A Joyful Journey...

Join Doris Smeltzer, critically acclaimed author/educator, as she muses on topics from eating disorders to the mysteries of life. Often "Featured" are select, astute observations made by Andrea during her all too brief 19-year life…it is she who taught us: the joy IS in the journey!

Finding MY Doctor

 

Given the AMA decision to label obesity a "disease," I was surprised and thrilled with an experience I had yesterday morning with an MD who is now my new Primary Care Physician (PCP).

After my visit with this doctor, I ran in the house so excited that I began telling Tom all about this small miracle even before setting my things down. I shouted, "I've found my doctor!"

To back-up a bit: A week or two ago I received a letter from my current PCP informing his patients that he's leaving town in mid-July. This was a fairly new MD for me--I'd bounced around quite a bit in my search for a HAES-friendly professional and had landed with him as the lesser of all the "evils" I'd encountered. To his credit, I'd grown to respect him and appreciated how willing he was to learn about my health from me!  Bummed when I read his letter of farewell, I called the office to ask about his replacement. The new doc sounded ok, but a memory-blip occurred as I hung up, causing me to run for the computer in search of an article I'd read sometime last year. It introduced a new female doctor who had just moved here from Oregon. 

With fingers crossed, I called her office on Monday. YES, she was still accepting new patients and YES she accepted my insurance. We set an appointment for Wednesday (yesterday). When the young nurse called my name and led me to the scale, I found myself holding my breath, praying there would be no negative scene similar to the ones I've had with previous medical personnel. I smiled broadly yet my response was just above a whisper as I said, "I respectfully decline." She had to ask me to repeat myself. When I did, she just smiled and asked if I knew my height, which I shared willingly, breathing out a big sigh of relief.

The physician entered promptly and thus began the most amazing and enlightened conversation I've ever before had with a member of the medical field (excluding the few progressive eating disorder medical specialists with whom I've had the honor of conversing).  She got it!  My need to forego being weighed so that we can focus on my health. My HAES perspective. My work in honor of Andrea. The only downside was that I'd neglected to ask why she'd left Oregon--in case there's someone in her life whose career forces a move every few years. Ah well, nothing is permanent and for now I feel I truly have found my doctor!

Until yesterday, this blog was going to be completely focused on the afore-mentioned AMA decision, filled with numerous quotes from the blog of a dear friend, Joslyn Smith. She wrote an inspiring and incredibly informative post that I believe every one needs to read. Given that I've now rambled long enough, I'd like to leave you the link to her article, A Disease of Self Hatred, and a few of her beautiful words from the end of her piece. May they provide motivation to read it from the beginning:

My body is mine and holds a beauty and a complexity and a health that can never be diagnosed from the outside. And you are not invited to name it.

[Originally posted on the Gürze Books Eating Disorders Blogs]

 

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Healing metaphors gathered at the beach

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Silenced by Bulimia (Gürze, 2006). read more...

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