Text of Thank-you Letter to Dr. Pomerenke
Laura K. Pomerenke, M.D.
3207 North Academy Blvd., Suite 301
Colorado Springs, CO 80917
Dear Dr. Pomerenke,
I'm sorry it has taken me so long to write to you, but I've been trying to figure out a way to thank
you for all you've done for me. I thought about flowers, but you probably get flowers all the time. And
I considered wine, since Temecula is the wine capital of Southern California, but I don't even know if you like wine.
So, I hope you'll accept my sincerest gratitude and a few faked publication covers. If nothing else, I hope
they make you smile. J (Even more than you always do!)
When I asked to take your photo during that last office visit, I really had no intention of using it
this way. My sister reminded me of some past images I had created and we thought this might be fun, so I hope you
don't mind my taking liberties in this regard.
I can't really begin to find the words to adequately express my thanks to you. In all my dealings with
the medical community, and you know I've had hundreds of them, you are by far the most extraordinary individual
I have encountered. From the moment I first saw you in the office, BEFORE my actual appointment in June,
I remarked to my sister that I knew I was going to like you. You have such a charisma about you and the
overall feeling you project is a powerful combination of interest, caring, and respect.
All of my visits with you confirmed that over and over. You treated me with courtesy and dignity and
you took the time to answer all of our questions. Not once did you say anything disparaging nor act disrespectful
with me in any way about my weight. That, in and of itself, speaks volumes on your behalf as a decent,
considerate, and compassionate human being, but it is especially significant to me because EVERY other
doctor I consulted for this surgery had something mean, hurtful, and condescending to say. The first surgeon
I saw this Spring, who was in fact the surgeon that eventually dealt with the advanced wound infection over
two years ago, didn't even examine me. In his less-than-two-minute appointment with me, he flippantly said
that he told me this would happen (the incisional hernia) and that I needed to go away and lose weight and then
he'd see me.
I also very much appreciate the fact that you never seemed rushed with me and that you graciously spent
as much time as I needed. Both my sister and I continue to be completely amazed that your appointments run
so smoothly. Not once did I have to wait beyond my scheduled time, and for those two post-op visits, I
didn't even have to sit in the waiting room for an instant! Your very polite back-office worker, Kelli*, was so
thoughtful and so aware, that she escorted me to an exam room immediately upon greeting me. She should be
commended for all of our interactions and I hope you'll let her know what an asset to the office she is.
(I am also writing her an individual thank-you note.) She was always friendly and attentive and was especially
helpful in making some of my appointments and faxing my paperwork.
I wish there were something I could do for you. If there is anything at all you can think of, please let
me know. I am sort of at a loss. If you were a retail establishment, I'd send letters to the Chamber of
Commerce, the Better Business Bureau, and the local newspapers. Or if you actually had a "boss,"
I would write to him/her and suggest you be promoted and honored. But since I don't know who exactly means
something to you and your career, I have written a letter to three Penrose Senior Management
folks whose names were given to me from a Patient Representative I contacted off the website. I am enclosing a
copy of that letter for your records, too. At least that's a start. If the ACS, AMA, or anyone
else you can think of should receive the same or a similar letter, please just ask. Or, if there are any
professional awards, such as "Heroes in Medicine" or "Pride in the Profession" for which you'd like me to write
testimonials, again, please don't hesitate to ask.
I haven't gone into all of the ways I think you're extraordinary in this personal, stream-of-
consciousness-like thank-you note to you, but I hope you'll get the picture
after reading the publication covers and the letter to Penrose. You really are an incredible woman and I feel
very fortunate to have met you. And I know I told you this several times, but it bears repeating: EVERYONE there
with whom I discussed having chosen you for my surgery (and lots of people asked because I'm from California)
had only great things to say about you and everyone offered personal comments and praise for you, far and above
just leaving it at "oh, yeah, she's nice". You really affect people that you may not even realize, and all
of them in an enormously positive way.
This probably goes without saying, but since you're a dog lover, too, I know you understood how fragile
I was after having lost my best pal of over 13 years, between the time I first saw you and when I flew back for
the surgery. I really don't think that I would have been able to go ahead and have my surgery had it not
been for you. Because of all the ways you treated me and all the things you are, I felt totally confident to be
in your care, and I truly felt cared for. I can't thank you enough for that, especially considering what
I was going through.
Well, I guess I've gone on enough. (Or perhaps even too much.) Thank you so much for everything. I
continue to feel well, and aside from the fluid build-up that has not yet been re-absorbed by my
body, I'm improving daily (but since you said the re-absorption could take 3 to 6 weeks, I'm being patient).
Only occasionally is there pain and the incision is healing nicely. Quite a remarkable and welcomed change from a couple
of years ago!
With all best wishes,
*I understand both the young ladies I encountered in your office are named 'Kelli.' However, if I was told
correctly, the blond receptionist one who sits at the very front, spells her name "Kelly."
The one with long brown hair who sits at that back desk (or side desk?) apparently spells her name "Kelli."
Please make no mistake: the one (and only one) about whom I have such nice things to say is the one who sits
at the back, "Kelli." I hope I am correctly identifying the one I mean and that you know who I'm talking about.
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