Monday, December 30, 2013

Lessons Learned From Teammates and Patients

Our concierge shared with us her adventure to Battle Creek, Michigan, to visit her mom. Being from a sunshine state where we miss fall foliage, it was fun to hear about how cold and rainy those states can be in autumn. However, the life lesson was having someone share what it is like to visit a parent in assisted living. We talked about being sandwiched between the responsibilities of aging parents and one’s own children and grandchildren. Best of all, we got to share a hug and realize just how lucky we are to be healthy. Thanks, Gina!

Our hygienist is in Kansas to run in a very important race, and just sent me a text. “Just managed to finish the marathon in less than 4 hours. Got 2nd place in my age group. Able to raise about $3,500.” You see, Christa’s niece’s son has leukemia and his young life is being seriously challenged. Her energy and commitment are just another way of showing how much our extended office family cares and shares. Thanks, Christa!

I had no idea what twerking was until our assistant showed my wife what her grandchildren had taught her. I was standing outside an operatory when I heard a commotion and raucous laughter. She and Phyllis were trying to move their booties, howling and giggling like middle schoolers. I must have missed twerking in dental school. Thanks, Phyllis!

Two years ago, I got a call from a patient of ours. I could feel the despair in his voice. “Bob I just got a call from my son. He has testicular cancer.” His voice cracked with emotion. “The first person we thought of was you. Can you help us with some info and referral?” I was reassured that all the years of training and treating the overall patient had come to fruition. Jack knew how much we cared about the total patient and I was his go-to guy in this very challenging situation. Within minutes, I had connected him with an MD and with someone who had already gone through the same medical issues. Thanks to all my instructors in my two-year GPR at Brookdale Hospital Medical Center!

I was the chairman of the health committee for the local Chamber of Commerce a number of years ago. Our aim was to give free medical education dinner seminars once a month. The room was packed for our Alzheimer’s seminar. For this seminar, we departed from tradition. One of our committee members, Joanie, role-played the steps of deterioration of communication that occurs in Alzheimer’s. You see, Joanie had gone through it all with her mom. The most important thing to remember with Alzheimer’s is that it is the support system (spouse, relatives), not the patient, who is under the most mental stress. Thanks ,Joanie!

No matter what the challenges in life, with a good support system, it is easier to…

Enjoy the journey,

Bob Oro, DMD, MAGD


Jon said...

Thanks for writing, Bob.
Jon Hardinger

Dr. Jyoti Sachdeva said...

Thanks for sharing your experiences Bob.


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