I posted last year about a good patient experience. It was a story about a patient that actually liked me. I titled it "Not everyone will like you." Some people criticized the title as false advertisement. I received some comments that stated I was basically tooting my own horn. For those that know me, they know that is not the case. For most of us in clinical practice, we hear more of the bad than good and occasionally someone will actually like you. My personal opinion is that we should not practice so that people will like you, because not everyone will; you should treat people like human beings. It is not a popularity contest. So for all of those who were a fan of that one, here is another.
It is Sunday. As usually, I am completing some work, signing forms, writing letters, etc.. In my pile of work, I came across a hand written letter from one of my patients. I will share it with you.
Dr. Someonect,That letter made my weekend. So I thought I would share it. It was nice.
Although you may not remember me, I wanted to thank you for the tremendous impact you've had on me this year. At the beginning of my Junior year, I was feeling overwhelmed by stress - I didn't have any of my best friends in my classes, I had just been rejected by a girl I'd been trying to charm for two years, and to top it off, I fractured my ankle in three places. I'd been in surgery before and broke a finger too, so at first it just seemed like a nuisance (I was the fastest cripple on two crutches at XXX school, which has a surprisingly large number of cripples), but then there came the worries that I might limp for the rest of my life - something about my growth plates, I still don't really understand it.
But when I met you and was told you'd be performing the operation, I had total confidence that I'd be back to my old ways in no time. I was especially impressed by your knowledge of Hendrix, RATM, Megadeth, and all the other guitar greats (I'm starting my lessons with my friend - I think he's the next Steve Vai) Just to see that a doctor could be that awesome yet so talented really inspired me. I'm not really sure what career path I'll take in life, but I've definitely added "awesome surgeon" to the list. The entire staff at XXX really made an impression me; I've never met a friendlier staff that seemed genuinely concerned with their patients, and I know that without their help I'd still be lurching around my house on home-school watching Seinfeld re-runs. You're the best doctor I've ever had.
*P.S. - My step dad's getting getting his summer Mohawk next weekend.
~John Quincy Adam