ROJoson’s Message to People (Friends, Colleagues, Patients, and Relatives) Who Greeted and Wished Me Well on My Birthday (January 31, 2016)
Thank you to all people (friends, colleagues, patients, relatives, etc.) who sent me greetings and best wishes through Facebook, SMS, and email. I really appreciated them. I tried my best to send back an acknowledgement and a “thank you” note to all. If I missed somebody, I apologize. I hope this “thank you” note to cover up for my deficiencies.
Beside thanking you for your greetings and well wishes, allow me to share with you what I did about a month or two before (pre), on (intra) and after (post) my milestone or my 67th birthday on January 31, 2016.
You probably notice my use of “pre”, “intra” and “post” in parentheses. These parallel the lingo that we use in our surgical specialty, preoperative or preop; intraoperative or intraop; and postoperative or postop. Just as there are important activities being done in these three phases of an operation, there were also activities that I did in my pre-, intra- and post-milestone phases.
My pre-milestone activities consisted mainly of review of the life plans (both long-term and short-term) that I had formulated before. This was followed by refinements and adjustments of the plans that I previously made in my projected and targeted life span. The review and refinement activities were actually done and more or less completed in December 2015 as December 31, 2015 was also an important milestone for me (end of the year) and January 31, 2016 was just a month away. I just did some additional review and refinement activities from January 1 to January 30, 2016.
In my self-assessment, I say that overall, I am on track and satisfied with what I have achieved based on my formulated life plans. Using “marble counting” as my day-to-day and bi-weekly tracking system, I say that I had lived a very structured 2015 life with 52-marble-weeks of happiness, satisfaction, and productivity. I have identified some 2015 notable milestones for myself and will cherish and, if need be, nourish them. These are:
- Maternal Death Control Management System in Zamboanga Peninsula
- Strategic Plan on Safe Hospital Initiative in Sri Lanka
- DOH-Central Office Earthquake Business Continuity Plan
- University of the Philippines Alumni Association 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award
- MDH Exemplary Award
- OMMC Department of Surgery Appreciation of Leadership
- Consultation by Booked Appointment Time – Legacy to patients to reduce waiting time
- More than 100 Cancer Survivors
- Online health care education
- 3000 Facebook Friends
- Medical Anecdotal Reports
- Avoided stroke; Joy of Home
Some of the adjustments and refinements that I decided to make from age 67 onwards are the following:
- Primary target lifespan is still 70 years. Stretched target 1 is 75 because I want to see my son become a full-pledged physician. Stretched target 2 is 78 – 80 because I want to see my son become stable in his medical practice.
- I have started defining end-points in all my ongoing programs and projects to serve as my criteria for “contented enough.” With this strategy, I will have peace of mind and relaxation with contentment.
My main intra-milestone activities consisted of the following:
Family bonding from January 30, 2016 to January 31, 2016 in Batangas. After a simple dinner in January 30, 2016, we watched family videos of yesteryears. In the morning of January 31, 2016, my son, my daughter and I went windsurfing. My son dubbed the activity as “family windsurfing day.”
Note: I figured in a major road accident in the afternoon of January 31, 2016. Fortunately, no persons got injured but the car I was driving was a wreck. I considered this event as a wake-up call for me in everything I am doing now.
My post-milestone activities (February 1-2, 2016) consisted of the following:
First, strengthening the consultation scheme in my clinic in Manila Doctors Hospital that I started in 2015 – to decrease the waiting time of my patients consulting by allowing and using a prebooked appointment date with time. This will constitute one of my acts of compassion and another legacy for my patients.
Second, reinforcing my initial efforts to entice more donation for the Mu Sigma Phi Simulation Room of the UP College of Medicine Academic Center.
Starting February 3, 2016, my post-milestone activities will be to continue to implement what I wrote in my life plans for 2016; for the next 3 years (2019); next 8 years (2024); and next 11 to 13 years (2027 to 2029). I will continue to be a productive retiree.
To end my reflection and this sharing, I like to say that the 2016 celebration of my birthday was simple yet useful and meaningful. I am very happy and very contented.
For this, foremost, I thank my wife and two children for their everlasting support.
Of course, to all of you who greeted and wished me well on my birthday, thank you very very much. Your greetings and wishes make me happy on my birthday because I got that feeling that I am still worth an attention and appreciation from you. Also, they serve as a moral support and motivation for me to continue to be of service to you and to others. Maraming maraming salamat. Mabuhay kayong lahat.