In arguing, the truth is always lost: Meet @jeffrapp
Member Spotlights feature interviews with fellow Connect members. Learn more about members you’ve connected with and some you haven’t met yet. Nominate a member you think should share the spotlight.
JOHN: How did you find Mayo Clinic Connect? What motivates you to take part in the community?
@jeffrapp: Like many other newly diagnosed patients with idiopathic small fiber neuropathy (SFN), I was confused, anxious, and looking for answers to questions like why, what will happen, and mostly, what can I do to relieve my symptoms, since nothing medical was working. I looked for an online resource and was attracted by the word Mayo in the name.
JOHN: What about Mayo Clinic Connect makes you feel comfortable to share and to be open with the community?
@jeffrapp: Members of Mayo Clinic Connect are all fellow sufferers. There should be very little or nothing to hide. The more you reveal, the more you are likely to get helpful answers.
JOHN: What groups do you participate in?
JOHN: Tell us about a meaningful moment on Mayo Clinic Connect.
@jeffrapp: My most meaningful exchanges have been with you, @johnbishop. You’re a font of knowledge. You respond nearly instantly, are oriented to science, and still impart hope and offer encouragement to try new things.
JOHN: What surprised you the most about Mayo Clinic Connect?
@jeffrapp: I was most surprised by how many participants have not been helped much or at all by the “standard” medical treatment. I’ve had the same experience, and I have to admit I am frustrated and disappointed. This leads to distrust and even anger at the medical establishment. Having spent my career in medicine, I can say truthfully that almost all the doctors, nurses, techs, etc. are skilled, caring people. They are also human, and many get worn down, like patients do, helping people manage conditions for which is no cure, often no known cause, and can be so varied in how they present differently in different patients.
Anger at them does no good, and in fact is counter productive.
JOHN: What energizes you? How do you find balance in your life?
@jeffrapp: I am energized by still being able to participate in sports (mainly bicycling) and other physical activities. I have been able to come to terms with my progressive illness to an extent, which I have come to believe is the best “treatment” for me. Knowing that I have at least some control gives me hope and balance.
JOHN: Tell us about your favorite pastime or activity.
@jeffrapp: As noted, my favorite activity is bicycling. I am still able to go on 30-mile rides, especially when I am with friends to distract me from the burning in my feet from wearing bike shoes. I usually stop and pour water on my feet to cool them. I have even carried frozen gel pads for the same purpose. I also enjoy kayaking and can do some hiking. Previously, I was a big hiker, skier, etc., but those days are gone.
JOHN: Do you have a favorite quote, life motto or personal mantra?
@jeffrapp: I have two: “Don’t sweat the small stuff” and “In arguing, the truth is always lost”. I wish I could say I follow them all the time.
JOHN: What food can you simply not resist?
@jeffrapp: Almost all of it, but here are a few of my favorites: ice cream, cashews, and my wife’s chicken cacciatore.
JOHN: If Hollywood made a movie about your life, whom would you like to see cast as you?
@jeffrapp: Robert Redford, of course. He even looks a little like me.
JOHN: What do you love about where you live or vacation?
@jeffrapp: I live in the Northern California wine country. I have traveled a lot and can’t seem to find a better place to live, although I’ve tried. Rolling hills, green redwood forests, miles of beautiful ocean beaches, vineyards, blue skies (when there aren’t any fires). What’s not to love?
JOHN: Puppies or Kittens?