I had a bad day
“ I had a bad day”
Yesterday as I was ending my day, I was feeling very heavy, and burdened. As I gathered my things and started walking to the parking garage with my lunch bag in hand, wrapped myself in my jacket with hoodie on the head, my mind wandered. I was going to call the wifey and tell her about my day. The first words were planned out as “ I had a bad day”. The words echoed in my head, and my heart responded.
“Did you really have a bad day? Why?” It asked.
“ I just did, too many distractions, too many crazy things happening” my mind tried to process in reply.
“ Why don’t we go through them and see if you really did. You ask the question and I will show you what to compare it to.” The heart challenged.
“ ok” said my mind agreeably. As it started to go through systematically the patient encounters and events.
I had a bad day…. till I heard about my patient who was in the Emergency room with a Cardiac arrest three times before she lost her fight.
I had a bad day…. till I heard from a patient that his primary care doctor of 40 years who I had known for about 20 years died last week from an infection
I had a bad day…. till I my 56 y old patient told me that he could not breathe going up a flight of stairs and was able to do less and less
I had a bad day… till I saw a man on the side street begging for money
I had a bad day…. till my 29 year patient in a wheel chair informed me that he has never walked due to muscular dystrophy
I had a bad day….. till my 87 year old patient told me that she could not afford her medications and buy food on a daily basis
I had a bad day….. till my 93 year old patient informed me that she had outlived all her immediate family members and her children and all her friends and she had no longer a desire to continue living.
I had a bad day… till my 46 year old patient had to get cleared for chemotherapy as he had now metastatic cancer
I had a bad day…. till I heard the sirens of the fire engine whizzing past me rushing to a burning building ( costing people their homes).
I had a bad day…. till my patient informed me that he had lost his job
And so the list went on and on. My mind asked, my heart replied, and by the time I reached my car, I had realized that I in fact did not have a bad day, I was in fact able to help, hold space for these patients and all these encounters and experiences were opportunities for me to have served.
How can that have been a bad day?
Most of the time each of us are constantly comparing our lives to some fantasy or expectation of what our day is supposed to be, or what we are expected to experience. We do not give ourselves permission to stay in the moment and simply experience reality for what it is. When we do in fact see things for what they are, we are better able to help others and see that our lives are not bad. They are good or bad based on a comparison. And someone else can always have a “better” or “ worse day”.
So did you really have a bad day? think about this as you go explore your day today, log the events and truly see the day for what it is.
I love you