Having a dysautonomic illness and playing sports means being in and out of hospitals and doctor’s offices, even if you hate them. I mean seriously hate them. You learn to get over the fear of needles, and when going into surgery, the nurses even laugh about how calm you are about the whole situation. Over the past two years, I’ve waited in many different doctor’s offices for hours on end. Every doctor’s office is different. There are many different types of people ranging in age and ethnicity with the offices each having a different type of atmosphere. Some have superheroes on the wall while others just have toys for children to play with. The most common thing for all of them, though, is the waiting time.

One of the reasons I try not to complain is because my older sister is a nurse, and if she ever heard me complain about something like that, she’d kick my butt. But even so, I’ve learned a lot from my situations. For one, almost every time I walk into my cardiologist’s office, I hear a baby crying its eyes out. Now, I do go to a children’s heart specialist, but that’s not the point. Many people don’t realize that the doctors and nurses do everything they can to comfort the child like it’s one of their own. They wait for the baby to calm down and then proceed with their appointment because they don’t want the child to be uncomfortable. This doesn’t seem like much, but having a doctor come in, hold your hand and tell you he or she will help you get better is something they don’t even have to do. Maybe some doctors don’t go above and beyond specifically for you, but I’ve realized it is because they’re going above and beyond to help someone who is worse off than you are.

First, think of telling someone the worst possible news you could ever tell them. Then, think about how a doctor may have to tell their patients that they have cancer and they only have a certain amount of time left to live. That may not be you, but that is someone else’s mom or daughter or father or son. After a doctor delivers that news to someone, they can’t just leave the room and leave the family to mourn. They sit there and comfort the family. Some people will, luckily, never have to experience this type of pain, but doctors experience this on a daily basis.

Doctors sometimes don’t have all the answers either. I am one of the many medical mysteries in the world. I have been in and out of doctor's offices where they couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me. Imagine a difficult math problem that you couldn’t figure out for the life of you. Now, imagine seeing random symptoms in someone and testing them for every possible thing -- cancer, mono and thyroid issues. How about imagining that almost a year later you still couldn't figure out what’s wrong with them? That is one of the most frustrating situations anyone could ever be in.

My point is, when it comes to doctors' offices, patience is truly a virtue. Doctors and nurses are doing everything they can to help whoever comes in, and sometimes that involves spending more time than usual with one patient. Sometimes, you have to realize that doctors actually care about every individual patient they treat and that their main focus isn’t to get people in and out quickly. It is to take care of their patients and go above and beyond for them. For that reason, I can not complain.