Astronomy Picture of the Day

Monday, December 27, 2010

For my doctor

For Hillel Panitch,
my primary MS doctor and the relentless researcher of MS,
who had stellar bedside manner and
who I really had to be talked into seeing by my eye doctor. In the end he became my first choice neuro doctor and I am very picky, being an "old neuro nurse".
I wrote this shortly after I found out he was gone.


I was sitting in the McDonalds parking lot,
Eating my lunch on the road where I work
(I still work full time, thanks Dr. P...)
Assessing clients

And helping them access personal care.

The clinic called and my heart always skips a beat when they call me

Back to my other reality....

This is YOUR life, not some other sufferer.

They wanted to invite me to a tribute to Dr Panitch.

I was on the “a” list.

I looked around, was there anyone looking at me?

Did anyone see? Hear?

I wanted to be polite, respectful,

I wanted to say, Yes.

My schedule flashing in my head.

How could I do that, I thought.
It is for the MS society.

The people who thought my MS story was too long and when I shortened it they said it wasn’t quite right.

But it is for Dr Panitch, I thought,
A lifetime achievement award.

No, I said, so plainly, No.

I am honored (and I was sincerely),

But I cannot do it.

I lived in two worlds,

The Neuro Nurse and the Neuro patient.

My friends, coworkers from 30 years ago would be there,

as health care professionals.

How would I fit in?

My world, a subset of both nurse and patient.

Hearing he is gone from our material world,

I am relieved I was not there,

That my memories can be of him standing in the hallway,

Trying to peek at my progress on his study meds,

Briefly making eye contact, I smiled at him,

Trying to say what he has done for me is appreciated.

He has bought me some time,

He has given me expensive cutting edge treatment I would have otherwise gone without,

He put his hand on my shoulder and said, “Don’t worry, we will take care of you.”

And

He meant every word.

3 comments:

  1. Poignant...thanks for telling us about Hillel Panitch.

    ReplyDelete
  2. this is such a beautiful tribute to your doctor...there are angels here on earth to help us daily...and when they have done what they can here I suppose they must fly away to serve in some other realm.

    ReplyDelete

Feel free to leave comments. Have a great day in the Universe!