How do you choose an eye doctor?

Are all eye doctors exams pretty much the same or is there a difference between one exam and another?

I think we all instinctively understand that there is always a difference—there are some plumbers that are better than other plumbers, there are some restaurants that are better than other restaurants, and there are some doctors that are better than other doctors. So, how do you know who to trust with your vision and good eye health? Let me share with you something my mother taught me as a youngster:

Mom had asked me to sweep the floor in the kitchen. I really didn’t want to sweep the floor, but I knew that it was expected of me since my mother had asked. I wasn’t very diligent at my sweeping job; I just wanted to get it done so I could go and do what I wanted to do. So, I pushed some dirt around and got some of the dirt off the floor, but I was neither thorough nor careful. After I pronounced that I had finished the job, Mom told me we needed to go look to see if the job was done properly. (Don’t you hate it when moms do that?) I am glad I had a mother who cared enough to expect my best effort. That day I learned a great lesson. My mother said to me, “Anyone can sweep the middle of the floor—that part is easy. But, if you do a good job of sweeping around the edges your work will be exceptional because most people don’t bother to sweep around the edges.”

Mom wasn’t just talking about sweeping floors. She was trying to teach me to give it my all, to pay attention to detail, and to not just “get by” in life. She wanted me to learn the difference between just doing a job and doing a job with excellence.

I started private practice in Casper in 1985 in the Eastridge Mall in a tiny 450 square foot office that I rented from Royal Optical. That office was small and crowded and there wasn’t much opportunity to bring in cool equipment or more than one employee. I had to make due with the basics, and it was pretty frustrating. I wanted my own building. I wanted to be able to grow and expand, but first I had to learn to “sweep around the edges” where I was. I had to take care of the person who came to that small office and trusted me enough to care for them using what I had on hand. I had to do that for about six years until I was finally able (with the help of a friendly banker) to build my own eye care clinic.

I have been practicing in our current location since 1991. We have added more equipment, more employees, and my son, Dr. Seth, has now joined the practice. Once again, we are a little bit cramped. Some day, we will need a bigger building, but for now we promise to take the time with each patient to make sure that we “sweep around the edges” like my mom would want us to.

I will never forget what my mother taught me that day in the kitchen with the broom.