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Black Ink Drops

Our Dance  

         ow are you feeling today?” our dance starting with a simple               question. The song begins with a soft rhythm, a rhythm of when two complete strangers meet for the first time. He looks at me and wonders whether this stranger in a white coat can be trusted. Trusted with precious secrets that perhaps, he will not share even with his closest friends.


Before I met him for the first time, before I even knew his name, my days were spent preparing for this special moment. Sleepless nights learning the chemical pathways of his body, long hours memorizing his anatomy, many days discovering how his body works, all to meet him here, today for the first time.


I sit down, pull my chair closer and listen. I listen to his story and listen to his pain. He starts cautiously only mentioning a few things. Today, he feels sick and he is afraid. He sings a song of sorrow of fear and of despair. I listen, and then sing back to him, I tell him that I hear his pain. I look at his sick body and examine it from head to toe. I try to find the reason, the source of his malaise.


We are no longer strangers, we now together sing. We dance this song of sorrow, of pain and of relieve. We look into each other’s eyes and he lets me see his life. He tells me about his childhood, his family, and his medicines. He mentions drugs and some bad habits, he explains his daily life. I ask him questions about his body and inquire about his bowels. I ask about his private matters and then I ask some more and more and even more.


I sing that part, which I had practiced for today; I sing it and ask him to sing with me the chorus of the review of systems, the verse of the history of his present illness, and then we take turns to sing the solo parts where he complains and I explain.


When our dance ends, the music ends and the lyrics of our song hide inside the yellow chart. They hide until next time for when he comes back and we can dance again that special dance of trust and of respect, that dance of confidentiality and frankness, the dance of the patient in the paper gown and the doctor in the white coat.


Black Ink Drops



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