December 27, 2013
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BLOG: Tiny miracles

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Read more from Darrell E. White.

It’s the Christmas season, and it’s gotten me to thinking about what we all do as doctors and the effect our care has on our patients and their families. How many times have you had a patient, particularly a dry eye patient, describe what you have done for them as a miracle? Kind of humbling in a way, isn’t it? We make a diagnosis at the slit lamp, send off a few electrons from the EMR that get translated into a drop of some sort and someone calls it a miracle. All in all that’s pretty cool. We work in the realm of tiny miracles.

I find myself thinking a bit about you, too. That’s right, you, the doctor. I’m worried about you. You see, we as a group are not known for being too terribly good to ourselves. We spend way more time thinking and worrying about the health of our patients and way too little time doing the same for ourselves. Admit it, you are way worse than all of your patients when it comes to taking your own fish oil every day, and you are only theoretically practicing all of those lifestyle prescriptions you talk about when it comes to you.

So yes, I’m worried about you, and so are your patients!

The reality is that not only is what you do very special, but you are too. Every day you wake up and go to your office or the OR and you make someone’s life better. Again and again. Not everyone can do that, and not everyone who can actually choose to do it. Take a moment this Christmas season to realize that, to feel good about that. Take better care of yourself this coming year. Eat a little better (and a little less); exercise a bit more. We all really need you to be healthy.

After all, the tiny miracle is you!