Donald Savastano was a 51 year old self-employed carpenter that wasn't able to afford healthcare insurance nor did he have a plan for retirement. But, it wasn't unusual for him to purchase scratch-off lottery tickets, and on Saturday, December 9, 2017, when he stopped at a gas station after work to purchase a lottery ticket, the only thing different this time was that he decided to purchase the Merry Millionaire lottery ticket.
As luck would have it , he became the 97th New York lottery $1M winner for the year (2017).
The lump sum payment check totaling $661,800 after required withholdings, was awarded on Monday, January 8, 2018. "This is going change our lives, to tell you the truth," Savastano said when he picked up his winnings.
“Being a self-employed carpenter, I didn’t really have a plan for retirement,” Savastano explained. “The money will help with that. I don’t have any other extravagant plans. I’ll buy a new truck, pay off some debt and invest for the future.”
Savastano also planned to visit the doctor,he hadn't been feeling good for a while, and when he got the money he went in to the doctor, he was very sick and he had brain and lung cancer, 23 days after winning $1M, on Friday January 26, 2018, Donald Louis Savastano was dead (stage IV lung cancer)
Our collective inability to understand that everything is connected has been cultivated over many years. We have been conditioned to believe that health is a single line event. But, it is not. Nor has it ever been. There are eight dimensions of wellness that must be optimized and woven together before we have any chance at being well, and subsequently healthy. I didn't have the opportunity to know Mr. Savastano personally; but, his death has emphasized the need for a new level of facilitating health and conversations about how wellness is key to health.
Ascend towards the light sir, with respect to your memory, and deepest condolences to your family and friends. We move forward into the movement that will heighten disease prevention, wellness, and authentic opportunities to be healthy and happy.
Donald Louis Savastano
As the only pharmacist in the United States that dispenses only wellness,
I have learned that it is only when each of us are able to connect (everyday) outcomes to the breaks in wellness that caused them, that we will be able to claim our own innate health.
This means that regardless of the latest healthcare technology breaking onto the market or the newest pharmaceutical claiming to relieve constipation within 10 minutes, you will not be healthy until you are well (wellness, well-being)
At times, I have wished that it were different-that just taking a diuretic for high blood pressure would cure high blood pressure or that simply limiting salt intake would be enough to lower high blood pressure. But this is not the case. Nor was it ever.
I'm a western trained pharmacist; therefore, I was instructed in almost everything there is to know about drugs, except the one most important thing. Yep. I had to learn (and still know to this day) ADME (absorption, distribution, metabolism, elimination), PK (pharmacokinetics), MIC (minimum inhibitory concentration), PD (pharmacodynamics), pharmacotherapeutics, and the Henderson-Hasselbach equation to name just a few.
Yet, there was one thing about drugs that I didn't learn because it was not taught (still isn't.) And, it is the most important thing.
DRUGS DON'T CURE CHRONIC DISEASES
I spent years questioning why my knowledge of drugs as a pharmacist, and dispensing the drug to the patient rarely cured their chronic disease. Few of my colleagues understood my misgivings , though. Or maybe they were just satisfied (enough) to dispense, shut up, and go home. I followed suit. Trembling inside, not able to quite piece it all together, it was easier to join the crowd and not make any waves.
There's one thing, however, that I continued to do. I prayed that one day I'd be able to actually help people to be healthy and not rely upon medication that would inevitably lose its effectiveness and plateau after a time anyway.
And frankly, I had become weary and embarrassed. I mean how could I continue to legitimize putting pills in baggies and capsules in vials while collecting a six-figure salary to do it? So, I continued to pray, half-way remembering my mother's wise words from years ago-
Bambi, be careful what you pray for... you just might get it
And three years ago, as I began to experience the most difficult time in my life, with losses, fears, and realizations beyond my worst nightmares, I realized that the Universe was readying me to be just what I had prayed for:
· A Progenitor of Truth
I know that I cannot turn back now-I mean, how do you return a gift to Great Spirit, especially when it was the very gift that you had been asking for all along? And what would you say? Thanks anyway, but I'm good, I changed my mind, this is too difficult?
Ha! I won't even lie. I have thought all of those things on numerous occasions through this three year period. But, each time I looked back, I saw or heard something and someone that said,
Keep going. You're not alone. Everything's connected. Keep pushing.
Folks want to know, they need to know that they can be healthy. They don't want to be ball and chained to disease suppression with pharmaceuticals. They want wellness, disease prevention, and authentic opportunities to pursue happiness.
**Yes. I know the gift isn't returnable. I wouldn't want it any other way.
Tracy Morgan's Triumphant Return
"I know my purpose in life now is to spread love, especially in the world right now that we're living in. I'm glad if I am the one to spread that love, I love you."
I continue to be so amazed with Tracy's recovery from massive and critical injuries. Of course he required pharmaceuticals, especially to manage pain, reduce swelling, prevent blood clots... but it was his eight dimensions of wellness that created his path back to even being funnier-if that is possible, and health. Once C.A. L.M. (Comedy, Arts, Love, Music) is launched, hoping that Tracy will join in.
"The goal is not to be successful and famous... The goal is if you have a specific God-given ability-is to live your life out through that. One. And two, we have a responsibility to push the conversation forward until we're all equal-'til we're all equal in this place because until everyone's free, no one is free. That's just a fact."
This Dean Baquet (NYTimes Executive Editor) conversation with Jay Z is possibly the best interview I have ever seen. Dean's temperament and laid back style while asking riveting questions of Jay Z, who is anointed with a phenomenal clarity about the mechanics of life, is refreshing and invigorating. C.A.L.M., There's A Pharmacist In The House Music, and Wellness Bistro are parallel to many of the ideas that Jay Z supports and encourages.
The new company will be "free from profit-making incentives and constraints" as it tries to find ways to cut costs and boost satisfaction with the health care plan for employees of Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan Chase
Monday, June 12, 2017, 11:43 AM EST...passed away peacefully...no, no, no. But, it was true. And there wasn't a damn thing I could do about it. Yeah, me-the compassionate pharmacist healer born to teach prevention, to somehow prevent the world from poisoning itself with physical and emotional toxins. Yet, I couldn't even heal my cool, calm, intellectual sistah-friend from almost dying from a stroke at age 57, only months after opening her own copywriting business, Catchphrase Copywriting. I, the western trained pharmacist with a holistic heart, had finally grown kahunas large enough to to be able to say that helping people with their health had little to do with dispensing the contents of an amber-colored vial and much more to do with facilitating the dimensions of wellness. She, having been the valiant soul that she was, fought back, though. She wasn't going out like this-after all, she had to get better-she was her mother's (dementia) caretaker. But it was going to be an uphill battle, the kind of battle you fight when you have no idea where the enemy came from, no clue what color the uniform is, nor what kind of weapons are in their arsenal. And then, the revelation... F**k. It was the the worst enemy possible. How? Why? Not the GBM army. Couldn't we have some kind of negotiations or something? A little time to form a treaty? No. Western medicine would rather play tiddlywinks with research that produces CAR-T cell therapies that "retail" at $500,000, while research on prevention and determining the root causes and origins of these "incurable" diseases goes severely underfunded and subsequently just not done...sufficiently. How many Brittany Maynards, Karen Glovers, John McCains, Beau Bidens, Ted Kennedys and countless others must linger, wither, and fall off before we collectively stop and say, "enough?" Out of nowhere, (the few risks that we do know-like ionizing radiation, head trauma, filtered cigarette smoking Karen didn't have nor was she exposed to) glioblastoma's tentacles squeezed my friends grey matter like silly putty oozes out of a strong man's grip, and robbed this world of one of its finest. Oh sure, she lived for 26 months post-diagnosis, but at what cost? Can the months of pain, disfigurement, and disability really be counted as live-ing? Karen Glover, March 22, 1958-June 12, 2017. KAREN SO MUCH BUT ACHIEVING SO LITTLE #GBMwearecomingforyou #gbmawareness #glioblastomaprevention #itstime
Something about daytime TV, especially between the hours of 10:00 AM and 1:00 PM EDT, that while at first glance is entertaining, casts a doleful gloom over my spirit. After the 1st gasp at the incredulous situations people get themselves into (like the young man that had 3 different women pregnant at the same time, two of the women being sisters), I reached for the remote-unconsciously seeking something more positive before actually just turning the television completely off. That's when I saw it. Yes, "it." The commercial of some company (name not remembered and truthfully not even important) with the paid actor portraying a physician that was adamantly encouraging viewers to "protect their health" with the insurance coverage being sold. What, I thought aloud? (Since I was alone, I was safe from being labeled crazy) But as clear as dye-free tylenol, viewers were being warned to protect their health with the purchase of the insurance. Sadly, because of the at birth separation we all experience from nature, our lives quickly experience the assault of breathing environmental toxins, ingestion of pesticide laden foods and the application of carcinogenic phthalates. It only gets "better" when we are encouraged to dampen our bodies' inherent ability to heal by suppressing nature with the best of Western medicine's pharmaceuticals with expected side effects of minimally nausea, vomiting and diarrhea and no promise of cure or healing... Questioning any of this, especially as a health care provider trained in this western suite of "poisoning the poison," would be crazytalk and unacceptable. The protection the actor was speaking about, however, was one where you take your drugs/poisons that are barely affordable and suppress your natural healing mechanisms. The holistic practitioner, however, also says protect your health-but means-protect your health, your inherent gift bestowed by the wisdom of nature, by living closer to nature. The more poisons of physical and emotional origin that you consume, the more your wellness and subsequent health are violated and further from reach. Protect your health, keep it safe from harm of suppression, toxins, wellness violations. #protectyourhealth #functionalmedicine #evolutionarymedicine
Any astute physician knows that our current medical model is not designed to keep Americans healthy. It is designed to treat disease. This is equivalent to designing your financial portfolio to avoid bankruptcy—a necessary but insufficient goal.
Treating disease is not enough. Diseases must be cured, prevented, or eradicated. Anything less is uncivilized.
CUP OF JOE: The Blog
Conjecture, facts, and opinion on health and wellness, holistic practice, and the quest for sustainability & optimal health.