Dr. Wonderful finishes my exam today, and says, “Wait a minute, don’t go anywhere.”
I say, “Okay,” and swing my legs at the edge of the exam table. I am happy to be boring. I love my No Evidence of Disease status. I am happy that I have no concerns, red flags, or burdens to bring to him today. I wonder if he is going to come back with an article or something for me to read: perhaps related to cancer, perhaps not. Last week we talked about the demise of redheads, so I’m not sure what to expect.
He walks back in the exam room, carrying a garment bag.
I look at him, at the bag, and back to him, puzzled.
He starts to open the bag, “This is from my wife and I.”
Immediately, my eyes fill with tears. “Seriously? You and your wife have something for me?” I’ve spoken to Mrs. Wonderful only once. It was when I called Dr. Wonderful at home one night when I was anxious about test results. Mrs. Wonderful cheerfully took my message when I called at eight o’clock at night, and said she would be happy to have him call me back. I blurted awkwardly that I was so thankful for her support of her husband’s career, that he is such a great doctor for me, and I’m so grateful for to be in his care. I know that she must be equally amazing, and I know that I was not articulate in trying to tell her so. The opposite of me, she was both graceful and articulate, and she thanked me for being his patient. Mrs. Wonderful is, well, wonderful. It’s a family affair.
Dr. Wonderful opens the garment bag while explaining that his wife is helping with a project and they have found themselves with these costumes, and they thought that my girls would like them.
Inside the bag is a purple tutu and crown for Greta, and a floor-length pink and gold ball gown for Maren.
They are perfect. Greta’s costume has the perfect amount of flair–just like Greta herself. Maren’s is over-the-top glamorous, and it will transform Maren into the princess she knows herself to be. It’s really one of those can-this-be-real moments at how well the dresses suit their little personalities.
I am blinking furiously to keep the tears from spilling over. Dr. Wonderful and I have great rapport, but I’m pretty sure he would not appreciate my blubbering. However, it’s really hard to not blubber because I am so touched at this gesture. He says he hopes the sizes are correct and he didn’t want to make a big production over the gift.
I tell him the dresses are perfect. I am grinning as I imagine the girls’ expressions when they see them. I manage to contain myself, and thank him at the same time–barely. Once again, I’m sure I was not articulate or graceful. At least I was sincere when I gave him a really big hug.
I am really just completely and totally overwhelmed that my cancer doctor and his wife talked about me, planned and packaged this gift for my children, and gave it to me on a random Monday.
So much love keeps finding me. Is it in spite of, or because of, cancer?
All that I am, it is because of the people who choose to love me. I think, yes, I am a good cancer patient. But how can I not be when the doctor(s) who treat me are filled with this kind of compassion and generosity?
I am inspired daily to be better and to live better by watching the greatness of those around me. Dr. Wonderful walks around with that quiet, dignified greatness every day. It’s a lesson in character for me.
Not only did Dr. Wonderful save my life this year, but he and his wife also got my kids their Halloween costumes. It’s so awesome it’s ridiculous. I am so grateful; I am so inspired.
The extra mile always matters. It matters more because it’s extra, it’s above-and-beyond. It’s a choice–a choice to be great. Thank you Dr. and Mrs. Wonderful; thank you.