Wednesday, October 16, 2013

BAD NEWS or scary - What helps

A few days ago, a delightful hospital staff member did something so kind for me; I was there because of a callback for additional mammograms.  She asked, "How are you?"  I hesitated, and she said:  "I know, you're called back for more."  And gave me an understanding smile.

Two hours later, a doctor told me the second films weren't enough--I'd have to have a biopsy.  He, too, was kind and showed that he realized the news and the description of the biopsy were not cheering.  I trusted him.  And I felt supported.  Not alone.

 And a week before that, layperson did the same thing--gave me understanding, listened, and put her number in my cell phone.

 All three acknowledged that the diagnosis process isn't likely to put me in a buoyant mood.  With their acknowledgements, I felt supported and almost cheerful.  Nobody insisted on a stiff upper lip.

This week, someone who once went through the diagnosis, and got the test results nobody wants, told me not to consider my feelings self-pity, that this process is real, and serious. She knew not to tell me to cheer up.

A priest I knew said once that the quickest way to make someone worry is to say:  Don't worry.  I will think twice before using those words.

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