Saturday, July 26, 2008

Today, try to make a difference in someone's life

Today's blog is quite different. It is not about HBOT. It is about what I have been thinking about while I have been in the chamber this week, when people ask me why I am doing it, besides the obvious reasons.

After all, I have done the low-dose ketamine, and blocks, and many other treatments. Most treatments except invasive treatments. Why do I keep doing them? Besides the prospect of going into remission, which I have achieved in the past and while glorious is also not permanent yet. I get asked this question a lot. While getting ready for a meeting of CRPS patients in Orlando today, I thought about it some more. Here are some of those thoughts.

What will you do today that will enhance someone's life? 

What piece of information will you share that could help re-shape how someone looks at their life, their pain, or simply enable them to better approach this day?

What kind words can you offer a friend or a total stranger that could have an impact far beyond the effort it takes to impart them? 

Success should be less about what we personally accomplish and more about what we enable others to achieve. Not how high we climb, but how high we encourage others to dream. 

When you depart this world will they say;

"He was a man who made a lot of money, he was a success!"  


"He was a man who touched many lives, his presence will be sorely missed."

My father was such a man, Bob Orsini. His presence filled the room and his smile lit up every face there. He always had a kind word for you and he had time for everyone. I think he was at his happiest when he was with his family but a close second was when he was with a group of people, any group. 

Bob, or Dad O as many in the RSD community knew him, helped many RSD/CRPS patients; as has Mom O, Lynne. I think of both of them and the hours upon hours they put in, and Lynne still puts in, helping patients and their loved ones deal with this disease every day. 

Why these thoughts? 

When you lie in these HBO chamber for hours each week, even with the TV going in the background, you have a lot of time to think. I think a lot about my Dad and hope that he is proud of the work we are still doing with American RSDHope. It is yet another reason why I am doing what I am doing with the blog and the HBOT. To try and educate the community, patients, and their loved ones. Our family has dedicated much of our lives to this cause for the last 15 years and we have lived with this disease nearly three and a half decades. 

We are not martyrs by any means. There are countless other families and individuals all across the globe as dedicated, reaching out, doing everything they can to further the cause. We have been very blessed with success, we have gotten so much more out of the whole experience than we have put in, and met some amazing and courageous people along the way. One day we hope that we, and the other organizations, will be so successful that we will no longer need to exist. A cure will be found, and there will be no more CRPS!

So what can you, one person, do? 

You can reach out, over, down, and help someone else. Put aside your own pain for a moment and think about how you might be able to encourage or educate someone else. 

I am not saying to stop thinking about your pain and it will go away. You have been told that before and as they say, "How's that working out for ya?" It works about as well as trying to drain the ocean with a tea strainer. 

Forgetting about something that permeates everything you do, every second of your day, awake or asleep, is next to impossible and is usually only encouraged by people who have never tried to do it.

Sort of  like putting a smoker in a room, surrounding her with cigarettes, and telling her to stop thinking about smoking. Sure. No problem.

I am not asking you to stop thinking about your pain, just asking you to put it on the back burner. Instead, think about what else you can do. It doesn't have to be anything big. Do you know of another patient who is feeling down? Having a difficult time and could use a little encouragement, maybe a card or a phone call to let them know they aren't in the fight alone? Or maybe share a few jokes you found on the internet, or a humorous story, by calling them. Don't just forward it to their email box, that takes no effort. Maybe you came across an article that you know might help someone; a friend or a loved one.

It is also a good thing to remember those who take care of us. Take a few minutes to drop a line, letter, or an email to your caregiver, nurse, or Doctor. Let them know you appreciate the extra care and attention they give you. When was the last time you did that? You might be surprised how far these simple thank-you's go. They have a cascading effect.

Let people know you believe in them, ask them how you can help them achieve their goals. we are always so quick nowadays to ask others for favors but far slower to ask people how we can help them. 

Not everything we do in life has to be about us. We have to work with others in mind because everything we do affects other people in some way. the great thing is, WE get to choose if it is for the better or the worse. What is your choice today? 

Just a few random thoughts, from my hyperbaric chamber this week :)

peace and freedom from pain, it is all we seek,


1 comment:

Wild West in KC said...

I am new to your site and I just want to say THANKS!!! I am an occupational therapist who got a little burned out argueing with case managers (the irony of this to follow) but I opened a retail store 4 years ago. Little did I know April 15,2007 my life would be changed forever. Now two surgeries and a RSD diagnosis later. The journey has been anything but smooth and actually has greatly saddened me. The lack of compasion and understanding regarding RSD would have saddened me as an OT but now that I have RSD it saddens me on a deeper level and want so much for no one to have to feel like this. I have utilized the web a lot and your site is great. I made a friend named Traci in California and she has just started HBOT and it has been a little scary too. I will send this blog to her and I know making those connections are so healing. On my worst days sending her an e-mail to tell her to hang in there someone cares makes me feel better. Well, just wanted to tell you thank you personally and your fight RSD helps so many and inspires me to keep going. I still have a long way to go to accept my diagnosis but I am taking it one day at a time.
Keep the faith