Friday, April 27, 2018

Potassium to a Dialysis Patient

   Potassium is a mineral found in most fruits and vegetables.  Some food high in potassium are avocado, squash, spinach, potato and sweet potato, coconut water and coconut milk Filipinos use as ingredient in the most favored dish called “gata”. 

   To a normal person, I mean one who does not have kidney failure, potassium is required to have energy because it controls muscle function.  When I was in my 40’s, before I got kidney disease, I suffered weakness of unknown origin.  I was not ill, not depressed, not malnourished in the least bit.  I slowly lost energy until I have taken to laying on the sofa.  Finally, I decided to see a doctor.  I don’t see a doctor unless I'm desperate.  The doctor prescribed that I eat BANANAS!  Lots and lots of bananas!  I couldn’t believe the fruit was the cure.  Banana is the top potassium provider.  It worked!  Thanks Doc!  It turned out, I had been eating a lot but none of the potassium rich food.  

   Patients with kidney failure can no longer remove excess potassium.  The level builds up in the body, hiding in leg, feet, and other muscles causing cramps.  During dialysis, I’ve had cramps start on my toes then move up to my legs, then to my waist.  Brian Benedict Reyes, my Dialysis Tech pushes my toes with his butt to reduce my cramp.  When the cramp starts, I jokingly alert him “Brian! I need your butt!”  I’m one of those who won’t admit they’re hurting.

   Fun and games aside, the heart is categorized as a muscle.  It beats because of potassium.  Patients on dialysis are at risk for sudden cardiac death. claims that nearly half of the population on dialysis die by cardiovascular disease.  The heart could cramp like a leg.  When it does, it’s called heart attack.

   Dialysis effectivity differ by country, by company management, by financial consideration and by the patient’s individuality.  DaVita, my dialysis center, tests my blood monthly to monitor what I’ve been doing to my body.  My potassium level tells them I have been eating the Filipino food rich in potassium, like turon, gata, etc.  My fluid level tells them I have been drinking like a fish.  My phosphorus level tells them I have not been taking my binder with every meal, or every can of Diet Coke, which I refuse to give up through the eight years that I have been on dialysis.  

   In Jehovah God’s great mercy I have survived all these years on dialysis.  My children say I’m “masamang damo”, an old saying in Tagalog which translates in English as “bad grass”,  the saying means horses don’t eat bad grass so they don’t die.

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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

An Open Letter Regarding Bank Fraud

Embassy of the United States of America
Consular Officers

Dear Sirs:

   My father, Marciano M. Camino was a US Navy Chief of Dental and a Korean War veteran.  He died in August 18, 2017 at the age of 90 in Malagasang 1st, Cavite.   I am the eldest of his four children by his first wife who died in 1983.  I am a US Citizen residing in California.  Two of my brothers are deceased.  My third brother also lives in California.  My stepmother whom my father married in April 14, 1994, died in February 10, 2016.  

   The U.S. Department of State – Bureau of Consular Affairs states in its website and on the above screen grab that “If no legal representative is in country, a consular officer will act as a provisional conservator of the deceased’s personal effects.  Consular officers will usually take possession of: convertible assets such as money.”  I believe that applies to our situation.   I am on dialysis here in California and can’t stay in the Philippines.  

   The bank managers of two banks informed us that his accounts has three signatories, my father, my stepmother, and a woman who claims to be a biological daughter of my father and stepmother.  This woman put her name in the bank accounts as soon as my father and stepmother became bedridden.   The woman’s late registration Birth Certificate and the accompanying affidavit were signed by my stepmother only, assuming that it was her authentic signature.  The affidavit’s Acknowledgement/ Admission of Paternity was not signed by my father.  His refusal to sign it proves he did not acknowledge the woman as his child and lawful heir.  This puts into question her access to the bank accounts.  Delayed registration is the Philippines short cut to legal adoption.  It is, nonetheless, falsification of public document, mainly since my stepmother had cancer of the uterus and a hysterectomy before the woman was born.

   The Philippine banking law states that accounts should be frozen upon the death of one of the account owners.  The banks did not freeze the accounts and allowed the woman to withdraw, even closing one of the accounts in July 2017, one month before my father died and more than one year after my stepmother died.  The banks refuse to give us, rightful heirs, any information on the accounts, invoking the bank secrecy law even after we have submitted identifications as next of kin.

   There is no telling how many aging US Citizen Veterans in the Philippines are being scammed in similar manner.  I believe this was also the reason why my incapacitated father and stepmother both died at home without the benefit of hospitalization.  

   May we request the Provisional Conservator to audit the bank withdrawals and equitably divide my father’s last bequeath between myself and my brothers.  Please help us.

   Thank you for your kind attention.

(Signed by Gloria P. Camino)

This letter was mailed to US Embassy in Manila.

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Tuesday, April 3, 2018

The Importance of Meditation

   Bible readers are always advised to meditate on what they have read.  Not to find something to add or take away from the Bible.  Revelation 22:18-19 says “If anyone makes an addition to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this scroll; (19) and if anyone takes anything away from the words of the scroll of this prophecy, God will take his portion away from the trees of life and out of the holy city…”

   The story of Moses needs a lot of meditation.  Let’s forget the movies made about him.  Let’s focus on the verses and their initial impression then what meditation brings to the table.  

Initial impression
My meditation says

In Exodus 4:21, it  says,  “The Lord said to Moses, “When you return to Egypt, see that you perform before Pharaoh all the wonders I have given you the power to do. But I will harden his heart so that he will not let the people go.

Films that shows Pharaoh ignoring the miracles led the readers to overlook the verse saying “I will allow his heart to become obstinate,” some other translation says “I will harden his heart, that he shall not let the people go.”  It was Jehovah who wanted Pharaoh to ignore the first nine plagues.
If Pharaoh gave up the Israelites too soon, somewhere between plague 1 to 9, then it would not reach the tenth where the first born of the Egyptians were killed, thereby   symbolizing Jesus’s death as Jehovah’s first born.  The parting of the sea showed something only a god can do. 

Numbers 20:8-9 says, “speak to the crag before their eyes that it may give its water” but then Moses said “Hear, now, you rebels! Must we bring out water for you from this crag?” 

Numbers 20:12 says, Jehovah said “Because you did not … sanctify me before the eyes … of Israel, you will not bring this congregation into the land that I will give them.”
Moses had been a faithful servant to this point.  He misspoke when he said “Must we bring out water…”  Because of those words Moses was not allowed to reach the promised land.  

Many readers found the penalty severe, it seemed that he was punished for not saying the words exactly as Jehovah commanded. 
1Sam:16:7 says, “Jehovah sees into the heart.”  And Matthew 15:18 says,  “the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart,”

Meditation should put us in the moments during Moses time.  The Israelites never saw Jehovah giving Moses instructions about the ten plagues.  They saw only Moses at the parting of the Red Sea.  Through it all the Israelites must have developed an awe for Moses.  Moses must have seen that admiration in their eyes and developed an equivalent self-esteem.

If he made it to the promised land, would he have said to the Israelites “I brought you out of Egypt to this land, I should now be your god!”?  Only Jehovah knows, but judging by Moses’s punishment, what do you think?

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