Sunday, September 2, 2007

Well, I'm supposed to be resting at home in an attempt to recover from pneumonia. But sitting around all day on my arse isn't exactly my idea of a good time. The thing is that I'm so tired all the time that it's hard to focus on anything school related, so I end up spending most of my day sleeping. I guess my body really needs rest and lets face facts here, I ain't no spring chicken.

Unfortunately, I had yet another "disagreement" with a physician about my care, so maybe I should consider another vocation. However, I can't escape the fact that speaking up has saved my life on a few occasions, so I'll continue to respectfully do what I must to ensure I get quality health care. The issue this time was being told by an asthma specialist that I didn't have asthma. Well, that was news to me since I've had it diagnosed in 1997. She read my pulmonary function test (incorrectly) and concluded that I didn't have asthma. I told her I did and after going back and forth with her a few times, I finally said "then I don't know what you call coughing that only stops after I use albuterol, tightness in the chest during allergy season, and shortness of breath. I was told that was asthma". Bottom line, be your own health advocate! So I leave her office shocked but adamant that I have asthma, and as I'm about to walk out of the main office, she calls me back to her office. She begins with a huge apology, then apologizes over and over again. Then she tells me that she read my test results wrong and that I do appear to have residual air pockets in my lung, indicative of asthma. I then thanked her for being so forthright about her mistake and made a follow up appointment to see her in six weeks.

In other news, my daughter started middle school last week at a school with grades from 6th to 8th. Now I was a little nervous about her attending school with teenagers and their raging hormones, but I'm sure it will all be OK. She is now wearing her ponytails in curls, after I pressed her hair out. And for anyone familiar with black culture, the first time a little girl gets a perm or gets her hair pressed out is a special occasion, lol! Still, I know there are folks out there who think it's "selling out" to press or straighten hair, to which I respond that wearing natural hair hasn't kept peace in Africa and it didn't prevent the genocide in Rwanda so maybe black folks ought to define blackness by something other than hair. Back to the subject, I think my daughter is adjusting well to middle school although we both share a concern about bullies. She changes classes and has a locker which are things I didn't experience until I was in the 8th grade.Thankfully she continues to enjoy close friendships with people from all racial backgrounds, enjoys being in the orchestra, and playing tennis along with her academic studies.

Here's a humorous situation, after posting the following on a premed website, I was banned for a practice called "trolling". I was actually banned for calling people out on their BS, but here's what I wrote:

"As I continue to successful move along my career path toward an MD/PhD, I'm starting to loose interest at an exponential pace with participating in debates with a bunch of conservative minded/anti affirmative action, spoiled/entitlement attitudinal, intellectual kiss a$$es, who not only balk at dissenting opinions but who cowardly try to cover up their disparaging retorts with slick a$$ attempts to be looking for an atmosphere of truth, peace and honesty in a debate. To that I say, Pluuueeezzze and maybe I should go for a JD instead!"

Now obviously, I must have said more than that to get banned and I did, but I certainly never said the kinds of things like disparage a group of people, frequently blacks, on that site but as I found out all too frequently, that behavior was allowed. I simply spoke my opinion sometimes with a 'tude, but often not. And the sad thing about all this is that one minority member in particular on that site allowed herself to be used in typical uncle tom fashion, to give me warnings, temporary ban me, ect, ect. which contributed I'm sure to my banning. So let me be real clear here, I'd never in a million years allow anyone to encourage me to disparage a minority person for speaking thier mind publically. And you know, this kind of behavior reeks of situations that occured during slavery, where a slave would be in charge in making sure none of the other slaves tried to run away. Well lets just say that when I made the above statement, I KNEW I'd ruffle a few feathers and in retrospect, should have followed the advice of MRM member Crooz 2 years ago to essentially avoid intellectual sewers.

Ironically, I've learned over and over again that often times in life, the person who does you the most harm will often look a lot like you and to be perfectly honest, I don't know how sad I think this is anymore. It simply "is" the way things are and I attribute it to slavery since I don't see too many Africans not sticking together in America. Unfortunately, it seems to be true that some black folks can be a LOT like crabs in a bucket, and don't let an Uncle Tom get a little power. Your arse can be TRUE grass in that situation.

But what can you do other than keep on keeping on with the definitive knowledge that one day, EVERY misdeed a person has done will be accounted for. I'm eternally thankful that I'm at a place where I live my life in a manner where I don't feel the need to go out of my way to bring my own people down and it's too bad so many of us in positions of power and/or authority don't feel the same. Still, I'll continue to do my part to uplift ALL minority people and I'm happy there are others out there that think and do the same.


  1. Amen! I am not African-American but I support your bold position in speaking out on behalf of so many. These issues affect ALL of us. Thank you!!