2022 has arrived like a breath of fresh air here in the Big Apple. The Omicron cloud has dissipated, people are bustling about in midtown, and the city that once never slept is regaining its mojo. There is truth in the words scribed by Alexander Pope, “Hope springs eternal.”
So, it is with a bright view of the future I want to update you about some exciting, albeit bittersweet, changes here at 30 East 40th Street.
Sandy & Meryl Are Leaving
After more than 30 years of professional collaboration, Sandy Rodriguez, dental hygienist extraordinaire, much-revered colleague, and friend, has decided to move on. Long in pursuit of a more serene lifestyle, Sandy is retreating from the intensity of Manhattan with the long view of settling in southern New Jersey to follow her dream of being a practicing acupuncturist now that she’s completed her educational requirements to be a Doctor of Acupuncture. Parting is such sweet sorrow, but I’m excited that she will be pursuing her passion.
Simultaneously my beloved hygienist Meryl Lipton has decided to hang up her dental instruments and retire to upstate New York. I “cut my dental teeth” with Meryl because her father, Norman Horowitz, was my mentor and partner back in my nascent years as a dentist in Forest Hills. Meryl is embarking on a second career as an artist and jewelry maker. And, I couldn’t be happier for her.
While Sandy and Meryl’s decisions were not hastily reached, in the spirit of dedication and loyalty, they both gave me adequate time to prepare for their departures and seek out a special person to whom we could pass their batons.
April Is Arriving (In More Than One Way!)
Opportunity can sometimes present itself when you least expect it. As I began my search, I was aware that it would be no small order to fill Sandy and Meryl’s very big shoes. But, as it turned out I needn’t search beyond my own backyard. To be more precise, all I had to do was take a look at our past Christmas/Hannukah cards and Halloween photos to notice the most wonderfully-talented and perfect-fit person was gazing back at me – the amazing April Rojas.
I’ve known April for many years. In fact, she began her dental journey in my office back when she was a newly-minted dental assistant. She is an excellent assistant and was embraced while she was here by many of you for whom she aided with dental care.
Back then, April wasn’t quite sure that dentistry would be her lifelong career. But I never doubted that her intellect and interpersonal skills would ensure her a promising future along whatever path she pursued. Although she left my practice more than four years ago, she has been invited to every office holiday party and Broadway show night ever since. After all, April is part of our dental family.
Happily, April did pursue dentistry as her career path. First, she earned her certification as a dental assistant, which requires a high level of training, and if that wasn’t enough, she went on to graduate from dental hygiene school. For the past few years, she’s been working full-time as a licensed dental hygienist at a practice in Manhattan.
This past December at our Christmas Party and Broadway show night at Carmine’s, April, as usual, was in attendance. The timing was right, the mood was celebratory, and apparently, the stars were in alignment so I took a chance and suggested that perhaps it was time for April to come home.
She said, “Yes!”
There’s no doubt that Sandra and Meryl will be missed, but we are all thrilled to welcome April back to the office. Her knowledge of the most current practices in preventive, periodontal, and diagnostic dentistry, her compassionate idealism, and her familiarity with my practice philosophy and high clinical standards all add up to April being the perfect match. I’m certain she will enhance the wonderful care that you have come to expect at my office.
PS: Covid kept many people away from the dentist’s office, so if you haven’t been here for a while, please make an appointment for your routine check-up now. Our phone number is 212-685-3040. We can’t wait to see you!
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