Dear Dr. T
Assalamualaikum. I feel like being called out to write this piece of so called "luahan hati". First of all, I apologised if this writing ever hurt somebody's feeling, somebody's heart or somebody's pride.
Dear Dr. T,
I know I am not a qualified registered doctor, I wrote this based on my struggle of 6 years in medical school, 1 year in housemanship and 2 years as patient who is being diagnosed with Membranous Glomerulonephritis secondary to Lupus. My knowledge can never be compared with you who is a registered and practicing doctor, but here is how I feel as a patient who is seen by you on 29th September 2021.
Dear Dr. T,
Let me in on a little secret, well, its not a secret cause you and me studied this during our medical student day, on how to be a medical doctor with compassion, empathy and the willingness to listen to your patient's complaint. When I started working as a houseman in Hospital Melaka, I always reminded myself, I may have the knowledge, I may have seen thousands of patients, but I will never understand what each patient go through physically or emotionally because I have never been in their shoes, so I told myself, have that empathy Farhana, never judge and try to understand why they feel what they feel and how they feel about it.
When I reviewed them during ward round, I will check at their investigation results, first I will tell them if there is any good improvement on their blood workout or other investigations, then if there is something abnormal, I will tell them about it. I will try to find the cause why, I never straight jump into a conclusion and judge them, nag them. I tried my best not to do that. I try and listen to their complaint. I think that is how we are taught to do. Remember?
Dear Dr. T,
You make such a huge fuss about my weight gain and keep ranting on and on with your loud voice as if you want to tell the whole hospital about it. Mind you, your consultation room is a sharing one, it already compromised patient's privacy and patient's right. But I understand, that is how a government hospital run with space constraint. I get it. But please be considerate and tone down your voice. I understand I'm wrong and I will try my best to lose all the pounds and fats.
But do you know why I gain weight? Do you ever try to listen the moment I told you how I can't sleep at night and started to binge eat for many months already? I got a huge appetite change. I cried so much at night. I feel so down, so low, so hopeless because I cannot smell and taste for nearly 1 and a half years. Do you know I can't cook well now? That is my favorite hobby but now I lose interest to cook. Do you know I sometimes eaten rotten food without me knowing it cause I can't smell or taste? Do you know I miss the smell of the air, the smell of my family, myself, my favorite durian, and so many other things?
No, you don't know. Because the moment I said I had appetite change because I cannot sleep at night, you keep saying "Tak bolehlah macam tu Puan. Takkan berat asyik naik macam ni. Nanti penyakit lain pula datang." At that point, you already judged me. You are a doctor, remember? Shouldn't you be listening to the what, why and how? No, you just go like you should do this you should do that without tackling the underlying cause.
Dear Dr. T,
I understand its not your jurisdiction under Nephrology to tackle my loss of smell and taste, I even understand when you said that "Kami pun tak boleh buat apa-apa Puan, kami bahagian Nephrology." But you didn't try to understand the chain of event that is causing my weight gain. You just sit there and judge on my weight gain. I'm sorry I burst out crying in front of you because that moment you make me feel more hopeless and more worthless. Fret not, I don't have suicidal ideation, because if I do have, I bet the consultation with you on that day, will trigger the suicidal tendency, because yes, I feel so hopeless after seeing you that day.
Deep down, I wish at least my doctor will understand how hard it is for me, will at least try to listen, and not judged because I have nobody to confide in. I don't like to burden my friends and family with this depressed feeling, so I hope at least my doctor could give an insight for me, but you let me down.
Dear Dr. T,
I don't blame you, maybe its the pandemic that burnt you out, but my wish for you, as you grow to be a more experience doctor, a specialist, a consultant perhaps, you can learn to be more empathic to your patient. During my housemanship, I met so many fierce and even sometimes we called them cruel consultant because of how they treat us, but when they see their patients, they are the most understanding one, they listen to their patient. And I do hope you become like that one day.
A doctor don't just do ordinary work, where you punch in and punch out, writing documents. You deal with people, a living being with feeling just like you. I'm sorry, I know I don't qualified to say it as a medical doctor, but I'm saying it to you as a patient. Your patient.
Dear Dr. T who worked in consultation room 15 of Klinik Pakar Perubatan Hospital Melaka, I wish you all the best in your medical career. And to all doctors, be a safe one, be a good one.