A House Call With Dr. M and Marley
Years ago I had a favorite old patient who was confined to home. She had several medical problems that were irreversible, at least from a scientific perspective, and she didn’t want to leave home for any of her treatment. (I can’t tell you the details, but she was correct in this assessment.)
About a year before she died she became comatose. I went out to the house, and considered every angle imaginable. I couldn’t think of thing else to do. It was lonely. Everyone looked to me for an answer. I had none.
Finally I said, “Let’s call Dr. M. Maybe he can think of something.” Dr. M was one of my heros. He was smart, but he also was kind, and he cared. He was this patient’s doctor for years, and had called me in when he retired.
“Doc. This is Tommy.” I explained the clinical circumstances. “Man, I can’t think of anything else to do. I need someone with more gray hair than me, brother.”
He came right out. Doc looked over the situation for a while, and then sat down in a chair in the den. Everyone gathered around, me included. “Folks, he said. “I’ve heard out Dr. B and I’ve checked her out. I agree with him. There is nothing more we can do. We’re just gonna have to pray for a miracle.”
And that is what we did.
Two days later, the family called. “Dr. B we have our miracle.” I hopped in the car and dashed out there. Sure enough a patient who had been stone cold irreversibly comatose was her old self.
“Good Lord have mercy Marley, we were worried sick. How the heck did ya do it?
She smiled. “Son, you worry too much. We’re all gonna meet our maker. This was just a dress rehearsal so all you children could be ready when the real day comes. I don’t want you to take it hard when I’m gone; you’ve done all you can do.”
One day it was no dress rehearsal. There were no more miracles. She passed on. There were tears, but there also was tranquility. She taught us to be ready.
It was fitting these two were patient and doctor together, ’cause they were two of the very best of these parts.
Dr. M just died. I cried. He finally ran out of miracles. I wish I coulda known of some miracle for him.
He and Marley taught me so much. From them I learned we should do our best, but have tranquility, ’cause it truth it is all in God’s hands.
Still though I gotta admit the human in me wishes I was powerful enough to know of one more miracle for Dr. M, and Marley too. I guess God decided it was time for them to rest and all I can do is accept it.
Maybe my miracle for the day is that Dr. M and Marley taught me to understand all that. I’ll miss ‘em both, but I’ll never forget their lessons.
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