Anatole Broyard’s Ideal Physician

[W]hat do I want in a doctor? I would say that I want one who is a close reader of illness and a good critic of medicine….not only a talented physician, but a bit of a metaphysician, too. Someone who can treat body and soul. I can imagine [my ideal doctor] entering my conditioin, looking around at it from the inside like a kind landlord with a tenant, trying to see how he could make the premises more livable. He would look around, holding me by the hand, and he would figure out what it feels like to be me. Then he wold try to find certain advantages in the situation. He can turn disadvantages into advantages…We would wrestle with my fate together.

Anatole Broyard, Intoxicated by My Illness; And Other Writings on Life and Death. Fawcett Columbine 1992.