Lost in Translation

Lost in Translation

The doctor speaks

But words go in one ear and out the other.

I cannot comprehend the medical jargon.

The interpreter sits in the corner of the room

Trying to translate the jumble of words

Into something I will understand in my native tongue.  

I get some.

But the rest?

I just smile and nod.

Somewhere in the transition from complicated jargon to my native tongue

The words are

Lost in translation

I am confused and scared because I can’t comprehend my care plan.

I wish my daughter was in the room to comfort me and make me feel better.

I wouldn’t just smile and nod. I would be engaged.

She would provide the context an interpreter can’t;

She would help bridge the divide.

Then the words wouldn’t get

Lost in translation.

Now I realize the reality people of my ethnicity and many others face every day.

A cultural divide.

An isolation.

Words fly right over our heads,

A barrier stands between us and the doctors.

Interpreters, not as skilled as they should be, can only help so much

Which creates a problem.

Because I am even more lost, even more confused.

In order to bridge this divide of language and culture,

I propose a resolution.

Bridge the divide.

Professionalize interpretation.

Let family members engage more in the conversation.

Only then will words not get

Lost in translation.

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