2020 was a dark year for so many reasons but, for me, there was one person, above all others, that gave me hope. And I don’t use the word “hope” lightly.

At one point I had brought my son to the ER 4 times in 5 days. I contacted his primary care provider on the weekend but the on-call nurse never got back to me after repeated attempts. Then on Monday I finally got through to the doctor only to have the call accidentally dropped. I tried calling back but it was too late. I missed my window to speak directly. The doctor wrote a prescription, I believe, and took some notes, I think, but never followed up with me.

A friend had told me about Dr. Ben Hagopian (pronounced like fallopian) from Maine Integrative Health.

My son and I met with him and he said “If you have a problem you call me. Here is my number. Even if it’s 2 in the morning I will pick up.”

He was invested in my health and my sons health. His practice was member based. I would pay a monthly fee and he would be MY doctor. He answers my calls, emails and texts directly. He came to my house and then my sons’ apartment for check-ins (A doctor that does house calls???). He is practical, resourceful and tries to cut institutional waste wherever he can.

I believe we all need a support network. I have been re-building mine over the past 2 years. I am so lucky to call Ben my doctor. My son is doing very well and so am I.

Thank you Dr. Ben.

I feel really good about 2021. Good things and good people are coming.

If you have a story about someone that shone brightly in 2020 I would love to hear it. Shoot me an email. mike@lumbery-me.com.

Michael Friedland

Promoting Sustainability – Supporting Local Communities