The one that was chosen was based on prior responsiveness to the tumor. Alas, the tumor had it’s own thoughts and decided to recur within six months of the end of treatment. Of course, my first thoughts are an energetic renunciation of having this happen and then quickly my thoughts went to my family. How to tell them? What to say? How to give them the hope and the positive outlook that I have in this journey through cancer and life? Instead, I was just real and shared with them my fear and my plan to get the best treatment available – and to let them know I love them. I am lucky to have the opportunity to have these discussions.

The next part of the journey is assembling the right team. Well, I thought I had the right team —- so what more do I need to add to my team. Getting my thoughts assembled and them my team have taken me from fearful to fearless. I thought I would share the team mates I chose this time – and who I added to the team and why.

A great team of doctors – and I added some from around the country with expertise in different aspects of treating this disease. I used both Dr. Copeland, who is a world renowned expert, and head of the GOG foundation, and is my doctor. He has access to all studies and all physicians. I also used a service called Private Health Management . Together, we were able to formulate a list of available studies and identify other resources outside of the US, if needed.

I leaned into my friend, John Reiner, who wrote a paper on his fight with cancer and changed my diet to vegan – among other changes. He wrote an interesting paper, called The Protocol, in 2010. I will share it below.

I then began talking to friends, family about other things I had tried and did not repeat and had not tried and should. So now I have a counselor – to help me stay focused on what is important and let the rest go.

I scheduled time with my college roommate, Susan – who so kindly has asked me what could she do to help. She is a medical masseuse, and I have asked her to help me with this.

I made sure my skin and teeth are in shape – with appointments at Timeless as well as my dentist, Dr. Robin Ford (some of the treatments make it tough to have any break in the skin or mucous membranes during treatment).

I visited and talked with multiple physicians on the best next steps in light of their ability to treat this disease.

I listened to my children who recommended Healing Touch. And scheduled time to be sure to be together with the family. We have great fun coming up for our family with a big celebration for a family friend on his nuptials and then the celebration of the Dublin Irish Festival.

So much of life to enjoy. What can you do? Wish me well. Join us at the festival. Listen to my podcast. Share this blog or the podcast with a friend who needs it. And if you are so inclined – The James needs to keep the world renowned level we have in the gynecologic oncology department. We are about $75,000 from fully funding the Larry Copeland MD Professorship Fund in Gynecologic Oncology. Feel free to donate – I would love to say my illness is what kept Ohio State great and helped cure ovarian cancer for good!

Here is more about my treatment – first three are in lay terms. Last is in scientific terms about the treatment that took the Nobel Prize in Medicine last year!

checkpoint inhibitor for the layperson – parp inhibitors basic science saves lives – NOBEL PRIZE IN MEDICINE

Did you ever podcast – the man behind the podcast – Kerouac Smith and changing your destiny!

Getting meta with Kerouac – Dr. Carol Clinton is back and she’s kicking off the next batch of podcasts with Kerouac Smith, the guy who records, edits and produces the show. We talk about how his midlife career change came about, what his focus is now and where he’ll go in the future — we find out what his skin in the game is. Check out his podcast — Kerouac to the Future — and come back here as we start exploring what drives other people.