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Healing Moments in Clinic

It never ceases to amaze me how much clinical work can bring me center, present, and in touch with my humanity. After days like this afternoon, my mind often thinks about the PCBH Corner I, gratefully, got to do with Deepu George (if you haven’t seen it yet, it’s a banger, so definitely check it out, which detailed, in only a way Deepu can, the humanity and spirituality of BHC work and how we can bring it more with us when working with patients. Today, truly, was the personification of that Corner and, as always, appreciate the grace for allowing to share with you all 😊

Interestingly, starting the clinic day, I was not in a very good headspace, which has been more of a pattern the past few months than I would like to admit. Maybe it is COVID and the continued ripple of the pandemic, maybe it is transitions that are occurring at work, maybe it is just a random experience that will soon pass; regardless, and as I had to email out to individuals that I was on a meeting with at lunch, my mind has needed more grace from others lately. As I was walking up to clinic, I noticed my mind’s chatter of, “the last thing I want to do right now is see patients. The last thing I want to do is handoffs and be here for the team.” And, thankfully, due to the value, I was able to show gratitude to my mind and pick up my first patient, and… immediately a transcendent moment began to ripple out and remained with me throughout the clinic.

To make a long story short and a moment more realized, let’s just say the afternoon was a typical PCBH four hour stretch. Seven patients with two of them being handoffs. Visits that lasted 20 minutes to others that lasted 45 minutes. Presenting concerns that ranged from an OB intake, to a patient that was facing the end of their life, to an individual who asked for a visit after I saw the kiddo due to them going through their own difficulties, to a patient that is dealing with a number of health concerns and still enjoys telling me about their newly born grandchild that even through the phone could hear the joy and smile on the patient’s face. There were tears, there was grace, there was genuineness, there was the human spirit, there was love. As I wrapped up my day with a teenager that has been engaging in self-harming behavior that was all too obviously related to their family’s context that included a parent’s near-death experience last year, I found my mind reflecting of the incredible work that we get to do every day while doing the work of PCBH. From a patient asking me if I thought Bridge would want to come to our next home visit (the patient knows Bridge works as a BHC, as well) to sitting with an MA after she interpreted for me and us talking about how resilient the individual was that we just met with, prompting the MA to become emotional with how connected she felt with the patient during the visit, it truly was an afternoon of a transcendent and healing moment.

I was joking with Jeff Reiter about writing/blogging these Stories of PCBH, as truly, my mind is always anxious at how they are received; and, even though the worry/fear is there, I know how much it means to me when others send out their stories and successes of doing the work of PCBH. In a way, it allows me to feel the humanity and spirituality they experienced during their visits, which is something I greatly appreciate the CHCW BHC team for as there is always an email, like there was today, the ends the day sharing wins and Stories of PCBH. All in all, my gratitude for you all and everyone doing the work of any type of integrated care. My mind hopes, as it was today, that while difficult, challenging, and, at times, exhausting, the clinical work that we all get to do remains as healing and as Deepu said, brings us closer to our spiritually and humanity, like it did today… Grateful for this community and the work of PCBH!

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