The doctor that I have had for the past 10 years seemed to be a gift from God. He understands how difficult fibromyalgia is for the patient, has an excellent problem-solving mind when presented with a new symptom, welcomes new information about treating FM, cares deeply about his patients, and gives the time a patient needs. There were a few rough spots through the 10 years, but our relationship seemed to be very satisfying for both of us. I thought he cared for me, appreciated how I worked with him, and I knew I respected him so I was dreading when he retired in a few years. When he retired I knew it would be hard but I also knew I would be happy for him and together we would find someone else to take care of my healthcare needs. What happened, however, was totally unexpected and is taking a long time to deal with emotionally.
I have Medicare insurance and he made the decision to not accept Medicare reimbursement if congress didn’t stop the decrease in payment to health care professionals, so this meant he would no longer be willing to treat me. Congress did put a hold on the cut but I had already felt the wound of betrayal and after a lot of thought and tears made the decision to discharge him from having responsibility for my primary healthcare needs – I fired him.
What pained me most was that he hadn’t seemed to understand how the ending of our relationship would impact me. From his perspective it was strictly an economic decision; from my perspective I was losing something more than a best friend. I was losing someone who I had put my trust in; who I had not only entrusted my body and health to, but had also shared my pain, fear, sadness and anger and he heard me and helped me. I had assumed that I had moved him in a way that mattered and maybe I did but his economic well-being meant more. I wanted to believe that I had mattered but in the end I had to realize that he mattered more to me than I mattered to him. Our relationship was unequal (I’ll post more on this topic) and I realized it was impacted by many factors that I had no control over (Maybe I’ll post more on this).
Copyright © Patricia A. Bailey and I Miss Me, Too/imissmetoo.me 2012-2013.
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