An interpreter has many challenges to face when going into an appointment. The uncertainty of not knowing exactly what type of appointment we’re walking into can build up mixed emotions. Emotions such as excitement, nervousness, confidence and so much more. I have been interpreting Mien since October 2017 and it has been such a great experience, almost life-changing. I now can say I know the feeling of making a difference in a matter of seconds right before my eyes with what I can say to help someone.
Most recently, the week of April 9th I serviced two separate appointments for an elderly patient at Providence St Vincent Hospital Cardiology. When I first met her, she was calm and collected. Even though she was very nervous not entirely knowing what testing she had to do, she was relieved to know I was there to help her. A few days later, I saw her again and this time, her health seemed worse. I felt the panic in the patient’s voice and she felt distressed so I immediately tried to help as much as I could by communicating with the staff for her. The patient was in a lot of pain and discomfort and without a family member there, she was so relieved as was the staff to see me there again. After some reassurance that she’s going to be okay and seeing some family members visit her, it seemed to uplift her spirits and leaving the appointment this second time, she was stable and in good condition to be discharged. It’s a great feeling to be with a patient through their journey. This particular experience of helping an elderly patient, although brought memories back of my grandma, allowed me to show my dedication to help my native people and help give a voice to someone that otherwise wouldn’t have one. This appointment along with any other appointment I’ve helped with gives me a warm feeling in my heart that I have done good. It’s a feeling that is irreplaceable.