Normal people don't win Academy Awards. Normal people don't get nominated or get to attend the ceremony. Most normal people go through life without recognition or honor. They wake up each day and go about their business, doing what they need to do and have to do, playing their part in the theater of life in the roles they have been assigned. Mothers and fathers, craftsmen and laborers, managers and employees, all are essential and few are recognized. Watching the Oscars caused me to stop for a moment and consider some of those in my life whose performances in the last year have been truly remarkable. Here are some of my award winners for the last year-
Best Doctor in a Starring Role- Ehab Mady, a specialist in Vascular Medicine. Over and over again he has made the difficult diagnosis and gone the extra mile, providing stellar service and amazing care, even when payment wasn’t guaranteed. He is truly a life saver. .
Best Pastor in a Supporting Role- John Coulombe, the hardest working pastor I know. As the primary pastor to the senior adults in a church of thousands he is always in demand, performing funerals and comforting the grieving, organizing events and developing ministries. He speaks several times a month, tirelessly advocates for the church to be truly intergenerational and still finds the time to be a source of encouragement to me. He never seeks the limelight but his light shines.
Best Produce- Mr. W, Patient who runs his own construction company while battling chronic and severe pain from a severely damaged ankle, prostate cancer and a heart condition. In his extra time he leads a Bible study, and he never complains. Each time I see him he manages to encourage me.
Best Director- Peter Mackler, the Executive Director for Government Relations for Memorial Care. He puts in long hours and countless miles, traveling to Washington DC and Sacramento advocating on behalf of doctors and patients, most of whom will never know how hard he has worked for them. I have seen in him action and benefited from his counsel.
Best Special Effects- The Parents in my practice with special needs children who juggle work schedules, school conferences, and doctor’s appointments, the spouses holding the family together while their husbands and wives battle serious illness, the countless people who each day put one foot in front of the other and simply get it done. They challenge and inspire me.
As I consider all of these people I am reminded that the true stars in this life are not the ones up on the screen, behind the podium or on a stage. The true stars are more likely to be in the audience or behind the scenes.
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