Stories by miatagano (8 matches)

Extraordinary Team Effort In Uncertain Times

Last week a doctor friend of ours was going with a team to Navajo Nation to help those who are sick with the coronavirus. COVID-19 is ripping through the Navajo Nation, infecting and killing people at rates that are above U.S. averages. Located across three states, the Navajo population is already vulnerable, with a high prevalence of underlying disease, a lack of infrastructure, and limited access to care and supplies. The day before they were to leave, I saw a post on Nextdoor - a note from a woman saying "Hello - My son's robotics team is making face shields that can help frontline staff in the hospitals. They wish to donate 100 of them for free..." Such generosity of spirit! Coincidentally, I had just spoken with another doctor friend on the east coast who is also working on the front lines – he was sharing how important the shields are for protection ... Read Full Story >>

3168 Reads

Road Rage Takes A New Turn

Tonight, I went to see a play by, and full with, women I consider fierce. En route, a car cut me off. I turned my bright lights on him and I drove right behind him. At the next stop light, I pulled up beside him. He was angry, and I gave him the bird as he seemed to shout profanities at me. I rolled down my window and said, "Really? You're mad at me when YOU cut me off?!" He retorted, "YES!" And then threw what I think was his coffee grande (with cream) in my face! It covered my face, my car, and my steering wheel. Thankfully, it was cold. I didn't know what to do but I was angry and tired and not feeling 100%, so I followed behind him with my bright lights on. I called 911 to report an assault by a taxi driver. A very nice and calm operator ... Read Full Story >>

2553 Reads

We Belong To Each Other - A Love Story

Yesterday evening, my partner John and I came to see my grandmother at the nursing home where she lives. As we were walking down the hall towards her room, I saw the elder who wears an orange turban. I don’t know him exactly and he doesn’t speak anymore but I always stop and say hello when I see him; I put my hand out and usually he will look at me, lift his hand up and we shake hands; he has the most gentle spirit and strong presence even though he is ½ foot here on earth and 1 ½ in the spirit world. I don’t know much about turbans exactly – from the outside it is a very simple thing- fabric wrapped around the head and yet, I know it is so much more, sacred in fact; his is typically always immaculately placed around his head covering his hair; he ... Read Full Story >>

2164 Reads

Walking Each Other Home

Last night, my partner and I went to the levees where I am relearning how to run (he supports on his bike and I go as fast or as slow as my old legs want to take me, heart is strong so that helps :)) Ahead of us was a very tall man with a plastic bag who seemed to be unable to walk a straight line. John said "you keep running, I will check on him." I tried to continue on but then turned around only to find that the man had fallen and was lying on his back with John at his side. I watched quietly. John was holding his hand. I saw the man's stomach go from quick breaths to one of ease. John told the man, "we are going to come back this way, if you are still here, we will check on you." The man said ... Read Full Story >>

1842 Reads

A Simple Offering

Tonight, I was walking home from work. It was dark. I passed a man sitting on a bench built into a wall of a building. I saw his feet first. We looked at each other as I passed. I half smiled and he just stared at me, sad like. It seemed he might be staying there the night. He was wearing a thin sweater and had a backpack. As I walked away, I felt the cold air on my skin and thought," I wish I had a blanket to offer him." My car was just down the block. I still have a bag from my grandmother's room. I haven't gone through it since she died. Haven't had the heart. I thought maybe there is an extra blanket amongst her things. There was one, I thought. I looked in the bag and the back of my car but there was no blanket. There ... Read Full Story >>

1408 Reads

More Than A Handshake

It was hot and overcast and yet, such a beautiful full day. We picked up my grandmother from her nursing home in San Jose and drove her to Watsonville where the three of us went to get a Shiatsu treatment (a gift from John). We used to go regularly but the last time I had taken my grandmother, she seemed to forget where she was and how to breathe while on her stomach on the massage table – it scared me so I thought perhaps it was better to just massage her myself the best I could. Still, what I can do is pretty cosmetic and she’s been getting weaker and having aches from sitting in a wheel chair all day so, I called Ben who runs the Shiatsu clinic with his wife and daughter out of their home and told him my concerns - I wasn’t even sure if ... Read Full Story >>

1366 Reads

Love Beyond Labels

Last night, when I went to see my grandmother, she was sitting alone at the nurses station with her word search book (when my grandmother, who has dementia, came to live here over 5 years ago, I tried many things to keep her occupied – painting, magazines, crossword, music, coloring, mazes…but it was only her word search book that kept her interest…the one thing her mind could follow – she began to think of it as her job; it kept her from wandering – over these 5 years, I have gotten her the same BIG EASY WORDSEARCH book at least 17 times… each one has 100 puzzles and she does them all. Recently coloring simple pictures like fishes has gotten her attention too)….. SO my grandmother was sitting at the desk with her book but no pencil just staring at the letters as if she was trying to find the word. ... Read Full Story >>

837 Reads

Helping Hand, Listening Heart

​A sweet memory from Oct 20 2014 that I thought I would share ... Thinking about all of the elders that I got to spend time with during my grandmother’s five-year stay in the nursing home. I can’t imagine what it’s been like for them without any visitors at all. So sad. Keep loving each other. Keep being kind. ❤️❤️❤️ That day, I saw a man alone on a couch, in the front lobby of a nursing facility I have been frequenting, lying with his head on the sidearm – earlier he had been trying to push Jean, who has cerebral palsy and can’t move far alone, in her wheelchair, with his head, from his wheelchair. The song, “inchworm, inchworm” came to mind. I asked if they would mind if I pushed Jean the rest of the way – Jean said, “yes, please!” and the man smiled a toothless ‘thank you’. I thanked ... Read Full Story >>

802 Reads

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