Thursday, September 9, 2010

Humans and Animal after Crash

Coming back from Hope on Labour Day weekend my truck and trailer ended in the ditch facing the direction from whence we came. Quite possibly Laura, Gilbert and I and the truck and trailer had had such a good time our first weekend as Good Sam RV people that the truck and trailer were refusing to return to Vancouver. It would have been a sweet idea if the Hal moment hadn't ended in Laura screaming and the truck and trailer being wrenched apart by the forces, the trailer landing on it's side, while the truck rebounded with an awesome jerk.

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police came to our rescue, not mounted on horses or wearing red serge but being really terrific caring people. The highly competent Jamie Davis towing group arrived and literally got the truck and trailer out of the ditch and back to their compound. Laura's daughter Shannon and son in law Ryan with their kids Paris and Kingsley arrived with hugs and assurances.

The consequence was that in relatively no time we were back in Vancouver. The trouble was that by then my neck and back had seized up. Both Laura and I were forgetful, having problems concentrating, making mistakes and taking endless time to do the simplest thing. I simply couldn't see myself going to work worried I'd make a terrible mistake and literally unable to sit for an hour.

Laura was more of a trooper. I hobbled about moaning and acting typically macho. Laura drove me to George. George was a brick. He reassured me. He's a healer. Something about his humorous manner just lightens the load. I was feeling better immediately after he touched me. Healing touch. He wants me to get x-rays. I'm not sure x-rays are good for psychiatrists. My psychiatrist friend kindly pointed out that trauma does things to the psyche. Friends were generally solicitous and the staff were terrific. Self pity doesn't work when people are so caring.

The insurance company was weird. A strange zebra of people. One drone with that heartless how can I make a buck attitude thinking their zomboid tones of voice are utterly loud and transparent.. I was immediately reminded of the hospital administrator who wanted me to stop a life saving medication because it wasn't 'approved'. Naturally these are the shadow folk. They talk on telephones or tell you behind things closed doors. "I remember saying, "The patient will die. Will you tell the family." "That's not my concern. We can't waste valuable resources." they'd said. I didn't tell the patient in the morning when they came alive. I often think I should of. These desk jockey sociopaths only know money and want gold stars from corporate managers who haven't apparently read "Snakes in Suits".

That said, there's these other folk in the insurance company who aren't hustling you. Maybe it's a good guy bad guy routine. I try not to be paranoid. Or maybe it's just maturity. There are these real people who are actually are just being honest and helpful. There's no deceit in their voices. I suspect they're more senior and feel deeply sorry for the people who only encounter the lying hustlers intent on making a buck. I remember asking such an insurance man to stop harassing my patient who was delirious when this fellow in Manitoba was trying to get this farmer to sign off on $500. The eventual claim was $50,000 or more but here was this agent "just trying to make a buck", "just doing my job", "just feeding the kids." They're the sort of people who make tobacco salesmen look saintly.

When I worked overseas there were dozen insurance companies involved in health care. We felt sorry for the families who had made the mistake of getting the bad apple company. Their kids routinely died because that insurance company would not authorize evacuation to the main centre, doing that covert aggression poison dance of delay and subterfuge till the babies were dead, over and over again. All the other companies had the same policies and did their best to keep the babies and children alive, all except that one.

And then there are all the good insurance companies and all the good insurance stories. And without insurance we'd all experience tremendous loss. I sailed solo across the ocean, around the islands and along the northern coasts all along without insurance but I don't want to live that way all the time. I like insurance. I always have as much as I can. Insurance companies collectively have made a fortune off of my patronage.

In the end I always find that there's an amazing education to be had going through these experiences. It a lesson in humility and increases empathy at the very least.

Right now, I've no patience, though. I'm irritable and frustrated. I felt incredible rage when I talked to this fellow who was paid to do something and didn't do it because he was lazy, incompetent or just a sociopath. I figure he lied about what he didn't do either. He tried blame and shame and appeared the sort to read 'negotiation through intimidation' books. I figured he was an addict too. Maybe a cannibal. Probably a child molester. Certainly alien. Never learned to wash his armpits or his genitals. Probably has sex with goldfish.

It's a good thing I'm not working. I did a clinic. It's addiction medicine predominantly and not psychiatry alone. Psychiatry alone requires a special kind of sensitivity I don't have to today. I didn't even think the person who was talking to me had a mother. I've worked with murderers, pedophiles, gang members, psychopaths and I don't forget they have mothers.

That said, my dog is just fine. Laura is in pain and unhappy but bearing up well. Gilbert is staying close to her. We're supposed to be on holidays. It's more of a sick leave right now but I'm grateful I'm not working.

I was just walking Gilbert along a stream enjoying the night breeze and rippling water. The stars are so bright here in the country. I'm going to focus on the day.

Luke and Sunny are two really funny guys. They're joining us tomorrow. Every day since the accident we're getting better and better.

There's definitely life after a truck and trailer crash. I'm even hoping to sleep through the night. Gilbert likes his new squeaky toy.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

1 comment:

Randy said...

Don't sign anything I know a great Lawyer (there are some) that will protect all of your interests including Laura's, and maybe Gilbert's. contact me.
ICBC dreads this guy!
All The best