Christmas morning. We are waiting on my boy to get here, and everyone is conked out. Our traditional Christmas breakfast casserole simmers, and turkey, persimmon pudding and more await. Honestly, my wife knows how to do everything. If it weren’t for her, the kids would get a bologna sandwich, some money, and a perfect immunization record.
In the candlelight service last night, the preacher got to talking about whether or not you had touched anyone in life and made a difference. Well, in my case that sure happened. I married my wife for a lot of reasons, but one was I was an average looking sort of guy, and I figured she would give me beautiful children. The plan worked. She gave me two beautiful children, a nice mandolin, a guitar, and saw to it that I didn’t work myself to death or starve, so I guess I was either smart, lucky or both.
One bad thing about being a doc is you probably do more good for others than your own people, but at least when our family is sick this old boy has the inside track on “Who you gonna call?” I’ve nursed many a family member back to health, and even made some decent holiday pick-ups, like the one Christmas Eve when my niece was limping, and had already been to the ER in another state on the way to the family gathering. Somehow someone overlooked the little piece of history that a car had tapped her in the Walmarks parking lot, and the broken fibula wasn’t too hard to diagnose. We spent Christmas Eve with our favorite Orthopedist, but she can walk straight now, so it was worth it.
Some of your patients become about like family, too. Every year I get a card from a nice lady who has retired and moved to the beach. Twenty five years ago, she came to see me and thought she had bursitis, and I got in my head it was angina. She thought I was too young to know what I was talking about, but was too scared to not comply, and wound up with a triple bypass two days later. Every year she sends a card thanking me for another year. I’m here to tell you, if you want to make an impression on your doc, that is a good way to start. After all the times I’ve put off my own people, and not done as well by them at times as I should have, that kind of recognition from your patients, who become your second family, is priceless. Believe me, I’ve saved all those cards. I hope the preacher is right and I’ve touched a few along the way. I did my best.
I hear Ms. Claus a stirring. I am off this year, and I’m gonna be the best Santa you ever saw. She deserves it, ’cause the doctor’s life is an odd one for sure.