About 13 years ago, one of my children developed a serious medical illness and I took several months off to be a full time caregiver. I wasn’t sure I’d be able to go back to practicing medicine. I was pretty depressed about the whole situation when I decided to try working part time. However, I will never forget my encounter with a quadriplegic patient the first week I returned to work. He greeted me with a cheery, “Hi Dr. Fife! Today is a beautiful Day! Would you scratch my nose for me?” I had spent the one hour drive into work that morning crying about my situation, but that encounter was like a bucket of cold water in the face. I realized that I had completely lost my perspective. Right on the spot I promised God that I would not let that happen again, and I would start being grateful for my blessings and for having courageous patients who inspire me.
Because wounds are a SYMPTOM of disease, our patients usually suffer from at least one awful problem and sometimes several. Every day I see patients who endure really terrible diseases with such courage and even humor that they inspire me. I wish I could celebrate all of them. However, today I can at least celebrate one of them.
I’m providing the link to “Wheels on Water,” an organization started by my friends Lisa and Kevin Fontenot. Kevin is an amazing man and a good friend who also took my son on his first dove hunt. Kevin is a wildlife biologist, and I never tire of hearing him talk about the habitat of northern Louisiana. He and Lisa are from the historic town of Natchitoches, Louisiana (where they filmed “Steel Magnolias”). Apparently, Natchitoches also makes men of steel.
Check out how Lisa and Kevin are sharing their love of nature with others who happen to be wheelchair bound. You can also help make it possible for them to make a difference in the lives of others.