by Jennifer Smith, RN, Australia
Today at work I witnessed something very beautiful, although it was something very ordinary. I watched two of my colleagues – two doctors – have a conversation about a patient.
Nothing unusual about this, given that we were all in a hospital. What was beautiful was the way they were with each other and then the patient.
This particular patient had only very recently received a very serious medical diagnosis. There had been a lot of medical assessments, tests and treatments in the previous 48 hours. All of which is often very overwhelming for anyone in this situation.
As I went about my work, organising patients for my day, I saw these two doctors standing together, talking to each other, and one was handing the care of the patient over to the other doctor as they were changing shifts. The thing that stood out the most was how genuinely caring they were, especially in the way they spoke of the person. They were considering everything about this person and their family.
Together they then spoke with the patient in a very ordinary fashion, very professional, but also connected to this patient as another human being.
You may be asking, so what’s so special about this, surely it happens every day?
This is true, however what I love about this moment was that I observed it and took note.
You see only a few years ago I would have not observed the way that these two doctors interacted with each other and would have dismissed how they spoke with the patient.
Over the last few years, with the support of Universal Medicine, I have been able to look at some of the beliefs that I have firmly held onto. One of them related to doctors and to medicine itself. One of these beliefs was that I thought doctors didn’t care, being sometimes put off by their manner, which could be abrupt, impersonal and rushed. I had seen doctors rush with patients and patients often said that they didn’t feel comfortable in talking to them as they never seemed to have the time.
One thing that I have come to understand is that we are all genuinely caring and this is our true nature, but sometimes for whatever reason we don’t allow ourselves to show this.
The doctors and all of my other colleagues are genuinely caring people who really do care for their patients. None of us are perfect and we have some not so great days. But the fact that we care does not alter.
This is especially important to see in a system that can seem so impersonal and rushed, even to someone who works within this system.
The other super important thing here was the fact that I chose to see this moment, for I am now sure that there have been many such moments that I have not even noticed before. In fact I am now a keen observer of all that goes on where I work, and there are many exquisitely beautiful moments between patients, relatives, cleaners, kitchen staff…everyone in fact.
As I ponder on why I am observing this now and not so much before, I can only put it down to how I treat and care for myself. The more open, tender and genuinely caring I am with myself, the more I see this in others.
Even though at times we may behave in ways that do not reflect the truly caring beings that we are, I know without doubt that this is our natural way and I now regularly see this in other people – the bottom line is, we are in this business because we truly love to care.
- From exhaustion and feeling false to feeling vital and truly looking after myself – another great article by Jen
- Nursing, me and Serge Benhayon
- Compassionate care