Visit to Dr. O

On our way to Dr. O’s, mom asked me, for probably the 18th time, if she’d told me that Dr. G had come to see her. “Yes mom, you did tell me.” Her next question was a fortelling of what would occupy more than a third of our half-hour visit with Dr. O: “What’s the  name of the group that’s in charge of the Land Trust that dad was involved in?” I replied, “Do you mean the Board of Directors?”

We found Dr. O’s offices (his practice model has changed, and now we go to him for care) with no problem. He arrived smiling, led us to his exam room, and then excused himself to put his coat and computer away. He and I had emailed the day before to strategize about this appointment. Mom seems to have forgotten all about the neuropsych appointment, and its pending test results. I expressed my concern that should those results be discussed, Dr. O would be witness to a fireworks display worthy of world news coverage… Also, that with pending medical necessity, mom seems quite content at the AL community. Dr. O wrote back that he was on it. Indeed he was. He started the appointment by greeting, and then inviting mom to talk. This is when, because I couldn’t find a pen quickly enough, I used my phone to capture the audio of what mom had to say, all while shooting Dr. O wide eyed glances:

Mom told a repetitive, and consistent, but utterly invented story, of how when the Land Trust was forming on the Island, Dr G told her he thought it was a horrible idea that would never accomplish anything. When the forming board of directors (which in reality included my father) was considering asking Dr. G to join the board, mom says she counseled them that being the only MD on the Island, it could be difficult for Dr. G to attend meetings and/or travel amongst the Islands to visit and assess potential lands for inclusion into the Trust. BUT, she said she never told the forming board of directors that Dr. G didn’t consider the endeavor of the Trust a worthy undertaking (she repeated this snippet the most). Fast forward to three months ago, when somehow Dr. G must have found out what she’d said to the board (38 years ago) and he came to the AL community, and read her the riot act! He further claimed that should she try to return to the Island, he’d make her life a living hell.

Mom spent over five minutes looping on the above for Dr. O, who managed to segue the conversation into concerns about mom’s, chronically, low sodium.

Toward the end of the appointment, as Dr. O asked mom if she had any questions for him, she fired up the confabulated story again. She asked Dr. O for a letter, at the time she leaves AL, stating it’s appropriate for her to live on the Island. She further said she doesn’t “have enough hard evidence to present, because I’m not a medical person to counter, or take him (Dr. G) to court or do something…” Dr. O then asked for Dr. G’s name. Mom spelled Dr. G’s first name wrong. Dr. O again segued to blood work, while encouraging mom to assume that she wouldn’t hear from Dr. G again. She then explained that Dr. G was no longer the only MD on the Island saying “there’s a pretty good clinic on the Island where, not that I’ve needed medication very much, but that I’ve gone the last few times I’ve needed care”. Dr. O worked the ‘you don’t need this stress’ angle with mom, and even as she agreed with him, she kept diving back into her story: “I can get a no-contact order but I’d have to have a reason, and I don’t see that there’s any reason in law, an overt reason that would make that effective…” She asserted again that Dr. G must have found out about her recommendation that he not be invited to join the board of the land trust, and why. It was kind of like listening to the POTUS.

As mom was fully out of the exam room, I quickly turned back to Dr. O. He asked, “Did that guy really come to see her?” I replied, “Oh, hell no!” We grinned at each other.

Easy online reaseach shows that the Land Trust was founded in 1979, the same year that Dr. G was doing his residency, a state away. And that further, there is most of a an eight year gap between the forming of the Land Trust and Dr. G’s arrival on the Island.

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