Tuesday, June 7, 2011

A visit to the doctor's

Yesterday I had occasion to visit my doctor's office for a check up. As I sat waiting, briefly, for her to see me, a young man walked in, tall, lanky, ball cap on his head, with one youngster in his arms another by his side.

I couldn't help but grin when "Dad" asked the oldest of the two - about five I would think though I'm no longer a good judge of age - where he would like to sit.

The youngster led him along the long narrow waiting area, to a cubby with an arm chair, but also filled with toys. His face lighting up.


He picked up a large dinosaur and a couple of other toys, laughing. His brother was equally intrigued. Dad sat down and the two boys began to play.

I was called in almost immediately, having a brief visit with my doctor and left looking around for the youngsters who were obviously visiting another doctor since the waiting area was empty.

Outside, in the hall before you enter the clinic, are several mats for boots and shoes and a hand written sign for people to remove their boots and shoes, with booties available... we had all entered the office barefoot. I went to put on my sandals but stopped to reach for my camera. The image at my feet begged for a photograph. It told me so much.

Dad has time to take the kids to the doctor, is he a young farmer, a house-husband, a night shift worker? Those thoughts ran through my mind, but also the shoes - something just tugged at my heartstrings seeing them lined up so carefully on the mat.

I had to take the shot.

Those shoes speak to me of family, of small communities, of the caring and love that I'd seen in the three faces. But that wasn't all I saw.

We who live in this small community are so fortunate - we don't have many of the issues that face families in big cities. Particularly here, we are extremely lucky that we have not only this clinic in a new building paid for and constructed by the women doctors who are newcomers to the village, yet another medical clinic associated with the local hospital in a nearby town is under construction. Not many can boast this wealth of medical care. And still there is a need.

I cam away feeling so blessed - for having seen two beloved children having fun with their father, their smiles and obvious enthusiasm lightened my day and will many times in the future.

But also I am blessed as are many living here for having our "women doctors" as they are called locally, living and working in our community. Canada's "free" health care, paid for by our taxes mind you so it's not really free, is like other systems, fraught with problems, but basically it works a lot of the time and I was witness to and the beneficiary of one of its best parts.

Life is pretty amazing. If I feel down I can recall the feelings I experienced in seeing those three pairs of shoes. May something in your day delight you!

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