Let the Holidays Begin..

It’s a damp and chilly Sunday afternoon here. I’m snuggled under the blanket my daughter brought me from Peru marveling that we’re on the cusp of another week. I mean we all know that time goes fast..but sometimes I think weekends shift into high gear while we’re not looking.
Last week I had to see an endodontist for a root canal. Having four inch needles aimed directly in my mouth is not my favorite way to spend an afternoon, but my courage has come a long way, so I managed it like a champ. The only blip was when the nurse readjusted my bib and moved my earbud wire out of the way. Evidently I grazed my iPod just enough to change my music setting. Wasn’t I surprised when I pushed play expecting to hear the comforting twang of the Avett Brothers, only to hear the Kingston Trio singing Christmas music. Ugh. By that time I was supine, with gadgets holding my mouth open and I couldn’t see my hands, so I was stuck. I closed my eyes and just tried to lean in to the inadvertent holiday kickoff.
When I opened my eyes for a moment, I saw little rings of smoke coming out of my mouth. I looked rather alarmingly at the nurse and cleared my throat ever so slightly as if to say Umm, hello, I think we have a little problem here.. But she looked back at me very nonchalantly so I sheepishly just went back to listening to my Christmas music..

Tuesday was my third visit back to the Cleveland Clinic. Some people think I’m crazy to drive 2 hours and 15 minutes to see a doctor and a nutritionist, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. I would much rather approach my health from a nutritional standpoint, rather than managing side effects of medicine with more medicine. Don’t get me wrong..when my annual bout of strep throat or an ear infection strikes, I will see my primary care doctor for the care I need. But for my long-term overall wellness, functional medicine is the approach that is right for me.
I wish I could say that getting to the Cleveland Clinic is a beautiful drive worth taking..but the truth is, it’s not in the greatest part of town. I’m always a bit surprised by the run down and unkempt neighborhoods I have to go through to get there. The campus itself is clean and well manicured, but I always find myself wondering how a world class medical facility landed in the heart of such tough surrounding neighborhoods.
This was my view from the parking lot with the city of Cleveland itself in the distance:  **A side note:  I’m realizing that I haven’t chosen the best platform of WordPress for pictures..but if you click right on the photo itself, it should come up larger on your screen for better viewing.



This is the building where I go to be seen.  This was taken through tinted glass from the parking garage:


Street view:


This is right when you walk in the door.  You can see by the photo itself why the welcome sign is in so many languages:


There is very calming music playing throughout all the hallways, the kind you hear at a day spa when you’re getting a facial or a massage.  (But evidently not calming enough to me that they don’t have to take my blood pressure twice because the first reading is always so high…what can I say, I’m not a fan of hospitals..)  

This is the entrance to the office and the waiting area:



Here is where the nurse takes my vitals and where I wait for Dr. Young:


Melissa Young, MD, always puts me instantly at ease:


After reviewing my latest labs, I go to Trisha for guidance on how to balance my needs with the proper nutrition.  I had to say goodbye to her after this picture was taken as she is moving back to Florida.  She had been commuting to Cleveland in the hopes that her husband would also find a job there.  He instead got a promotion with his current job thereby leaving him in Florida.  Trisha is ready to not have a commuter marriage anymore.  While I can’t say I blame her, I sure will miss her..


And from there, I’m off to the dreaded lab:  


Fortunately for me, I still had the spa music and nice, calming art work such as this to help me get there:


And then this is the part where they have to strap me down…Fortunately, I had a great technician who kept me distracted:


And then I’m done, which is when the smiling begins again and the technician gives me an ‘atta girl…


I should say that I don’t love any of the photos of myself here…but they are an accurate depiction of who and how I was that day, and I want to show my real experience.  Brene Brown would be so proud…Look at me daring greatly…


“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly….. and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”

~ Theodore Roosevelt

I’ll be back tomorrow with a recipe of the shrimp scampi I made when I got home from Cleveland completely starving.


3 thoughts on “Let the Holidays Begin..

  1. Thank you for the tour, Kathy. As you know, I LOVE experiencing your stuff through your words, and now your photos too! 🙂 I will try that Shrimp…it looked easy and delicious, like most whole food cooking!


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