On Lifelong Learning

dsc_0522NaBloPoMo 2016, Letters to Patients, Day 13

To My Patients Who Continue to Teach Me:

I’m a better doctor, a better parent, and a better person for knowing you.  Thank you.

To the middle-aged father of five who told me about my tween son, “Just be present.  Wait for it.  He won’t use many words.  When he starts talking, put down whatever you’re doing and listen.”

To the gifted daycare director and mom of two who advised me to ‘come alongside’ the kids rather than ‘coming at’ them.

To the auntie who reassured me that all will be well if I can hang on and ride the tides of marriage.

To the psychologist who taught me mindfulness in the exam room.

To the creative who showed me that left- and right-brainers overlap more than I realized.

To every patient who loves, hates, adores, vexes, uplifts, frustrates, admires and dismisses me, you each teach me a unique and valuable lesson.

Medicine is not about knowing.  It’s about listening, watching, being, waiting, doing, and holding.

Thank you all for the privilege to learn.

May I serve you well in return.



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