There's such a need to defend one's knowledge nowadays. Is it the Internet? Has everyone suddenly become such an expert on everything? What happened to education the hard way? Where did, "I know this because I spent fifty years of my life doing work in this field" disappear to?
Am I the only one who gets sick and tired of hearing people complain about their medical problems, often in vivid details...."I had diarrhea all night", "I can't stop throwing up", "I just still don't feel well"? And, I am I only one who feels wounded when I find a bit of new information that my experience (I took my nursing boards in 1968), and pass it along to the "afflicted" only to be told that he/she has all the medical knowledge in the world. Huh?
We live in a crazy world, at crazy times. We have doctors who are overworked and feel underpaid. They don't have the time to answer all of our questions. So, oftentimes, we are left to figure things out on our own. Were it not for friends who cared, friends who I trusted and respected, there are so many things I might have missed regarding my own or a family member's health or welfare.
Years ago, I taught childbirth classes. I can't recall all of the details of each and every class but I can remember the wisdom I would attempt to impart at the final class. I watched the faces on my prospective parents for six weeks and I knew that they needed everything I had in me at that, which would be their last one before being set out on their own. I talked about the post-partum, what to expect and what to not expect. Perfection was on the "not" list. "Confusion, fatigue and hormonal instability" were on the "to" list. One of the biggest pieces of advice I felt that I had to give was an easy one....."Take whatever help is offered, even if you feel you do not need it. If your neighbor asks what can be done for you, say something like this...'.if you're going out to the store, pick us up a container of milk, thank you' ". Why did I think this was so important? Well, I went on to say, "if you keep saying that you don't need anything, they will stop asking and when you really do need help, it won't be there for you". I still think I gave some darned good advice and I hope that my new moms and dads had ridiculously large amounts of milk on the shelves of their refrigerators.