What I learned at Samos hospital

Even in adverse and unfamiliar situations establish a routine. Bounce back to helpful rituals such as remembering my daily mantra (make today count; be kind), reading the newspaper.

Journal. It helps reflect and put things in order. This creates perspective and understanding.

Never stop counting my blessings, first and foremost my supportive family and friends. I am so immensely lucky to have an enormously supportive and loving husband and incredibly loving and caring kids.

Pack well. Travel with a few beautiful things from loved ones.

Don’t let yourself go. Keep brushing your teeth and washing your face.

Remember that feeling guilty isn’t necessary and doesn’t serve anyone.

Triangulate expert assessments by having experts speak to each other. Encourage and enable doctors to talk to each other.

Validation of information increases trust and comfort.

Don’t forget to listen to my intuition and common sense, think critically.

Enjoy the little things. The birds nest in the window. The cat on the motor cycle. The Lego dog for good luck. Joking with the bar tender.

Ask the nurses how their day is going.

Be more disciplined about avoiding disturbing media consumption.

Let breath be my anchor, allowing to breathe through tension.

Always nurture friendship.

Accept the circumstances I cannot change. Flow.

Understand where negative thoughts and anxiety comes from. Reframe.

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