It was back in 2003 I wrote none of us want to be sick. I added, if I do get sick I want it to be home in Calhoun. If I have to go to the hospital I want it to be to Gordon Hospital and I want my doctor to be Dr. Max Parrott or one of his locals. Now I need to add, if I need sur-gery I want Dr. Craig Box to be the surgeon.
My column today is not about me. Eight days in the hospital provide a lot of private time. I spent that time in what I consider profitable reflection and contemplation. A few of the top-ics of my reflections will be shared with you today.
First: We take our health and our life too much for granted and that often without grati-tude. It often has been observed that if we were suffering and ill we would trade any wealth that might be ours in exchange for good health. At the same time, if we were healthy we would not trade that health for all the riches in the world.
How often I gave thanks for the health that has allowed me to enjoy 75 great years of life. Yes, there have been various ailments but nothing earth shattering. I am thankful.
Second: My plight during this interlude of normal life doesn’t begin to compare to the suf-fering by so many.
Hunger, disease, oppression, and physical abuse are the lot of those near and millions far away. My heart reaches out to them. I had so much for which to be grateful during my stay in the hospital.
Third: Calhoun and Gordon County have top-flight medical facilities.
My age allows for a look far back into the history of local medical facilities. The old Johnston-Hall Hospital above the former Palmer Drug Store served our county to the extent of its capacity in the two or three decades before and into the 1950s. The old Gordon County Hospital on Pine Street in the West Side of town took its place. Thousands availed them-selves of care there for decades.
After that came the new facility across town at the present location.
Sadly, all the facilities mentioned above were subject to criticism and ridicule. This writer never appreciated any remarks with negative connotations made toward any of those facilities. Especially, was this true if the remarks were made by an immigrant from some other part of the United States (Like “Up North,” for instance). At the time those facilities were all we had. They were precious to me and thousands of others to whom they provided life-giving services.
Somewhere in the past, the local hospital’s control and ownership was taken over by the Adventist Group. It would be more than unjust if I did not testify to the growth of the facility in both size and competence under that group. The expansion of our local facility has been treated by me and so many other local writers over the years.
Maybe transplants haven’t adequately appreciated our hospital. Here is one who ex-presses pride and thanksgiving that our community is blessed with such a fine institution. I hope with a word here and there I can adequately express my feelings which I know are shared by many.
Fourth: The hospital is more than physical facilities. We have a skilled and dedicated staff.
I can’t say enough about the doctors of our town. I speak of the doctors of local experience through my “journey through recovery” this past week. There was Dr. Parrott who saw my situation coming. He turned me over to Dr. Craig Box, the surgeon. I always got the impres-sion Dr. Box didn’t know quite what to think about the crazy old coach. He stayed with me and put me through the paces. Those doctors’ skill has been mentioned by many.
And, there are the nurses. Young girls in my classes a few years ago are now grown, tal-ented and skilled young ladies. I wish I could name them all. They are a caring crew for which we should be thankful. There is so much but I need to close with one observation; I don’t know who inserted the catheter while I was asleep, but not one of those girls was going to insert it again if I failed to pee within the six-hour limit after it was removed.
There were thousands of reflections but these will serve to say we are blessed.