Friday, December 6, 2013

A Moment of Silence.

Forgive me in advance.

I am well aware that social media, particularly blogging, is a place to show your best - the happy, the funny, the light-hearted.
But I've always made it a priority to reflect reality on my blog.
Because life isn't sparkles and sunshine all day everyday.
And to be completely honest, I don't think I have even the slightest ability to pretend with my emotions.
What you see is what you get.

I was actually planning to write a post on Lyla's holiday wish list.
But that now seems so completely trivial, it's embarrassing.
Because today, my heart is heavy.

There's been a pit in my stomach since last evening.
I received a text message from a friend telling me that my OBGYN had died in an accident while on vacation.

Here's the thing.
He was not just my OB.
The fact that I'm writing an entire blog post dedicated to my doctor is telling of that fact.
And I guarantee there are hundreds {if not thousands} of women out there who are feeling the same way that I am today.
Not to mention the unimaginable loss his family and friends are experiencing, only two short weeks before Christmas.

Dr. Douthit had a way of making me feel special at every visit. He got to know me, got to know Gabe, and never rushed me. He remembered even the smallest details of my life - like the fact that I put so much work into being a good teacher. He respected my birth plan and worked with me to make my desire to have a natural childbirth possible and comfortable. He made me laugh at every visit, and I even have a silly keepsake in my wallet that he gave me. It was a diagram he drew of my "womanly cycle" showing me the days to really try NOT to get pregnant. {Since we were unsuccessful in "not trying" the first time around}. In his words, this diagram was for our next child's baby book - implying that we don't seem to do well with our own version of "natural family planning".

When I saw him just a few weeks ago, he asked to see pictures of Lyla and then immediately pulled out his iPhone and proudly showed me pictures of his granddaughter.  A few minutes into my appointment, he got a phone call from the hospital telling him one of his patient's was starting to push and that he was needed immediately. He apologized to me and started to head out the door to go deliver a baby. But then he stopped, turned around, and said with that infamous smirk, "Eh, this won't take too long. I feel like I have to make up for the fact that I missed Lyla's debut. I'll just tell her I was dealing with a really demanding patient". He asked me a few more questions, finished my exam, shook my hand, and he said "Make sure you tell Gabe hello!"

It was after this last visit that he uknowingly "sealed the deal" for me.
Prior to that day, I was actually thinking about switching doctors, purely for logistical reasons (like having to wait 2-3 hours during prenatal appointments).
I had been debating for a few months with the thought of switching for our next baby, but I always turned my thoughts back to staying with Douthit. We had such rapport, and I trusted him with my life.
And after my most recent visit, I came home and told Gabe, "Decision made. I don't know what I was thinking. I can't imagine being in the hands of any other doctor."

He cared about every one of his patients, and it was evidenced by the hundreds of pictures of him holding fresh-from-the-womb newborns while displaying a certain number of fingers {which signified the birth order of that baby}. These pictures wall-papered his entire office.

This is the doctor who promised me that even if he was NOT on call, there was a 90% chance he would still deliver my baby.
Unfortunately, Lyla decided to enter the world the one day he was out of town.
He came up to the hospital on his lunch break the next day - just to meet my new baby.
He gave me a huge hug and told me that he heard all about my hard work during my natural labor. He told me he was proud. Then he teared up when he held Lyla and said how sad he was to miss her birth.
He asked to get a picture and held up a number 1, "This time", he said, "meaning one day late".
Talk about making me feel special.

My heart and my prayers go out to his family and his practice.
May all whom Dr. Douthit impacted find peace during this difficult time.
There are a countless number of babies, children, and now grown adults who are here because of his work.
What a truly amazing doctor, and what a legacy this Godly man has left behind.

Dr. Douthit, you will be missed!


AG said...

Oh my! I have to say I read your blog and have for a few years and rarely comment but I have to say that this post actually made me cry. He sounded like a wonderful doctor. I'm sorry for your loss and to everyone else he impacted in his life and work.

Terri Jackson-Zdrojewski said...

I was so saddened to hear about his accident. I go to Christman but many times saw Douthit when Christmas was out. All the gals at the hair salon were talking about it so he definitely made an impact on many people's lives.

C Mae said...

I emailed you! This was such a sad post to read :(

Crazy Shenanigans-JMO said...

How sad and awful! It sounds like he was a wonderful doctor and friend.

MommyMandy Musings said...

This just broke my heart. He sounds like such an amazing man. I am so sorry for your loss.

Shoshanah said...

How awful. But at least his family can know how much of an impact he made on so many lives.

My pediatrician actually died when I was away at camp in middle school. And now however many years later, he's still the doctor I think of when I say "my doctor."

Carolyn said...

I'm so sorry! :( So sad!