When The Bedside Manner Is On The Wrong Side Of The Bed

I believe that at some point in a child’s life, every one of them wants to be a doctor. Or nurse. Or veterinarian. It’s not necessarily a life ambition that sticks all the time. We’d be overrun with health professionals if that were the case. (Thoughts come to mind, but I’m choosing not to go there.)

They want to help others. Take care of others. Give medicine and cut them open with sharp things. (Yes, some are a bit questionable with their intent.)

Isley has entered that hopeful healer phase with passion. It helped immensely that she got a doctoring kit for Christmas. And a bona fide Doc McStuffins’ lab unnamedcoat. (The Disney character is her new hero–a young girl who treats her toys who come to life with an assortment of boo-boos.) (Being sick or injured is not a great reason to become animate. Very sad story line.)

With great heart and focus, Isley is poking, prodding and placating her toys as she seeks to heal their woes. She’s not totally aware of what the different instruments are used for. She does get that they must be inserted in places. Or held over places. Or strapped on to places. If the way she treats her toys is any indication, she’s got the potential to be a prodder on a grand scale.

But not everything comes naturally. A little doctor phone came with her kit, and in her world, it was ringing off the hook. Her need for a more well-developed bedside manner came across with the way she answered her phone. It appeared a big cat was being persistent. “Tiger, stop calling me! If you call again, you’re going to get a spanking!”

A little brusque. A little put out, perhaps.

She had no time for interruptions. Her stuffed horse needed attention. A beloved friend and companion who was ailing. She didn’t want to be bothered with phone calls.

Part of me really appreciates her ability to focus on what was important in the moment. (Does a focused three-year-old come across as annoying? Yes! But look at the positive side! Her stick-to-itiveness reflects a future persistence of character. An unwillingness to quit.)

unnamed-1And then I recognize my own dislike of interruptions. My own intolerance for things I don’t consider important. In the moment.

I haven’t threatened corporal punishment for intrusions on my time. Yet. I’m typically a little better with disruptions. (Sometimes.)

But I do get irritated when people infringe on my plans and expectations. My bedside manner may not totally collapse, but trust me–folks know when I’m not “happy”.

Jesus was never put out by interruptions. His life could be seen as a series of disruptions to a plan. But that was the plan. To be present with people. To love those He came in contact with. To show them God with them. Because people are the reason He came. To love us. To die in our place. To provide a way back to a relationship with the One who made us.

When I get bothered by interruptions, it has more to do with me and my plan not working. Self-absorption.

Putting others first? It’s where I want to be.

Sometimes that wrong side of the bed is the easy way out. Just not the best.

That’s something worth considering. Before I get out of bed.

2 responses to “When The Bedside Manner Is On The Wrong Side Of The Bed”

  1. Wow, Dayle, you opened up some new thoughts for me on fire and heat – and NO, I don’t think I can handle HIS heat – EXCEPT when HE IS creating HIS NEW LIFE in me! And it relates with what Isley says on her phone – who wants to be bothered with interruptions – [maybe brusque in answering]. But there IS an UNwillingness to quit, when Jesus is present with ME – loving ME or dying for ME and providing for MY connection with HIM! 2014 Blessings to you and John – Isley, as well!


  2. You’ve always had good bedside manners with me… Or faked it well! I believe God will keep making you better and better… You have the right heart! Love to you!


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