We have many medical professionals in our community who are doing their jobs in a new and largely unfamiliar context, some in extreme environments. Healers work best, as we all do, when they are on the outside of the problem they are trying to solve. The level of difficulty increases as they become aware of their own vulnerability and susceptibility to the thing ailing their patients.
Medical professionals are also used to having the knowledge and equipment they need to do their job. They are the people we look to for answers. None of us like to feel unprepared or under-resourced.
So they are - you are - indeed on the front lines doing critical and heroic work but they are human beings like all of us. And these caregivers need our care.
They have families too who did not sign up for the role they are being asked to play and are possibly anxious both for the medical professional in their family as well as what that person might bring home with them. Spouses, children and parents of these medical professionals are a step closer than they would want to be to the pandemic.
Rabbi Lisa Sacks and I are convening a conversation with medical professionals on Sunday night April 12th at 8pm. The goals are to share stories of people's experiences, look to Jewish tradition for perspective and support those who are caring for us.
In preparation for this session we have a request.
If you are a medical professional or a family member of one, please consider replying to this email and telling us your story. What has it been like for you?
When we recite the prayer for healing we say "healer of soul, healer of body." In that prayer we try to see the whole human being, from emotional to physical, who is going through illness. Similarly we also must let our healers and their families know we see them. We see you, we are grateful, and we want you to know that you are not alone.
I would like to thank Dr. Jill Ratner for helping us understand the crucial importance and nuances of this issue.