Tag: writing

Confessions

I am flawed. Those who have read some of my earlier scribbles have seen the somewhat self-critical lens through which I view myself. Despite this, a new year is just upon us, which, like every new day, offers a chance for us to adjust whatever it is we feel we need to adjust…whether it is our daily habits or our perspective on life.

Therefore, Puppydoc would like to share with you a few things about herself by presenting her three big goals for the New Year:

♥ To LIVE more.

Prioritizing her professional and academic endeavors over the past decade has somewhat come at a price for Puppydoc, who feels that she has missed out on life in general as well as many of the people in it. Therefore, she would like to do things differently this year by more fully treasuring what she already has…her dear family and friends…and by putting them first.

To LAUGH more.

Medicine, while it has given her many precious memories, has formed in her a sort of a somber outlook on life, where all she sees is suffering around her. Coupled with an impression that she is rather powerless to really make a difference, she ends up bearing a lingering guilt for not being able to do more for others. For this, Puppydoc will take a dose of what has traditionally been considered the best medicine–laughter–and just try to loosen up a bit.

 To LOVE more.

For most of her life, Puppydoc has guarded her heart closely, almost afraid to feel…experience…embrace that nebulous realm called love. Fearing vulnerability, she has attached herself to the position of caregiver in both her professional and personal life, always caring for others while within remained a daydreaming girl aching to be cared for. But now is the time for her to start taking down the walls surrounding her. And who knows what may happen…

• 

Thank you, dear Liz, for prompting me to think about my goals and to write this post. You are an inspiration to all!

Wishing everyone a lovely week and a wonderful start to the New Year.

Love,
Puppydoc

Assurance.

Frosted stars
proclaimed by breeze,
a dance of farewell
before their queen.
Revealed by moon’s
glow in misted eyes
a wish reflected.
A longing…seeking
to be found.

Thread of secrets,
thrum of time,
silvered braids upon
wounded soul.
A queen
before her horizon
heeds the echoed promise
of a rising sun.
She smiles.

A Blessed Christmas Tragedy.

A bustling hospital. An unexpected arrival. A frigid Christmas Eve.

I was saying goodbye to another patient when fate collided us.

“I’m sorry Father,” I heard your son say, “you can no longer live with us, but here is a nice doctor who will find you a home. Merry Christmas, Dad.”

Pretending not to notice your son’s exasperation as you pleaded for him to stay, I choked down the anguish of my own awareness and proceeded to examine you. 

Bound to the prison of your seat—scared, bewildered, frail—you looked so lost. You asked why, what you did wrong, where your son had gone, not fully comprehending the chaos surrounding. A deep sigh escaped pursed lips as I searched within for an answer that would never come. Taking your hands, contorted by disease, I gazed into eyes dulled by years gone by—their hope fading beneath a glimmer of fear of an iniquitous present and an unpromised future–and I made you a promise I wondered if I myself could keep. 

“It’s going to be okay…you’ll see.” 

But hours pass, and it was not okay—you couldn’t sleep, you wouldn’t eat, and the only sound I heard as I passed the door of your half-vacant room was the resonance of muffled tears.

Behind a mask, I also let myself weep.

*    *    *

Soon the day ended. I entered your room, prepared to make my final rounds. But instead of a bid goodbye, what escaped was an exclamation of the first words that came to my mind.

“Sir, I think we should have a party!”

And that was what we did.

A 90-year-old veteran. A 30-year-old internist. A 20-year-old nurse.

Gathered around your bed, over reconstituted cocoa, you shared with us your history, your joys, your life’s adventures. Over paper cups of chicken broth, I told you my story. As the muted treble of holiday cheer dripped through the bedside radio, together we heralded in, with bittersweetness, the arrival of Christmas Day.

You then took my hand.

As I started to apologize for the late hour, you stopped me. Eyes still glimmering, I hear you laugh, and I believe I finally catch a glimpse of what was the real you.

“Thank you for a blessed Christmas,” you said.

Yes.

A blessed one, indeed.

Dawning.

Snowflakes.
Fading upon blushed flesh,
its rivulets a frame
sketched
for the captive soul.
Gaze glimmering, hope dissolving,
an echo to the void of twilight’s end.
She longs to be released.

A breath divine.
An oasis to a threadbare wish
sculpts bittersweetness
into frosted air.
Embraced by light,
she follows the seraph’s call
and is freed.

 

A Lunch with a Gift.

I had lunch with a homeless man.

But not just any man. An elderly man, a former high school teacher…and a former patient of mine from a charity clinic where I used to work.

It happened as I was driving through downtown, stopped at a light beneath an overpass. Suddenly, I heard a familiar voice. 

“Hi Doc!”

Since we were both hungry, we did the natural thing: we went for lunch at a nearby cafe. Despite intrigued glances from others, we had a lovely lunch. Looking back, it may have been one of the most enjoyable lunches I’ve ever had.

A few days later, I was contacted by the clinic who informed me that I had received a letter from a patient. And here I will share it with you—in a form put into verse by me but which maintains its original wording:

Dear doc, you have been so kind to me.
Why, you even took me to lunch.
I wish I could give you something in return,
but I know I don’t have much.

So I write these simple words to you
in hope that on those days
that they’ll make you smile and give you strength
and peace in many ways.

You are a doctor to many,
but an angel you have been to me,
who encouraged, cared, and healed my pain,
and a light you made me see. 

I am sad that you are no longer my doc
but am glad that you are my friend.
And I hope we can keep in touch
until the very end. 

So why did I share this? Because I was “challenged” by Liz to give a gift to someone. But now I realize—I don’t think I succeeded in giving anything to anyone.

Rather, the gift was given to me