Translated in Filipino
ME: (sincerely, to patient’s mother) Ma’am condolence po. N-namatayan daw po kayo… ng relative?Mother and patient started crying together in front of me.
PATIENT'S MOTHER: (uncomfortably) S-saan mo na-narinig –
ME: …um, narinig po namin kay Honey. Uncle daw or…
ME: Condolence po…s-sino po yun?
(Awkward silence ulet)
PATIENT: (voice cracks) O..okay lang Nay…alam ko na po…
PATIENT’S MOTHER: (starts crying) S…sorry ‘anak…hindi ko lang kasi alam paano sasabihin sa yo…pero talagang sasabihin ko naman eh…(sobs)
I swear to God I wanted to disappear right there and then! Of course, I didn’t think the parents would hide it from the patient who just underwent heart surgery. Argh! I really felt very very guilty. They told me afterwards that it’s okay. Darling also comforted me by saying she would have asked the same question, I just asked it first. But still, argh! It’s definitely a lesson in tact. I’m so bad! :(
ETA: I still feel guilty. :(