27 June 2002
The card was buried in a stack of files to be filed, bills to be paid, and lab reports
to be matched to patient records. It was a Hallmark (he cares enough to send the very best) and it had my name written on the envelope.
I opened the card and the front of it said, "I'm sure you've heard it all before:
'You're the best,' 'Thanks a ton!', 'You rock!' 'Thanks a butt load.'"
Inside it said "OK, maybe not that last one" and Dr. G had written
"Thanks again for helping with the video" and told me I could take salary for
sitting after hours and pretending to be part of a discussion on menopause so that we
could make a demo video, showing how well he presented to the media. This is all part of a
big project he's currently in the middle of.
My role in the video making was minimal, but the card told me that I guess I'm settling
in to this job. And I guess I've passed muster with the boss.
He jokes with me now. He calls me "dear" on occasion. He is teaching me more
about being a medical assistant. He doesn't hover over my shoulder to make sure I'm
doing everything right. He actually gives me some autonomy and has started treating me
more like an equal.
The checkbook doesn't scare me any more. I even got my desk essentially cleared off two
days ago, for the first time since I began the job in October. I'm now eyeing the files
with the idea in mind that I need to reorganize them. They have frustrated me for 8
months, but I finally have a handle on how the office runs, what's important and what's
not and I think I could easily organize the files so that I could make some sense
out of them.
Tonight when I left, Dr. G handed me another card. This one has a quote from Thoreau on
the front of it: "If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and
endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected
in common hours." Inside it says, "In other words, you done good!" and Dr.
G had added "congratulations on the ongoing success of your commitment to health. It
looks good on you!!!"
He's taken great interest in my diet/exercise program and has been cheering on each new
pound lost, each new mile biked.
We've reached a good point, he and I.
Too bad it's all about to fall apart.
He said those infamous words the other day: "We'll put in a computer in
Now, you'd think that the prospect of having a computer at work (finally), with
Internet access would have me turning cartwheels in joyous anticipation. But that's not
the case. He's springing for a computer primarily so that he can stop paying a billing
service, and so that I can take over doing all the billing.
Once again, fear and terror grips my heart.
It's not simply typing out bills to send to patients. I can do that. It's dealing with
insurance companies, knowing which codes will bring in the most money, following up when
the money doesn't come, etc., etc. To say nothing of the fact that I've been relying on
the billing company to help me straighten things out when I have questions about a
patient's ledger card.
Over and above the competency factor (there are seminars given in how to do this
stuffexpensive seminars and so far Dr. G has not mentioned my taking one),
there's the time factor. Being receptionist, bookkeeper, medical assistant and
janitor takes up all of my time now (in addition to bringing home the transcription and
soon to be taking over the upkeep of his web site), so when I'm going to fit in doing the
full time job of being biller as well is a mystery to me.
But then I didn't think I could do the bookkeeping when I started this job too, and so
far I haven't run us into bankruptcy yet.
With luck, it will only be a huge learning curve to get around. Or so I'm telling
myself to keep from having nightmares about all of this.
After all, I'm the best! I rock! I will meet a success unexpected in common hours. And
I have the cards to prove it.