Welcome to the June/July issue of WonderWell, a newsletter intended to gather the most groundbreaking research and insightful commentaries in evidence-based medicine, wellness, healthcare leadership, writing, and innovation to help you live and work in alignment with your purpose and well-being.
Some things that had me wondering this month:
1. COVID and…
Pediatric Multinflammatory multisystem syndrome: In the Lancet, some good news: the sequelae (long lasting effects) of the initial symptoms may not persist past 6 months.
Vaccine Hesitancy: Among healthcare workers in the New York Times.
How the pandemic ends, by the indomitable Helen Branswell, in STATNews.
2. Podcasts (and shows) worth listening to/watching
The best series I’ve watched in a long time is “The Me you Can’t See,” a series on mental health and wellbeing, produced by Oprah and Prince Harry. I especially loved the last episode, which placed a solutions-lens on mental health as well where this issue intersects with other contemporary challenges, such as policing. Make the time to watch!
3.On…reconciling with Canada’s challenging past with residential schools
In the CBC, the discovery of the bodies of 215 Indigenous children, some as young as three, rippled throughout the country. It’s likely there are many similar mass graves across the nation. First comes ‘truth’ and understanding the true scope of this tragic legacy, and then reconciliation. I sense that we’re only beginning to get to the truth bit.
4.Sound (and wise) reflections
~In NiemanLab, why Darnella Frazier, now 18, should win a Pulitzer for her bravery in capturing the tragic death of George Floyd, which had a ripple effect on how we understand systemic racism in policing and more broadly in our society.
~Billy Porter, on sharing his truth as a man living with HIV, in the Hollywood Reporter
~On the Cicadas who are re-emerging after years, in the New York Times.
~I developed a tree pollen allergy last year, and have been sneezing nonstop seemingly this month. Finally, I have my answer, from CTV.
~On brain implants that could translate thoughts into text, in Wired
~For subscribers to STAT+, the investment in healthcare teams, by tech companies.
~From Yahoo, the tragic death of Michael Lewis’ daughter, Dixie (along with her boyfriend, Ross Schultz), in a car accident last week reverberated throughout the literary community. Lewis is one of the most talented narrative nonfiction writers, and I just started his latest: The Premonition, about the pandemic. His podcast, with Pushkin Industries, Against the Rules, is one of my favorites, and last season he described being coached for singing, drawing parallels with Dixie’s experience with her softball coach. May Dixie and Ross rest in peace.
6.Best tweets of the month goes to…
Adam Grant, on a mantra we need to finally do away with:
“We’ve always done it that way” is not a valid reason for anything. Don’t follow traditions because the status quo is comfortable and change makes you uncomfortable. Question whether past routines are serving you well in the present and guiding you toward a better future.
Rebecca Herbert, on attachment (or…”inosculation”, in the plant world) which continues to be a theme I think about often:
The thinner tree was cut years ago and the big one has been holding and feeding it since then. They “wake up” together in the spring and “go to sleep” together in the autumn.
An excellent thread by Marie Beecham on cancel culture as a form of intellectualism.
This sums up a lot of the past 18 months with the pandemic: Mike DiCenzo: (a former writer for Jimmy Fallon, the Onion, etc):
Nobody really knows anything. Everyone’s just saying things. But some people say things more confidently than others.
NYC, enlivened, as the storm clouds (of COVID) appears to be clearing! May 2021
In My Own Words…
This was also a month with additional ‘in person’ reporting in and around New York with sources I couldn’t meet in person a year ago, given the lockdowns. We also cemented the title (On Healing will be the final!) and the subtitle (this was a toss up between two — so stay tuned!) and hopefully I’ll be able to share the cover in the next newsletter.
And a brand new book to be sure to get your hands on, by my friend Barrett Swanson (I’ve linked to his essays in previous newsletter): Lost in Summerland. This interview, in LitHub, is a great as well.
Have a healthy, joyful, and safe June and July!
Amitha Kalaichandran, M.D., M.H.S.