“I searched for an answer to my mother’s suffering, but in none of the books I scoured did I find the term, ‘palliative care’. Just weeks later, I encountered those words for the first time, and I decided that this is the field I want to belong to.”
Pallium India’s Program Director, Smriti Rana, in her talk “The Power of Stories in Transforming Healthcare” at TEDx SJMC, described to an enthralled audience her journey as a palliative care professional. She spoke about how her mother taught her to listen to the sound of the trees moving in the wind, and went on to describe the power of listening in healing. She narrated the heart-wrenching experience of watching her mother’s difficult cancer journey, over twenty years ago, and how it brought her to palliative care. She shared her own observations as a palliative care professional in the subsequent years, seeing suffering, and understanding how, more than the physical pain, the psychological part of it sometimes tormented the patient.
Several pairs of eyes in the audience were moist, and the standing ovation at the end of the talk was so well deserved.
TEDxSJMC, organized at St Johns Medical College, Bengaluru on September 1, 2019, with the theme, “360 degrees”, was a well-coordinated event, with several eminent speakers sharing their life journey and the lessons they learnt.