Though not a doctor, I frequently saw myself as if I was looking at someone else until the pain or exhaustion overwhelmed me. The fatigue is persistent, and exhaustion finds me during the day, even after a good night’s sleep. Fatigue can start first thing in the morning upon waking, and sometimes I am so tired that I want to stay in bed.

I never received a lot of affirmation as a kid. I remember myself as the fifth fiddle in a two-fiddle band. Now, even as my body deteriorates, I cling to the role of a healthcare technology professional as a critical source of self-esteem. It’s not an attempt to make up for childhood. Instead, I find the satisfaction of providing quality services worthy, even if such services remain in the background. 

In this sense, patients continually wrestle with mortality, suffering, and pain. I wrestle with a sense of who I am and what I could become. However, like the guy searching for meaning and the one screaming in fear, answers are personal. One’s response isn’t to another. The days of pain that sporadically occurred have combined to plaster my bones relentlessly. Only then, I realize how exhausted I am.

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