I watched her “working” the crowd at the banquet last night…she didn’t know she was under my microscopic eye and has been since I first met her. She paused to speak to Congressmen and local government authorities as if old friends, and I’m sure they may have been just that. Always smiling, always gracious, she was engaging with everyone she encountered…no different than my observations of her interactions with patients in her office.
I’m talking about Dr. She Who Will Not Be Named. She is the person who invited me to attend the banquet last evening…I don’t know WHY she asked me to attend and I can’t even begin to second guess her motives, nor can I explain why THIS time, I accepted the invitation. The crowd was well out of the league of my typical “social circle” of social workers and the mentally ill…
I don’t really know that much about Dr. SWWNBN, only what I have observed and what she has told me. She was an immigrant to this country at a young age, went to medical school, and did her neurology training locally here in Seattle with a highly respected neurologist…who has announced publicly in the past that, “If I had to see a neurologist, I’d see Dr. SWWNBN (of course he didn’t say those initials, but I do have anonymity to protect! LOL).” She sits on many boards, provides consultation to the FDA, the National MS Society, the local King County MS Association, is published, and flies around the country giving lectures (you may have even attended one of her talks and didn’t know it!). She is very active in local government issues and quite vocal about her beliefs and philosophies. She is considered an expert in her field and is recognized nationally.
One might think the above paragraph is why I choose to see her for my MS care, but it is not. I’ve known a lot of “experts” in my near half a century 43 years, and most have never impressed me in the least…I tend to run the other direction when faced off with a self-proclaimed “expert”. And, although highly knowledgeable about Multiple Sclerosis, this is also only part of the reason I continue to include her as a part of my treatment team.
You see, in the almost 2 years I have known Dr. SWWNBN, she has remained “human”…even “humble” if you will, which has not been the foremost quality I observe in most physicians. She laughs loudly, makes mistakes and admits them, participates in and donates her time to local charities, and has always spoken to me as an individual person, allowing me to make decisions about my health care based upon her advice. I am allowed to be and be accepted as the quirky, slightly “off the beaten trail” person that I am, with my own opinions, thoughts, and feelings. And, she listens to me respectfully and with the dignity any human being deserves. I am very fortunate and grateful to have found her as it has made my tolerance of this disease much easier to bear…it is such a blessing to be “heard” and accepted, without requests to conform.
It is typical of me when posting about Dr. SWWNBN to tell funny tales or even make a mockery of conversations or encounters between us…and all, sadly are true! LOL And some of you have even voiced concern I might be paying a “quack” for my medical advice and care, based on some of these taken-out-of-context stories and adventures I post. But I can assure you I am not. I have surrounded myself with top notch medical, psychiatric, and spiritual advisors…perhaps not fitting the typical “mold” or YOUR standards, but well into the realm of my needs and desires.
Yesterday evening, the contents of my blog came up in conversation…I find it highly entertaining I can now “Google” Dr. SWWNBN and various BRAINCHEESE blog posts are reflected in the search. But I realized this morning, what does NOT come up in a “Google” search is who this person really is…not, of course, her real name or demographic data (because I might be sued, or worse killed, if I ever revealed this highly classified information!), but “who” this person is and what they mean to me. I hope THIS post may now reflect just that…the real "tale" behind Dr. SWWNBN...