Caught your attention with the above title…?
Well… I'm sorry to tell your overworked mind that this has nothing to do with the image that may be occupying your imagination by now!! In fact, it really has nothing to do with much of anything that is overtaxing my own mind and imagination right now.
There is really little to add to what has not been said yet… Yesterday morning my appointment book showed a date with my urology MD, residing in
some 60 miles away from here. The reason being that my treatment will be
continued by the VA doctor instead of the outside MD who had been seeing me.
Cut cutting measures, I assume. I had
some misgivings, since the original MD had truly earned my trust, beside
actually taking the measures which, most likely, saved my life. But… “Donde
manda Capitán… no manda soldado”… an old Spanish saying that says: “When the
Captain speaks, the soldier keeps quiet” or, something to that effect. And so, I boarded my car and headed out to Salisbury, NC . Salisbury
Once there, the Physician’s Assistant who received me, asked:
-“Why are you here?”
-“What do you mean?” and he proceeded to tell me…-“Don’t you live in
-“Yes, I do” said I, not really knowing where this was going…
-“Well, we have an urologist who works out of the
outpatient center”… Charlotte
-“Ohh?” “Is that so?” was my brilliant reply…
-“Yep” said Michael the PA. “Would you like to continue your treatment over there?” he asked…
-“Of Course!!” was my reply… “after all,. It takes almost one and a half hours to get here…”
The conversation continued on this vein, while he was taking and writing notes on the computer. After we had some “shop” talk about Spain (turns out his grandmother had lived in Spain… not that it had anything to do with my being there but…), he added: “As long as you are here, let’s get your blood for a PSA test”… then he said: “If you don’t hear from me in the next 5 business days, then just make an appointment with the MD in Charlotte for 6 months from now”… “if there is anything wrong, I will contact you”
As I turned to go out the door, I told him: “Mike… I like you a lot but don’t really want to hear from you again anytime soon” He just smiled and waved me off… could almost swear I heard him say “next!”…
Just wanted to add a couple of thoughts:
There is much being said about the lack of services available to the veterans, alleged poor quality, etc. Perhaps in some cases there may be some cause to complain but, every time I go to the hospital or the clinic to get something done, there are always a large number of veterans being helped in one way or another. The doctors do their utmost and most everyone with whom I deal while there, are very helpful and courteous. I can bet my bottom dollar that their pay scale is not comparable to equivalent jobs in the private sector. So, Thank You!
The other thought is a little more “personal”, if this is possible. Back in the late 60’s and early 70’s, when those of us who had been in the service came back to civilian life, we were made to feel unwelcome by many, in far too many instances. We were in the middle of the “flower movement” and the “give peace a chance” movement; these viewpoints did not allow much in the way of tolerance for those who, according to them, had taken part in the “unmentionable conflict”:
However, most of those who went to VN, including several who did not make it
back, did so in order to serve their country; most, before going there, did not
probably even know where this bloody peninsula was located. Viet Nam
It has taken almost 4 decades to put a zipper to many feelings which were not good; in fact, for too many of the young people who came back, these memories and feelings overwhelmed their daily lives to the point of actually undoing them emotionally for many years. It is right that every time we get a piece from veteran’s admin, even on the bills for the co-pays, there is always a message that reads: “We give you the service you earned and thank you for your service on behalf of our country”. Perhaps this little gem is the result of some marketing guy’s brainstorm but, it feels good to read this.
If you have a veteran in your family of circle of friends, let him or her know that you appreciate the time and the risks taken… the vet will understand. And appreciate it highly.
Be Well … Be Back!!!
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