I’m Losing Patience with Being a Patient

I’m Losing Patience with Being a Patient
Last week, I discussed my current health battle with elevated liver enzymes. I continue to get weekly bloodwork so that my transplant team can monitor my situation remotely. After a two-week delay, I’ll finally meet with my doctor this afternoon to discuss tests and lab results from three weeks ago. In the meantime, I’ve been in a holding pattern, waiting for answers. As a woman of faith, I fostered patience at a time when I was causing myself nothing but grief from trying to control my life situation. I finally learned to “let go and let God.” The lesson of trusting something larger than myself helped me handle my autoimmune diseases until my doctors found a suitable medical regimen. After years of remission from Crohn’s and restored health after my liver transplant, I’m being sucked back into the dark hole of wondering what is going on inside my body. This period of waiting for my medical team to shine light on my deteriorating condition has caused me to question why the sick are called “patients.” A rose is a rose is a rose Those of us with chronic illness and autoimmune diseases constantly struggle with patience. At appointments, we bide our time in literal waiting rooms and exam rooms to see our care teams. When we have tests and lab work performed, we wait by our phones or check our emails for results. We anticipate if and how medications will work. We hope for a cure within our lifetime. The adage “patience is a virtue” implies that being patient is admirable. It comes across as a trait everyone should attain. However, “patience” and “patient” are derived from the Latin word pati, which means to suffer. The etymology made sense. I often write about suffering from Crohn’s. But the more I thought about the meaning, I bega
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