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Share time of thanks to bring order to world

Share time of thanks to bring order to world Share time of thanks to bring order to world

Out of whack! I don’t know if they use this expression today, but my mother would say it when things didn’t seem to be working together as when you put on short pants and it starts to snow or if you were told to do two things at once but each one contradicted the other.

I feel like life is “out of whack today.” Nothing is functional, from my personal body to world affairs. Nothing is operating well. When various situations, protocols and missions statements interact with each other, things spin out of control.

It started with a simple stomach bug that in a few days landed me in a hospital  emergency room in Indianapolis. The next 24 hours felt like a series of disconnects. All the service providers were super nice but they didn’t seem to be working together. Everyone asked me the same questions, nodded that they heard me and left saying they would be back. No one ever came back. It may have made sense to them but, to me, the patient, it certainly looked like a broken system. They put me in an isolation room with no bathroom, which doesn’t serve well when one has a stomach bug. There were wires all over the room and a giant screen TV that was turned on with no sound. I tried to pass the time by figuring out what the speaker was trying to sell. I had no call button to herald help of any kind, IV needles attached to my arms that kept me in bed and no direction as to what would happen next.

Thank goodness Don, my husband, is a good sport.

When I did get detached to find a rest room, I had to weave around patients lying on gurneys in the hall. While grabbing my hospital gown, I commented to a sheriff’s deputy who accompanied an incoming patient, “At this point, who cares.” I have never seen such a miserable bunch of people trying to survive amidst chaos.

Case 1 of a broken system. I don’t know if it is lack of funding, inadequate training or poor reasoning and habits of patients. It is probably all of the above.

I left the emergency room to come home as they never did have a room for me in the hospital. We as a modern-day society can provide better health care.

Case 2. I dragged myself home, so fortunate that while I recouping I would be able to watch the impeachment hearings. Talk about a display of the dysfunctional. Once again, I saw people trying to do what was needed but struggling amidst confusion, discord and misinformation. Participants seemed locked in to their preset conclusions and not really hearing what witnesses said. It was as if they were all just sending their words in the vast universe to be reshuffled somewhere some other day. And, the problems they addressed were themselves evidence of a dysfunctional government. Again, I don’t know how we as a democracy got to this point in time, but it isn’t just one episode, one man or one time. We have a problem.

Case 3. We watched the presidential debates last week. All the candidates were again good people trying to contribute to bettering our country, but the discord created by the nature of debate is counterproductive to a society that must work together. The campaign system itself develops an adversarial atmosphere. Us against them. I believe in our democracy as the best form of government ever attempted, but we have some big refining to do.

We have been changing and developing as a species on an old planet at an historically rapid rate. Thank goodness we have history itself to help guide us in the future. Our ancestors were a hard-working and smart bunch of folks. Documents such as the Magna Carta, the preamble to the our constitution and the Constitution are remarkable statements of shared values with stated standards and plans for ways of working. They basically establish that we are ruled by “law,” not by the will of men.

It is the complexity of applying these principles to such an interwoven set of diverse shifting opportunities, needs and consequences that trip us up. Technology is both our friend and our devil when we try to navigate the mess. The nurses in the emergency room used advanced machines in taking care of a patients’ needs, but elderly patients don’t often even know the questions to ask in taking part in their use. No one told me what the technology placed in my small room was suppose to do to ease the strain on the sick and the health care providers. We have gaps in our system between the young technicians creating equipment and ways of working and their intended user. The breakdown creates a problem much as a heart doctor’s office would if placed on the 10th floor with no elevator. Common sense sometimes seems to have left the process in the planning.

I don’t have the answer to our huge dilemma, but I do know this Thanksgiving I am thankful we live on a planet with a majority of people of goodwill who work their tails off to make life better.

Let’s in good faith meet over this bountiful table provided and figure out how to do better.