Thursday, June 27, 2013

Friday 55 & Da Count-Da Care

FRIDAY 55

The gowned surgeon smiles and asks,
"Ready to go?"
"Let's evict a tumor, Doc."
I drop quickly but gently.

I'm blinking slowly,
trying to focus,
remember.

I see her face level with mine,
her eyes meeting mine,
smiling.

Soft words, 
gentle touch,
"Michelle, 
we're all done.
It went great.  
Go rest."

Again
I peacefully sink.




DA COUNT

Last Wednesday I had my thyroid removed after months of testing and anxious waiting while cancer continued to grow unabated.  Those of you who have followed me regularly for some time recall a couple years ago how sick my daughter Calypso was and the months of anxiety and fear for her.  Along with that were some truly horrific experiences with doctors who either did not take her seriously or who were abusive and predatory once we got a diagnosis.  Although her physical health is restored it has left a mark on how we view doctors.

My experiences since my own health woes began continued in a similar vein.  I will say the experience with Calypso did bring me to a place where I was simply unwilling to put up with incompetence, unwillingness to communicate, or disrespect toward me as a patient.  I fired two doctors locally and never got through the door of the first surgeon I was referred to because his staff was intolerably rude and unprofessional.  I despaired of finding decent care for myself but I kept searching.

I wound up at Fox Chase Cancer Center.  I feel like all the bullshit I endured locally (I'll spare you the details but just trust me, you'd be mortified) was in order to get me to the place where I needed to be.  There are certain factors that make my case "interesting" even by the standards of people who specialize in my issue so I know I am better off with these specialists than with the local dopes who can't even diagnose a disease that is endemic to their own backyard (in the case of Calypso).

As important as the technical and professional skill the folks at FCCC demonstrate they have shown qualities I had pretty much given up hope in finding on a wide scale...compassion and maintaining the dignity of a patient.  Believe me when I tell you that from the first phone call I made until I was wheeled out to my car upon discharge I felt as if not one person I interacted with forgot they were dealing with a vulnerable human being.  Whether it was a doctor, a nurse, an aide, a housekeeper, a person delivering my meal, someone answering the phone, or a volunteer handing out free books to patients (cool bonus that felt like some sweet karma after all my years as a RIF coordinator) every single person treated me like I was...a person....not a case, a chart, or a disease.  I could rest in the care of skilled and decent people.  I could channel my energy into getting well rather than having to be hyper-vigilant as to whether or not others were doing their job or communicating appropriately.  And THAT was as healing and beneficial as having a tumor cut out of my neck, perhaps even more in some ways.

38 comments:

Suldog said...

There is nothing as important in life as being treated like an individual with a heart and a soul. I'm so happy you found a place where compassion is combined with intelligence. Now, go have some ice cream.

Jackie said...

It sounds like the care you are getting at Fox Chase Cancer Center is exactly what you need, lime. I'm so glad that you feel confident about the doctors, nurses, and caregivers there. May God continue to bless you and may each of those who comes in contact with you be blessed by you. I continue to pray for you each day.
Love,
Jackie

Bijoux said...

I'm so glad you finally had a good experience out in the medical community. Take care of yourself.

Mama Zen said...

Nothing is worse than being an "interesting" case! I'm so glad that you found a place to get the care that you needed and deserved.

silly rabbit said...

Excellent! You deserve that kind of care and I am thrilled that you found it. Our own recent dealings with the medical world were with wonderful medical staffs from the cleaning ladies to the top docs. It is a blessing and a huge comfort. I would not have wished less for you. Big hugs lime!

g-man said...

Trini...
It's great to have you back among the Thyroids.
You really can't notice anything different, I'll try not to stare...:-)
Loved your Surgical 55
Thanks for playing Limey, you don't know how much this means to The Friday Funfest
Have a Kick Ass Week End

snowelf said...

Lime, I love hearing this!! I know in my heart how I like to be treated and I always do my best to treat people the same way. I am always amazed at the amount of people in the medical field who go into it to "help people" but really are big giant jerkfaces. What IS that?? I swear, there should be a test they have to pass for professional bedside manner--no matter how smart you are. Good on you for standing your ground--love you!!
--snow

Hilary said...

I'm so glad you were in good, caring hands Michelle. And that all went well. I hope the Fox Chase Center gets a copy of your blog post. Hugs to you, dear one.

Leave It To Davis said...

Working at a hospital for over 12 years now and seeing the lack of respect for human life like I do, I completely understand where you are coming from and totally agree with you. I'm so thankful that you found a good place to treat you that knows that each individual is valued and that life is precious.

Just the fact that you wrote a post this long is encouraging....sounds like you must be on the road to better days!! Hugs.

Tabor said...

Surgery is enough of a trauma without feeling you are being ignored, misunderstood, or just plain treated badly. Go for you in taking the energy to seek out good care. I fired my old doctor but have not tried the new one yet. Maybe after all this business with the wedding and company coming, I will make an appointment.

Tempest Nightingale LeTrope said...

I wish you the best. My hypothyroidism was discovered when I was in my teens. Still have the lazy thing sitting in there doing a half-cracked job.
Best wishes for a good recovery.

TALON said...

Wishing you health and peace of mind, lime. It's difficult enough to go through illness without having the stress of incompetence sitting firmly on top, making it even harder to breathe.

Kat said...

Thank God! That really makes all the difference.
I know what Calypso, and you as a family, went through. I know it was hellish. But clearly that made you a much stronger voice and much braver to stand up for yourself and find good doctors. Who knows what would have happened if your incompetent doctors had not diagnosed you or treated you for a long time. Because of the nightmare with Calypso you didn't wait for that to happen and were treated in a timely and efficient and kind manner.
Everything happens for a reason, right?
Continued healing prayers!

lecram sinun said...

Being treated decently as a person is always count worthy. Glad you areon the mend.

Cheers!

Beach Bum said...

Does the same rule apply about ice cream for thyroids as it does about having your tonsils removed?

As important as the technical and professional skill the folks at FCCC demonstrate they have shown qualities I had pretty much given up hope in finding on a wide scale...compassion and maintaining the dignity of a patient.

Glad you found some docs with humans souls. Still, keep them on a short leash, they're some sneaking buggers.

Stephen Hayes said...

Your attention should be focused on getting well and not whether or not your doctors are competent. So glad you ended up where you needed to be. Hopefully this will soon be a distant memory.

Helen said...

... every person deserves to be treated like you finally were.
No exceptions. Take care ...

Other Mary said...

I'm glad everything went well and that you got such good, kind care. Welcome back!

Craig said...

Being treated like a person at a high-falutin cancer center??

Inconceivable!

Glad you found a good sitchy-ation fer yerself.

Rest up and get well. . .

Doctor FTSE said...

Heartwarming conclusion to your sad experiences . . and an encouraging 55.

(M)ary said...

Really ridiculous that a cancer patient-- or any patient has to go thru rude and incompetent medical professionals to get treatment.
Come to Fort Wayne. I'll hook you up with good doctors.

~Tim said...

One of the local radio DJs where I lived in Florida signs off every show with, "Remember that it's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice." Maybe that needs to be stamped on those doctor's foreheads every morning until they learn.

Be well.

Secret Agent Woman said...

Having doctors who are kind and competent makes all the difference. One of my best memories immediately pre-surgery, is my doctor patting my shoulder and telling me to sleep well.

Daryl said...

HOORAY!

Ann Cordner said...

It's heart warming to know that some medics have hearts. I was beginning to doubt it. Here's for a quick recovery lime. xx

waqas farooq said...

Lols and Gags, Lol Pictures, Lol Videos, Funny Pictures, Lol is the Laugh out of Laugh where you can Fun Unlimited and Laughing Unlimited. Visit the Best Lol Network Ever, where you can every thing is lol and Funny, Troll Images, Funny Vidoes, Prank Peoples, Funny Peoples, Prank Images, Fail Pictures, Epic Pictures, Epic Videos, Prank Videos, Fail Videos and Much More Fun and Entertainment
lolsgag.com

Dave said...

That's great news Michelle. I feel so glad for you that you have finally found the care you so intensely wanted and needed. The doctors, nurses and staff at our local hospital are wonderful and caring people and I am glad that you found your so too - Dave

muhammad kumail said...

Earn Money Launch a New Earning System on Facebook, the best Social Media Website where you can share some fun and earn with us, Share some pictures on Facebook and earn on every pictures you post or share. Unlimited Facebook Wall Sharing and Unlimited Earning.
Earn with Making Facebook Ids, Make Unlimited Facebook Ids and Get 10$ on Every FB Id.
jobzcorner.com

Salaar Sohail said...

World's best Online Hot Current Affairs Network where you can get every thing, World's Most Popular Classified Sites, Full Entertainment, Entertainment Pictures Article and Latest News, Latest Mp3 Tunes, Internet Online Jobs, Data Entry, Copy Pasting, Clicking, Facebook and Marketing Jobs, Online Marketing, Facebook Marketing, SEO Marketing, Latest Funny Entertainment Hot and Lol pictures, Funny Hot and Entertainment Videos
hotcurrentaffairs.com

saeed ahmed thanvi said...

Its Awkward to Say some one you are doing Lol.... Every thing you want in Lol and Troll, Now you Get all in one Network, LolsGag, Lol Pictures, Lol Videos, Lol Peoples, Funny Peoples, Troll Images, Awkwards Text, Funny Comics, Jokes, Funny Jokes, Funny Facts, Humour, Funny Planet, troll pictures, funny pictures, Facebook pictures, facebook funny pictures, facebook lol pictures, Funny videos and Much More only Laughing out of Laughing
lolsgag.com

Absolut Ruiness said...

I feel so happy for you Lime! I can totally understand what it means when you constantly have to monitor and judge the doctor rather than him doing the same for you. I have gone through some similarly terrible experiences in the past. Anyways, whats important are the words "It went great." Sometimes that's what heals you the most. Hope you recover from it mentally too!

Leave It To Davis said...

Hey, lady! Just thinking about ya' and hoping you're on the road to recovery....miss your posts and wish you were well. Prayers being sent up for you this minute...hugs.

Jocelyn said...

What Suldog said.

Thank heavens you found a place--insisted on a place!--that treated you as you should have been. Seriously.

Hiba Ahmed said...

Want to Increase Website Traffic or Social Media Marketing..? Want Facebook Likes, Facebook Targeted Likes, Twitter Followers Tweets Re-Tweets and Favorites, Youtube Views Likes and Subscribes, Pinterest Followers Pins Re-Pins and Likes, Google Plus Follow and Circles, StumbleUpon Follow and Website Visitors.
Just Contact Us on jobzcornerz@gmail.com and Skype : Jobz.Corner
jobzcorner.com

saleem mohd. said...

Free Social Media Marketing where Every thing will be Free, Facebook Likes, Twitter Followers, Twitter Tweets, Twitter Re-Tweets, Twitter Favorites, Google Plus Followers, StumbleUpon Followers, Youtube Views, Youtube Likes, Youtube Subsribes, Pinterest Followers, Pinterest Likes, Pinterest PinIt, Free Website Visitors.
Just Join now and Free Increase your Social Media Networks.
GetLikeFast.com

muhammad kumail said...

Earn Money Launch a New Earning System on Facebook, the best Social Media Website where you can share some fun and earn with us, Share some pictures on Facebook and earn on every pictures you post or share. Unlimited Facebook Wall Sharing and Unlimited Earning.
Earn with Making Facebook Ids, Make Unlimited Facebook Ids and Get 10$ on Every FB Id.
jobzcorner.com

muhammad kumail said...

Now you Get all in one Network, ThatIsLol.. Lol Pictures, Lol Videos, Lol Peoples, Funny Peoples, Troll Images, troll pictures, funny pictures, Facebook pictures, facebook funny pictures, facebook lol pictures, Funny videos and Much More only Laughing out of Laughing
lolsgag.com

saleem mohd. said...

Lols and Gags, Lol Pictures, Funny Pictures, Lol is the Laugh out of Laugh where you can Fun Unlimited and Laughing Unlimited. Visit the Best Lol Network Ever, where you can every thing is lol and Funny, Troll Images, Funny Vidoes, Prank Peoples, Funny Peoples, Prank Images, Fail Pictures, Epic Pictures and Much More Fun and Entertainment
lolsgag.com