You are my hero & my inspiration… Dr. Timothy

May 27, 2014   //   by Jen   //   Blog  //  No Comments

It’s amazing to me how in a moment, emotions and feelings can flood back to you in an instant… today as I sat in that overly comfortable reclining dentist chair with the smooth plastic surfaces, bright lights and clean surroundings, I totally went back.

I really have no I idea how old I was when I got it.  I mean I really understood deeply and appreciated the generosity and kindness showered on me.  I would sit in a very similar over sized chair with shining lights, fancy dangling medical tools, a small bright white tray that had carefully been laid out just for me and when I left a little goodie bag with a new toothbrush.  Today I was in awe how I have been having my teeth cleaned for 35 years or so.  That this is just what I do, twice a year whether I need it or not, I have a special person who is well trained that checks each of my teeth, scrapes them, polishes them, sometimes x-rays then and then a well trained dental doctor looks them over again and lets me know if I need any sort of treatment plan for the next few months.  Such a privilege.  Dental care.  How incredible.

And while I was just soaking up the awe of how awesome it is to get care… I remembered the first dentist and only dentist I ever had, all the way through college and until I finally moved away.  His Generosity.  His Kindness.  I got it even back then.  I remember Dr. Dolby (he let me call him Tim of course because we were friends) asking me what was happening at school, how my co-students were doing and how I was feeling about life.  He tenderly and humbly cared about my health and about who I was as a person.  He always took care to smell fresh of mints and clean soap when he wheeled around on that chair to look into my face with his full attention.  His conversations to me as a mere child gave me confidence that I mattered, that I was important and that I was somebody.

When I became a teen and needed expensive braces and retainers and teeth pulled, Tim worked hard to make sure my mouth had the very best.  I remember in high school, we re-evaluated my teeth and there was one tooth that just wasn’t quite perfect and he did not even hesitate to put braces back on me so that I would love my smile.  It was important to me and it was important to him.

As I sat in that in the overwhelming awe today of my current care and how wonderful it is to have someone care for my teeth and the teeth of my own children, my heart went to my friend, my dentist, my childhood hero, Tim.  What I haven’t mentioned is that all of that care, he blessed me and our family with, without any charge.  He saw my father and mother giving generously in the community and gave us something we couldn’t get without help.  Tim was my childhood miracle.

When we allow ourselves to give extraordinary gifts of ourselves to others…often times those gifts give back in the most unexpected ways.  I wonder if Tim would have ever imagined that  the little girl that he was so kind and tender toward and made sure she had the “perfect for her” teeth, would pass on the miracle over and over again.  I looked at the young dentist today who was reviewing my mouth and asked him straight up…”Have you ever considered giving away your amazing gift of helping us others with dental care, to others around the world?”  He looked at me rather surprised and said… “Well, as a matter of fact…” and the story and the journey and the “Paying it Forward” continues.

Love on the children around you, you never know how your input into a child can shape their future.

Thank you Dr. Tim for being my hero and my inspiration to give of myself and my resources to bless the little children in Ethiopia.  Your respect, love and tenderness toward me as a child is the greatest gift you could have given me.  Thank you…or as we say in the village, Galatoomi. 

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Nekempte hospital is the leading hospital in western Ethiopia, specifically in the Oromia region. Approximately 5 million people surround the hospital and are serviced by the staff at this medical facility.

We would like to highlight some new progress currently underway at the hospital. Dr. Haileyesus, the lead surgeon, has worked diligently to establish teamwork among the staff, the local community and with other non profit helping teams across the world. Doctor Haileyesus finds great success in working hard to build an infrastructure that supports the best care possible for patients. He sees great value in bringing together multiple helpers and team players for the best results.

While our wonderful doctor is very humble, we will boast of some of the wonderful achievements that have come from his leadership and partnership with others.

We are celebrating the opening of a new operating theater that will increase the number of surgeries by 50%! The new operating room gives more options as we have added a new orthopedic surgeon who is using SIGN materials to repair badly broken bones.

We are also celebrating the addition of a new skin grafting dermatome machine that has already increased our level of care for our patients.

With much thanks to the community and their support, to Doctor Haileyesus and his humble leadership and to the supporting NGO’s like Sign and Embrace Compassion, our team is making a wonderful impact for the Oromia region.

Nekemte Public Referral Hospital Haileyesus Tesfaye Jeanne Dillner Jennifer Bridges

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