Friday, January 29, 2010

Dailure and Dailrag

Florence Gelo, D.Min, NCPsyA

Associate Professor

  • DEPARTMENT: Family, Community, and Preventive Medicine
  • SPECIALTY: Death and dying; palliative care; religion/spirituality and medicine
  • EDUCATION: D.Min, Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary; NCPsyA, Philadelphia School for Modern Psychoanalysis

Dr. Gelo is the behavioral science coordinator for the Family Medicine residency program and the recipient of funding to establish a curriculum around religion, spirituality and medicine. She is the co-recipient of a grant from the George Washington Institute for Spirituality and Health for work in medicine and spirituality with family medicine residents. She has numerous peer-reviewed publications in journals, including the Hastings Center Report, theJournal of Pastoral Care and the American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. Gelo is also a pastoral psychotherapist in private practice specializing in grief and loss and chronic illness. She serves as a guide at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Watch Dr. Gelo in "The Heart of Empathy" video (WMV)

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Dailure and Dailrag

This effort to create a cross-disciplinary course/elective with the medical school(s) is very exciting! At the same time it's quite anxiety-producing. I am not sleeping well. I keep thinking of all the things that can go well (as well the things that I can f--k up!). It's a bit like bush-wacking and I know there are others, in my camp, who will help out (or are helping) and this is not a solo voyage, but I feel like I've taken on something big and I'm so small. It's all in the details ("god is in the details"). I am doing my homework, researching medical school program, which incorporate the arts, and speaking to others who have done or are doing the same, reading articles, planning, etc.. Will it be enough?! We have our first Roundtable meeting on February 23rd. Attendees include: two deans from the medical school, one assistant dean from the nursing school and the Chairs of the psychology and physical therapy departments, the Director of the museum and other parties. And I'm facilitating it! Shit.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


My daughter is leaving and going to Seville and I won't see her for 6 months. I'm so happy for her, but am having a very hard time with her leaving. This is out-of-character for me as I'm all about my children being independent and I celebrate them spreading their wings, but all of a sudden I feel as if she's taking all the joy out of the house and I can't get beyond it. I cried and cried into my coffee cup this morning...pathetic!

Monday, January 25, 2010


My teenage son, 14 and teenage daughter, 16, fight ALL OF THE TIME! It's driving me insane. I'm not sure which one of us needs therapy?! (Maybe all of us?). The routine is getting too routine, she gets home from school, then he gets home from school and the 'fun' begins; they start to pick at one another, then they eat something and they stop picking, because they can't pick at one another and chew at the same time, but once they've downed the entire contents of the refrigerator, they begin again. Then it's time to get dressed for tennis. Because they are in separate rooms they don't actually get dressed together (so they aren't fighting). But then, they get into the car, and my 16 old drives and my 14 year old says something to provoke her and they begin only this time it's in the car and that's SUPER DANGEROUS ( so we grounded them). When they arrive home from tennis they take showers, not together, so they aren't fighting. But we do sit down at the dinner table with one another and they start, but they know, because we are at the table, with them, that they may not actually yell at one another. It's much more subtle jabs. I just know if we weren't at the table they'd throw food across the table at each other. And so I'll suggest to them that maybe they could actually say something NICE to one another (not an option). And I keep saying things like, "Ah, I'm tired of hearing you both fight". And my 16 year old will say, "You're tired of it...think how I feel??!!" and then I just decide to go to bed, really early, bc I can't take it anymore. And so I wake up the next morning, feeling totally optimistic, that this day will be different, they'll treat each other with respect! But nope, hasn't happened. What's a mom to do?!

Hot-Buttered Popcorn

I'm not partial to popcorn that you have to pay too much money for, in the movie theaters, I do like Orville Reddenbacker's yummy popcorn. Every now and then, we'll make a large batch, at home, and sit down and watch a movie, in front of the TV. And with hot butter there's not much that tastes better. A cold glass of fresh lemonade keeps good company with the buttery delight. Yum!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Dailure-Teenage interest

My daughter's best friend, Daniela, reads this blog every day, and she said she "really likes it". I love it. I can't tell you how that warms the cockles of my heart. Maybe one day my own daughter will take an interest and even make a 'contribution'. It would be great if we could get a more cross-generational interest and then a cross-cultural, etc...

Friday, January 15, 2010

Devastation in Haiti

Tuesday, January 11th, an earthquake, 7, on the Richter scale, devastated Haiti. It seems that the capital, Port Au Prince, has been leveled. There are bodies, dead and alive, on the streets, and it's almost impossible for people, living outside the area to get through to their loved ones. Two friends and co-workers, at the Lowe, haven't been able to get in touch with their families; don't know if they are dead, injured or alive. It really puts things into perspective, for me, for my children, what is important?! My daughter, Sophie, went to Haiti, in November, with doctors from Project Medishare. She came back and shared her photos and stories of families, with their young children, waiting in make-shift hospitals, sometimes for days, to take advantage of the free health care. Children with Hydrocephalus, swollen heads and glassy eyes, lay on their mother's laps, in anticipation of a new life. Sophie explained that the 'hospital'; building with bare-minimum staff and supplies, smelled and the ambulences were all out of comission, with flat-tires and no gas. And that was BEFORE this earthquake. It's so sad. If there's anything good that will come out of this it's that the infrastructure of this country (poorest in the western hemisphere) may be re-evaluated. Maybe just maybe they'll build better buildings???!!! And maybe just maybe the government will get its act together. Although they've implemented horrible, self-serving, dictators for years now.

It's close to home. Hopefully, we people stateside will take a lesson from all of this. I know I am having a conversation, at our dinner table, every night about it.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


Latest addition to our clan, Cleo (Cleopatra). She's a wonderful puppy. And I don't mind taking her out daily, it's just that this isn't the best time of year, what with our cold snap (coldest it's been in Miami in years). But she's a good dog, even whines, when she wants to go out, so smart!

Monday, January 11, 2010

Dailrag-Iguanas fall from trees due to cold

Poor Iguanas, falling from the trees, here in South Florida, due to the unseasonably cold temperatures. Not sure what this is about and why they fall; do they lose their grip? fall asleep? die? It's wierd!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Almodovar Movies

We went to see Broken Embraces (Los Abrazos Rotos) Almodovar's latest, starring Penelope Cruz. I love his movies, the subject matter, the humor, the interesting angles, the bright colors, the flavors of Spain, and I love watching Penelope Cruz in them. He brings out the best in her.

Double Feature

Last night we went to see two movies! The first, A Single Man, with Colin Firth. It's based on a novel by Isherwood (done into a play, I Am A Camera and then Cabaret). I thought it was beautifully done: Filming, music and acting. Then Jordi wanted to see The Blind Side (I had already seen it). I liked it but think I liked Precious more. They aren't exactly the same but very similar in idea; kids from underprivileged neighborhoods, making it out, pulling themselves up by the bootstraps. I found The Blind Side to be endearing but a bit too Hollywoodish. Precious was raw. Monique, I thought, did a fantastic job.