Hospital, Health, and Happiness
We all want to live a happy life. In order to have a happy life, we need to have a health body and the help of hospital to achieve that. We are all born with an unique body and have difference appearance and capabilities. Some will succumb to illness at a young age and some will get sick caused by infection, while some get to live to old age with minimum bodily discomfort. In the man-made world, the hospital is normally where we are born, get vaccinated against flu and known virus, and have periodic physical checkup. More and more, we also go to the hospital to seek help on:
1) Physical injuries due to abuse, overuse, and or lack of use of our body,
2) Ailment caused by work related stress that lowers the body’s immune system,
3) Bodily harm due to traffic accidents, domestic violence, or bullying.
When our health is compromised, it is hard to be happy. Hospital cannot fix all our body’s problems, but, at a minimum, the remedy will cover up or eliminate the symptoms and restore the quality of life.
Happiness is a state of mind. Money can buy happiness but there is happiness that money cannot buy. We are happy when:
1) We win a hard-fought competition (sport, business, game). But, it will soon wear off as we prepare to face the next challenge,
2) We go on a long awaited vacation after months of working. But, happiness will turn into sadness as we return to the daily routines,
3) We get accepted to a well-paid job. But, we soon find that with higher pay comes greater pressure to perform as happiness transforms to stressfulness,
4) We marry to the person we love. But, we are soon burdened with the responsibility to raise a family and come to face the falsehood of happy-ever-after.
We have learned that no happiness lasts forever:
1) Childhood – It is a time of innocence when our happiness is totally controlled by the physical urges. We are happy when we can get what we want. Since our curiosity is boundless and sometimes dangerous, we spend most of our childhood unhappy,
2) Adolescence – It is a time of rebellion and self-discovery. We are so self-conscious that the only time that we can be happy is when we are with close friends sharing gossips and inner secrets,
3) Adulthood – It is a time to be independent, to raise a family, and to look for true and long lasting happiness. No matter how much money we spend, how hard we try, and how long we wait, we can only catch a fleeting moment of happiness,
4) Old Age - We are at the end stage of a long journey. Our body has been through many illness, sickness, and injuries. From those experiences, we realize that good health is one of the vital factors that determine when we can be happy.
Our body is a complex biological machine that performs vital functions to keep us alive automatically and repetitively non-stop 24/7 till we pass away. Its design has been fool proved since life started on Earth 3.5 billion years ago. This does not mean that it will never fail. Actually, the chance for malfunction is very high due to the following factors:
1) Genetic defects – They can occur during the birth process when half of the genes from each sex are recombined to form an entirely unique set of genes. These new genes can contain mutations that will enhance or degrade the body’s normal functions,
2) Environment – Seasonal flu, infectious diseases, contagious virus, traffic accident, and injury caused by sport activity will all alter the body’s normal functions,
3) Self infliction – Poor nutrition, over-eating, lack of exercise, and drug addiction will all damage the body’s normal functions,
When our health has issues, our state of mind is also affected and our attention to happiness is greatly reduced.
Our hospital is an indispensible institution to keep the man-made world working seamlessly. We go to the hospital when:
1) We are sick or injury at work,
2) We need regular physical exam and or advice on a healthier life style,
3) We have cancer and need treatment.
In order to care for the health of people from all walks of life, our hospital has evolved from a few:
1) Generalists – family doctor, general practitioner, internal medicine – to a myriad of specialists with hard to pronounce names from A to Z,
2) Medical equipments – stethoscope, thermometer, syringe – to X-ray machine, MRI, CAT scan, dialysis machine, and a host of instruments that help the doctor to find out what is going on inside the body.
3) Clean rooms to sterilized room, negative pressure room, and surgical room.
4) Patient visitations increased from the tens, hundreds, to the thousands a day.
We are always seeking happiness in a life of routines, stress at work, competitions in business, and indifference in society. Most of us are given a clean bill of health to start the journey of life. However, through abuse, overuse, and or lack of use, our bodies can no longer function normally causing our health to deteriorate. Fortunately, for most of us, with changing life style, watching out how/when/what we eat, and doing regular exercise, we will be able to get our health back and maintain it for a long time.
In the meantime, more and more hospitals are being built to serve the local community. There are also hospitals that specialize in treating children, cancers, and other rare diseases. As a result, our average life span is on a constant upswing to the present 80 years of age. We may not be able to find long lasting happiness but we are given more time to experience the wonders of life.