Monday, November 10, 2008

Gratitude

Today at my nuclear medicine appointment...

A man in his 50’s delivered a lead lined box with radioactive iodine for patients to ingest. I was filled with gratitude. I believe that the lead box provides adequate protection against the radiation inside, but can you imagine transporting toxicity around?
I am grateful.

Then I thought about the medical receptionists that deal with all the bureaucracies of insurance companies, schedule tests, move appointments up, track down all kinds of records, and then write a little note just making sure I’m ok: “I know this is a lot of information to absorb, so please call with any questions.”

I am grateful.

And the radiation techs—yes they wear one of those nuclear medicine badges to monitor all the radiation that they are subject to and it’s “controlled” but still…Dealing with all the crazies who are hypothyroid and then these crazy patients emit radiation on top of it? It’s a hard job. Amidst of all of this, they still have time to give a hug (even after a little radiation).

I am grateful.

Doctors...People love to complain about them--They make too much money, have poor bedside manner, (which is really too bad when this happens) or some other derogatory term. Doctors put their lives on hold in their 20’s and 30’s to study medicine and if that’s not enough they are subjected to human tissue and infectious disease, work long hours, sacrifice family time, amass huge debt, and the list goes on.

Can you imagine if your job was to dig tumors out of the human body day after day? It’s certainly very rewarding, especially when you see people getting better, but face it, it’s hard work. Or what if it was your job was to look at images of tumors and other pathological conditions—all day? Call patients and tell them difficult news… Or be a primary care doctor who is so swamped with insurance paperwork and red tape that he/she can’t really give patients the time and attention that they need.

But through research, willingness to work
collectively, learn every day, and practice kindness—many doctors are healing and listening. And that has to be fulfilling.

At least this has been my experience.

1 comment:

Liz & Joe said...

Hear, hear, M! You make great points.