For the oncologists out there -- medical and surgical alike.
There's something about an oncologist's office that's different than any other office you'll ever sit in.
Thicker with sadness.
The waiting room is a buffet of different levels of illness. It's a sampling of various stages of disease. Some of us closer to death and some of us further away.
The oncologists themselves are also a rare and lovely breed of human. They give their whole hearts to their patients, working with them like a puzzle to help cure the disease and uncover what cocktail of medicine or what slice of the scalpel will best benefit the sickness within.
In my experience, the oncologist is patient and understanding, stoic and strong. They are with us through this fight.
Looking closely, you may see them shrug with tiredness.
Their suits may be rumpled from a day full of bad news and elation.
The ups and downs they face are like a roller coaster that has no brakes.
Each step into exam rooms becomes a new and present danger.
There is laughter. There are tears. There's jaw dropping heartbreak and fist pumps from the chairs.
And in the in between their heart carries the sadness and gladness of us all.
They quietly root for us as our bodies become wrecked with poison or stitches and scars. Holding our hand (if only metaphorically) letting us know it's working.
They are our time keepers and our leaders through the weeds. They know they're the Hail Mary we've been searching for since the culmination of our bad news.
I don't envy the oncologist's role.
It's one I can't imagine choosing in the list of specialties.
I'd like to think I could handle the wild ride that is the battle hard won but something in me doesn't know if the sadness of the lost ground would overtake me. I'm not sure I'm made of the sterner stuff required. I would only hope my heart was big enough to fill a role such as this.
What I can imagine though, is that these are angels walking here on earth. Guides trying their best to handle a disease from which we cannot escape.
And it's with this guidance we are anchored in towards a cure.
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