Monday, April 21, 2008

The wedding

I am working today.
"John, I thought you don't work on Mondays."
I don't .
Sometimes I don't mind when I work on Mondays.

I have a patient that is getting married tomorrow. (Wait, what day is this? Yes, tomorrow, on a Tuesday. I thought it was crazy too.)
But let me finish.
I think the wedding is going to be an intimate affair (you know, family, friends, and dental staff) and her family didn't care what day it was on.

But the thing is, she invited me and my staff (I will get to the reason later).
So my staff and I talked about it at a staff meeting and they all wanted to go.
So we voted (if you think I make the decisions around here, you are dead wrong) and we decided to work today and have the day off tomorrow to go to the wedding.
So after work today they all got in a van and drove to the beach, where the wedding is going to be.
So they are going to get a place (the beach is about an hour drive away) and party tonight and go to the wedding tomorrow.
I am excited about the fact the staff likes each other enough to plan something together.
And I am excited we all are going to share in the wedding of one of our patients.
This bride is really a great patient. She is about 45 and has been a patient here for about 9 years.
See this bride was born with some issues with her face. She was born without some tendons and muscles in her face. So things seem to droop and pull to one side. She has had a bunch of surgeries when she was young and the doctors did the best they could to prevent things from getting any worse (since she has been a patient here I have sent her to an Oral Surgeon around town that specializes in what she has, and he said there was nothing he could do for her that her previous surgeons did not do).
She is a wonderful woman and has always had a great attitude. But I can remember her telling us when she got engaged, how excited she was (I know every woman is but with her it was better).
All the staff gathered around her to hear her story.

Her next recall she brought in the lucky man. He had to meet the whole staff. We all wanted to meet him. It was funny, he is a cook so he brought food. We all ate.
Tomorrow is going to be great. She is getting married on the beach and having a little to do at a hotel.

But the blog is not all about this... it is about the relationship we have with our patients.
When I first got into this career I knew I was a people person and I liked teeth so I thought, yeah dentistry will be cool.
But I didn't know it would be this cool.
I mean I think I have something special going on here when a patient invites you and your staff to her wedding (AND WE WANT TO GO).
I can just remember all the crap we have to wade through on a daily basis. I can remember the people that are pissed at me for one thing or another. I can remember not being paid or unappreciative people but this will never overshadow the things I am talking about today.

We all work so hard at making people like us and it is really really cool when people actually do. But when people take it to the next level it makes me forget all the hard times.
Not just, "yeah, my dentist is cool" (or in my case, "yeah my dentist is really good looking and cool.") , it is more than that.
When they like me in a way to call me their friend, I feel like I have made it. We treat them the way they want their friends to treat them. So we become their friends. They become ours.
Isn't what this job is all about?
Yeah, I love doing a great filling or a great veneer case but what I am talking about here is even better.

In December I am always so blessed to open up Christmas cards from my patients. Not specialist that send a template card with everyone on the staff signing it.
No, a real Christmas card (Holiday card, for all you politically correct people). Hand written, "Thank you to you and your staff for always taking care of me and my family. The Owens"
Think about all the cards you send out. Do you send any of your family cards (not the office ones) to your optometrist or your podiatrist? If yes then good for them.

So my staff likes each other (in spite of me)
My patients are great.
At least one of them likes us enough to invite them to their wedding.
And we want to go.
This warms my heart.
Yeah, I don't mind working this Monday.

Have a great Monday,
I will talk to you Wednesday,

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