"Hi Beth. How can I help you today?"
When you have a chronic condition like MS, it's important to find a physician who you like and trust. What makes this happen? It's so different for everyone. Today I've been thinking of what is important to me.
It's that my physician calls me Beth. He called me that in my appointment today, and he ended with my name. I never realized that's important, but it is. They have my name in their system so I am never called Elizabeth. It's also personal.
I didn't want to talk about MS as the main thing, so we talked about the other thing. Then he still checked MS because it's his job, he still told me about the new MS drug I won't take because it's his job. He also did this stuff, I think, because he cares. That's something else that's important. He knows I won't take the new drug, but he tells me anyway.
And there are the tests. He's still interested in the ulnar neuropathy I have which is not MS. He knows I won't have surgery for that, so he told me about a brace I could wear at night which might help. And then he said, "I'm not a dermatologist, but right here your hands are way too dry and you need to work on that, and here's a suggestion." It's about caring.
He's a numbers guy and I love numbers so he spits those out and I love numbers too.
I think he "gets" Beth. She's going to walk. She knows what she wants and doesn't, and it's hard to change her mind so don't try to hard, but catch her with the unexpected so she knows you care.
The office staff seemed so happy and I like that, and they said , "Bye, Beth." You can tell when employees are happy. That's important.
When I walked out, he watched and said I look better than in June. That gives me incentive. I've been in a bit of a funk lately, but what other people say builds me and helps. There's more to do... more progress to be made... I know that. But I think it's taken a few other voices to help me try to get back on track from feeling something... I don't know what it is... stuck... I've even brought this to the attention of God... get me back on track.
Slowly I'll find my way. But back to physicians - it's about feeling that they do know a lot, but with all that knowledge, that they have some level of caring, and that they use my name. Beth