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Waiting for a Hug from My Doctor

Waiting for a Hug from My Doctor

Is this you?

Scott Ware

You’re sitting on the exam table when the doctor rushes in.

He tries not to appear like he’s rushing when he asks you the reason for your visit (while scanning your chart and typing into a computer).

You know your time is short so you think fast, trying to remember all your symptoms.

A big reason you’re here is because your insurance covers it. Well, not all of it. There are always extra costs you pay and shrug off as “necessary.”

He’s extra-busy because he has to see more patients to pay for rising malpractice insurance and to overcome for the reduction in payments from insurance companies (if the insurance company’s stock is in your 401k portfolio, you’d want those profits maximized too, right?).

At least he has some pharmaceutical company incentives to offset all this, as long as he prescribes one drug over another. Every little bit helps, right?

He examines you, orders tests and meds and tells you to book a follow-up. You’re grateful, but—is this you?—you feel like something’s missing from the healing process.

Like, does he have the time to take all of you into account, your physical, emotional, and even spiritual well-being? Does he even know how to do that or think it’s important?

On the other hand, when you’re seeing a holistic practitioner, they’re taking into account the entirety of who you are. “Where is your pain,” yes, but also, “What is your overall level of wellbeing? What’s actually making you angry or frustrated? Are you depressed or anxious? Are the foods you eat working for or against you? Have you tried aromatherapy oils? Is your relationship with your significant other working, or lagging in significant areas? Do you contribute to a community of like-minded (and like-hearted) people in a way that gratifies you? Is your life in balance?”

You’re probably not used to having someone care about your overall well-being as much as you do, but that’s what holistic means. You have the right to choose someone who has integrity when it comes to the wholeness of your wellness, and we have many of the best holistic healing professionals right here in Radiance Magazine. I invite you to make an appointment with one and judge for yourself.

You know what else you get more of with holistic professionals? Hugs. It’s a natural reaction to sharing the most intimate details of your body, mind and spirit. I can’t speak for all holistic professionals, but when you care enough to create this kind of relationship, hugs can happen. It’s not a cure in itself, but it’s a start.

So while we’re keeping an eye on Western medicine as it chases goals that aren’t always about personal health, we can integrate alternative/wellness/Eastern/holistic/energy healing into our lives.

For what it’s worth, the day my doctor gives me a hug is the day we’ll turn a corner in “conventional” healthcare. Until then, choice is a beautiful thing.

I want to take a moment and give special acknowledgment to my Associate Editor, Rita Robinson. She brings years of professional journalism experience and spiritual inquiry to Radiance and helps ensure the headlines pop, the articles sing, and the magazine joyfully dances in the hands of the reader. It wouldn’t be the same without her.


Scott Ware


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