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A Health Information Management professional, I survived a life-threatening emergency with information that only a person of my professional experience would know. And I’m sharing it!

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Loving Southern Life and The Medical Miracles that Came with it!


23 Av, 5777

If you've been reading this blog and its associated book over the years then you're aware of several upheavals in my life: Being struck blind and almost dead by a benign brain tumor called a Petroclival Tentorial Meningioma, emergency life-saving brain surgery, extraordinary efforts to regain health and vision, and relocating from one city to another in order to achieve several other goals.

It's enough to leave a person feeling winded.

And yet, I caught my breath, time after time, looking toward goals and steeling myself to reach them as I limped to the finish line.

I earned certification in ICD10 medical coding that way, plus certification in counseling skills, including Spiritual Chaplaincy (end of life issues), and rescue credentials from Israel's Homefront Command. I wrote a book to help other people to better cope with medical or mental health setbacks (kids, too!).

I've experienced an extraordinary life. As I indicated in the book, whenever I feel frightened or endangered, I pretty much focus on happiness, grab life by the collar and holler (inwardly or outwardly) "I want more!"

A person in daunting circumstances needs to strengthen themselves to face difficulties.

That mindset helped me to reach a miraculous milestone. I marked it with festivity. 

This past Shabbat, I'd prepared a kiddush, a celebratory party, in my synagogue. Here is the speech I gave to my friends, neighbors and fellow congregants about why I'd bothered to share my happiness with them. I share it in the hopes of strengthening your resolve to deal with your setbacks in optimal fashion:

Parshat Eikev Dvar Torah

Throughout chumash, we learn to love GOD, to walk in His ways. Moshe Rabenu (Moses) emphasizes this imperative in Parshat Eikev. Generations later, Mikha tells us that justice and kindness as we “walk humbly with HaShem (GOD)” are critically important. He rhetorically asks what sort of sacrifices we ought to make to show our closeness with HaShem, but then specifies that being fair, just, a practitioner of kindness, and walking “with” GOD humbly is the perfect recipe for achieving that closeness.

Now let’s look at what impresses me deeply as I continue my Beershevian life: I’ve only been here a bit over two years. What strikes me most is the compassion here, the genuine dvekut  (attachment) to Torah values. I can’t recall ever hearing the slightest hint of lashon hara (gossip). No idle musings, no diatribes, nothing. That reality sums up the wonder and beauty of Beer Sheva: You take morals seriously. The sweetness of character among all of you is remarkable. I keep picking up on it in other ways, too.

In your zekhut (merit), I’d like to share a story from the Chafetz Chaim with you.  He once mentioned that map makers indicate important cities with stars or special colors, perhaps special lettering. “But,” the Chafetz Chaim remarked, “that’s not how HaKadosh Barukh Hu (the Holy One) looks at the world. He/She is impressed with the holy lights of kedusha (holiness) coming out of specific locations. You think or Rome and Paris are important? Not in heaven. They don’t light up. It is the places where Jews practice compassion, where mercy and unconditional love are the stuff of daily life, that look large in Heaven. They light it up!”

I’ve obviously paraphrased the Chafetz Chaim, but you get his drift.

I came to Beer Sheva legally blind due to a medical mishap. I’ve dealt with it since 2006 by adhering to an organic diet, avoiding synthetics, and indulging in innovative vision therapies. But I’d hit a plateau in 2014-15. My eye wear prescription had fallen about 20 times by then. But no improvements followed. Doctors and I accepted the fact that I’d reached my potential for recovering sight after having been blinded by a benign brain tumor. I prayed every day for more medical miracles, did alternative healing techniques new to me, and prayed harder. I knew that it would take a miracle to gain “normal vision.” What would it be?

I learned to see life more sweetly by living in Beer Sheva. I learned it from you. I am grateful to each person standing here, as you have done something that touched me deeply. We can speak privately about that if you wish.

I’ve prepared this Kiddush (party) to thank you for your accepting me, physical disabilities and all, into Beer Sheva. I’ve experienced some heart-breaking discrimination elsewhere, and each day of my life here is a menukhat hanefesh (spiritual comfort)

You’ve made Beer Sheva shine in heaven. And you made a medical miracle by relaxing my heart and soul. After extensive, sophisticated vision exams from February to June this year, exams on equipment you could never imagine to exist, my medical team found astonishing proof that I am no longer “legally blind.” Yes, I have the wandering eyes of strabismus/pazila; I still need to be extra careful when descending stairs or curbs, but my vision is almost certifiably normal. It’s a miracle, and I credit you for making it happen. I have found deep, meaningful happiness in Beer Sheva, and much of it here in this synagoge. 

This Kiddush is my way of saying a big “Thank you.” You are beautiful to my eyes.

Buy the E-book or print edition of EMPOWER Yourself to Cope with a Medical Challenge

Face Your Medical Problems with Dignity. Face Your Future with Optimism.

Fill your mind, heart and soul with a sense of an ever-better future. Then ask GOD to help you to make it happen!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Socialized Medicine can be BAD for Public Mental Health!


16 Av, 5777

Several days ago I wondered why so many UKers were jamming the statistics for visitors to this blog. Then I checked some recent headlines and guessed what the problem might be: A lack of sound mental health care in England.

I indicated as much on one of my facebook pages:

Yocheved Golani Uh, might this be the issue on your minds?

The Government says it wants create 21,000 new jobs,…


Figures suggest a large rise in the number of reported cases of abuse of mental health patients.


Yocheved Golani Socialized medicine is not necessarily good for the public.

ReplyRemove Preview1 min

This 7 Things You Need to Know about Britain's Failing Nationalized Health System report underscores the overall problem. 

If you're in the UK and need competent mental health care, I strongly suggest that you A) Make use of licensed, reputable online mental health care professionals ready to serve your needs, and B) Check out the Global Resources section of 

It's packed with details about private and charitable organizations ready to serve the public's medical and mental health needs.

I write about many online mental health care options at a website geared to US reader interest, but no less valuable to UKers: it as often as necessary. 

Buy the E-book or print edition of EMPOWER Yourself to Cope with a Medical Challenge

Face Your Medical Problems with Dignity. Face Your Future with Optimism.

Fill your life with better choices.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Pity Parties Prevent Progress.


12 Av, 5777

As you've read in the EMPOWER Yourself book, I look forward to an ever-better future. I might limp towards some finish line or other, but I make every effort to reach it.

That's how I earned rescue certification, ICD10 medical coding certification, and counseling certification while facing a bewildering picture before me. 

I have spent years recovering from life-saving emergency brain surgery to remove a benign tumor that had blinded and almost killed me. 

I needed lots of physical, occupational and vision therapy to deal with vertigo, a brain that disagreed with my eyes about where my body and all its parts were located (an issue called "proprioception"), rapidly changing vision ability that caused my eyewear prescriptions to fall more than 20 times in 12 years, and all the courage I could summon up. 

I felt exhausted inside and out at times, and begged The One Above to help me to reach a state of inner and outer health. I refused to indulge in self-pity. No time for that. I had goals to reach!

Through it all, I've struggled to become employed. I've secured temporary and permanent employment over time. But I had to contend with doubters suspicious that a "disabled" person was "unabled." Some of them refused to hire me though I'd passed the interviews and skill-testing processes.

I read this article yesterday, and smiled. I appreciate the courage described in it. You might, too.

“Pity is one of the most dangerous things for the disability community,” Murray said. “It removes the value of the work and contribution of the person.”

Read the rest of the article at 

Michael Murray’s involvement in the disability community stems from his personal and unforgettable childhood experiences.

Buy the E-book or print edition of EMPOWER Yourself to Cope with a Medical Challenge.

You don't have time for pity parties. They prevent progress.

Face Your Medical Problems with Dignity. Face Your Future with Optimism.

Fill your time and life with quality.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Doing Well Not Despite Being Sick, but BECAUSE of Being Ill.


11 Av, 5777

I found this remarkable video online and want to share it with you.

Do something upbeat with the inspiration you feel.

Maybe I'll do a blogpost about YOU!

Ready? Read the E-book or print edition of EMPOWER Yourself to Cope with a Medical Challenge

Face Your Medical Problems with Dignity. Face Your Future with Optimism.

Fill your life with wonder.

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

You Need to Continue Advocating for Yourself


9 Av, 5777

This "Doctors too often fail to inform patients of a drug's possible side effects" Washington Post article holds information and suggestions worth noting, especially

"...Fugh-Berman said patients need to become their own experts, researching drugs on websites — such as the government database MedlinePlus — that are 'free of [the pharmaceutical] industry.'
Doctors have a responsibility to listen to their patients about side effects, too, she said.
'I tell medical students: If a patient develops a symptom after they’ve gone on their drug, it’s always the drug’s fault until proven otherwise,” said Fugh-Berman.'"

Click on the link to read the rest of the

Learn more about how to manage your medical life. Read the E-book or print edition of EMPOWER Yourself to Cope with a Medical Challenge

Face Your Medical Problems with Dignity. Face Your Future with Optimism.

Fill your medicine cabinet with safety.

Monday, July 31, 2017

What's Bothering UKers?

An addendum to today's blogpost:

LAWDY, UKers, what's on your mind 
that you're loading the stats 
on my part of the blogosphere today?

If you want specific information about 
how to cope with a medical 
or mental health issue, 
let me know privately with a PM 
on Facebook, or contact me via the blog 
(my contact info appears in the 
right margin and under every blogpost).

Get ready. You can EMPOWER Yourself to Cope with a Medical Challenge

Face Your Medical Problems with Dignity. Face Your Future with Optimism.

Fill your time with smart efforts.