Physician, Heal Thyself: Pt. Vb


Miss Cathy was quieter than usual as we settled ourselves in Dr GG’s waiting room after I checked us in with the receptionist.

We sat in a pair of soft leather seats angled for intimate conversation and privacy accented with a small side table topped by fresh flowers in a bud vase.

Ours was one of many such groupings in the large well-appointed room. Under our feet the carpet looked to be a high-end Berber and the walls were papered in a tasteful stripe.

And instead of the ghastly fluorescents glaring down from a drop ceiling that can make any one look ill (even those that are not sick) the lighting here was a healthy soft glow emanating from sconces, floor and table lamps.

I was impressed to see original art on the walls (not the faded, dated prints one usually finds in a doctors office that looked like they’d been holding up the walls since the 1980’s).

There was also a large plasma TV and computer workstations for patients to view and peruse while they waited.

The conspicuous display of taste and wealth went a long way to make me feel comfortable and was a welcome change from the other offices where I felt like we were waiting in a bus depot in Hoboken, New Jersey (no offense Hoboken).

Dr D, the Retina Specialist told me that there were only a few Neuro-ophthalmologists in the country so I assumed that might account for the feeling of exclusivity in being in Dr GG office.

Because of a cancelation I was lucky enough to get the appointment for Miss Cathy as quickly as I did.

I’m not sure if mom noticed the change in surroundings or even cared, she just seemed pleased that I’d remembered to bring some water and snacks for her to eat while we waited. It was obvious that all the running here, there and getting nowhere was finally wearing her down.

But, as an assistant came out to walk her back for some ‘pre-tests’ (my presence was not needed just yet) I could hear her asking the young man question after question so she still had some life (and a lot of babble) left in her.

I was getting pretty worn out too but came prepared (as always) with my “Cathy Clutch” (a tote bag filled with all of her files, paperwork, notebook and the film from all her exams) so I was ready for whatever was to come, “Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more”.

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