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Sometimes we do.
Sometimes we don’t.
He’s had some problems and he knows something isn’t right, but he’s scared to find out. Eventually, he goes to the doctor. Tests are run. Then he waits.
Anxious, fearful, but working hard to convince himself that it’s not going to be anything serious he’s contacted by the doctor’s office. The doctor would like him to come in for a consultation. Ut oh. This isn’t going to be good, he thinks.
Nervously he enters the waiting room, checks in, and begins to sweat even though it’s 45 degrees outside. He’s called back and the doctor informs him more tests are needed, but it doesn’t look like this is a problem with an easy remedy. The doctor delicately delivers the news, telling him that a number of other physicians are going to be involved as together they assess the test results. “I know you’re worried and I understand,” says the doctor, “but I want to assure you that we don’t handle these things in a vacuum. There will be a room full of very capable doctors who will go over the results with a fine-tooth comb and join forces to do everything we can to serve you.”
He sits there, paralyzed in his body while his mind races. Due to the current pandemic restrictions, he’s alone in this doctor’s office, both wearing masks. His wife is sitting in the parking lot in the car. The doctor had asked him if he wanted to call her and have her on the speakerphone, but he had declined. He didn’t want to endure whatever reaction she may have displayed. Not in front of the doctor.
“It’s very important,” says the doctor, “that a group of us join forces to consider what our next steps should be.” The doctor talks about the value of skilled, experienced opinions. The news isn’t good, but he leaves the doctor’s office believing more than ever in the power of others – not just the doctor, but the forces marshaled by the doctor.
I hope you never have to experience a visit like that with your doctor.
If you do, don’t we want as many smart people in the room as we can get? And for good reason, what one might miss the others will surely catch. And what others might think can be challenged by someone with a novel or innovative solution. Outside insights can make all the difference in now just growing great, but in staying alive.
Today is Veteran’s Day in America – Wednesday, November 11, 2020. My dad turned 97 in September. He’s a World War II veteran. He’s healthy and doing well, living independently with my mother where they need no serious healthcare other than doctor visits. We’re blessed. He’s blessed.
The world he grew up in is very different today. He has seen the pace of the world pick up speed. He’s also seen the sheer volume of information, data, technology, and science accelerate to blinding speed. What may have once been humanly possible isn’t any longer. Namely, for anyone of us to keep it all straight. Or for anyone of us to know enough, do enough, or be enough to go it alone. We can try, but only at our own peril.
Life is so frantic today we need all the help we can get. Let’s talk about it.
Be well. Do good. Grow great!