Category Archives: Breathing Is More Than Political!

Breathing Is More Than Political! (BIMTP!) is a health journal with a ton of hints, information and ideas from a nurse who didn’t see her own collapse coming. Although my health crisis came as respiratory distress, BIMTP! is for anyone — patients, caregivers, family and friends — living with chronic illness and sudden downturns. (For more background please see, Who is BIP?.)

I hadn’t been sick in 64 years. I hadn’t bothered with baseline lab tests or x-rays in 20 years. My diet was atrocious and I loved to smoke. On December 21, 2016, that train came to a crashing halt. Or, as a friend described the moment an iron band clamped his chest and stopped the air before it could fill his lungs, “They froze. My lungs froze.”

When it happens, all you can do is concentrate on sucking in each molecule of air and pushing it out as fast as possible to make room for the next. Afraid to exhale. Terrified you’ll need one breath too many. No matter what you were doing before the moment you lost your breath, your new immediate priority is to keep it from happening again. Consequently, the first six weeks of this journal is written retrospectively. It’s organized chronologically because, as the days pass, you’ll discover that your physical and mental states, needs and relationships change. In order to make specific discussions, ideas and suggestions easier to find, I’ve linked them to these basic:

Header Categories
The “Holy Crap, What Happened to My Life!”  Journal.
Learn to Breathe Again.
Demented? Hypoxia, Hypoxemia “Low Blood Oxygen”
Tools: Oxygen, Incentive Spirometers, Pulse Oxymeters, BP Cuffs, Nebulizer Treatments. .
Re-Building Your Life: Nutrition, Smoking Cessation, Pithy Rules to Live By, Daily Routines .
Things That Health Workers and Families Should Never Forget.
Living Rural With Chronic Illness: Local Resources, Building Networks.
Lungs: What They Do & Why We Need Them.
Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD).

Coming soonBreathing Is More Than Political!  with helps and hints for patients,  families and medical workers from a chronically healthy nurse who went to work one day and was discharged from the hospital a week later with an oxygen tank in tow.

In the wake of a sudden,  life-smacking medical crisis,  I needed a  place where I could speak as a nurse who hadn’t seen the collapse coming;  a place where other people whose health has been upended over night — or in a matter of seconds — can teach, learn and laugh together because, face it,  breathing  doesn’t have an alternative and the world is short on oxygen humor.

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