This is an email I just exchanged with a new friend I made at a coffee shop yesterday (kind of revealing my personality in a nutshell 🙂
I had sat down to do some editing of the book I’m writing on the U.S. medical system, and these three very nice elderly ladies at the table next to me, were actually talking about the differences between the U.S. and Canadian healthcare systems!
The main lady I met, Justine, has three brothers who live in the U.S., with a nephew who is currently attending NYU medical school.
They are all Canadian by birth, but her brothers moved to the U.S. years ago.
Justine, very properly dressed, with beautiful hair and well spoken, was sharing with her friends how horrified she was regarding what happens do people in the U.S. healthcare system.
One of her brothers had lost his house when his wife developed serious medical problems, and they couldn’t afford the bills–and they had health insurance!!
I was so taken back by the irony of my being there working on my book, I just couldn’t help myself and had to interject.
This lady and I are about as different as different could be (she had an air of being conservative and very well-to-do, which was also why I was taken back by what she was saying–whereas I come across as a little bit like ‘trailer trash’, so at first she was a little resistant when I jumped in to their conversation–)
And then we started to blend together a little–like oil and vinegar on a salad, perhaps 🙂
We mostly just started brainstorming ways to reach Americans about how to improve their system, as well as reach Canadians to find ways to improve this system, without resorting to ‘let’s go private insurance like they have in the U.S, which we both agreed would be terrible.
I gently nudged her to get involved, and that the world needed her to speak up. She is such a lovely and beautiful lady, I know if she spoke on Parliament Hill, people would listen. There is absolutely nothing ‘crack pot’ about this woman. She would be a great leader in the healthcare movement.
(I could never keep my temper in check long enough to be a leader–but I can write speeches or give good policy advice–)
Overall, it was really a fascinating conversation, partly because on the surface, we couldn’t have been any more different.
Who knows? Maybe I met a kindred spirit 🙂
Begin forwarded message:
Date: November 20, 2014 at 3:24:15 PM EST
Subject: Re: Book
It was truly a pleasure meeting you yesterday. I really admire your poise discussing complex ‘hot button’ topics so eloquently–my passion is both my blessing and my curse–it fuels me, but it also makes it difficult for me to reach people sometimes, because I often inadvertently turn people off with my intensity.
(If I believe something strongly, I tend to dig in my heals in and fight like a mad dog…I need to learn usually a little sweetness can go a lot farther than barking and snarling 🙂
I’m looking forward to hearing your response to my book on the U.S. medical system–I’m still going through the editors revisions (he’s British–some of his word choices don’t fit my tone (does anyone actually use ‘whilst’ anymore? :), so unfortunately I have to comb through it a little more carefully than I had hoped), but I will send you a copy with the next few days for your feedback.
I really appreciate that you included me into your conversation yesterday. I didn’t want to interrupt, but I was very inspired by what you were saying. I think if we both brainstorm for a bit, we can come up with a way to help shed some light where there is darkness–
On Nov 20, 2014, at 2:39 PM, Justine wrote:
I enjoyed meeting/talking with you yesterday. You are a woman with amazing energy & purpose.
I truly admire your passion for insuring the humane availability of health care. The task on the surface seems daunting. Perhaps reading your book on your personal journey in all of this is a good place to start.
If it would be helpful for me to read your e-book, send it my way. I’m not an editor, but I would be happy to read it and give you some feed back.
Let’s start the journey by taking that 1 St step,
Sent from my iPad