exactly when is it a good time to ruin your life? or rather life as you know it?
the one filled with hurdles, yes but still that far away uncertainty that we all share when it comes to embracing the inescapable fate that we all must someday face? death
when might you suggest I bring up these facts that I am holding close to my chest?
the ones that will snatch you from your loved ones like a ruthless thief and pry you away from your youthful hopes and dreams?
is now a good time? or would you prefer I come back later? tv muted or off? lights on or would sunlight somehow make it feel less awful and unnatural? shall I tell you on an empty stomach? or a full one instead? or not bother with any of these trivial things and jump right in and tell it all?
your life is about to change and just maybe-- no more than maybe-- end
tell me would offering you a blissful weekend before you walk into your new normal be better? would offering you that be empathic? or unethical? or cruel?
I'm asking you because I don't know I don't
and yes, I do know that I should tell you and that I must tell you but I also should tell you that I've seen people wade those waters not just the ones like you but the ones who love the ones like you
but I know I should tell you but when? when would you recommend that I shatter your world?
after I speak the tranquil sea of your life will split one half will be B.C. -- before cancer and everything else consumed by the deafening white noise of A.D.--after diagnosis.
this isn't the kind that can be knocked into remission with good family support or aggressive drug regimens or fancy juicing machines
it's the kind that you see and then say "damn" about
damn because I know I should tell you of course I know I should tell you but please tell me, what time is best? what might you suggest?
'cause see I keep asking myself and my answer is never
even though I should tell you that it can't be that
Honestly? I write this blog to share the human aspects of medicine + teaching + work/life balance with others and myself -- and to honor the public hospital and her patients--but never at the expense of patient privacy or dignity.
Thanks for stopping by! :)
"One writes out of one thing only--one's own experience. Everything depends of how relentlessly one forces from this experience the last drop, sweet or bitter, it can possibly give."
~ James Baldwin (1924 - 1987)
"Do it for the story." ~ Antoinette Nguyen, MD, MPH
Details, names, time frames, etc. are always changed to protect anonymity. This may or may not be an amalgamation of true,quasi-true, or completely fictional events. But the lessons? They are always real and never, ever fictional. Got that?