Saturday, September 11, 2010

Tasting Autumn


It is 9/11. I remember that day. So so sad.

We had our Hearts Helping Haiti benefit and it was one of the most beautiful days of my life. The setting was pristine on the hillside lawn under the old oak trees looking out over the Nelson's vineyard and valley (see the picture of "Breath" singing for us). People came and set up their chairs. The music was beautiful and we made $15,000! That will pay the rent for our orphanage for 1 year and help us get food and medicine to them. Thank you to all of the loving souls who are helping us.

Lucie is the president of the Reveil Matinal Orphanage Foundation, she came from New York with her son Jason. It was a love fest. Soul Mates united to help our 20 daughters in Haiti. Lucie brought home made Haitian African outfits for the auction, above is a picture of us winners with our friends. (Kirsten, Tifanny, Lynn, Lucie, Christina, Serena)

Breathing and relaxing. I have sworn to several important people that I am going to truly slow down now. We have our yearly "Taste of Autumn" benefit coming up on October 3, then I leave for Mexico for 3 weeks where I officially turn over a new leaf. Having 20 new daughters has taken my stress level to a height that is unsurpassed from past experience. This is my biggest challenge, to save the world and not freak out from stress.

I tried to attach the poster from our "Taste of Autumn" event but failed, you can go to our website and check it out, please come if you can, it is a wonderful fall day with the family. Apple Pressing, hay rides, lots of food and music. We are auctioning off a mansion in our Baja paradise, El Cardonal for 12 people for a week it includes a fishing excursion (see the poster above). I am going to Olivino on Monday to get an official training in my new passion "Olive Oil Tasting". Come to the event to see what I learn.

I taught a Versant class this week at the hospital. These are 16 new nurses that are joining our team at UVMC. I read them the following story that I wrote one year ago. I share it here with you, it is a glimpse into my work as a PA hospitalist at UVMC.


Fall is coming, thank you God. The chickens are clucking, other birds are calling all around me. No wind. Perfect cool temperature. The ground is holding water longer. The plants have almost stopped growing. Eggs, tomatoes, Asian pears, yesterday. Beans, basil, apples, cucumbers, summer squash for the family outing to Leonard Lake.

I keep remembering the light on the clean white sheets. Natural light coming in through the window. Praying, breathing, resting, letting go. He was a thin homeless man. With long kinky gray hair and beard. He was seen on our streets for years. They moved him from ICU, on high flow oxygen, his lungs were done. Marvin assigned him to me.

He was struggling to breath, very hard work, and not getting him anywhere. Letting go was the order of the day. There are wonderful medications to help with air hunger. It was a pleasure to help him relax.

The staff had him perfectly clean. Hair combed and flowing. The bed was immaculate. We called for spiritual care, the pastor sat and prayed with him. May you be pain free, at peace and know you are loved. He was breathing away.

We wandered in and out, checked him often. When the time came we stayed by his side. I called for Marvin. He was surrounded by love as he faded peacefully away. So clean, and comfortable in the light, on those clean white sheets.

So proud and moved I was that he died with such perfect dignity. In my thoughts I thanked the housekeepers and nurses for their labor of love, honored to have a place on this team.

I woke up the next few mornings with tears of grief for this man. I knew that I was the only person crying for him, his wailing woman. Thankful that I cared, it would be even more sad if no one cried.