Inspiration. It’s funny where you find it sometimes. And at other times, it’s not so funny. This week, we’ve seen radicals march on the lands of Charlottesville, Virginia. We’ve seen the destruction and hate they have left in their wake. We’ve seen death. At the same time, I have been reading a series of books to my oldest child as I prepare them for Kindergarten in the next couple of weeks. Tonight’s book about Jackie Robinson, and like all books in this series, it was about ordinary people changing the world. Charlottesville is not ordinary, but it is extraordinary about how our world is changing and the hate — no matter its form — that is peppered amongst our daily lives. Nonetheless, both scenarios are inspiring.
When I moved from a healthcare delivery system to IT, many of the players didn’t want me here. Much like a game of baseball, and liken to Jackie Robinson, the pitchers threw fastballs at my head. Catchers spit on my shoes. Runners stepped on me with their cleats. I’ve even had my livelihood and family threatened.
And outside of this industry — in life — people have tried to scare me. People have tried to stop me. People have tried to just make me go away.
Because I am different. I am edgy. I am forward thinking and envelope-pushing.
At times, has this made me mad, yes.
At times, has this scared me, yes.
At times, has this sent me into a black mental health hole, yes.
But I have never let it stop me.
Because it is not my job to judge, nor is it theirs.
My job isn’t to figure out whether or not someone deserves something, nor is it there.
My job in this industry, especially now that I have none, is to make of it what I will.
And that job is to do good, to be good, to spread good, and to make good.
Because our industry is fucking broken.
We don’t need to “unbreak healthcare,” we need to unfuck healthcare.
So, my job is to lift the fallen, to restore the broken, and to heal the hurting by showing others the light to a better pathway.
I have been all of those things — lifted from rock bottom, broken and restored, hurt and healed. And the game goes on.
I no longer play this game for myself — and in fact, I never have. I’ve just played it with the wrong people.
But we can all play together.
We can realize new possibility.
We can realize new options.
All we need is for someone to go first.
For real change to come, one has to lead for example. Fighting back isn’t leadership. Bravery is leadership. And its ok to be afraid.
Just don’t let it stop you.
There is real power in each and every one of us. Use that power to do what’s right. Use that power for a cause that you believe in. And most of all, use that power to lead and health others. — Brad Meltzer
I am Bill Bunting.
I will always march in the right direction for the right reasons.
And I hope you will too.
Because the only way healthcare will change is together.
Which is why I am shifting my career to focus on the fucking patient and good fucking leadership.
I want to see healthcare driven by leaders who give a fuck instead of leaders who just believe in mythical fucking unicorns.
Everyone has the promise of the unicorn in healthcare. Yet, we’ve forgotten how to draw a straight line back to why healthcare exists. Patients. People.
And that’s great. You will certainly see even more to come.
Not only is he one of my closest friends in life, he is my closest ally in designing a different tomorrow for our industry; for our patients; and for our physicians, clinicians and leaders.
Some will be offended by our name or offended by our mission. In which case:
They aren’t as much offended by our name as they are offended by reality — offended by someone calling them to the Godfather-styled mattresses and overturning a Biff Tannen, Back-to-the-Future-sized cart of manure over on the bullshit they keep cramming down our throats.
Some will fucking love us.
In which case, we say fuck yes.
You’re the ones that understand the paragraph above and got both a chuckle out of it, as well as felt a tinge of inspiration to do better tomorrow.
And that’s where we need to start. Together. Tomorrow.
Monday’s fucking suck, but together, we can turn a different page. We can pledge to change the status-quo.
Which is why I am inviting you to read our pledges.
I don’t give a shit whether or not you sign them since some across the industry will think they are a marketing campaign — a ploy.
But I do care that you read them, digest them, reflect upon them, and think of the ways that you can change — whether that is as a patient, as a physician, as a leader.
I thank Bill for this post.
As always, feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect with me on Twitter via @cancergeek