There's little that can beat the drained feeling I have after sitting in on a meeting where some poor parent is at such a loss for words and plans of action that they break down and cry in front of the teachers. I've sat in more than one meeting like that and it gets me every time. To feel so helpless when it comes to your own child's well being...
I come out of meetings like that feeling like a wet towel that's been put through the wringer. I don't cry or have a nervous breakdown, but it erodes the pedestal of comfortable living right out from under my feet for that day at least.
I always thought that MAYBE I might have been a good doctor or a good therapist, but I'm also aware of how too much empathy would be my downfall and not my strength. I imagine that to be a great doctor you'd have to temper empathy with subjectivity because if you imagined that child on the gurney was your own, perhaps you wouldn't pursue such a risky operation, but that operation may just be what's needed to save that child's life.
I didn't do that too well today. I imagined the child was my own, the horrors my own, and at the end of such a busy day, it left me feeling a little numb.
I need an Indian take away, to read some fantastic books with my daughter, and to snuggle up with my man on the sofa watching some fantastic TV show. I CAN walk away with sympathy for the family and gratitude that I'm not living the lives they are. I can.