Healers and Healing was written soon after I finished my residency program in 1996. It was written as my way of expressing my experiences with as a medical student, resident physician and physician in training hospice and hospice care.
What I discovered (and this is even more difficult with all of the new advances and new technology) is that often the most difficult role of a physician may be knowing when to "let go," and just "to be."
Healers and Healing
Healing, the ancient covenant between physician and patient a promise to cure, to save, and to restore.
Healing appears in many forms-- The right antibiotics for an infectious organism The curative chemotherapy for a malignant tumor The correct diagnosis in a complex case.
But what of the terminal diagnosis with no treatment options when your diagnostic skills are no longer required your presence will not alter the course?
Then Healing manifests on the purest level-- an extension of the soul, aiding in the acceptance of the process finding peace and serenity on the path leading to transition.
Healing of pain, suffering, and emotional distress. No longer with technical devices and the newest medication.
But just A cheerful smile An open ear A gentle touch A warm embrace Taking the time to listen, to be to share a part of yourself.
Healing becomes an expression of caring and love. The greatest gift of all may be the ability to walk with a person help provide them with strength and courage on their path to transition and then let go.
About the Poem Healers and Healing poem was one that I used in a resource included for an AMSA presentation that I gave in 2001 to medical students on Caring For The Person,Not Just The Patient In End-of-Life Care . It was featured as an article on "Healers and Healing: Learning to 'Let Go' published on the old Beyond Indigo site in 2002.
Healers and Healing is a poem that I continue to shared with my bereavement graduate students as part of the Bereavement Course that I teach.