Calming Your Anxiety in the Doctor's Waiting Room

Merely Me Health Guide
  • Well the week is flying along here. Yesterday was a blur to me. I had an MRI and a mammogram and then took my son to the pediatrician. I didn't think it was possible to complete three medical visits in one day but we did it. And now I feel pooped.

     

    We spend a lot of time in doctor's offices don't we? And each waiting room is like a new mirror into the human soul. While waiting at the gynecologist's we might wonder who is pregnant. We see women with bulging bellies and we might reminisce about when our children were born. At the pediatrician's office our children are separated by the sick and the well. We see the worried expression on a mother's face and we wish to ask or comfort but there is the long hall between us. At the neurology hospital I see people with various degrees of disability. Some have walkers. Some are in wheelchairs and are attended by a caretaker. I stare past them but can't help but to wonder if I am viewing my future.

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    Then too there are the waiting rooms for mental health services. I am all too familiar with them as I grew up with a mother having schizophrenia. I have watched my mother go through doors and sometimes not come out. Other times I would wait as she saw yet another psychiatrist and hope that she would emerge, somehow changed. But all that changed was she might get a new prescription for a new med.

     

    In later years it was me who was the patient and waiting to see a psychologist. There were times I would see another patient come out of a therapy session, sometimes stonefaced and sometimes tearful. I always wondered what became of them after therapy. Did they have a family? Did all the talking help? Did they suffer?

     

    Over time the faces we see in the waiting room fade quickly from memory. In their place is the residual feeling of so many untold stories. And the realization that whatever someone is going through, it could be us. At one time or another we are a patient waiting within the confines of a doctor's waiting room...leafing through dated magazines...and trying not to worry. Our meditation is broken by the words, "The doctor will see you now." What happens next is anyone's guess.

     

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    It seems that waiting rooms are such a big part of my life that they have been a theme in my writings. Here are a couple of additional posts about the waiting room experience.

     

    Waiting Room Conversations

     

    The Waiting Room

     

    How about you? What sorts of thoughts go through your head as you sit in a waiting room? Tell us your story. We would love to hear from you!

Published On: January 13, 2011