I’ve been told by many a good teacher that every interaction with a patient presents a learning opportunity. I really believe that’s true. Each individual allows you to refine your assessments, or practice interacting with people. But, I’m also learning that each patient has a chance to teach you something; give you something to think about.
I once had a very sick patient, going through some very challenging things physically, mentally, and socially. With everything going on and going wrong, one could only expect that he would throw his hands up and say, “Can I just have one thing go right? Can I just have one good day?” I’ve said that myself plenty of times over lesser events. I searched for words. I tried to verbalize my sympathy. I quietly noted aloud that all the gray, rainy days must be exhausting for him.
“But, you know,” He said calmly, looking away as if he were actually physically searching for words, “Even too much sunshine can get you burnt.”
The dull roar of road noise was the only thing that filled the silence as we absorbed his words. He sighed and nestled a little deeper into his pillow.
“Balance, dear. Life is about balance.”