A Medical Frontliner’s Story
BY ZNJ GUMBAN BACLAY
A doctor, after intubation, held the face of a young patient suffering from massive bleeding and told her in his gentle but full of conviction voice, “Bato Maam! bata ka pa. Bato! kaya na.” (Keep fighting, Ma’am! You’re still young. Keep fighting! You can do it.)
Later that day, I discovered that it was the doctor’s birthday. He chose to serve and care than celebrate.
A fellow healthcare worker whose astronaut-like costume was soaked in sweat came to tell me in a tired but dedicated tone, “Ma’am, kabudlay mangita kwarta noh?” (Ma’am, isn’t it hard to earn money?)
Nevertheless, she continued her work and catered to the patient’s needs.
A patient suffering from kidney disease in his early 40s, while catching his breath, pleaded, “Maam, tubig please…maski gamay lang ay, tubig maam maluoy ka, mala na gd bibig ko..Tubig, nauhaw na gd ko… man-an ko man indi pwd kainom tubig, maski gamay lang.. tubig.. tubig..tubig… maluoy kamo.” (Water please, have mercy, I’m so thirsty)
“If only I could, Sir, I will… If only I could.” This thought echoed loud in my mind, but I never converted it into words.
These are scenarios of love and sacrifices, of hard work and struggles. These are scenarios I used to watch on television, but this time, they’re real! They are happening right before my eyes.
These scenarios cause my sweat and tears into collision and drive me into some realizations…
- In this world, flooded with deceptions and iniquities, there are still good people who are willing to sacrifice their own for the sake of others.
- When money is earned through hardwork and dedication, no matter how small or big it is… it has the Best Value.
- Do not invalidate other’s feelings. We all have our silent cries, our silent battles and struggles.
We all thirst for things that can occupy the vacuum deep within our hearts.
We are thirsty for love. Hence, give love!
We are thirsty for encouragement. Encourage others then!
We are thirsty for understanding and affirmation. Therefore, try to understand and be generous in appreciation.
We all thirst for the Living Water that can satisfy our souls. Then, share with others the Source of the Living Water.
We have limitations, and we thirst for things only God our Creator can satisfy because we are His own.
These are scenarios that break my heart, and it feels so easy to give up, but I realize that they are also why I keep on fighting. These are scenarios that enlighten me with my calling.
I am but just one voice among many voices of the many medical frontliners. Many of them have their own stories of selfless love, struggles, and sacrifices, be it known or not.
Kudos to my fellow medical frontliners!
When sweat and tears collide, look up, take a deep breath, and keep on!
NOTE: The author, Zenj, first posted her reflection on Facebook, and we have reposted it with her permission.
PHOTO CREDIT: An exhausted exhausted anesthesiologist by Alberto Giuliani – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=90816712