Saturday, January 23, 2010

A New Doctor

Yesterday I took Davin to see a new doctor. The neurologist has insisted for two years that Davin must see this doctor. I was not sure why, but the neurologist was insistent every single time we saw her, so finally I got a hold of them and made an appointment. We took our x-rays and records with us. The doctor sat down and asked about Davin's history and then asked me how he could help me. You see, the problem was that I had no idea. I explained to him that I was hoping he could tell me how he might be able to help us. I wasn't sure what his expertise was. When I called to make the appointment, the receptionist asked why we were coming to see the doctor. I replied that I did not know. She asked if he was having trouble walking and I replied no. He is non-ambulatory. She asked if he wore MAFOs and I said yes. She asked if he was having problems with them. I said no. Hmmm... The neurologist insisted we see you, so that is why I am making the appointment.

So, the doctor explained that the neurologist was concerned that Davin was very tight. Well, she is always concerned that he is tight. Last appointment she was concerned he was tight and too thin. Really????? I had never noticed! You think he is tight??? And I thought he was chubby, not thin!! Okay, I am being smart. Every time we go to see the neurologist, she tries picking up his foot while he is in his wheelchair and stretching it out straight. You are never going to do that and have Davin NOT feel tight. She does not usually listen to me when I tell her how far his range of motion is, etc. I have come to accept this and just try to tell her and move on.

The new doctor seemed nice and gave me some things to think about. I am going to consider doing botox shots in Davin's arms right before his next round with intensive PT. That is the kind of thing this doctor does.

Although I thought the doctor seemed very knowledgable, I couldn't help but leave with somewhat of a bad taste in my mouth. When the doctor came in, he shook Davin's hand. That was good. However, that was the last time he spoke to Davin. Not to mention that he used phrases like "I have done this proceedure on someone of normal intelligence" and "kids who are older don't respond as well to PT". He made quite a few comments that I had to come home and talk to Davin about. If the doctor would have talked about these kinds of things, but had addressed Davin, I probably wouldn't have been as upset. I talk frankly in front of Davin. He didn't, though. I had to come home and tell Davin that even though the doctor has said that "Davin can't do anything for himself", that that wasn't a big deal and that is not what makes someone a great person. I had to talk to him about the fact that just because he may not know everything, he is still someone I am very proud of because he is trying to be the very best he can be.

My Dad was with us for the visit. My Dad thought the doctor was so good and I simply had to say that yes, he seemed to know what he was talking about, he only addressed Davin (his patient) one time and that didn't seem very good to me.

Maybe I should have said something. Maybe I should have asked him not to say those things in front of Davin or maybe the doctor just thought that our situation was so hopeless that Davin knew his life was horrible. Maybe that is just how doctors have to look at things because they just see the problems and not the people. I hope I never stop seeing people. I don't want to see their problems. I want to see their potential and their purpose. It is so easy for me to feel discouraged when a doctor asks me so many questions to find out if Davin can in any way help take care of himself and I have to answer no to every single one. In real life, though, when I am living with this boy and learning from him, I don't think about the fact that he can't brush his teeth by himself (okay, he could try, but they would not be clean;) or put his shirt on. I think about all the ways he is an amazing part of my family!


Tina said...

a bible verse came to mind as I was reading this and thinking of that doctor

"the Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outer appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart"

Like you, I'm a bit put off that the doctor seemed to look at Davin and see only a patient ... not a young man who loves and is loved

you go right on following your heart as you navigate the sea of doctors and procedures that Davin must endure because you see the young man that he is, the joy he has in every day and in his family. He cannot fight for himself, that is why God gave him to you, He knew you would fight for him.

God sees Davins heart ... and yours

much love,

Heather said...

Thanks Tina. You, my friend, are such a blessing to me. Your words touched my heart.

Mrs. L. said...

Sounds like that doctor had the gift of discouragement!

Martha said...

I was here to read this a couple days ago and could just imagine your reaction to this doctor. You are a good mom and very right to treat Davin with as much honor and respect as you would any other person. I'm sure he appreciates that. I know I do.