Wednesday, April 6, 2011

This and that

Sholom Glouberman is a philosopher in residence at Toronto's Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care, author of the new book: My Operation: An Insider Becomes a Patient, and founder of the Patients' Association of Canada.

This health-policy professor who spent years working in health care felt he 'knew the ropes' before undergoing his first major surgery. He was wrong, and writes about how the acute-care system doesn't respond to the needs of people with chronic conditions and renders them passive.

I found this Maclean's Magazine interview with Glouberman fascinating: On the shock of his hospital experience, patients' rights, and what needs to change.

I enjoyed this Toronto Star interview with Montreal author Joel Yanofsky who's written a memoir about his son Jonah, who has autism: Bad Animals (A father's accidental education in autism).

While all young children have tantrums, Jonah’s were frequent and out-of-the-blue. His wife, an art therapist, coped better with Jonah. “He’d cry and rage and I’d explode,” writes Yanofsky. “I can’t count the number of times I was exiled to the basement...”

Life with Jonah felt like being on a balance beam, says Yanofsky. If he made one misstep, such as slightly raising his voice, the boy might plummet into an afternoon of sadness, anxiety and obsessive talk.

“What was being asked of me simply felt like too much to ask,” Yanofsky writes. “I was afraid that whatever progress Jonah made was not going to be enough. By which I mean – and was as deeply ashamed to admit this seven years ago as I am now – enough for me.”

I never saw this when it ran in the Globe last November:  My son bullies his autistic brother.

And this is an interesting study at Arizona State University looking at deaf kindergartens in France, Japan and the U.S., and how they assimilate students into the deaf culture: Scissors, paste, sign language.



My bedroom (I live at home as I don't wish to move into accessible housing. Most of the apartment building are in bad neighhoods, promote segregation, and reek of poverty.) was never large enough for a bookshelf, so I bought myself an armoire and filled have of it with books. Nonetheless, I think that I'm gong to empty it out and buy an iPad, as I begin to prepare myself for college and some advocacy work on behalf of children and adults with disabilities. I figure that Glouberman's new book and a few major studies from Holland Bloorview is a good place to start.

Thank you,

Matt Kamaratakis