December 2013

A Greek Christmas Carol

My grandmother was an amazing woman.  I described her briefly in my first blog post, but that mention really didn’t do her justice.  Born in a tiny village in Northern Greece called Kato Lesnitsa, my “YiaYia” had only a sixth grade education, but was the wisest woman I have ever met.  We spent a lot of time with her growing up including most summers when she came to visit us in Pennsylvania, and during Christmas vacations where we visited her in Florida.

kales@umich.eduA Greek Christmas Carol
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No Yoga Pants.

Written in pink marker, “The List” appeared on my night stand.  It was the evening before my 13 year old daughter’s field trip to Mexicantown in Detroit with her Spanish class.  Sophia had asked me to be one of the chaperones: “My friends like you…they think you are fun.”  I was slightly suspicious, but honored.  Who doesn’t want to be the fun mom?  And then the List appeared.

kales@umich.eduNo Yoga Pants.
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Let’s talk about depression.

A friend posted the thought-provoking cartoon on the left on  Facebook with the title ‘If Physical Diseases Were Treated Like Mental Illness’ (credit to Robot Hugs).  The cartoon graphically points out something that all of us know—“mental” disorders are treated differently than “physical” disorders.

kales@umich.eduLet’s talk about depression.
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(Gero)transcendence, my mom and me.

 About a month ago, I traveled to Falls Church, Virginia to give a talk.  As is my usual pattern, I sign on to give a talk 6-12 months ahead of time.  “Sure!  Sounds great.”  And in my office, on the end of the phone, 6-12 months ahead of time, it truly does.   A couple weeks ahead of the actual event, it dawns on me.  I have to leave Ann Arbor and my family (husband, 3 kids and 2 dogs) to go somewhere.  Crap.  As we like to say in, my mom and me.
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