As the Myelin Fades #4

As the Myelin Fades #4


Another tearjerker.


Sappy music and endless commercials for household cleaners & walk-in tubs can only mean it’s time for another gut-punching episode of the only daytime drama devoted to multiple sclerosis.

Welcome to…..”As the Myelin Fades.”




It was a beautifully-bright day outside Dubuque metro’s premier MS treatment center, but I, Dr. Scott Benton, Chief of Neurology & frequent employee-of-the-week, was crest-fallen, roaming the halls when he called my name.

“Doctor Benton, pick up that crest & see me in my office.”


William “Barbells” Gillis

He was William “Barbells” Gillis, my boss and clinic administrator.

“Close the door so we can speak in private,” he said.

I did as I was told…but then I couldn’t hear a word.

“Come into my office BEFORE you close the door,” he shouted from the other side.

“Oh yeah, that’s better,” I said entering the room.


“Doc, what’s wrong?  You’re lower than the ceiling of an MRI.  C’mon, spill the beans.”

Again, I did as I was told.

“Sorry ’bout those Pintos,” I said.

Eh, don’t worry, I’ll clean’em up later.  You okay?” he asked.

“Yeah, I just.  I mean, I’m questioning my work.  My career.  I dunno.”

“Scott, we all go through this.  It’s the ups & downs of the job.  Good days, bad days & days they serve tuna in the cafeteria.  You gotta forget failure and remember success.  Like the patient you cured the other day.  The one with numbness in his fingers?”

“I remember him.  The acrobat.  Walked on his hands everywhere he went.  I told him to stand on his feet.”

“That’s right.  And the numbness went away, didn’t it?” he added.

“Yeah, went away,” I said.

“Thanks to the medical genius of Dr. Scott Benton.”

“Well, I dunno.”

“Don’t be so hard on yourself.”

He continued, “That’s why I hired you.  Says here in pencil…Top of your class.”

“Well, I wrote that in before our interview,” I confessed.

Crocheted no less!


“Eastern Tenneessee State University.  You must be a proud alum!”

“It’s Etsy, sir.  I got my medical degree on Etsy!”

“Well, keep up the good work, Benton!”


Talking with William Gillis was always a boost.  He had a knack of raising your spirits.  Lifting you higher.

“Okay Mr Gillis, you can put me down now.  Besides, you’re crushing my ribs,” I pleaded.

“Sorry Doc, don’t know my own strength!”

The pitiful sound of uneasiness means the end of this queasy episode of dirth.  Either that or better check the ‘best-buy’ date on the mayo in the tuna.

Tune in next time for another leg-spasm inducing version of …..”As the Myelin Fades.”