Her patients needed more than a quick visit from an uncaring physician. They needed to remember what they could, and to know they were special and loved. She was proud to have fought against the norm and to have created a warm and special environment.
The last thing a confused patient needed was to be locked inside a small windowless room, poked and prodded. They didn’t understand what was happening to them. So, Amira had fought like the devil to get what she’d wanted, and one month earlier she’d won the battle — thanks to a lot of help from the one and only Joseph Anderson who’d come to her with concerns for his own wife.
Yes, Katherine Anderson was in the beginning stages of dementia, and it had broken Amira’s heart to realize that. She’d just affirmed the diagnosis the day before after her sixth visit with the effervescent matriarch of the Anderson family. It wasn’t going to be easy for Amira to relay this information to Joseph, whose heart would surely be broken. The light at the end of the tunnel was that Amira knew how loved Katherine was, and she also knew that Joseph would spend his last breath assuring his wife of that, even if someday he’d have to remind her who he was. He’d do it over and over again, because a love like theirs was eternal, and no sickness would ever diminish their epic love story.
Instead of shoving her patients into a cold office, Amira had changed the entire waiting room into one large area that was strategically sectioned off with plants and furniture to make her patients feel at ease as soon as they stepped from the elevators. Their loved ones had been encouraged to bring pictures and their favorite items from home to be on display in the giant room. She could have a dozen patients in the oversized room, and still give privacy to each family.
When she met with them, she’d walk the patients around, ensuring they noticed their personal items that had been brought in. Watching their faces light up as they came upon a familiar picture or an item from home was one of the best parts of Amira’s day. The walls were adorned with priceless pieces of art. Those art pieces ranged from an original Rembrandt to a painted canvas with each of Katherine Anderson’s grandchildren’s handprints on it. Each piece was just as precious as the next.
Model airplanes hung from the ceiling and a scaled locomotive, the tracks placed near the ceiling, chugged its way on a track running around the entire room. Military pictures were adorned with heroic medals won, and flags of fallen loved ones were placed in triangle cases — proudly displayed for all to note the sacrifices made. This room was a sanctuary, and she prayed it would stay that way long after she was gone.
She prayed the hospital could adapt to a new reality of the benefits of mental health. There was so much more to doctoring than fixing an obvious wound. If a person could help fix the soul, a patient could have a miraculous healing.
Amira had always been the smartest person in her classrooms, even in college. She’d been raised by a brilliant, handsome Japanese father, and a tall, stunning Danish mother. Her parents had been graceful, successful, and unbelievably talented, and they’d been determined to pass those traits to their only daughter — they’d only ever been able to accept perfection.
Amira stood at five-foot-ten, intimidating many people with her height, her slender build, and her flawless naturally tanned complexion. Her unusual dark eyes were a stunning jade green. The color of her eyes combined with the exotic shape of her face, the color of her skin, and her height, was a recipe for assuming she was a beautiful woman with limited intellect. There was more than one time she’d heard she’d be a great model or a piece of eye-candy adorning a rich man’s arm.
She’d had to prove herself over and over again, and she knew she’d continue to do so, as long as the end result was her ability to help those who needed it the most.
The elevator dinged, and Amira turned to watch three of her staff walk into the room, laughing at something said on their ride to the sixth floor of the hospital. There were few things she loved more than to see their smiles and positive attitude as people came into work.
Amira shook herself from her thoughts as she walked back to her private office and turned on her computer. It was time to see what was in store for the day. She was always busy from the first patient to the last, easily working sixty-hour weeks. There was just so much to do, and she didn’t want to leave anyone behind. She had to fight harder than others in life to prove herself, but it was a challenge she’d been more than willing to accept from the time she’d realized life wasn’t always fair.
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