Tag Archives: people

Paradigm Shift

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “180 Degrees.”

“180 Degrees: Tell us about a time you did a 180—changed your views on something, reversed a decision, or acted in a way you ordinarily don’t.”

Paradigm Shift

It was the year 2005. A moody Thursday in a border town located in South Texas. It was late in the afternoon. The clouds have covered the sky, dark and grey. Rain poured down, as though an entire ocean was being drained from above. Thunder rumbled in the sky, so deep and ominous. Brief flickers of lightening created a momentary ray, only to disappear right away.

In a silver Honda Accord, I sat in the back seat, entirely drenched by the rain, and with my backpack clinging on. With the wipers oscillating with such fierce swiftness, my father drove, calmly and slowly.

The road was barely visible, flooded by the heavy waters. With the hazard lights on, and the high beams burning bright, we moved—steady and strong.

Just then, a gray SUV zoomed past, splashing several feet of water on either side. The SUV so recklessly rushed past, on the opposite lane, in a hurry seemingly unneeded with such a monstrous weather. As the SUV shoved past, our car forcibly swayed to the right nearing the edge of the road, almost veering off into the ditch. Although our car trembled, my father, as skilled as he was, kept it on the road and we remained safe. The SUV merged onto our lane, in front of us, and kept the speed haste.

In shock we sat, wondering of what had happened. Unable to understand the irresponsible speed and reckless driving the SUV had displayed. We thought it to be a careless person, without consideration for another life. Surely it must be right, if they drove in such a reckless haste?

At a distance, a frail old woman, half deep in water, walked in a struggle, on the right side of our lane. The rain was pouring heavily upon her; she prodded along, with a hand full of bags, completely drenched. With the waters flooded heavily, her every step must be placed so precisely or she risks falling into the ditch, with the waters hiding the edge.

As we worriedly approached the frail woman closer and closer, the “reckless” SUV ahead, recessed its speed. With the hazard lights on, the SUV came to a complete stop. Its passenger side front door propped open right adjacent the frail woman. What was said between them remains unknown. But a gentle smile came upon the frail woman’s face, as she struggled to climb onto the seat.

As we passed the SUV, our rear-view mirror revealed a beautiful sight. The SUV that was in such a “reckless” rush, picked up the frail woman, and now turned around, driving off in the opposite direction. Seemingly, providing this woman with a ride and relief from the danger that surrounded.

It was a complete paradigm shift. Just moments before, we had thought of this person driving the SUV to be someone who was so inconsiderate of another life. Since, they drove so recklessly in this horrid weather, almost forcing us off to the ditch. But, that image changed completely as the person gave a ride to this frail old woman, driving off in the opposite direction, caring enough to take this woman to safety.

Our view of this person took a complete 180. Till this day, 10 years after, the kindness displayed by providing the old woman with safety is what is revered. It showed me that no one is either good or bad. No one is black or white. We are all but a collective shade, capable of making good choices, capable of showing kindness. I’d like to think that the person who drove the SUV, after almost forcing us off the road, reflected upon his or her haste, perhaps felt it was an unneeded momentary impulse. Perhaps it was one of those moments that changed his or her perspective of life, and forced him or her to slow down, and continue this journey without rush. Perhaps that is what compelled the once-rushing person to halt, offer a ride, and head off in the opposite direction. Or perhaps it’s nothing more than that he or she is simply, human. Capable of polar expressions. Capable of actions beyond reason. Capable of making their own 180s.

– Surely, Sherley

Thanks for visiting! Cheers!

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2015.
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Seaside

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2015.
March 2015, Costa Rica. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2015.

“Soul”

I dedicate this poem to my dear little brother, Arnold, whom we lost 17 years back, when he was only an infant. Not a day goes by without his thought, and not a day goes by where we don’t rejoice his life. Although he was only in our lives for a mere four months, his love, strength, and smile has lasted since. We love you, Sunny, you were and forever are a Sunshine in this big sister’s life.

Love,

your “Akkum”

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
My younger brother, Arnold, with my mother back in 1996. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

“Soul”

I search the soul of my brother,

Which we had lost forever.

I search for it at moonlight,

And at the day break of sunlight.

I believe that he is with God and angels,

Exuding laughter that mimics the sound of bangles.

This soul passes through the gentle breeze,

And runs up and down through the blue seas.

It passes through the green meadows,

And slides through the dark shadows.

He speaks with angels on his way,

Which I cannot see by my own way.

This soul hears the clouds thundering,

With the rain water pouring.

This soul senses what I cannot,

But it touches all my thoughts.

Our life is a temporary show,

But the heavenly souls take an eternal glow.

Even though I cannot see his soul,

His memories fill the void and make me whole.

– Surely, Sherley

Thanks for visiting! Cheers!

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

An Indian American’s perspective on the pursuit of India’s global recognition

The 2014 general election taking place in India to constitute the 16th Lok Sabha (the lower house of the Indian Parliament), with a whopping current electoral population of 814.5 million, largest in the world, according to the Election Commission of India, really got me to reflect about my Indian heritage and my American growth.

Being an Indian born American citizen living in the United States for over seventeen years, I find myself in a unique cross-roads- balancing Indian values and seizing the opportunity behind the American freedom, while embracing India’s global leadership simultaneously.

In the usual norm where being a minority may not serve as the most prestigious title, being an Indian minority in the United States of America not only serves as a catalyst for success but also a recipe for strong grounding.

India is currently tantalizing the world in many dimensions- a worthy contender in sports, politics, science, education, commerce and innovation. Having an Indian identity is quite an honor- where people’s expectations of you become high and demanding. While India is climbing the global stairway ardently, it gets me to think how I, as an Indian American, will contribute to the Indian global recognition while adding an American flavor.

India has its historical richness, with its successes in politics, business, arts, religions, economic prosperity; despite Indian challenges on population excesses, diversity of thinking and multi cultural aspirations. India shines because of the fundamentals of cultural greatness which lie in Indian morality and discipline—seen through acts of non violence, tolerance, piety, religious outlook, belief in karma, aspirations for success and respect for the elders. Indian success lasts because of the strong familial connection and commitment of the elders to youth and their achievement. While India has its already strong moral backbone, it concurrently seeks globalization with an ever-prepared attitude for growth in emerging fields and a quest to mimic western cultural greatness, and this balance propelled India for victory in the new era.

As an Indian American, I assume moral responsibility of bringing balance to Indian thinking and aspirations. For that, my task at hand is to connect American societies- change perspective on India, and connect Indians through the self confidence to believing in themselves and cashing on old principles and glories. The key philosophy is to think global but act locally, and this thinking should be brought to India.

For that, immediate solutions should be to apply foreign successes to Indian problems such as over population, environment awareness, self discipline, hygiene, and lack of sensitivity to other cultures. We should help break the stereotypical actions which falsely lead us Indians to close our eyes and follow- where the American way is to embrace the odds and follow our dreams. Fusing American dreams with Indian aspirations will free us from limiting and containing ourselves to certain professions and industries.

As Indians, we have the duty and moral obligation to play an active role in fighting child labor, anti-women growth, child abduction, women abuse and many such ill occurrences. We should resist the goal towards material wealth possession instead gather wealth in harmonious living compatible with nature- which include less consumption, organic farming, water harvest/recycling etc. It’s important for us to resist the love for affluence and consumption, and rather grow love in reaching out and bring balance to this world. We can actively help develop responsible citizens, through partnership and collaboration in higher education, and bring a stepping stone to our brothers and sisters on the other side of the world.

To bring my words to action, and walk the talk, I for my part, will be committing myself to the rural and semi-urban development by engaging in civic engagement activities. Rural and semi-urban healthcare issues- especially women and childcare health are under peril- and are indirectly impeding the growth of the Indian national economy because India still depends on the rural development. For that, I wish to be an activist. Just as America is actively democratizing the world by putting boots on the ground, synonymously, we must make the commitment to become the foot-soldiers. In my case, as a pre-health professional, I must become a foot soldier, step into the heart of India, and make first hand change in healthcare opportunities. We want stethoscopes and gloves on every rural hut, we must attend to every man, woman or child in need of our service. We should share the joy and pain that every human feels and actively shape the well-being of our world.

We are the privileged ones, we have tasted of our success, and now it’s time to break the barrier and give back to the community and the only effective way is to spend at least 10% of our professional time and help the rural population. We must not just visit the urban elite, but step deeper in and aid the rural commoner—where the heart of India lies.

Although I as an Indian American have been raised in America, I still share an Indian lineage and the welfare and growth of India should equally be my concern as is America’s welfare and growth. In that thinking, we as Indian Americans get a unique gift to spread America’s freedom to dream and innovate to our India and its aspirations.

I have dreamed of the day where the entire world is fed, clothed, cared for and is healthy- and now I will make my first step in making that dream a reality. Who is with me?

After all, we are one world; not all that separated.

– Surely, Sherley

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) is causing a decline in health care spending growth: True or False?

Picture retrieved from: http://news92fm.com/366805/more-delays-possible-for-obamacare/
[BORROWED IMAGE] Picture retrieved from: http://news92fm.com/366805/more-delays-possible-for-obamacare/
According to the White House, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was passed during a time of great growth in spending on health care in the United States; while majority of that spending was towards new treatments and improvement in overall well being and health, the system also was affected by disorganization, and high costs and the declining quality of care for patients (1). The White House states, “a key goal of the ACA was to begin wringing these inefficiencies out of the health care system, simultaneously reducing the growth of health care spending—and its burden on families, employers, and state and federal budgets—while increasing the quality of the care delivered (1).”

While the White House document suggests that 1) spending on health care is at an all time low, 2) inflation in the price of health care is low, 3) and the low spending on health care recently has benefited the Federal budget future outlook, it is still unclear if the ACA is directly responsible for the decrease in spending on growth (1). Although enough evidence is not yet present to correlate this spending decline to the ACA, one of the evidences out of a few that could credit this spending decline to the ACA is that: “ACA provisions that reduce Medicare over payment to private insurers and medical providers are contributing to the recent slow growth in health care prices and spending. In addition, ACA reforms that aim to improve the quality of care are reducing hospital readmission rates and increasing provider participation in payment models designed to promote high-quality, integrated care (1).”

In my opinion, I believe that the ACA played a significant role in the decline of health care spending. The ACA collectively addressed many of the weakness that affected our health care system, and is currently working to fix those gaps. As in any large problem, it takes time to fully address the issue, fix the problems and sustain the success. More research and time would be needed to evaluate ACA’s true role in the deceleration of health care spending in the U.S., and it is definitely something I would be interested in knowing. Accordingly, I do believe the claim held by some administration officials that the ACA is responsible for the recent deceleration in the health care spending growth is justified, as explained above.


Reference:

  1. TRENDS IN HEALTH CARE COST GROWTH AND THE ROLE OF THE AFFORDABLE CARE ACT. (2013, November). Retrieved from White House Government website: http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/docs/healthcostreport_final_noembargo_v2.pdf?elq=75c63bc1676c46258da63f1ad018de63&elqCampaignId=5282
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

Variation of Public Health Adminstration in the U.S.- Something to rejoice or address?

In a health policy and management class that I took earlier, we were asked to read, “Major Component and Themes of local public Health Laws in Select U.S. Jurisdictions,” by McCarty, et al. Found here.

After reading, “Major Component and Themes of local public Health Laws in Select U.S. Jurisdictions,” by McCarty, et al, I’m overcome by a mixed, bitter-sweet, reaction regarding the variation in approaches to public health administration and enforcement at the local level in the U.S (1). While I find it a celebration that local jurisdictions address community health with their unique ordinances that are catered to fit their particular community, I find it an alarm that there seems to be a lack of uniform application throughout the U.S. with certain best, evaluated regulations/ordinances.

An example that caused my alarm is local public health laws concerning the regulation of food. I believe, the regulation of food should be carefully thought, and carried out, addressing the nuances that accompany the complexity that follows it. In the study, the municipalities that were observed to have ordinances that regulate the category of food were grouped into five subcategories, namely: “(1) food handlers and distribution; (2) mobile food units; (3) restaurant licensing, inspections, and sanitation; (4) milk; and (5) meat(1).” There was great dissimilarity among the various ordinances on how many of those five subcategories each addressed. It would be beneficial if the ordinances across jurisdictions would adhere to a “Guidelines-Manual”, for example, and sync their individual jurisdictions accordingly, which would allow the entirety of the population to benefit from the same quality experienced through the best jurisdiction’s ordinance.

Aside from one such example of my cause for alarm, I do believe the diversity and specific catering of ordinances across jurisdictions to their community is something to be celebrated. Being Americans, we pride ourselves in our diversity, thriving way of living with various cultures, and by the uniqueness and individuality that accompanies each state, city, county, and community. What better way to address our unique needs and philosophical reflection than with ordinances that show great flexibility and such individualized attention?

I am not sure which is better, complete synchrony or absolute variation, and perhaps it changes across situations, but with public health, it may be beneficial to strike a balance between the two, to reflect the individuals that we are but at the same time have a universal quality.


Reference:

1. McCarty, et al. “Law and the Public’s Health.” Public Health Reports. 2009. 124: 458-462.

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

Carnival: The Fountain of Youth

What is it about the carnival that is so innately alluring to children and adults, alike?

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014. Texas Carnival 2014. Ride: Scream!

Every so often the booming noises emanating from the bustling streets fade, and is replaced by the gleeful music of the touring carnival. The lure of the colorful stalls filled with games and plush toys; the heavenly temptation of sugary, deep-fried, meaty treats; the vivid call of adrenaline pumping thrill-rides; and the feeling of community and togetherness, all, budding from this one, universal celebration- the carnival.

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014. Texas Carnival 2014, “Funnel Cakes” vendor.

Like a bug to a light, we are drawn to the flickering, beaming, luminescence displayed by the carnival. The dazzling ambiance turns even the most sophisticated of individuals into a child again. We emerge again, with a childlike innocence, eager to coalesce with the crowd and be rapt in the wonders that we out-grew long ago.

The carnival reveals to us, the innocence we have at heart, the thrills and unity we so seek. Unlike, the regular world, which is filled with a repetition of mundane tasks and responsibility. Bound by the strings of age, we float in stillness, and one visit to the carnival severs the strings and let’s us fly.

We fly high and far, to reach out and touch the stars, just as joyfully as would a child, lost in reverie.

Perhaps it is time again, for us to seek the next carnival, to rejuvenate our souls, in this fountain of youth.

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014. Texas Carnival 2014, game stall.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014. Texas Carnival 2014, game stall.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014. Texas Carnival 2014. Ride: OMG!
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014. Texas Carnival 2014. Ride: Merry Go Round.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014. Texas Carnival 2014. Ride: OMG! In action.

Thanks for reading! 

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

Journey into South India

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Paricel (Boat) rides on the pathway of Hogenakkal Falls, Tamils Nadu, India. Located in South India, on the Kaveri river. Often refered to as the “Niagara of India.” Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

I journeyed to South India in the summer of 2012. Pictured, are some events I experienced in my brief visit to the town of Pollachi, the Hill-station city of Ooty, and the town of Dharmapuri in Tamil Nadu India.

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Hogenakkal Falls, Tamil Nadu, India. A friendly, and natural interaction between monkeys and the Human tourists. Just, hide your food! Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Paricel (Boat) rides along the pathway of the Hogenakkal Falls. Innovative idea of delivering refreshments to the tourists by Paricel (boat). Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Hogennakkal Falls, Tamil Nadu, India- Salesman by Paricel (boat). Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Hogenakkal Falls, Tamil Nadu, India- A paricel (boat) navigator resting after a long morning. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Tamil Nadu, India. A monkey, just enjoying the warm afternoon. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Road sign placed at Tamil Nadu, India. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Ooty, Tamil Nadu, India- interaction between nature, monkeys, and humans. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Tamil Nadu, India- Looks like a monkey successfully sneaked a juice container from a tourist. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Ooty, Tamil Nadu, India- Street vendors display their delicious products, in this case, Mangoes. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Ooty, Tamil Nadu, India- Street vendor serving warm, freshly steamed, corn. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Ooty, Tamil Nadu, India- a serene, agricultural land, with farmers hard at work. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Tamil Nadu, India- A monkey, waiting for a chance to sneak some food from the tourists. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Pollachi, Tamil Nadu, India. Roadside vendors display their products colorfully to serve the on going traffic in the area. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

The Ferris Wheel

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.
The Ferris Wheel blanketed by a thick veil of gray clouds. Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.

Pictured, is a shot I took of a Ferris Wheel during a carnival event that was held in Brownsville, Texas back in March, 2014. The thick, gray, clouds behind the bright, vibrant, Ferris Wheel makes this shot so hauntingly beautiful to me.

Copyright © Sherley J. Edinbarough (Surely, Sherley and/or SurelySherley), 2014.