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Old 08-01-2011, 12:47 PM   #1
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That "Ah-ha" Moment

I was at a conference many years ago and the speaker started off by saying there were two gestures we needed to learn for the weekend. The first was to wave your hand back over your head as in "it went straight over my head" and the other was to (lightly) take your fist to your forehead to illustrate that the fact finally hit you or, as he put it the "ah-ha" moment.

I hadn't thought about it for years, but just yesterday I was pretty stressed out from the heat, looking after Dad, DH, the house and still battling sinus migraines (both sides now). Now my husband and my Dad think a lot of each other, but they also see a lot of faults in each other and have great opinions about how the other one is ruining my life .

So around 8:45 pm my best friend calls to see what I am up to - watching a movie with DH (10 minutes to go), getting Dad settled in. She says she has some great news and wants to go for tea! This is a real gift! I watch the last minutes with DH, clear Dad's snack dishes and get him settled and inform them both I am going out.

DH asks if I have my cell phone and I say yes. I tell Dad that I won't be long and DH is here for whatever he needs and he asks me if I have my cell phone and I say........and then it hits me! Ah-ha! I take my cell phone out of my purse, hand it to DH in front of Dad and say "you are on your own guys", I will be about an hour! I had such a feeling of relief and huge smile on my face. I told my friend as she picked me up and she said she was proud of me.

How did it turn out? My friend and I had a wonderful time and all was quiet on the homefront. Dad was fast asleep (something that has been difficult for him lately and DH had emptied the dishwasher and was watching TV waiting for me.

Do you get "ah-ha" moments? They can be big or small, serious or funny. I would love to hear about them

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Old 08-01-2011, 01:06 PM   #2
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Good for you!

When I am in situations similar to the one you outlined above I think of this quote:

"The cemeteries of the world are full of indispensable men."
- Charles De Gaulle


I don't think people intend to "put the monkey on our backs" initially, I think we take him and then those around us get used to handing him off. Once you realize that it is happening you can smile, give the monkey a hug and hand him right back! Once you have had your first "ah-ha" moment you can see the monkey coming a mile away. The game can be great fun !
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:26 PM   #3
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That is so true! Nicely put Aunt Bea.

But ah-ha moments don't just have to be about others putting their loads on us.

I had knee replacement surgery a few years ago and there were some complications (not the doctor's fault, I grow scar tissue at an alarming rate). Basically I was told I needed to have a cane for the rest of my life. I was crying all the way home until DH turned off the main road and stopped in front of a large drug store. I was very puzzled. He said "if you have to have a cane, I don't want you depressed over that ugly black thing. Let's get you something you feel good about". I came out with a butterfly cane and all of a sudden I felt great.....until I was sitting at the YMCA waiting for Dad and realized maybe I should join. That was March and by the beginning of May I realized I didn't need the cane anymore! A double AH-HA!!!
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:50 PM   #4
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Oh, yeah. With me, it has been the last few years and workouts. When I first moved here, I walked to the hospital's fitness center three times a week for an hour workout. My doctor was in a clinic at the same location, so that would be some extra walks. Well, a few years ago, both moved to locations a few miles out of town ... too far for a regular walk to & from (it was 3/4 mile, is now over 3 miles, fine one way but forget it after that and an hour workout). All of a sudden I was driving places I used to walk. Then the instructor left the area, and I've never quite been able to get into her various replacements.

Well, the duh! moment comes when a classmate told me that there are classes at the community center. THAT is a very pleasant climb, the class is dance oriented (which I like), the 15 minute climb to and from I thoroughly enjoy, meeting a few new people (I like the social aspects of classes rather than working out to tapes or just walking by myself). The thing is it just never occurred to me to check into the community center. What an idiot!
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Old 08-01-2011, 01:58 PM   #5
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But you were enlightened and are doing it! That's great! Like me realizing leaving the cell phone behind was a sure bet they would have to fend for themselves and I could have an enjoyable visit!

Way to go, Claire!
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:05 PM   #6
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Yeah, and the thing is I knew that they did have all sorts of classes, just never checked into them.
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:06 PM   #7
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I have a "I'm only here to do for you what you CAN'T do..." speech, patients are sometimes surprised to find out that nurses are really there to do those things and they report to the doctor all those things patients like to skate on thinking they have a servant. It's bad when the doctor finds out you won't even hold your own cup of water for a drink...it extends your stay.

That's their "Ah-Ha" Moment!
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:17 PM   #8
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Fiona, I have a couple of elderly shut-in friends. One is totally crippled from RA, the other is legally blind and has broken her hip & had replacement. The RA lady does as much as she can, which isn't much, but she does. The blind/hip replacement lady whines at me sometimes. Other people have great recoveries from hip replacement (as a matter of fact everyone I know has). I just told her, you don't exercise at all, you're content to live in that chair unless I bring you out for our weekly social hour, you resisted all PT, you resist eating a good diet. Forget it. Unfortunately, I think at least one of her care-givers just finds it easier to let her sit there and do everything for her when it isn't necessary (I'm there for an hour or so twice a week to read for her, their care-givers often use that hour to take a much-deserved break). I, of course, do not. If they can do it themselves, they do it themselves for that hour.

What I'm getting at is I wonder if my friend will ever have a "Duh!" moment? She's 79 and I honestly don't think it's beyond her to have better balance and walking if she'd just work on it a little. I actually talked to her physical therapists at one point, and she agreed. Case was proven when she recently took a plane trip with her daughter (who does not live in the area and comes for visits once or twice a year), and when we did our social hour last week, her walking was vastly improved. Get up and MOVE! But I don't think you can force a "duh" moment.
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:19 PM   #9
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I've never been sure how other women handled some of the stresses that they don't usually share with others so your comments were really good to see. Mine was a few years ago when my sister and I had gone to our mother's for the weekend. I came home on Sunday afternoon to see the kitchen sink piled high with dishes, etc - even overflowing on part of the counter. The clean dishes were in the dishwasher just as I had left them. Dh and our son were having a great time on some sport or another on tv. I looked at the mess and said I'll be gone for about an hour and when I get back the kitchen should be shining. When I got back it was definitely shining. I have never come home since to find my kitchen a mess - even if I leave it that way.
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Old 08-01-2011, 02:25 PM   #10
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i think my wife has ah-ha moment with cell phone every day, she either forgets it at home, or she cannot here it becasue it is in her purse. Now I know why. Thanks.
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