Shed a Tear

tear dropThroughout my 20-something year career in outpatient medicine, I’ve had the opportunity to enjoy a wonderful connection with many patients behind the closed doors of my offices.  There, patients can freely smile, cry, and share concerns without a fear of judgement.  This emotional sharing allows for a powerful connection between patient and physician.  Sometimes I know more about their inner thoughts and fears than their family does.  I’ve laughed with my patients as well as shed many a tear in solidarity with them.  Both encounters are equally powerful to me as well as to me patients.  Don’t be afraid to express your humanity in the moment.

Take the time to enjoy these times and, later, to reflect upon them.  Cherish the emotions that your patients bring out in themselves and in you.  They provide the fuel to sustain you during our other responsibilities that may not be as rewarding (ie paperwork, computer tasks, etc).  Don’t ever be afraid or embarrassed to shed a tear – no matter what your age or sex.  These encounters are what allows us to continue caring and brings longevity and joy to our career.

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