This is more of a welcome back to myself, as it's been many months since I have had the luxury to sit down and write. Such is the life of any professional mother, isn't it? We have since bought a house, moved, helped our girls adjust to life at a private school, and sorted through many, many other details.
A side note- we lost Bob. We are in fact on Bob 3, and judging by the looks of the little guy perhaps Bob 4 in a day or so. I am making a mental note to research how to keep a goldfish alive.
On keeping my sanity while raising three active girls, trying to be an attentive wife, and being a good family doctor, a patient I recently saw said it best. "Girl, you're gonna wear yourself out. You gotta detach". This from the mouth of an ill-appearing, elderly woman who wore the face that only results from those who have endured so much in life. As I listened to her detail her latest battles with health, family and aging, I realized as she interrupted herself with her "blurt" (as my 7 year old calls it) that I must have lost my professional composure and shown too much empathy on my face. What I had been thinking was, "there but for the grace of G_d...", what a truly treacherous path so many people have in life. I only hope I can offer some advice or comfort, if not a solution. Sometimes words are the only medicine we have to give.
But in healing, it takes great skill to give of yourself while at the same time remaining in tact, shielded, 100 per cent of the time. The truth is the best advice comes from the heart, and a little bit of you goes along with it. So incredibly difficult as a family physician, when most of our encounters are with families we have come to know. In dealing with medical issues, we must also delve into personal lives, stories, experiences. It's all part of how a person feels when they come to the doctor, and helps determine what they need to get better or stay healthy. How to "detach", this is the question. Some colleagues I have know do not. But this is trickier for mothers, who need to switch instantaneously from telling a patient they have cancer one moment, then discussing the importance of a "no blurt" day in school. It's the art of medicine, and the art of mothering. All I can say is it wears down the spirit if we don't pay attention.
I aspire to write more often, possible to give insight to any other working Mom MD, working mom, or anyone else who might be entertained by my musings.