Last night I had leftovers from a Chinese take-out meal. Afterward I cracked open a fortune cookie and this is what I read…

“No problem can stand the assault of sustained thinking.”

I couldn’t stop thinking about this.

They are the words of Voltaire, which I learned from Googling the phrase.

Figuring Out Solutions To Problems:

What I think he meant was that the first thing is to figure out the problem. Because until you look at it in its present state and in its entirety, you will not be able to figure out the right answer.

Then you figure out the answer to your problem by breaking it down into smaller pieces.

I think we are overwhelmed with some problems and we look at it and just see a tornado in the gray sky. One swirling and moving right toward us. I think then we tend to panic from the sheer enormity of a problem.

“Common sense is not so common.” – Voltaire

And when you panic you look at things on a more emotional level. I know when I’m being emotional, good sense typically goes out the window.

The Chicken Or The Egg:

So then, in a chicken-or-the-egg way of thinking, how do you break it down? Was it first the chicken or the egg? Which angle do you approach first?

A photo of a black duck swimming in Swan Lake in Tulsa, Oklahoma

I suppose you attempt to get all the answers you possibly can and then follow them where they lead.

Take a small bite but don’t attempt to swallow it whole or you can’t digest it.

“The mirror is a worthless invention. The only way to truly see yourself is in the reflection of someone else’s eyes.” – Voltaire

I appreciate your comments yesterday about seeing an orthopedic surgeon.

I wish I had written about this earlier so someone could have pointed me in the right direction.

Words From A Fortune Cookie Got Me Thinking:

One’s ability to walk and get around is so important. And I just went to one doctor and stayed with him.

I should have realized he was out of his depth when he said he felt that the brace was my best solution.

“I cannot imagine how the clockwork of the universe can exist without a clockmaker.” – Voltaire

A foot and ankle specialist and surgeon. I read that about him and thought that he was my answer.

Sometimes I think I exist underneath a rock. Or that I live in a state of bewilderment.

In Words From A Fortune Cookie, this fountain of spraying water reminds me of not being able to see one problem, but instead see too many to digest.

Communication Is Key:

I don’t always communicate well or fully understand what is being communicated to me. Then the problem and the answer are sometimes muddled.

Many times in my life I’ve gone forward and then been perplexed when someone explains that I should have gone in a different direction.

When they explain this to me, it is plain as day. I always wonder why I didn’t see it myself.


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  1. Well, Brenda, don’t beat yourself up over not seeing another doc sooner…mercy me, LOTS of us out there have been badly treated when it comes to medicine. Heh, why do you suppose they call it “practicing medicine”? Well, oft times they are practicing on us!! We saw the specialist’s PA today with Hubby…we were with her 3 hours!! She was asking questions, giving us some helpful information, deciding what tests to order…there is a slew of them. She was astonished that he had not been sent to several specialists before now. So there is an awful lot to do and pay for in near future…most is not covered by medicare and not entirely by insurance either!! But it could even help our offspring to know some things too…I certainly hope you find an excellent CARING doctor…caring is half the battle!!

  2. I’m just amazed that a fortune cookie would have a Voltaire quote! All the Voltaire quotes you included definitely make one think. Don’t berate yourself for not knowing about an orthopedic surgeon. As I like to say, we only know what we know. We need other people to bounce things off of, and to open our minds to new things.

  3. What an interesting fortune in your cookie, lol! More food for thought. Happy Mother’s day to all! 💐

  4. Good afternoon and Happy Mother’s Day.

    I don’t know if you have access to a teaching hospital attached to a University but it’s worth checking out. Medicare will pay for it as long as the practice accepts Medicare. I was in a very frightening situation and ended up at a teaching hospital and highly recommend trying it if you can. I want you to have the best and get well. 😀

  5. A specialist who is an MD and has a bunch of letters after that is one who has kept current in the area of speculation.

  6. Knowing and admitting there is a problem is first.
    Some people work from the part to the whole. Others work from the whole to the part. My suggestion it to get a referral from your primary care physician for an MD who specializes in surgery for ankles and feet.
    Read the comments and reviews online. You want one who does many surgeries each year.

    1. A foot and ankle surgeon is who she has been seeing. That’s what she is saying. At this point she’s looking at trying an orthopedic surgeon since the foot and ankle surgeons solution was the brace.

      1. Hi Brenda and Kelly,
        Just a thought in regards to Orthopedic surgeon. My older son had a traumatic injury to his lower leg and ankle at work 10
        years ago. He had an Orthopedic surgeon assigned to him at the hospital to perform his surgery. Orthopedic surgeons work in group practices and each surgeon specializes in a different part of body. I guess what I’m trying to say is that a foot and ankle surgeon is indeed an Orthopedic surgeon, just like a hand surgeon or a spine surgeon is an Ortho surgeon.
        Ortho surgeons deal with bones and joints whether there be issues in regards to deformities, injuries or arthritis to name a few and every Ortho surgeon has a specialty. I hope this clarifies things for you Brenda. I hope that you will soon be able to have relief from your pain.
        Unfortunately for my son he may now have arthritis in his ankle and he is soon to be 31 years old but the Ortho surgeon did say it could happen long before his time. As a matter of fact he has an appointment this week with his Ortho surgeon.

        1. Hi Laura, yes I know. But since Brenda’s problems have been ongoing and gotten worse over time, seeing someone outside the narrow specialty of foot and ankle surgery seems prudent( I am aware they are also “orthopedists” and I’m sure Brenda is as well). She can always opt to see another foot and ankle surgeon but like she says, this current one WAS a second opinion. With the leg and hip pain she has, I believe she needs a general orthopedist to at least consult. But of course it’s all up to Brenda and I’m sure all of us wish her the best, whatever she chooses.

  7. Happy Mother’s Day.
    My theory = Always get a second opinion.
    If at first the doctor doesn’t succeed, try try another one.
    Thinking of you and wishing you all the good and wonderfilled things .

  8. That’s so true Jan. You must find the option that works best for you. I find it much easier to accept outcomes if I know that I tried every option. I hope everyone has a wonderful Mothers Day.

  9. Happy🌹Mother’s🌹Day to all! I get what you mean. The body aches, not joint pain, that I have come and go. I really like our Doctor and he said I don’t have fibromyalgia. I am looking into Vitamin D deficiency or dehydration. I just go about my day not even thinking about taking a Tylenol to see if that would help. Not too smart.

  10. It’s not that you didn’t see what you may think is obvious. Sometimes we get settled with a found solution and think that’s our only option. Someone looking in will see a different solution and offer that solution. Now you have new ideas so run with them. Don’t be hard on yourself – it’s ok!
    Happy Mother’s Day, Brenda! Have a joy filled day.

  11. Take that egg and make a fried egg sandwich, but keep the chicken to get more eggs. It’s not the chicken or the egg, making a decision is not always a zero sum game. There may be multiple options available and they may all be run through, one by one, until you find the answer that works or fits best for you. I hope you have a wonderful Mothers’ Day, Brenda, and don’t forget to smell the roses 🙂

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