The road to becoming a doctor has been the most intense and exhausting journey, yet I would do it all over again if I had to go back. Medicine is more than a career, it is a passion that becomes part of your identity, and as I get ready to enter the last year of residency, I look back and can’t believe how far I have come.
Doctors often get criticized in the media, thought of as money-hungry and chastised when we make errors. While there may be a few bad apples amongst us, eh hem Andrew Wakefield, the majority of us are here for the love of medicine and human life. We are absolutely fascinated by the human body and how it functions as small parts and as a whole. It is complicated, intricate, and amazing how sophisticated the body is. It can tolerate so many insults and yet some seemingly benign process can send the whole system crashing down!
This is what excites us, watching this process, helping it function at its best, and watching in amazement as we are able to touch the lives of our patients and families as we help you get better. This process is so complicated that we continue to learn about it every moment, every day. Doctors are humans, we make mistakes and we can’t control every aspect of your body. We try our best based on current research and our own experiences. In making a mistake, we are devastated, just like you are. We criticize ourselves and then learn why the mistake happened so we never make it again. These mistakes are not made of laziness or malicious intent, it is simply that we are humans who do not know it all, but we strive to be an expert in our field. We constantly learn and grow, have setbacks and major breakthroughs. We continue to learn the latest information and technology and we never, ever stop caring for the patient.
I thought it would be fun and eye-opening to share my experiences as I navigate my career in medicine, so I am going to start doing a segment called “So You Want to Be a Doctor…” on the first Monday of every month. I will talk about the ups, the downs, and the full on panic attacks! There are so many people contemplating going into the medical field and other people who are completely unaware of our journey and only see the final product of a well-put together physician. By starting this segment, you will see a small part of our long journey and be apart of the sacrifices, joys, determination, lack of sleep, and life changing moments. Hope you enjoy!