Medical Stories

A Moment with Gretchen

Have you ever wondered: Why dentists put abstract art on the wall instead of the ceiling where you can see it? Why those instruments that look so tiny on the swiveling tray feel so large when they are whirling away in your mouth? If “Marathon Man” style dental questioning was used by the CIA? What dental pain feels like if you have really big teeth...


A Psychological Incident

When Warren was fourteen years of age, psychiatric hospitals were commonly called, ”the crazy house”. To Warren, they seemed irrelevant, unimportant, inconsequential and distant. At age fourteen, Warren didn’t have any indication that a psychiatric hospital would be a place that would have any importance in his life. However, at age eighteen, at...



FoldUnfold Table of Contents Diabetes Diabetes and the death of a ten year old Diabetes When I was a child I remember seeing saccharine in the grocery stores and being told that there were people who could not eat sugar. I was told that these people used saccharine instead. I was told that they could not eat ice cream or cookies and that...


Dr. Judah Folkman

Glynnis and Dr. Folkman In April 1991, when my daughter, Glynnis, was 6 months old we discovered that she had a tumor stretching from the base of her skull to the middle of her chest. It had invaded her spinal column, surrounded her carotid artery and her jugular vein but what was of most immediate concern was that her throat was 99% compressed by...


Election 2012

When I needed an appointment, with the hand specialist, it wasn’t difficult to arrange although I was a new patient. Now in the last few weeks before the election, the same hand specialist is booked for weeks. If you ask why, I’ll explain. If you are like me who is totally ready to scream every time a political lie, oops commercial comes on the TV...


Home Remedies

Do you remember when door-to-door salesmen were welcomed into your home? The Fuller Brush Man – Watkins Products – encyclopedia salesmen – Tupperware and Jewelry parties would go door to door and would entice you by offering a free gift to gain entry to your home? Many other items such as milk, bread products, fresh vegetables from the farm and...


Irena Delahunty

A little over a year ago I joined a group of women at the Alzheimers Resource Center of Connecticut, Inc. The group is the Daughters Group - for daughters of those with dementia. My friend Mary had raved about the leader of this group and the facility hosting the group. I was cautious because the accolades Mary extoled on the leader, Irena, seemed...


Model School and Road Trips

It’s been way too long since I last sent an email, I apologize! I have been so busy. The Peace Corps does not allow us to have any free time during training but I am glad to be kept busy; it means a lot less time to be homesick. For the past few weeks they have been preparing us for model school. Every day we are divided up into Science, English,...


On the Death of a Loved One

My Father My father, Tom McGavin, and his wife, Jane Louise, Lake Tahoe, 2007 I don't really understand how it happened and yet it happens all the time, all over the world. Everyone has or will experience the death of a loved one and yet I was completely unprepared. I had no idea of the process of dying what is considered a natural death. When he...


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