Psychologist Russell Lockhart referred to words as "eggs." Crack them open and go beyond their dry literal meaning; dig more deeply and excavate the information and images buried within. See where the words and the pictures lead us by following the connections that arise spontaneously in our pursuit of the holy grail of health.
What I learned from Josh the former Pararescueman is that the way to manage fear is to plan for what to do if and when something does go wrong. People are fearful when they are uncertain about what they are facing and about what they can do. Josh taught us how to figure out what had happened, and he taught us what was in our scope of practice to do.
The trouble with holistic medicine, or integrative medicine, is less the holes that can be poked in it by self-proclaimed sentinels of evidence, and more our prevailing tendency to gravitate to diametric poles. The best way forward is the road less traveled, which lies, as it often does, in the middle.
In last week's New York Times, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel suggested that this year's resolution might be to abandon the ritual of your annual physical. The title of his column, perhaps chosen by an editor to maximize glibness and thus provocation was: "Skip your annual physical." But permit me to suggest you don't commit to that just yet. The annual physical exam warrants some more examination, a defense to follow its prosecution.