Blog Articles

Re asking the question: why so afraid of the truth?

“That’s a bit harsh.” There it was again.  A put down, albeit accompanied by a smile. A ‘get-back-in-your-box’ comment. I could add it to the collection, along with, “straight talking,” “feisty,” “scary,” “abrupt,” not to mention the emotional or bossy comments....

Remembering that kindness works both ways

When my husband was called up urgently in the evening by a consultant haematologist to come into the acute assessment unit at the local hospital, on the same day as he had had a routine blood test at the GP practice, this was never going to be ‘normal’. My husband...

Recognising the smoke screens that help us get closer

I met ‘Aunt Es’ when I was 18. I had heard all about her from my Dad. She had introduced him to the Lake District and to Swallows and Amazons, which he read to me the long, hot summer of 1976 when I broke my arm, aged 8. My dad adored his ‘Aunt Es’ who was not his...

Recalculating the impact of change

A phenomenon. Live Aid. 1985. Hundreds of music industry people coming together, free of charge, to produce the world’s biggest cross continent concert to help others less fortunate than themselves. Where were you for Live Aid? This was a recent question on one of my...
Regretfully falling between the cracks.

Regretfully falling between the cracks.

I first met Karen in 2018.  She came in to consult about a possible chest infection, and I went on to discover that ten months after undergoing surgery for breast cancer she was apparently still waiting for her chemotherapy to start. She wasn’t one to complain...

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Remarking on the igglepiggle moments

Remarking on the igglepiggle moments

Eight years ago I wrote about the ‘Igglepiggle moments’ of my clinical practice. The quick fixes in paediatric ED that punctuate my week and lighten the load, reminding me why I love my job, grounding me in what really matters. I was reminded again this week of my...

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Redefine professionalism at your peril

Redefine professionalism at your peril

“If I want to get plastered on a Saturday night, and fight on my High Street,” a surgeon told me about 12 years ago, “ I can.”  At that time I took issue with his view, my lofty beliefs then suggesting that professionalism was something we were, part of our...

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Retreating from the world.

Retreating from the world.

I can't leave the garden this evening.  It's not a large garden – the size of some people’s kitchens, where they cook in front of friends and serve “supper” at the table, a happy, chaotic mess, wine bottles strewn around, pans in the sink, kids paintings on the...

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Really, really want

Really, really want

In the words of the 1990s pop song, what do we want? What do we really, really want?  From life? From work? From each other?  Many people have asked this question over the centuries and most of the time the answers are a variation on the same theme. As human...

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Realigning our priorities

Realigning our priorities

Five people, strangers, met one sunny Friday in early September. They had not met previously, but had come together with one sole purpose in mind – to create. Standing around in an airy workshop, stuffed to the rafters with material, tools, objects and knick knacks,...

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Re entering the wonderful world of work.

Re entering the wonderful world of work.

For the first time in six months, I felt I had a place in the world again.  Six long months of uncertainty, of worry, or wondering if I would ever be needed in the ways that I was previously pre Covid. Not that we are post Covid at the moment, but we are...

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