Maybe I have dentistry on the brain but this cartoon reminds me of a dentist peering down into a patient's mouth.
Earlier in the week, we had a patient scheduled to be seen for a tooth that was causing her pain. She was driving from quite a ways away and was nearly to the office when her car broke down in an intersection. She called us to say she wouldn't be able to make her appointment. Then a good Samaritan stopped by and helped rig some cables in order for her to make it the few more blocks here. She was late but with her call we were able to coordinate the schedule to be able to see her, especially in light of her rough afternoon and efforts to get here! She ended up being our last patient of the day. Living a ways away, she had no family or friends close by to call so after her appointment our wonderful dentist, Dr. Jack Fisher was able to walk out to the parking lot to take a look at the car too. He used a wrench to tighten her battery cables and send her safely on her way back home.
Now, I should mention, Dr. Fisher is an AMAZING dentist but is not normally available for car repairs, haha! :) I will say though that just down the road from us is Chet's Car Care. http://www.chetscarcare.com/ Chet's has been providing honest, great quality car care in the area for more than 3 decades. It's where I have personally done all of my car care, I've gotten to know them over the years and I trust them. It's a place I highly recommend!
In a perfect world, prevention is always practiced. But it's peculiar how things like cars... or teeth, tend to break down at the most inconvenient times, leaving us a ball of stress, either from pain or financial strain. Thank you Dr. Fisher for being that kind of dentist, one who truly cares about the person in front of you! We are blessed to have you serving with us, providing affordable dentistry to those who have had to neglect needed care due to cost!
Yesterday I was serving in the clinic as the dental hygienist. I was seeing a patient for the second half of his deep cleaning. Scaling and Root Planing if you will, but that just sounds scary so I like to call it a "deep cleaning" like it is. :) I learned my patient was a sheep farmer. And that each day, the flock is moved to a new piece of ground. The reason is because the ground fills with parasites if they stay in the same place. The sheep shouldn't come back in less than 30 days but for good measure, my patient usually keeps at least 50 days between returns. As I got to know him more, I realized that it wasn't just with his sheep that he goes the extra mile. He shared about the his years serving in his local food pantry. At one point the pantry had a huge donation of frozen, whole chickens. "What a WONDERFUL donation!" he thought. But he watched the chicken nuggets fly off the shelves instead of the chickens. Why would anyone choose chicken nuggets over actual whole chickens?" he wondered. And then it dawned on him that the majority of those coming in there did not know how to prepare or cook chicken. So my patient gave cooking lessons in his food pantry. That is going the extra mile! He also goes the extra mile when he drives here, literally! Having an affordable option for dentistry is the reason he drives over one hour each way and that he's back in the dental chair after several years of neglecting what he knew he needed to do. We're so happy to have him and all the other farmers and wonderful people who go the extra mile!
It seems like an appropriate question to ask today being May 1. But that question lingers among the staff here at ADC as we think about one of our paitents last week who came in just a couple hours after receiving the hard news of a cancer diagnosis that day.
Catching glimpse of him while I walked down the hall, I watched my doc's eyes tear up just a bit . I heard him ask, "Do you mind me asking, are you a man of faith?" This patient is a man of few words in general and it was his second visit with us. "No" was all I heard as I finished my way back down the hall. Our doctor asked his permission to share the circumstance with some family and friends who he assured him would be willing to pray for him. And we did just that over the weekend. Today, Dr. Fisher called and left him a voicemail just to say we were thinking of him and praying for him. He left him his personal cell # in case he needed someone to just talk to.
Aside from how proud I am to work with a doctor like that, I just love the avenues that dentistry brings to get involved in peoples lives, at some of their hardest times, to just be there for them- not with all the answers, just there.
Having lived in Wisconsin all my life, I know April is does not qualify for "hardest times", but certainly the extra rain can be a downer. The question is, poetry aside, do the showers really bring the flowers? Well, that is our prayer for this special patient. That these hard times would allow something greater than he could have imagined to blossom. #hopehealthandopportunity