Dear Duke

Dear Duke

Today you got it right. Did you know that? I don’t think you could so I shall take the time to tell you how you earned a gold star from a little boy with special needs and his mama.

Today you got it right. We waited a few minutes, checked in with a woman who was bright and cheery for a day in which the sun had yet to rise. She reassured me when I realized I didn’t have my ID and when I reluctantly offered that Amos was averse to wristbands, I was met with an easy smile and she handed it to me to hang onto. That’s okay, she replied.

Today you got it right. The nurse called us back and asked how we could best get Amos’ weight and height and blood pressure. I was filled with encouragement rather than sheepishness and thus, that question inspired a bit of bravery and I said we could try. Amos, for the first time ever, stood on a scale, all 27 and a half pounds of him and his 36 inches was measured like any other three year old standing impatiently by the wall height chart.

Today you got it right. Our doctor, who we have always loved and done both prior sets of Amos’ ear tubes, came in and was so happy to see us. He kneeled on the cold floor so their eyes could meet and called both of us by name. He didn’t act annoyed by the many emails I had sent the last two weeks and listened and explained everything I had quizzed him over. When I apologized for badgering him and explained that I just wanted to know, he listened carefully and then said that he was sorry, sorry he hadn’t looked earlier, investigated further. He was sorry and yet, we had both done our best and I was filled with adoration.

Today you got it right. A smiling and very friendly anesthesiologist came in, called himself by his first name, shook my hand and talked to Amos and me like he had known us forever. He sat down and asked me tell him about Amos and his special needs. He listened and his eyes reflected the genuine empathy that matched the way he carried himself and the manner in which he listened. He listened to a mother who needed to be heard and then before he left, he asked if there was anything else he could do to make today go well for us. Us, he said, meaning me and Amos.

Today you got it right. After the surgery, both physicians came into the waiting room and spoke to me individually. Your surgeon had listened to a worried mother who felt encouraged to voice her gut instinct and used a camera to investigate his palate quite carefully. The muscle from his uvula was small, meaning a submucous cleft palate may be a possibility. He had emailed me before we made it back to Edenton that he had sent the referral and surgical notes I had requested.

Today you got it right. Thank you, Duke.

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