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Extra Kindness Can Mean So Much


Booker was so ill, he needed to get to Madison for a biopsy and possible treatment.

Dr. Yocum made arrangements for us to get in on an emergency basis, that week before Christmas. I was so distraught they showed me to a room while they ran their tests.

Dr. Clare sat down next to me. Her eyes sparkled, but I couldn’t meet them. “I have good news,” she said. “It’s a prostate tumor that grew backwards into his abdomen. Neutering will fix him. He will be fine.”

Since Dr. Yocum was booked solid for two weeks and Madison was tied up, Dr. Clare arranged for a resident to operate a few days later.

She saved my dog’s life. She saved mine.

I was so full of sorrow and difficulty from my job and pneumonia and a possible MS diagnosis that losing Booker would have been more grief than I could bear.

But this professional who stayed late -- who figured out how to fit me in -- not only helped Bruce and me, but she also helped my forty-five students who needed me to be present as I taught them how to write and come to terms with authors like the Dalai Lama.

Dr. Clare didn’t have to put in those extra hours to help Booker, but she did. Sometimes that inconvenience, that weariness that comes with dropping a boundary -- that kindness -- can save a life.

I’m Katie Andraski, and that’s my perspective.

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