Rick Bendel, M.D. Mayo Clinic
Rick Bendel, M.D.
That experience could have been very frightening to be sure, but it actually turned into a spiritual one for me because of the exceptional skill, encouragement, and empathy of my doctor, Rick Bendel, M.D. at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida.
The privilege of working with this amazing doctor and undergoing eye surgery under his care is difficult to put into words.
Dr. Bendel graduated from medical school with highest distinction, did an internship in India, and was a Fellow and did his residency at the Kresge Eye Institute.
was invited as professor for the 20th anniversary of finishing his
residency at Kresge
and was awarded their Distinguished Alumni Award in June 2015.
I believe all of this has made him an extraordinary and sensitive doctor - one that other doctors could learn from.
When Dr. Bendel
first discovered that my narrow angle glaucoma was extremely problematic and perhaps even close to a dangerous closure with the possible loss of sight, he
gently and patiently
explained the danger my eyes were in.
I shall never forget how tranquil and confident he
made me feel - without making me panicked or unnerved.
Days later in the operating room, I was calm and comfortable as I listened to the sounds of soft, soothing music playing in the background, and there was no chattering among the staff.
explained that he
wanted me to be able to relax and focus on the music while he
focused on his
task - a teamwork approach.
I could feel his
reassuring hands on my face as he
instructed me to "Look at the light, Joy
It truly became a spiritual occasion for me as "the light" turned into outlandishly beautiful colors as he
worked on my eye.
Somehow that entire experience changed my perspective on seeing.
Yes, I now think that I have a new way of "seeing".
I learned something about sight and vision from Dr. Bendel's
concern and kindness and from my period of "not seeing" with my right eye.
Strange how my encounter with the very compassionate Dr. Bendel
and my brief, temporary bout with not being able to see has helped me to experience a deeper kind of seeing.
Thank you also for highly skilled and compassionate doctors like Dr. Bendel
who believe in us and help us when we are in dark times.