Never ever would I have imagined that I would someday be working as a patient advocate addressing medical problems for clients.
After all, I hid in the back of my Drivers Ed class to avoid seeing the bloody warning videos about unsafe driving.
Then, I had the “exact same” blood type as my high school biology class partner, since I couldn’t bring myself to stick my own finger and he was willing to test two drops of his own blood.
Finally, my career underway and I was studying instructional video production in Austin, Texas—ready to take on the Silicon Valley there and produce TV programs in nice, clean rooms full of computers.
Then, my life turned upside down and I found myself in Houston. Some video production friends lured me down to the Texas Medical Center with promise of work in a Drug Prevention Project. This turned out to be my “gateway” drug that led me deeper and deeper into the mysteries of medicine. A job opened up at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and I was hooked. At the same time, doctors were breaking their silence and Drs. Sherwin Nuland, Jerome Groopman, Atul Gawande, Marty Makary and many others were beginning to tear down the wall between the All-Knowing Doctor and the patients they needed to help. I became an avid reader of all things medical and quite the geek.
My friend began to call me “Dr.” Bonnie, since this all-consuming wonderment at the mystery of our existence which led to all that reading, allowed me to see the bigger picture. And hauling camera equipment all over the Texas Medical Center provided insight into all sorts of procedures and conditions.
This all led to the mantra that all my favorite doctors continually advocate—we know very little about our own bodies and there is much to discover. It is only possible to state “what we know now” but not “what we will know in the future”. Thus, my byline became, “no answers, just questions” as I can provide plenty of questions to be asked. Questions lead to new answers, which sometimes lead to more questions—all in all, avoiding the terrible pitfall of absolute knowledge which is the most likely cause of medical mistakes.
My blog will explore all the questions I have and the questions I don’t even know I have. In addition, I want to share all the fascinating people and blogs that I’ve discovered–to become a clearinghouse of medical information.
Disclaimer: The patient advocacy provided by Bonnie Sheeren is not the practice of medicine as defined by the Texas Occupations Code (TOC) § 151.002(13): she does not purport to diagnose, treat, or “offer to treat a mental or physical disease or disorder or a physical deformity or injury by any system or method, or the attempt to effect cures of those conditions. . ..” Additionally, Bonnie Sheeren does not contend to practice the “Healing Art,” including “any system, treatment, operation, diagnosis, prescription, or practice to ascertain, cure, relieve, adjust, or correct a human disease, injury, or unhealthy or abnormal physical mental condition,” pursuant to TOC § 104.002.