We are forever bombarded with articles and news stories about the state of the medical profession in Western societies. The system is always overloaded, under financed, and overwhelmed in trying to provide care for anyone. I see this within medical institutions when people looking to see a specialist are waiting four months to get an appointment. I know for myself that it may be four months on paper, but in my life it would seem and has seemed like an eternity, an eternity that I have to live through.
My real concern is not about the wait although that’s important, but because our medical professionals are so busy how do we know that we really get the full ten minutes we’re allotted in the system. I’m not saying that we should keep an eye on the clock, but I am suggesting the importance of you and your medical provider being present together throughout the appointment.
There is lots of scientific literature and books about being “mindful”. As I interview those with illnesses I’m wondering how our doctors would respond if we tried to practice mindfulness during our appointment. Is it possible to create a sacred space within the doctor’s office? Could we invoke some level of control over our appointment by suggesting to our medical provider that we both get centered for a moment making the interaction more human and relationship based and gets both us and our providers to match energetic forces as we tackle the big questions about test results, examinations and treatments.
Would we absorb more and become more responsible patients if we had the doctor’s attention to the degree that the two of us are really the only one’s in the world….just for those ten minutes. I haven’t tried this yet, but I’m considering it as a way to give both my medical provider and myself a gift, the gift of presence.