The Third Table

a: More Mooney

a: More

MY PREVAILING GOOD LUCK

By Jayne Mooney Brookes

I grew to know quite a few doctors because I sometimes had lunch at the MOB and often went up to the third floor for afternoon tea. For Christmas 1964 I decided that I wanted to give the patients a real Christmas present so I sent around a notice to the staff that I wanted to do a production of The Ugly Duckling as a surprise Christmas present for the patients. I was thrilled that so many doctors and secretaries came to the tryouts. Actually they weren’t tryouts – everyone who came got a role. Ira Rosenbaum, Maury Marcus, John Pierce, and Ian Story from the therapy staff, and Elinor Smith  and Dede Swazey – secretaries, and, from the business office, Joan Reeves. Other staff people helped on the production and Dr. Chassell’s wife, Margo did the costumes.   They were fabulous.

At the second rehearsal when I walked off the stage after directing a scene there was a new man in the audience. He offered his services as stage manager, “If  you need a stage manager?”  I was very pleased to meet this handsome new doctor and also very pleased to have a stage manager. That was my first introduction to David Lord.

After the rehearsal when everyone else had gone he asked me if I had any money. I said “About three dollars” and he said “Good, I’ll let you buy me a beer”. So we went to a bowling alley in Lee, had a beer and talked. He asked me about myself and where I lived and I told him about the little house I had recently bought. He asked if he could see it so we went there and sat on the floor talking. ( I didn’t have much furniture). He told me he had been dating one of the secretaries, Virginia Rowe, who had been in one of the plays. She had told him that I was talented, but that I was a lesbian. He had really come to the theater to check me out not to volunteer for the stage manager’s job.  As I was dressed as usual in my unisex outfit jeans, boots and sweat shirt, I said,  “How long did it take you to figure out that I wasn’t?” “Oh a long time. About three minutes!” We laughed.

David and I  started going together after that and dated for the two years he was a fellow and even dated after he left.  We were a pretty steady couple. Becoming involved with David was pretty important to me at the time.  After all, David was on the staff and I was working in the shop.  In any hospital situation where, say there is a nurse dating a doctor, it is a big deal because the doctors are the kings of the hill. I really liked the fact that I was dating a doctor and that he was not only a doctor but he was very attractive and incredibly smart.  It was rumored that he was one of the smartest of the Fellows who came that year.  Because of my relationship with David I got to know all the therapy staff and especially all the fellows. Stockbridge is or was, such a small community, that going to one anothers’ houses pretty much made up the social calendar.

David was terribly attractive but he was also weird.  At meetings he had his doctors hat on but outside he also had his weirdness.  After a time I realized that he would do nasty little things to hurt me.  DuringThe Importance of Being Ernest I had scheduled a couple of hours one Saturday afternoon to make artificial flowers for the set.  We were all at the theater and David was also there.  Michael Brookes, an English teacher in the area was also there helping.  David and I had made a date  – after we finished working we were going to pick up a steak and go home and make supper. Everybody was pretty tired and started drifting out around 4:30 or so.  It came down to just Michael, David and me.  We were cleaning up when David looked at Michael and said, “Want to come over to Simms for a drink with us?”  Michael said, “Sure- that would be just great.”  Now, I was thinking, “What are you doing?  This was  a date we had.”  I was really kinda mad.  Anyway we went over to Simms and David started talking about the Virgin Islands where he had lived before coming to Riggs and the three of us kept talking and laughing.  We had a couple of drinks and  I figured we would eventually say to Michael, “Well, see you around.”

But David looked at Michael and said, “We are going to go across to the market to get a steak. Do you want to join us for supper?”  Michael said, “Sure.”

I’m thinking, “I’m going to kill you David Lord.”  I mean, I had a date with him.  We got the steaks and went home.  After dinner we were all sitting around and Michael and I got to chatting and David fell asleep.  He woke with a start and said, “I’m leaving.”  I followed him out to the kitchen hissing, “You have got him here, you take him with you.”

David said, “Come on Michael , I’ll give you a ride to your car.” I sort of expected that David would drop Michael off and come back.  But he didn’t.  I called him several times but there was no answer.  The next day I drove to his apartment and walked up the stairs.  He was lying in bed and said, “I don’t want to see you.  Get out of here.”  So, I left and went to Nejaimes to get a cup of coffee where I bumped into Peter at the counter.  “Peter, I am going to have to get rid of David Lord ,”  I confessed in  snit. Peter smiled and said , “Its  about time.”

Of course I didn’t really mean that and on  Monday I saw him several times in the hall and he wouldn’t talk to me.  Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday – nothing.  On Thursday I saw him in the hall of the MOB and he said, “Do you want to come and talk?”  I said sure.

“Do you feel bad?”

Well, yes”  I answered, “I do.”

Well, do you think you have suffered?”

“Well, yes, why?”

He said then rather matter of factly, “I was mad.”

Why were you mad?”

He said, “Because you made me jealous so you had to be punished.”

It wasn’t just the patients who could be pretty sick!

Shrinks  are like acting teachers – they are never wrong.  You are wrong, they are never wrong.  I call what David did “Riggsing” someone.  When you outsmart someone in a way that seems nice when actually you are sticking the knife in, I call that Riggsing someone.  David was good at that. That was a side of my relationship with him.  I was involved with him for the next two years of my life. He was also very supportive of the threater and my work. He often came to rehearsals and I cast him as King Louis in Becket and as Henry VIII in A Man for All Seasons — he had natural presence and an easy dignity on stage and working with him was fun.

Edelson was not into Riggsing people.  He was always straightforward and told it like it was.

Marshall Edelson ran the community meetings,  and I had great respect for him. On his part, he liked and supported the theater program.  He often sat in on open rehearsals. Sometimes he brought visiting doctors. One day at a morning conference he spoke of the drama program and what he thought was one of the reasons for it’s popularity. He said that when I came in I greeted all the actors with hugs and smiles. He said,  “Jayne treats everyone the same. No one person is singled out or made to feel special”. I hadn’t ever thought about it.

I liked Marshall very much and he liked me. If I put my arm around him in his secretary’s office she would practically pass out from shock, because he was so formal and in many ways cold. Unapproachable was the way some people found him. And I think a lot of people were afraid of him. He had a brilliant mind. He was always right there, right on top of things. You’d have to get up very early in the morning to best Marshall. To my knowledge no one ever got up that early!

He and his wife came to my house a few times for dinner parties. The first time was in the Summer and we were having a cold supper of turkey, ham and salad. After he had been in the house about five minutes he beckoned me into the kitchen. He whispered, “Was I mistaken? Aren’t we going to have supper?” I assured him we were, but he didn’t seem convinced. He said, “Where is your apron? Why is there nothing in the oven”? I told him it was a cold supper and everyone would, indeed, be fed. When David  Lord started to carve the turkey I asked him for a leg and gave it to Marshall along with a kiss on the cheek. He stood around with that big drumstick in his hand grinning while he ate it. I loved it.

He was obsessive about some  things,  such as keeping his records safe guarded.  My secretary and his shared an office and I hung out there,  trading a few lies and having a few laughs. Whenever Marshall came into the room for anything he would cross over to a wall of locked patient files and, as he spoke to his secretary about what he needed done, he would test every drawer to be sure they were all locked, and when he came to the last drawer he would start over again. It was just instinctive. I really don’t think he was concentrating on anything but the messages he was giving his secretary but, check,  check, check over and over. One night at  three in the morning he actually called his secretary to ask if she was sure she’d locked the files before she left for the day She told me about it the next day. She was  furious.

One day I watched him do the same thing with his car which he had parked in the tiny space in front of the post office. You have to remember that “off season” Stockbridge was in those days  a town of about 1500 people and everyone knew everyone else. People hardly ever locked their doors. The three parking spaces were five steps to the front door where mail was put into boxes. It took 5 seconds to open your box, take out your mail and jump back into your car. So the day I watched him lock his car, check all four doors and come around to check again. I walked up to him and said, “Marshall do you really think someone is going to steal your car while you are two steps away? This is Stockbridge,  remember?” He actually blushed and said something about coming from a big city where you have to be very careful. But he laughed. That’s one thing I was able to do with Marshall – make him laugh. He knew how much I liked him, so I guess that was why I could kid him.

The quality of the stage and its equipment kept improving, too. In 1965 my assistant Peter came up with the idea of taking down the wall between the theater and the art room and hanging a scrim. This would allow us to improve the technical side of the productions – to bring the set and lighting design up to the same standards we were striving for in the acting. Peter had already brought in Beth to do the lighting and together they had decided that a scrim between the art room and the theater would be a huge step towards creating more interesting lighting. This project took a bit of finesse. Some of the patient artists were not enamored of the theater group, and we wanted to stay on Leo’s good side, since he was one of the great assets of the staff.  But he agreed and we did it. We had help from the maintenance crew who showed us how to take down the wall without damaging the building (or ourselves).

The day we hung the scrim was a red letter day.  We sat on the floor and ate and laughed. We knew we had taken a giant step toward more sophisticated productions. And we were right.

We all worked very hard and over the years transforming the ‘shop space” into a real theater with risers for the audiences and comfortable chairs, a light booth, over a hundred lighting instruments, special effects equipment, a scrim wall, a real stage, a Green Room with dressing rooms, intercom between the light booth, the “Lobby” and the Green Room.

Now we could really consider set and lighting design. By 1966 we were able to build a set with real depth and height.– or the illusion of it. Turk, one of our best comic actors, designed a great set for A Man For All Seasons, which the budget could just afford — and as usual (by then) we got our costumes from Brooks in New York. It was a beautiful and elegant production — even if the actors had to bend over double before coming down the ramp! Walter Scott, a local photographer who’d worked in New York theater as a set and lighting designer –he had designed the set for The Lady’s Not for Burning — came in to help us build the set — Turk’s design used massive amounts of lumber, including some four-by-fours to support the platform, and I don’t think we could have built it without Walter. We had enough lights by now, and enough gels, that Beth could cast the set in warm oak tones or dreary grays.

We began to think of improving the space further.  Walter and I came up with the idea of building simple four-by-eight platforms that could be stacked for tiered seating, and used for building sets, too. He showed us what we needed.  Plywood and 2 x 4’s were delivered and one week-end we all got together. Walter ran the construction crew. (David Loveless wouldn’t have anything to do with it.)  Together we built about forty foot-high platforms. We all got very excited. Now we had three tiers of seating in the back of the theater. The ceiling may have been a little low, but it worked. We built more platforms for Turk’s next design,  After the Fall,  which produced our first thrust stage, jutting out into the audience at an angle and featuring irregular levels and a center stage pit. Lighting was even more important to this production, and Beth was getting to be a pro. Jurgen Thomas wrote in the Eagle, “Beth’s …lighting is as smooth and professional as one could hope for, and [Turk’s] set gives an illusion of space that is remarkable on the tiny Riggs stage.”

The Eagle notice (one of my favorites) continued, “This production is, I understand, already sold out for the balance of its run through Sunday. (There are those who will not wait for the review!) The only suggestion I can make for those who will be deprived of this fine theatrical opportunity is: find someone who has a ticket and push him in front of a truck. At worst, you’ll have plenty to think about during those long years in solitary.”

I took several of the theater group up to Amhearst to see Erik Morganroth, my first Riggs partner, in The Great God Brown. Amhearst is a wealthy college and the theater had everything.  It was a good production and Erik was wonderful in it.  But I thought that he was nostalgic about our little theater.  The Riggs drama group was very important to him – after all, Erik and I  had launched it together- had gotten it up and on its feet and he had extremely warm feelings for the theater.  There might even have been a longing for us.  Perhaps  he wasn’t getting the joy from the Amhearst theater even with all its equipment.  Not the same joy that he got from our enterprise with its one small room and its rickety chairs.  In addition to the plays, you see, we were initiating seminars and discussions and all sorts of things where we sat around and talked about theater.  He was the intellectual, the one who brought the material forward.  The person who said, “Why don’t we do this play, it is a wonderful work.” I think he missed us.

It never occurred to me that  Erik really had problems or was nuts or was unhappy or was homosexual. Anyway, in  March Erik came  to see Importance of Being Ernest and  then at the end of April Bob Harris came up to me in the hall and said, “Come down to my office for a minute.”  So, I went.  He was very casual and said, ” Erik Morganroth killed himself last night with his boyfriend’s gun.”

I went nuts.  I wanted to run.  You know how when something happens that you don’t want to face, you want to run?  I bolted out of Bob Harris’ office.  He grabbed me and wouldn’t let me go.  Now, Bob Harris was no sweetie – he was no favorite of mine, but he did come through for me that day.

When I got home I was still a mess and I called Peter Kipp.  When he answered the phone I just said his name, “Peter.”

He said “Are you all right?”

“No”, he said “I’ll be right there.  And he was and he stayed with me all evening. David Lord came over later, but it was Peter I needed the most.

I never dreamed of that side of Erik.  I simply didn’t see the patients as sick people.  The patients I worked with, I saw as creative, bright and attractive people.  People who liked me and people I liked.  I never said, “Humm, what is wrong with her or him?”  But when Erik killed himself I was stunned – stunned by how he must have seen himself  and  stunned that his vision of himself was so different from how I saw him.

Dr, Knight died in May 1966 and there was great speculation about who would be the new medical director.  However, I was so involved with the theater department that I didn’t pay too much attention to the mood of the MOB.  Although I had wonderful times with the staff, had great fun with David and had respected Dr. Knight, my real friends were the patients.  For whatever reason, I identified more with them than with the staff,  perhaps because we worked together.

The first time I met Otto Will was at a seminar  he gave one evening in the conference room. He was one of the people Riggs was considering as the next Medical Director following Dr. Knight’s death. The lecture was fantastic. After it was over I went up to him and introduced myself. I told him it was the most wonderful lecture I had ever heard. He seemed pleased.  When I added,  “and I do so hope you will be the new Medical Director”, he smiled and said it made him feel very welcome. You might say Otto and I got off on the right foot. He never interfered with my work and he okayed ten weekend trips to New York and all my expenses when I went to study at Joseph Chaiken’s ” Open Theater” which changed my entire method of directing.

It took almost a year for the staff to find a replacement for Dr. Knight and finally Dr.  Will took over and moved to town in June of 1967. His arrival was filled with confusion.  First he accepted the position and then refused it.  When he finally came there was great relief all around since the  hospital had been leaderless for over a year.  I was still dating David although he had moved to New York the summer of 1966 when his Fellowship was up.  He came back often and we often threw big buffet suppers at my house.  One Summer night almost the entire therapy staff and their wives came to a hundredth birthday party for my oak tree. We put acorns in the martinis and everyone got a little drunk. At midnight we gave everyone a lighted candle and we filed through the cemetery singing “Happy birthday dear Oak tree, happy birthday to you”. Otto Will arrived unexpectedly.  He intended to spend the night in a sleeping bag in his as yet unfurnished house out near the Garden Center. He was alone – his wife was not with him.  He got loaded and at some point invited me to go home with him, and I said I really couldn’t do that.

It was at this party that a new Fellow, Johanna Kramer, told me quite frankly she wanted to be my friend because, as she put it, “if there are any interesting men around you’ll know them”. She was enamored of Ian Storey and had come to Riggs specifically to “catch him”.  She said she had applied for a fellowship after she had attended a lecture he gave in New York. ( I was  somewhat surprised because I had always assumed Ian was homosexual.)  One of the reasons I gave the party was to let her spend some time (read flirt) with Ian. Not long into the evening she stormed into the house. I realized she had discovered her mistake. Anyhow she turned her sights elsewhere, as I was to discover later. Around eleven o’clock I ran into the house looking for David. I wanted him to stop Otto from driving home drunk.  There Johanna was in a deep (seemingly intimate) conversation with David. I immediately knew what was up.

David gave me a puppy that Christmas – a huge Saint Bernard.  Then he told me he was going off sailing with Johanna.  She used my hospitality and went after David.  Not the warmest time for me. By the end  of Christmas I had  broken off with David and turned to someone who had been interested in me for two years or more and I had been too blind (or faithful) to see. MichaeI Brookes and I were married the following summer and are still married today.

I did have a social life, but the biggest part of myself and certainly my energy was with the theater group. They were always welcome at my house and I was welcome in the houses of outpatients. The stage manager ( all stage managers were from the patient community), and I spent part of every day in my office when we were in rehearsal which was pretty much all the time. We went from one production to another until we were doing four and sometimes five full productions a year including musicals, and in addition staged readings, staff Christmas shows and one year, shortly before I left, a children’s’ Christmas show. That show brought us new friends, working people of the town,  most of whom had simply stayed away before.  Maybe to some  we were considered “elitist”.

I want to make a point right here. I didn’t in any way think what we were was a matter of something “good for the patients”.  It was obvious that we needed smart creative people to continue to succeed, and as they were there, I encouraged them to join me, and many, many of them did. And they learned many things besides acting, analyzing scripts, or digging out subtext. Some of them learned (by doing) how to design and build sets, how to design lights, how to run light boards, how to stage-manage. We needed each other — it was as simple as that.

I was not naive enough to think of the hospital as a spa for wealthy spoiled kids. It was a serious hospital doing wonderful work. But it so happened that many, not all, patients could work with me and in therapy at the same time. I never knew, or cared to know, what was “wrong” with any of the people I worked with. It wasn’t any of my business of course,  but more important, I simply didn’t care. What they did on stage and backstage was what mattered.  And I was tough. I didn’t put up with missed rehearsals, drinking before rehearsals or any other unreliable behavior. I had rules and stuck to my guns. I threw a young man out of a production three nights before we opened (a big rollicking production of  Alice in Wonderland which had music, special effects, dancing and singing. )He cut the first dress rehearsal saying he was ill. When I found out he had gone out to dinner with friends I called and told him he was out. He couldn’t believe it. He kept saying “but I’m good in the part and you know it”. I said “Yes you are, but you know what else you are? Untrustworthy. You’re out and that’s that”.

As we were by then very much an ensemble theater, I just divided his roles between two other actors and we went ahead. He never forgave me, and hated me of course. His doctor told me after his discharge that he had said. “I hate her, but she’s the only person I know who refused to take my bullshit”. I was happy to settle for that.

It was that autonomy that made the theater the success it was. Putting in a patient because she was a patient, even though she was wrong for the part, would have been the thin edge of the wedge, leading sooner or later to a patients-only theater, which I knew would fail. Having outsiders in the company did wonderful things for the patient community, even for those patients who never took any part in the theater program. Outside actors saw patients as actors, technician, artists. They respected them and their talents. They saw them as people, not patients or crazies.  They made friends and invited patients to their homes. That feeling spread to the rest of the patient community. Also, and this is a very big also, the competition was healthy. Patients  were cast after competing for roles with outsiders, and they knew when they got the role it was because they were good, not because they were patients.

The audience also saw the patients in a different way. And that was a very big thing too, which was proven over and over in the eighteen years I ran the theater. Just to give one example, a young man, very shy and diffident , went with great trepidation to a job interview. When he went into the manager’s office, and before he ever had a chance to display his nervousness, the man said to him, “Hey, don’t I know you? Didn’t you play the lead role in   Tom Paine? “ Needless to say the nervousness evaporated. He was being looked at as an actor, not a patient from a psychiatric hospital. He got the job.

People often tried to figure out who were the patients and who were actors from outside. One time Eugene Ionesco came to see the musical, In Circles . After the performance there was a small party for Ionesco, and I was invited. He was told that some of the people on the stage were  malades.  He nodded and said he could easily tell which were which. So we said “okay” and we went through the cast describing each actor. The little blond girl, the tall man with glasses and so forth. He got every single one wrong! We all had a good laugh including Ionesco who kept shaking his head and saying (in French) “I can’t believe it” or “That little blonde girl? Are you sure”?

We did it together as a group of creative people who respected and cared for one another. Friends who could give and take, fight and make up, be disappointed and get over it. I never saw the patients with whom I worked as anything but what they were to me, co-workers and friends. Many therapy staff members auditioned and became part of the theater group. I think it is terribly significant to note that not once did any patient in the company treat those doctors as staff or cross any boundaries that should not have been crossed. They saw those doctors for what they were in that setting — fellow actors.

Most of the  patients I worked with became my friends. We respected one another and listened to one another. Once in a while they pulled a number on me and I’d only find out about it later. I had wanted us to do Alfred Jarry’s  Ubu Roi but some of the group did not.  They managed to sabotage the auditions.  Hardly anyone from the patient community came. A little later the mood shifted. I was able to cast Ubu and it was a dynamite production. So good in fact that the critic published my notes about the play.

Successful theater is not a neat and tidy enterprise.  During Ubu Mary, the set and costume designer, and Judy  the lighting designer took over the patient’s laundry room one night, and made an incredible mess dying the costumes,  long johns in five different colors. They worked most of the night. I dropped in around eleven and they were hard at it. The next night they dyed side curtains for the set to match. It was marvelous. What a group! Nothing was impossible – nothing. We let our imaginations soar. We weren’t afraid to tackle anything. We knew we could do anything we wanted to. And we did.

So much of the success of the Activities Program had to do with Joan Erikson’s vision for Riggs.  The staff called Joan and Erik Erikson  “Mr. and Mrs God”. They certainly held a prominent place at Riggs. When Erik walked into a room with his handsome face and snow-white hair he was simply the best looking man in the room. Joan looked like a face on a coin. An Egyptian coin. She gave some seminars for the Activities staff which I enjoyed very much. I thought they were both superb.

But Beth Rosenfeld told me after she had retired that Joan had made her life very difficult at Riggs late in the 60″s, going over her head to talk about the department with the Medical Director. Mrs. Rosenfeld kept her counsel all those years but she finally confided in me. Even though Joan had recommended Beth as her replacement, whenever she came back to town she acted as if she were still in charge of the department. As she had conceived the whole program in the first place, I imagine it was very easy to fall back into that role.

Joan originally brought David Loveless from California to run the Shop, and she championed any and all of his causes. David was never really happy with Beth Rosenfeld,  I’m sure because he and Joan had been so close. He made Beth’s life difficult in many ways, for example he hardly ever prepared any weekly reports for the Activities Department. Leo and I were really the only ones who wrote up reports. Mrs. Rosenfeld needed these reports to represent the Department at conferences. She was such a wonderful, elegant woman. Her loyalty to Riggs was very strong. My success with the theater program made her happy. She was supportive in every way.

When Beth Rosenfeld  retired, Joan strongly suggested David be made Head of the Department. I know that Dr. Les Farber influenced Otto to appoint him but in truth David was spending a shocking amount of time away from the Shop.  By this time he was working on other projects in town. When someone asked about his whereabouts we were all told to say he was out on an errand. He had designed a couple of houses in town, and the swimming pool room for Bill and Margaret Gibson and he had other projects.

When I heard that David was campaigning for professional cleaners for the Shop I went to Otto to beg him not to allow that to happen. I was so disappointed in Otto on this point. He couldn’t, or wouldn’t, see the value of the Common Work program. David kept pushing the safety button, the possibility of fire, everything he could think of.  I pointed out to Otto that the only time there had been a fire in the Shop was caused by a staff member on staff only night. And I couldn’t remember a single injury during all the years I worked at Riggs.   But Otto sided with David and the professional cleaners took over.  In my opinion it was the biggest mistake Otto made during his ten-year tenure as Medical Director. It wasn’t long before the rest of the program ground to a halt. The program which had been started by Dr. Knight all those years ago was wiped away by Otto. I have no idea where the rest of the therapy staff and the nursing staff came down on this decision. Otto couldn’t really understand my fervor. He made it sound as if I were fighting for something unimportant, like whether to have Friday night movies in the Inn or something, and not that it was an integral part of the whole therapeutic community. Marshall Edelson was gone by then or his voice would certainly have been raised in protest. But then Marshall believed in the strength of community. David certainly did not and Perhaps Otto did not either. Maybe he only believed in the efficacy of one-on-one.

When David lost the Acting Director’s job (primarily  I think because he was never around) I was offered the job. I didn’t really want it and didn’t  make a great department head, except for one thing. If staff people got out of line with patients I went head-to-head with them. I let people go if they were not doing their jobs and while it caused a lot of rancor I always made it clear that the patients’ needs came first. Stan Smith was the first person I had to let go. Patients were complaining that when they went to the Greenhouse, Stan walked out saying he had to run an errand. The attendance at the Greenhouse was very small to begin with, so I spoke to him about the complaints. When he said “I don’t like working with the patients”, I simply told him he couldn’t work for the Activities Department anymore. The Business office manager told me he would give Stan his old job with maintenance, but that never came through, and Stan left Riggs a very angry man.

It was always traumatic when I had to let someone go, but I never wavered in my conviction that if people couldn’t follow Rigg’s rules they simply shouldn’t take Riggs pay checks. Simple as that. The problem of being moved up to “boss” is that people close ranks and fight you. If I hadn’t also been working at the Shop and simply handled the administrative work. it probably would have been better. But I was one of the staff and I was running the theater and that put me in a difficult position.  I never made any special demands on any staff member, but I was still seen as “the boss” and no longer one of them. I hated that but it unfortunately went with the territory.

I left Riggs after eighteen years because it was time.  But I’ve never forgotten my years there or the patients that I worked with.  It was a magical time and one that was blessed with my prevailing good luck

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