Several years ago, my husband and I were desperately seeking to find someone, anyone, who could help me with my medical condition that was slowly strangling the life out of me. At one point, our search took us to the RIM center in Detroit where we met with one of the doctors who had developed a new infusion pain pump. The doctor sailed into our examination room, drafted by several interns, flipped through my chart, discussed my problems with the interns, announced that my `condition’ was going to kill me, and abruptly left.
Stunned, I choked back sobs while my husband patted my back, trying to reassure me when someone knocked on the door. One of the interns poked her head in and slipped into the room. She apologized for the unfortunate comment and immediately turned the conversation around to put a positive spin on the situation. I mopped up my tears, listening as she suggested several other directions and doctors to try.
Hope springs eternal and this intern provided me with that last straw to grasp as I struggled forward. Ami and I stayed in contact, discussing new pain control techniques, weighing my treatment options and eventually when I found a doctor who could and did help me reclaim my life, I wanted her to meet him.
I have met dozens and dozens of doctors over the years and regretfully have found many of them lacking in knowledge, talent and skill. When I do find that special doctor, like Ami, I want them on my team and as a friend. It’s that invaluable, remarkable combination of training, experience and compassion that will make her a very successful doctor. My doctor.
I’ve wanted to write this for some time now. I can hardly express how grateful I am for the wonderful care you gave my husband Bob during his illness. It takes a very special person like you to look after others with such kindness and concern. How does one put the proper words together to express how much this means?
It began with a referral from a co-worker to contact you in hope that you could help manage Bob ’s escalating pain. At that time, he was enduring many tests, meeting several doctors and we were beginning to fear the worst. In the midst of all this, we were blessed that he was in your care. With your knowledge, skill and your human kindness, you focused on Bob and what it would take to ease his pain. And you did just that. You became our angel.
Over the months that followed, you were a constant source of strength and emotional support. It hurts to bring the memories back…my desperation and watching Bob suffer before he was hospitalized. But you were always a phone call away, even in the middle of the night. Your voice on the phone was calming and you always suggested something to lessen his pain, even something as simple as a movement or position…where to prop a pillow…things we just didn’t know. It would bring him comfort and we would make it through another night.
I’m so grateful for your professional guidance. In the hospital, when I was asked to sign the papers about resuscitation and all the questions I didn’t want to answer, I was overcome with confusion, fear and grief. I called you and you took the time to explain what everything meant and once again calmed me down. I was able to think and make a decision. You were truly my lifeline!
Then there was the hope and optimism. You kept us uplifted, but also grounded…very important at such times. Bob and I were both so thankful to be able to reach out to you and to get some understanding about what was happening. It was a dreadful situation and we were terrified. But Bob was the one enduring the physical pain. You somehow managed our darkest fears and deepest emotions while staying focused on relieving Bob ’s pain.
This is the hardest part for me to write. I will forever and ever remember my need to have you by my side, by Bob ’s bedside, with my family as Bob took his last breath. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You are a true professional, an amazing doctor and a kind soul.
Bob was a wonderful man and he deserved the best. Thank you for being the best of the best.