Funny Story of the week
One day I answered the phone to help Daisy as she was busy on the other line. Immediately on the other end, a patient asked, "Dr. Vu?"
Me (surprised someone recognized my voice so quickly): Hello?
Patient: Dr. Vu? Is that you?
Patient: Maybe, Dr. Vu?
Me (recognizing the voice now): Yes, maybe Dr. Vu
Patient: It's me, David.
Patient: Yes, David. Maybe, David?
Me: What? (smiling now)
Patient: No, wait. It's not maybe. It's definitely David.
Me (laughing): What?
Patient: It's definitely David. I need to see you soon.
Me: Okay, when can you come in?
Patient: After lunch.
So the patient came in after lunch, sat down in the chair to show me his concern then turned to me and said, "Okay Maybe Dr. Vu, I'm Definitely David..."
So funny. I have some of the funniest patients. I think I will have to call him Definitely David from now on. He has been my patient for over a decade. We have a long history together. A few years ago, he said some people have cigarette addition, alcohol dependency or waste their money on junk. Him, he just lacks proper dental hygiene at home so his "vice" is to pay me to clean his teeth every 2 months. Therefore, it's a "good" bad habit to have. Also, it's a good excuse not to floss or keep up with nightly home care (according to Definitely David.) Silly guy. here to edit.
Today we had a young man with a broken heart come in. His cheerful demeanor was a distraction to his sunken heart. Our normal cordial exchanges took place and something was admist. As I laid him back to start my exam, tears started to well up in his eyes. Slowly, he closed them only to let one run down quickly to his cheek. I stopped for a second. Not wanting to make the obvious evident, I continued my exam calling out the pocket numbers and anything else I would see. As I was only half way done, a smile suddenly came across his face as I took another moment before proceeding again. I couldn't help but asked what he was thinking.
His replied left me laughing so hard I couldn't continue for a few minutes.
He said, "For some reason, Dr.Vu calling out the numbers is so soothing."
Bobbie: It's probably not her voice but just a sound of a woman's voice being so gentle and not screaming at you is soothing.
We all laughed. Of course I couldn't be soothing anymore. I gave him a hug before I continued. Another tear followed the release of my arms. As an older sister, I reminded him to always try to be kind even to mean people. When he finally left, he was thankful for the 2 hours of therapy and support, along with some dental treatment.
Our patients are like family to us. We know them for so long that we exchange stories and information throughout the years. When one is hurt, we all gather to form a pillar of support. This is why our little office is so unique. We embrace all kinds of pain and will help you work through it slowly. We will also find a song to sing to cheer you up. The singing may not be good but the intention is pure love and greatness.
Last weekend my family was asked to foster 3 weeks old puppies. As my youngest had been asking for a dog, we thought fostering would be a good option in lieu of actually getting a dog. It's a win-win for everyone. So we got these two little ones. They are sweet. They comfort each other and play together nicely. I'm looking for a nice stable home for these little guys. They will be returned to the humane society if I can't find someone for them. My hope is not to have them stay at the shelter as they are so young. It could be intimidating for young pups at the shelter. I also hope someone can take them together so they don't have to be separated and be alone. They're joyful now, I would like for them to remain that way. So, if you are interested in adopting these little guys, please let me know. I will help you get all the adoption papers done.
FYI...there are more dogs out there who could use a loving home. Please visit www.hssv.org to see all your options.
Sometimes during the holiday rush and busyness, someone just lays in despair. Some of our patients were amongst that crowd of loneliness. So with some thoughts and much consideration, we decided to celebrate the holidays quietly. We had an amazing time with our families and each other, as we are a family of dental sisters. Each and everyone of us contribute our own uniqueness to this office ambiance and personality.
As we reflect on the past year, we truly had the circle of life again. Jessica gave birth to her daughter and Bob lost an extended family member. Both my dads were at doctor appointments and hospitals. I got so confused one day that I was calling my dad back for his doctor's appointment when it should have been my father-in-law's. That was how my daily schedule was, one appointment after another.
Now with the normalcy of life slowly creeping back in, I just want to thank everyone for your continual support of our office and its growth. Every year we welcome so many amazing new patients that bring us into their lives. We are so humbled by the gestures. I started with little kids who are now young adults. It is quite sweet to witness individual human evolution. The up close and personal aspect of it has made me a better parent, friend, doctor, and wife. The changes I see in myself are reflections of my patients' experiences and stories. I don't think I could have raised my kids by myself. My patients' stories and lessons learned were passed onto me. Now I see it does take a village to raise a child. I am very grateful.
For 2019, of course I'm an optimist for a better world. I don't think we all have to change the world. I think we just need to make our own little world better for ourselves and those around us. Please stay healthy, find your source of happiness in any small amount and definitely be yourself. A visage is too hard to keep up. May you make your 2019 to your likings. Cheers!
This past Sunday I went up to Chico, CA to volunteer as a healthcare provider for the evacuees in northern California. There was a church that acted as a makeshift ER room as the hospitals are overwhelmed with patients right now. There were a lot of nursing students from all over the Bay Area getting their experiences in. I was so happy to see all the doctors that I met on my shift were Vietnamese females. The doctors on the other shifts were also females. We rock.
I arrived with my family at 6 am. My kids continue to sleep in the car with my husband while I checked in. Since it was still early, volunteers checked-in in the dark.
It was about 8 am when we started to see mass movements. The church gymnasium served as a medical ward, the other rooms were family rooms with children’s playroom, the back of the church housed a tent city, and army tents were triages. There were about 200+ people seeking shelter at the church. There were also homeless people in the area seeking refuge from the cold and air pollution. No one was turned away. People and their pets slept together, along with their food waste and garbage. There was also a norovirus breakout just days before.
We walked around, asked people if they needed help with anything. We brought food and drinks to their cot. We helped them onto their commode, changed their bandage, removed their IV, gave medications, even babysat their children. Emotions were higher in the family unit as young parents with multiple children stuck in a little room for a week, were easily agitated and aggravated. I had to personally step in between a young mother with her sick infant and her older children before she got physical with them. It was sad and completely understandable. A nurse took the infant and I took the older children to allow mom to exhale.
The evacuees were grateful. Food were being served all day long with breakfast, lunch and dinner, and snacks in between. It was hard to get medical history on anyone as their health centers burnt down. As it was Sunday, many places were closed. This is the epitome of a start over. They don’t have a choice. Some younger folks were looking forward to a new beginning, be it in Paradise, CA or a new place. A combat veteran on disability told me he was contemplating a move to the east coast so this maybe his incentive to do so after he receives his FEMA check. It was good to hear people planning their future. There were some sense of hopelessness but the majority were optimistic. Most of the guests at the church were senior citizens and a quarter were psyche ward residents. They appreciated the fact that there were so many people there ready and willing to help.
Please continue to donate and help wherever you can for the people who lost their homes, both in northern and southern California. We are burning at both ends. It is bad. The air quality here is like being in a smoke-filled room 24/7. We need rain. Somebody make it rain. Millions have been praying. Please continue to pray. Our hearts and efforts will continue to help the victims of the Camp fire. We hope that you will start as well, or continue until things are more settled. Please help. Thank you.