Have you checked your WhatsApp messages lately?

-Featured article by Dr Sanjaya Vishwamithra

Have you checked your WhatsApp messages lately.. of course you have!! Was it the IACI group.. dare say it was not!! Fear not. I would rather you read my message so in brief: There is an upcoming case-based discussion on Sarcoidosis on July 23rd, a nice summary of non-ischemic DCM risk stratification, shared links to lecture series from our ASCI, SCMR, IRIA, colleagues and several interesting cases shared by members. Kudos to the IACI Webinar and Newsletter teams. Lots of effort in getting this done.

What do I read on WhatsApp you ask. Sharing is caring, so let me see what is cooking on my phone. My medical school group messages are peppered with birthday wishes. mostly to the children of the members. The ratio of classmate wishing to child wishing gets skewed considering that each classmate has more than one child. Many messages on food and drinks (mostly the alcoholic kind but let us not advertise this), some vacations, selfies and vacation-selfies. Ironic considering that we are past looking our best. Nevertheless, the customary, “Looking good da” never fails to elevate the spirit. Lest you think that I come from a hedonistic medical school, we do have serious discussions, but, these are…well.. seriously limited. Dear reader…you are looking good too. May I suggest that if you sit up straight and take a deep breath you will look even better!

Which brings me to wondering; what do we learn from our children? A quick poll shows that most of us have learnt nothing from our children. What is to learn? I mean, it is 12 noon, and my son is still in bed… on a weekday. Apparently, the first session of his online classes was not interesting. He is bound to get up soon, doesn’t miss his evening basketball game for anything!! Yet, he seems to be able to keep his grades as high as his morale and outlook to life. My daughter has been talking on the phone for the past hour, while walking around on the balcony. Multi-tasking at its best. I know because, my work room is directly below her room. She has literally taken Covid in her ‘stride’, handles calls, work, assignments, and friends, with the ebullient attitude as in her dedication to the hour of “Scam 1992” or ironically “The Office”. She enjoys every morsel of her dinner, eating slowly, for the entire length of the TV show! Her idea of “me” time seems to include her eating time, friend time, and other times when she is truly not
socially active. Seems to have figured out that it is more important to have a “me” time than define one.

The good thing about having kids is that they make you feel young. I am “appa” most of the time, but, recently, have been getting a lot of complementary “chill bro” greetings. Makes me feel young and reckless all over again apart from the occasional ectopic.

Perhaps, there are a few “too close to home,” messages here. We can all “chill”, get the extra sleep, and more “me” time. We can ignore uninteresting opportunities, pick up a new hobby, and get essential exercise! I came across a 3-2-1 program. Simply put, assign exercises in cardio, strength building, and flexibility in the order of our choice to 3, 2, and 1 day per week. Increase over 3 months. Add a little quiet time, perhaps music or meditation, for yourself. Spend more time over our meals, make time to talk to friends, and laugh more frequently with our loved ones. Maybe the secret of youth is to be more like them! I feel like I am really getting some “universe” pointers in here and am so glad to share these with you. Oops… have to leave.. my wife is calling and that is one message I am not going to ignore.