I met Dr. Jan Stafl not long after I moved to town 18 years ago. Although he didn’t end up delivering my 4th and last child, he was my medical back up and also the one who skillfully put me back together again after she was born. I was drawn to his authentic curiosity about health and openness to alternative, natural remedies, but what really won me over was his easy, gentle spirit. He was always kind and compassionate.
I remember seeing him after waking up minutes after the prolapse surgery he performed in excruciating pain. Unlike so many doctors, he was genuinely sorry for my pain and stayed around for hours to help me get comfortable. Before he left the hospital for the night, he offered any drug that I thought would help and gave me 2 doses of a sleep medication that I long remembered as golden sleep. Although he laughed when I said I didn’t sleep I was always reassured by his confidence at each appointment. He confidently assured met how happy he would be that we did this surgery. Even many years later, he would say, answering his own question, “Now aren’t you happy that we did that procedure?” And truly I was.
I continued to see him at least once per year for a decade after that. As I grew my little love business, he was always interested and became a big fan of Good Clean Love. He was, in fact, one of the first doctors who provided a testimonial for us to post on our website. As the years passed, he even sent some of his patients to talk to me. His approach to medicine was as holistic as he was… I remain grateful for all of the many menopausal women who learned about organic intimacy products from him.
What I know will be most missed by me and so many of his other patients was the easy way Jan had of making you feel seen and heard every time you sat down with him. I believe this capacity came from his deep presence with and love for the natural world. He was one of very few Oregonians who knew their way into the deep forest and hidden waterfalls that adorn our majestic state. He was a gift to medicine and all the women who were lucky enough to be in his care. He delivered over 4000 babies into the world and attended to just as many women in the mysterious menopausal years.
Jan, life and medicine is larger because you were here… you will be missed.