Dr Bambi Rakhel Ward

Medical Education Consultant|Author & Speaker

Category: Grief and Loss

My Revamped Blog

I’m finally back home after having time for work and pleasure in the wonderful Northern Territory.

I’m looking forward to celebrating my birthday this week…..it’s not a special birthday in the traditional sense, but I’m turning the age of the last two digits of the year I was born in, so it feels very special to me.

I’ve also been reflecting on my current blog, and how it’s going. Given that I have a multitude of interests, I’ve decided to experiment for a while and try a few regular features. These may include links to someone else’s blog, photos of books I’ve bought or am reading, a recommendation of a cultural activity, conference or festival, and something or someone that has inspired me.

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The Value of Intuition

Have you ever had a strong intuition about something and ignored it or pushed it to one side?

I have. It cost me dearly in terms of my emotional and physical wellbeing. Lying on a cold silver guerney, awaiting a medical procedure six years ago, I had a strong urge to get up and leave. It wasn’t too late. The specialist wasn’t in the room yet. I started feeling really uneasy. Something felt very wrong.

‘Don’t be silly’, the rational part of me said to myself. It’s normal to feel like this before a procedure. It’s just nerves.

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The Power of Art in Healing

Back in the early 2000s, I organised for Doctors training to be General Practitioners (or Family Doctors) to go on a field trip to a gallery of psychiatric art in Melbourne.  These doctors were known as GP registrars, and my role was that of Medical Educator/Senior Lecturer.

The visit was seen to be a radical idea at the time, and my boss needed a fair bit of convincing as to why registrars should be spending time doing this, rather than learning more practical things. However I was very aware that art and other humanities such as literature were being used increasingly in medical education to gain insights into patients’ experiences of illness and to foster empathy.

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An emotional rollercoaster ride

Have you ever experienced a rollercoaster of emotions in just a few days?

That’s what happened to me last week.

In the space of three days, I commemorated the anniversary of my stillborn sister’s death by lighting a candle, attended a funeral of someone two years younger than me who died of cancer, and found out that the husband of one of my dear friends probably has cancer. I felt like screaming out loud: It’s not fair!!!! They don’t deserve it!!!

However I resorted to pouring my heart out in my black Snoopy journal instead. Journalling gives me comfort. It always has a healing, calming effect on my soul.

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March – a bitter sweet month

March was a bitter sweet month whilst my parents were alive.

Dad’s birthday on March 6 was followed one week later by Mum and Dad’s wedding anniversary on March 13. If Mum ever heard a superstitious person say that thirteen was an unlucky number, she would reply that thirteen had always been a lucky number for her and Dad.

Mum and Dad met shortly after the end of the Second World War in Budapest at ‘The Joint”. (Incidently, ‘The Joint’ had nothing to do with smoking pot! It was short for the American Joint Distribution Committee, a Jewish humanitarian assistance organisation funded by American Jews.)

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