This is a commentary about the slow lane, about the slowing of time since I suffered a severe brain injury while skateboarding with my dog. This is a blog about recovery; about our '82 VW Westfalia. It's about writing, surfing, camping, married life, bleeding ulcers that make you feel old at 32; about family, friends, and my dog Artie; it's about cruising in fourth gear, getting passed by every car and learning to appreciate every second of it.
I would have died if not for my doctors and nurses at Scripps Mercy. The damage inflicted on my brain would have been much worse if not for those same doctors and nurses. I appreciate all they did and what they do for a living.
When I was transferred to another hospital for in-patient rehabilitation I had a new doctor. I wrote about him in this post and in several others. I didn't like him for several reasons. Despite the drugs and the damage, I didn't hear anything in his voice or I couldn't see anything in his eyes that showed any kindness. I saw status. I saw a conceited, smug man.
I remember as my frustration grew, I requested a meeting with Dr. Stone. He sat down on a chair next to my bed. He looked annoyed. I asked him if he was going to write my concerns down. He said no and then reluctantly took out a sheet of paper. I told him I wasn't benefiting from the rehab. I told him I wasn't learning anything about my condition. He left the room after I was finished. My family was waiting in the hallway. He shook his head and said something about my poor attitude.
I mentioned him, not by name, in the article. He wrote the following letter to the editor.
What An Insult
I was insulted by your article “Broken Skull, Broken Heart” (Cover Story, April 22). I was one of the physicians caring for Dorian. The derogatory depiction of his medical care and physicians in particular was in poor taste. Your readers have no idea of the time, skill, care, and interest myself and others had in trying to provide medical, advice, support for him and his family. It is clear he is and probably always was an insecure, angry, and self-absorbed person. Trust, I had no economic gain in his care, and I am unsure I have ever been paid. Someone should have edited this article. He comes across as an immature, careless person. The article does nothing to educate the public about the social, personal, neurologic consequences of brain injury, which are substantial. The Reader missed a great opportunity to help the public understand this endemic problem but settled for a hit job on the medical community.
Name Withheld by Request via email
Thanks for the confirmation, Doctor Stone. Even brain damage can't blind a person from seeing the man you are!