Hospitals and Tae Kwon Do…Waiting to Exhale!

I can usually count on my Friday’s to be one giant exhale, but it’s the weekend and I’m still running. My dad entered the hospital via emergency last Saturday, and although he is doing very well, we are learning that recovering from pneumonia can be complicated and  just takes time. So we aren’t yet sure when he will be released and the whole family is contributing time at the hospital in hopes of not just of being closer to him, but also occasionally giving my mom a chance to leave the room without concern that the very moment she goes to get something to eat or exercise her legs she’ll miss seeing one of the doctors. In other words, there is a lot of waiting around.

And you’d think that waiting around would be the perfect situation for getting caught up on some blog reading wouldn’t you? Well, guess what? Our hospital has blog filters! Yep! Provided a log-in and password and armed with my trusty iPad I was all set to at least do a little reading. We’re talking hours of sitting, so good reading time! But then this strange little box pops up to tell me that blogs are prohibited except for one hour a day. Now what sense does that make? The legalese addressed hospital concerns for patient privacy stating I could have ten minutes at a time on WordPress and not to exceed one hour a day. If I had any plans to breach patient privacy I would need to be quick about it! Good grief. So my blogging this week has been really spotty.

Today was a one-day respite from the hospital, spent with my granddaughters. I was able to sit on their patio, enjoying a little warmth and sunshine as well as reading a few blog posts. The last one I read before we closed up shop to get to Sophia’s Tae Kwon Do practice was a post by The Accidental Cootchie Mama, Andra Watkins. Her title caught my attention, Why Are the English So Bloody Nice?

Andra refers to a trip to England and her observation that the British people were friendly, with genuine “hellos” and “goodbyes” unparalleled in her American experience. I offered that I thought Southern Californians were quite friendly. I have good experiences on the street when I make eye contact and say hello. I don’t encounter unfriendliness anywhere, really. But my concern with Southern Californians is an increasing level of rudeness.

That may seem counterintuitive to my claim that friendliness prevails. But my point was punctuated today with dozens of parents collected in one large room presumably to observe their darlings practice Tae Kwon Do. The parents are a friendly and jovial lot! But remember. I have already made the claim that most people are VERY friendly.

I couldn’t help notice the dad in the front row on the phone. Not whispering. He had to speak up to be heard in an active room, but in his defense the door was a good 15 feet away. I also really enjoyed the smiling dad sitting behind me thoroughly enjoying whatever he was drinking in that paper cup! He enjoyed it so much he just couldn’t contain himself, and seemed sure we didn’t mind the sound of air being sucked through the straw. I don’t think he noticed the loud objectionable noise. I did.

Learning to kick! Concentration requires tuning out distractions!

Then there were the very happy, oh-so-pleasant parents with the younger children scooting all over the floor. Not wordlessly playing mind you, but slithering all over the place speaking to Mom (and the rest of us).  Mom flashed me a friendly smile while also sharing the universal sign of parental resignation–the shrugged shoulders and wordless wink that tells me she isn’t planning to interfere with her child’s creative expression. What good would it do?

Other very friendly parents stood in the doorway and chatted at above normal voice levels…but who could blame them. They had to talk louder. After all, the instructor and our martial arts-learning children were performing and that can be loud. If you want a personal conversation you must raise your voice!

Breaking a board with her hands. Again…paying attention and not being distracted by loud chatter from the back of the room.

So after responding to Andra’s post and mentioning  my belief that rudeness is on the rise, I couldn’t help but notice the distractions. I could tune most of it out, however, and simply enjoy the children. They didn’t seem to care.  I think they’re used to it!

Belt testing over…moving up to a yellow belt!

Whatever is going on in your life, and I know that many of you have difficulties and heavy concerns of your own, I hope you will find at least a little personal refreshment. Mother’s Day is hard for many of my friends, and it may be for you, too.

Still, I hope you have a good weekend, possibly shifting your priorities a bit to take care of yourselves. Find some ways to refresh before Monday. I’ll be checking in from time to time–between the hospital no-blog rule periods–and hope to hear you’re doing well!


44 thoughts on “Hospitals and Tae Kwon Do…Waiting to Exhale!

  1. Good to read you Dad is recuperating! Amazing that there is blogging filters, never heard of this. 😉 Whenever you get a chance (no rush) would love for you to check my latest entry “The Gift of Healing”… there is good news… 🙂

    1. Oh I will read soon, Marie! Thank you. And I wanted to tell you how much I have enjoyed your book. I’ve been reading it…and now will need to buy another copy for my friend–I originally bought it for her! It’s really lovely and has a wonderful sense of organization. The photographs are perfect and it’s visually really appealing. My favorite is the newborn kitten in the palm of the hand. I will be purchasing copies for gifts–I suspect it is going to be a very well received book. Again, congratulations! Debra

      1. Debra, Ooh, wow, THANK YOU for your kindness and support! I confess I worry a little that someone who is not aligned with my way of viewing spirituality will be offended, reason why I made it clear in the book, it’s a spiritual but not religious book so it embraces all paths. 🙂 Would appreciate a review in amazon, it doesn’t have to be lenghty, just a few words is enough. If I get reviews in Amazon it helps me to become more visible in the search engines. Hugs to you, and Happy Mother’s Day!

        1. I will do that, Marie. Just as soon as I can give it the kind of attention I would like to…don’t want to do it with a fuzzy brain! LOL! I completely understand what you’re saying about possibly being misunderstood. I get it…completely! I think you’ve done a wonderful job of making it clear, and it’s respectful to every human being. I really think it’s special. I’ll do a review soon. Debra

    1. Thank you so much, Eve. I have been with my dad most of the morning, and he’s starting to really miss home…I think that’s a good sign! So you did Tae Kwon Do, too? I love watching these children. Sophia isn’t even quite five yet…and all of these children are doing well. It’s a nice physical discipline! Debra

  2. Debra, I hope your Dad continues to kick pneumonia and can go home soon.

    I think the best way to counter the natural frustrations of society is to just try to be the person I want to be and not focus on those other people. It isn’t easy, and I don’t always succeed, but in the end, I am happier for having made the effort. That was what was so inspiring about spending time in England. It gave me an example to bring back with me and try to emulate every day.

    Happy Mother’s Day Eve! Please keep us posted on your Dad’s progress.

      1. I love that you thought of me! I haven’t been a big scarf wearer, but I have recently been noticing them more and thinking that maybe I’ve missed out on something. This one is really fun! And I liked the site itself…I’m not a great accessorizer, and I think it’s because I don’t have a natural sense of style. I have friends who really do…I need to “hire” them to help me out! 🙂 Debra

    1. Thank you so much for the kind words regarding Dad, Andra. I had to ask my mom if it was okay I mentioned it! You know, it’s hard when we have things going on in our lives yet we don’t want to betray the privacy of others! As to your bringing home the “best of England”–it just emphasizes to me why Rotary International is such a fit for you! You see the broader picture, while also understanding that your only one person…but connecting to others who are also committed to being ambassadors for change you are that much more effective. I think you’ll be reaping the rewards from this most recent trip for a very long time! Thanks, too, for the Mother’s Day well-wishes. I’m thankful every day that I have my mom, and that she lives close by. More and more of my friends no longer have their moms. So it will be a good day! Do your parents live in Charleston or nearby? I loved your stories of your dad, but somehow I’m now unsure if they lived in Nashville, or you just tied in one of the stories to your Dad and his youth! 🙂 Debra

      1. My parents live a couple of hours north of Charleston, but we will be home for the day. Dad is from outside of Cleveland, TN, and I was born outside of Nashville. Things all blur together in the bloggy universe, don’t they?

        I understand about having to ask about writing on the blog. My brother forbade me to write about him or his family, and my mom really doesn’t like for me to write about her, though I sometimes do anyway. Dad loves it. LOVES IT. So, I’m very lucky that he is a treasure trove of stories, and I’m getting to tell them to new people.

        Please keep me updated regarding how your Dad is faring.

    1. Thank you so much, John. I think Dad’s at least “on the mend” and I’m so glad for that, of course. Also thank you for the Mother’s Day wishes…I am fortunate to still have my mom. I know my husband, and frankly most of my friends my age, find Mother’s Day a little hard. I hope you have a good weekend and you sure do a lot to honor your mother with every blogpost! Debra

  3. Hi Debra, good to hear about your Dad’s recovery, in the meantime I hope you have a lovely weekend – I just popped over to check out the Why are the English so bloody nice – thanks for sharing 🙂

    1. I’m so glad you read Andra’s post. She just amuses me to no end…although I loved what she wrote, I also got the biggest chuckle out of the responses from some of her British “followers.” There are some very clever and humorous people out there, don’t you agree ? Thanks, too, about well wishes for my dad. I really think he’ll be home soon, but then begins the hard part…guaranteeing that he takes the necessary time at home to continue his recovery. Ha! Debra

  4. What a jam filled blog you have today, Debra.

    My mom had pneumonia and was hospitalized for some time, Debra. It took a while, but she recovered and did wonderfully well after that. It sounds like your Dad is improving and he will continue to do so, it can just be a bit of a stretch. What a wonderful family you have. My prayers and thoughts come your way.

    All that blogging repression from the hospital. Those are odd rules, aren’t they? Just one hour/10 minutes at a time? Do the blogging police come in and inject offenders with anti-virus medication. Okay, okay. I just couldn’t help myself there. Forgive me.

    I couldn’t agree more about the level of rudeness rising, friendly or not so. We have a few women in our garden group that always have their phones turned on, the highest pitched ring, of course, and they go off during meetings. There was one sweetheart, however, who came up to me and said she hoped I didn’t mind but she had her cell phone turned on just high enough to hear because her husband needed a ride home, explaining he was blind, but that she would sit in the very back of the room, with her coat on, so she could bolt out on the first ring. I gave her a big hug.

    1. Thank you so much for your concern Penny. I was at the hospital for quite a stretch today and managed to be there when doctors came in…that’s the tricky part! They are sure he should be released very soon, as long as he stays very closely tied to follow-up doctor’s visits and antibiotics, and most of all, antibiotics. I think things just got our of control for a while…so we’re on it now 🙂

      I really do wonder about the rudeness levels. We may be very nearly the last of a generation who sees it so clearly. I’m much more easily bothered by what I observe than my children are. They see it, but they aren’t nearly as affected by it, whereas I really do think it disturbs me. I’d better get over that, though, or I’ll be a cranky old woman–because I don’t think it’s going to get any better, do you? Ha!

      Then there are those like the woman who was so apologetic, feeling badly when she absolutely needed that cell phone call! I don’t often hear anyone apologize for any disruption…I’d have given her a big hug, too! I hope your girls and that little darling Kezzie will at least be able to give you a phone call tomorrow! 🙂 Debra

    1. Thank you so much, Sharyn. I think every day Dad is getting stronger. I did discover this week that althoug I like to keep up with reading the blogs I follow, it should never be a source of anxiety! And it’s even more of a delight when I finally get the chance to settle down with a cup of tea and see what everyone is doing! Debra

  5. Our son used to learn judo, Debra, but the outfit took me right back to those years. 🙂 Sorry to hear that your dad is still in hospital. My sister had pneumonia last year and was in hospital for nearly 2 weeks. It’s a sneaky beast and doesn’t admit defeat in a hurry.

    I know what you man about rudeness. it seems like a basic disregard for anything but one’s own convenience and such a bad example to those lovely children.

    1. Thank you, Perpetua. I think if dad comes home soon, and he may, he is still going to have a long recovery period. It is a sneaky beast…I like that label. I don’t know the differences in the martial arts, but I just love watching the children follow the instructions and I hope Sophia will stay with it for quite a while. She begins Kindergarten in August and I don’t know how much one little girl can do! But the hand-eye coordination is a good thing as well as concentration. And I love it when she’s concentrating, catches our eye and smiles or gives a little wave–acts like a four year old 🙂 She’s the one who knew that littering is rude, so we will have to teach her about phones and talking in other people’s “space”–she’ll learn! Debra

  6. Dear Debra, . . . I read several of the comments for your posting today and was relieved to learn that pneumonia takes a while to heal. Your dad being in the hospital all week was concerning to me and now I learn that pneumonia holds on. So I hope that this coming week finds your dad not just eager to be home, but actually there!

    I so enjoyed seeing the pictures of Sophia.

    And like you and many others, I am surprised by the amount of rudeness in today’s world. There’s a lot of talk about privacy and yet the noises made by cell phones interrupts privacy all the time. Sometimes when I’m out and about–and even when I call some company and am put hold–I find myself longing for the balm of silence.


  7. Happy Mother’s Day to you too Debra. Great pictures of your granddaughter! She looks like an expert. I’ll be thinking of you this weekend. Having seen my mom go through what you’re going through the past several years, I can relate a bit. Hugs to you!!!! I hope you find a bit of R&R before Monday.

  8. Happy Mother’s Day to you Debra. Even if it’s spent in the hospital its being spent – as we can all see who read the post – with lots of love and concern for your Dad. Beautiful! I hope your Dad’s out of the hospital soon.

    Love the photos of your grand daughter. I wonder why no one told the guy on the phone to SHUT UP! We do it all the time.

    I cannot understand why on earth the hospital would block your WP time. Good grief indeed. Talk about Big Brother watching you!

    1. I love the suggestion that someone tell the guy with the phone to “shut up.” I’m not beyond that typically, but since I was a “guest” observing, I knew I wouldn’t do it. I get quite aggressive with phones and all noise–even eating, if we are at the movies. I think it may be one reason we go so rarely thse days. Thank you for well wishes for my dad. I am sure he’ll be home some time this week. He’s feeling a lot better and now just eager to get home to his own bed and his own food! 🙂 Have a good week, Rosie. You must be very busy getting ready for your wonderful trip! Debra

  9. Well I am glad that your Dad is on the road to recovery. What a BORE that you can only blog in tiny bits, what a stupid rule.. and i have to say that your shots of that stunning lovely fascinated face wholly absorbed in her sport were awesome . just lovely. You could frame one of those for her wall! c

    1. Thank you, Celi. I fully expect my dad to be home in the next couple of days. He will finish his recovery from home much better I think. We keep teasing that a hospital is no place to be when you’re sick…he wants his own bed and my mom’s cooking! I have been really frustrated with the inability to access WordPress for more than little bits! I hardly ever have hour upon hour just to sit, and it seems the perfect time to read and respond and maybe even spend some time going through different blog rolls. I’ve beene eager to do that for quite awhile. I love taking pictures of my granddaughters and really do need to do more to move them from digital to frame! I hope you have a good week, Celi. I’ll be checking in every day 🙂 Debra

  10. Hi Debra: you have been so much in my thoughts …. my mum and dad are home now and it’s my wish for you that your dad feels better with each day and returns home soon. Home is such great medicine. As you say, you think you have an end in sight and in reality you just end up running even faster than before. All the best, and I continue to think and pray xx

    1. Thank you SO much, Kate. I fully expect my dad to be home soon. They are mostly watching him now, just making sure that he doesn’t “go backwards” in his recovery. And the one real advantage I’ve had is that the hospital is local. What a blessing that is…no real travel! I’m so glad your mom is home and I hope continuing to do well. We all need a much less stressful summer now, don’t you think? 🙂 oxo Debra

  11. I’ve never heard of hospitals blocking blogs?? That’s bizarre.. what do patients who are bored and recovering do all day?? As usual, the rules are for the few and the rest suffer along. Your little tae kwon do expert is adorable!!

    1. I think it’s bizarre, too, Smidge. If they had a concern about using too much bandwidth or something I’d at least have understood. But about privacy…that really doesn’t make any sense. Sophia will start soccer in the fall…I think I’m going to be one of “those” grandmas! LOL! Debra

  12. I’m so sorry to hear your father isn’t well. My son had pneumonia when he was a baby and nearly died from it. I’ve heard that small children and the elderly are most at risk with pneumonia. That is a ridiculous rule that you can’t blog in a hospital. There is always so much waiting around that you should be able to read on your computer to help pass the time. I don’t understand how blogging beside a hospital bed would invade a patient’s privacy more than if you went home and wrote about it – bizarre and annoying rule for sure. Your grand-daughter looks very cute but I wouldn’t want to be kicked by her! xx

    1. Thanks for your thoughts concerning my dad, Charlie. I think he’ll be home soon. He is at the “I’m bored” stage…that’s a good sign! The no-blogging rule makes no sense. I have really been frustrated. When do any of us get hours and hours of “down time” to even maintain our blogs. I’d love a few hours to update my blog roll and just clean up a few untidy corners 🙂 I am really a good rule follower most of the time…but when they don’t make sense to me, I struggle! Have a great week-I’ll be checking in from wherever I am! Debra

  13. Sending healing light his way and bravo to your grand kid!
    ღ˚ •。* ♥ ˚ ˚✰˚ ˛★* 。 ღ˛° 。* °♥ ˚ • ★ *˚ .ღ 。*˛˚ღ •˚ ˚…Sending sprinkles of Love to You: Happy Mother’s Day! ˚ ✰* ★˚. ★ *˛ ˚♥* ✰。˚ ˚ღ。* ˛˚ ♥ 。✰˚* ˚ ★ღ ˚ 。✰ •* ˚ ♥

  14. It’s Monday morning, and the growing rudeness of people aside, I hope you dad’s improvement continued over the weekend … and I imagine your granddaughters brought many smiles to your face on Mother’s Day.

    1. Thank you, Frank. My dad is doing well enough to be getting bored! That’s a very good sign, and I’m sure he is going to be home soon. And the little girls brighten all our lives. They made a hospital visit and that was good medicine! You have a good week, too! Debra

  15. I hope your dad is better and out of the hospital quickly. We’re sending positive thoughts your way.

    Our state is known to have “the fewest smiles per square mile”, which is one of the top reasons I’m looking to move! I’ve got my sights set on a small town in a neighboring state where people are ever so friendly and care about their neighbors. That’s the kind of place that’s perfect for me! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much for well wishes for dad…I know we’re getting close to his “release.” I think it’s very exciting to consider moving to a small town. I have always fantasized a bit about that very thing myself. Sometimes when I watch a movie and see “small town” life I wonder what that would be like. I think I’d be one who’d do well! I hope you’ll be in a position to “blog all about it” when you do. I think we’d all be very interested…I suspect there are many of us with that secret desire! 🙂 I’m always so glad to hear from you–and Daisy, of course. I hope your week goes well! Debra

  16. I hope your Dad is ok Debra! I love the photos of your granddaughter 😀 She is so cute!! I see the rudeness changing here. Where most of the time it’s a “hi” or at the LEAST a smile on the street, now I notice looking away, talking on their phone, texting or playing on their phone and all over rude behavior. I was told by a high school classmate who was from the east coast that smiling and saying “hi” on the street there didn’t happen. So I still enjoy the nice people to give me the “hi” but mostly I have to wait until I get to my small town, Portland is turning quite “east coast.” But that could be because everyone is moving here from there…

    1. My California-transplanted friends who are now on the east coast have had some very big adjustments to make. Their experience anyway is that it is quite different, and speaking to “strangers” hasn’t been a pleasant experience for them. I don’t have enough experience myself to know how true that is, but the rudeness level, and the preoccupation with phones? Oh my yes! I find that really frustrating, and wonder what little children are going to learn just observing this. One of the funniest things I saw in a restaurant not too long ago was two young people sitting opposite one another in a restaurant with heads bowed. I thought they were praying before their meal…no, they were both not speaking to one another and instead were texting on their phones! It was so funny, and at the same time disturbing! LOL! Let’s keep being friendly to people we meet on the street until its no longer safe to do so! Debra

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