We all are unique. We have different looks, different personalities, different dreams, different journeys. Even identical twins have different fingerprints. There is no one exactly like you, or like me, yet we do have similarities. For example, has anyone ever told you that you look just like your Mom? or act just like your Dad? Do you ever find yourself doing or saying something that one of your parents did or said? Something that you swore you’d never do. Yes, most of us have. When you’re around a person for so long, their fiber gets interwoven with yours, and you can’t help but to pick up some of the same traits. The question has been asked for many years. Is it nature or nurture? Or could it be a combination of the two? Think about it, where did your traditions come from? Even if you have started your own family, many of the same customs carry on for many generations. The cycle, whether good or bad, often tends to repeat itself until someone in that fabric decides to change or is forced to change. Where do your biases come from? Are they learned or innate? Is a baby born seeing color? Thinking one race is superior to the other? Or is it something that a child is taught, after years and years of hearing their primary sources of influence which can be family, friends, and/or the media make the assumptions for them? Even in my case, I may be diagnosed with the same illness as you, but you and I might handle it in completely differently ways. We may have similar physical symptoms, but my medical chart is not going to look exactly like yours. The medications or diet that works for you, might not work for me – but that’s not to say that we can’t help each other in one way or another.
The question has been asked for many years. Is it nature or nurture? Or could it be a combination of the two? Think about it, where did your traditions come from? Even if you have started your own family, many of the same customs carry on for many generations.
As I was sitting in the hospital today, waiting to have my labs drawn, I noticed a nurse who was sitting there waiting as well. A young lady came up and acknowledged herself as one of the nurse’s patients. The young lady walked up to her and said, ‘Hi, what are you doing here?’, I know the nurse probably wanted to respond, ‘The same thing you’re doing here, getting lab work done.” But she just said, “taking care of some business”. I could tell the patient wanted her to elaborate, but she didn’t. After a moment or two of silence, the patient went on to talk about how she had doctors’ appointments everyday that week, how she kept on getting infections since receiving chemotherapy treatments and even shared the date of her next office visit. The nurse just sat there and listened. Honestly she appeared to be a little irritated, but the patient just kept on talking, she didn’t care who could hear her. I know, I know. There is a time and place for everything, that’s what the nurse was probably saying, but In my opinion, it would have been nice, if the nurse would have responded to SOMETHING the lady was saying, but she just shook her head, and gave direct answers when asked a question. I thought to myself, you know what, we all have something and no one is perfectly healthy throughout their life. At some point, everyone will experience some type of illness, some type of challenge, some type of trial, even if its as small as the common cold or the flu.
Yes, even doctors and nurses get sick too. We come from the same fabric, the human race. Although it’s not everyday that we hear of a doctor or nurse being ill, it does happen. Sickness has no regard for professional status, religion, social or economic standing. Everyone is different in the way that they express themselves and how personal they choose to be, but it’s sometimes good to know, especially for patients, that we are not alone. It would sometimes help to hear a doctor say, I don’t understand everything that you’re going through, but I can most definitely relate. Our doctors, nurses, and other medical professionals have the same type of problems and sometimes deal with the same types of challenges that we deal with. Not many talk about it, but wouldn’t it be nice to know if you are being treated for breast cancer, that you knew that your doctor or her mother is a survivor. It just brings something extra to the table. It helps others feel more humanized and not so isolated. I know that I can only speak for myself, but there have been times that I felt I was all alone in this struggle and that no one else could understand what I was going through, until I met one of my very dear friends. It was so amazing to know that we had so much in common, not only common medical issues, but we could relate spiritually and personally as well. It also helped me tremendously when one of my nurses came in one day and told me that she, too, has the same diagnosis that I have and sat down and explained to me the things she was doing that worked for her. Hearing her share her story and the time that she took out of her busy day to talk with me, was just what I needed to make it though my difficult day. And just when I thought that no one understood. She was placed in my life on that day to show me that I was not alone. Yes, there is a time and a place, a reason and a season for everything, but you never know how your story could help someone else. Her story greatly helped me.
If I can help somebody as I pass along, if I can cheer someone with word or song, if I can show someone He’s traveling wrong, then my living has not been in vain. – Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr
Your uniqueness, your challenges, your past and your present make you who you are. Everyone has a gift, everyone has a purpose, everyone has a story. Sometimes the things you consider to be small can make a huge difference in the lives of others. Taking the time to listen, taking the time to share a part of YOU can make a big difference in someone else’s journey.
Will you commit to share your story today, even if it’s with only one person? Believe me, it will certainly make a difference in someone’s life, and maybe even your own.