What do you mean by that? How many times have you said that? How many times have you heard something come out of someone’s mouth and can’t believe he/she said that? We have to leave The President out of this because everyone would say that about what he says. This is about people in your day to day life. Syntax, how a simple statement is made to reek of negativity, condemnation or condescension. Syntax,
Syntax refers to the composition, or the arrangement of words used to portray a meaning. Bad Syntax, in my opinion, doesn’t just refer to poor word arrangement, but the arrangement of words to portray a poorly emoted meaning. I think it was my Mom who always used to say, “it’s not just what you say, it is how you say it!” Me, I am all about that. Lately more so than ever. These days everything seems so dark and dreary in a way, so why not take any chance possible to lighten or brighten things up. For example, instead of asking the question “WHY would you do it THAT way? That makes it look smaller!” Maybe phrase it, “I ‘m curious as to why that is the better style? Does that make it seem bigger?” Here you are asking for the same information, just with a lighter approach. Again, it is how you say it.
Most don’t hear themselves when they speak. So, when you point out that they sound harsh or stern (angry even) they are taken aback. Often becoming more argumentative. I have been accused of that from time to time, and when pointed out I quickly look for the better way to say the same question (and apologize for using poor syntax). Nobody is perfect – and now there is even a slang for it…MY BAD! But if we all just took a second to hear ourselves (maybe even record yourself once in a while) you may learn how you sound to others.
I often use a story form 1982. I was 20 and just diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Disease. The next morning, I was being operated on – I was losing my Spleen and part of my Liver. Not feeling particularly light (though I was optimistic about the end results). I was having this done at Tufts Medical Center (a teaching hospital – you know with all those seemingly clueless interns like you see on the TV shows). So, before Dr. Detterling was to arrive, a young intern came to explain what was about to happen. He spoke fast and curtly and in ‘medical talk’ that I couldn’t understand anyway. Trying to lighten the mood I asked: “It’s all gibberish to me, so could you just tell me am I going to live or die?” (I was joking of course). This Intern looked me straight in the eye and solemnly said: “I cannot predict the outcome, Cancer is a very serious disease!” I was actually too stunned to talk. Frozen actually. Luckily as I sat there on the precipice of an emotional breakdown, Dr. D walked in. His hands and body shaking (in a put-on kind of way), he says “Do you need the scare to be perfectly straight?” Some of the interns giggled and I relaxed as much as possible. That lightened the mood immediately. It isn’t what you say it is how you say it!
This is such an important lesson for everyone. Interpersonal relationships, business relationships, co-dependent relationships J, can benefit from understanding this. How many times have you walked away out of a restaurant, a store, or after dealing with a rude person? Aren’t you soured on that place or person? And all it would have taken is for them to tell you the same thing in a different way. These days we read the papers and are meet with Shock and Yawn. We don’t know whether to cry or hibernate for a while. If we could just learn that what we say and how we say it matters. If we could just learn to be positive and light- instead of Angry and Argumentative we can emerge shaky yet optimistic! I hope for that! The Sun WILL come out Tomorrow! Bet Your Bottom Dollar that TOMORROW they’ll be Sun and Syntax!
Enjoy, Be Happy and Be Understanding!
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What a summer I have enjoyed. With my kids in camp, and not a Dr.’s appointment scheduled…Well except for a yearly Gyno appointment, I had an “worry free and health issue free summer.” I know that is how most people enjoy life, but for the past three summers, as many of you know, either I, or a family member, has undergone one sort of cancer treatment or another. And this summer…that was not the case…Now, this is not to say that I don’t have friends being faced with this awful disease and treatment, because that would not be true. And this is alos not to say that I don’t think about what they are going through, or ways I can help them get through it. I have, however, enjoyed a summer of appointments, and errands, and meetings, and tastings, and dinners out, and visiting friends, and visiting family, and planning for the kids 13th, and…well just all things I have not been able to do for the last 3 years. All things that are just part of LIFE….and boy was I thrilled to do them all.
With that being said, with my new found freedom, I gave up on the blog for a spell. And honestly my schedule for the next 3 weeks doesn’t let up much, so my blog may lay dormant until the beginning of October (or maybe even November). But fear not, I will return and with new inisght into just about everything. Even though the title remains The Cancer Made Me Do It, I will begin to tackle all different “life” issues, from the same humorous (yet sometimes cynical) perspective.
My summer has also presented a new emotional turmoil. My Mom and Dad, who I have written of often, are moving to Florida just after Halloween. This move will give them a new and improved lifestyle. I am so thrilled for the opportunity my brother and sister-in-law have helped to create; but I can’t help but feel sad about loosing my constant, and loving lunch mate. Of course, now I have a reason to go to Florida (one other than Disneyworld). I am thankful to Facetime, Skype and all of these other technological marvels because that will make it a little easier.
So while I am busy with so many things…helping to pack them up and move them just adds more to my schedule. But, again, a busy life is better than no life at all…
So I bid you good-bye for a few weeks. And wish you all well…
I will be back.
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I believe that honesty is the best policy. If you can’t admit to it, then you know it is wrong. Well I will admit it…Over the last year I got BIG. 30 lbs bigger than I was before Cancer. And it really sent me into a tizzy. I know how silly that sounds that my weight can phase me more than my health. But it can. I am the type of individual who cares about my appearance. Not in the “designer clothes” sense…just in my appearance. How that appearance is perceived.
It is along the same lines as when I lost my hair. I gave off the appearance of being “sick”…and even though I had cancer, I never considered myself “sick”. I may be generalizing, but I believe women feel that Hair and Weight are also personality traits — I mean a bad hair day can alter your personality for the day. Now, due to the cancer, I won’t have bad hair days anymore. No, not because I don’t have hair…because I do. But because the way it grew in is so cute, that I am going to keep it short and silver…A friend called me a Silver Fox the other day, and I liked it. So that part of my appearance is in check.
So lets get back to the weighty issue at hand. Weight. I am not here to say that I am obese, but I am large for me. My bones ached constantly from the additional weight they are carrying; I would loose my breathe easily when walking up stairs or exerting myself at a rapid pace. And my internist and cardiologist confirmed it…(and to think I call these two my friends as well) — I suffered from DECONDITIONING. Over-weight and out-of-shape for us laymen! As he said in the movie NETWORK…”I was mad as hell and I wasn’t going to take it anymore.” So off to Weight Watchers I went. That was 6 weeks ago. I have had good days and bad days on the diet but this morning I got on my scale (not their’s yet cause I wear clothing there…Thank god!) But on my Scale I reached 169.9 Lbs. That is down 13 LBs. 13 is my new lucky number. I have been doing exercise and dieting and it is really making a difference.
I was so happy when I saw that I went right down stairs and had a donut…JUST KIDDING! But I thought about it! I have 17 Lbs to go before I hit my goal…which honestly was the heaviest I had been in 10 years, but right know that weight will be fine.
So I guess, after my anniversary from surgery was yesterday (if you remember, I had re-named my double Mastectomy day “Erin go Brahless Day”) I didn’t worry about my weight during treatment (MUCH), but it has weighed heavy on my mind (& body) since…So I see this as another step in my recovery…
I will soon “Tip the Scales of Time” in my favor….and once again will be as “light-hearted” about this issue as I was about my cancer.
Even my puns have gotten a little thin….
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