I am not sure why I wanted to become a doctor.I cannot pin point a source of inspiration or motivation.I do know some doctors that I have looked up to from an early age.I think I was tricked at wanting to become one.Funny how theory of suggestions work.Now I believe there is nothing else I can do, or even hope to be good at.
No I am not saying I am a good doctor.No one is ever good or bad.The decisions one makes are right or wrong.So much like life itself.One learns with time.What is important that one continues to make those decisions.No one is born with a healing hand.Trust me that doesn’t happen in Allopathic medicine.Practice is the key.
A medical student learns after rigourous reading of gazzillion fat books.We learn what the body is made up of.How it normally functions and what can possibly go wrong.If something does go wrong what can we possibly do to help.Really all a doctor does is help.It is you and your body that gets you better.
In my third year I was worried if I would know which part of the body my patient is talking about.If my patient was talking about pain in the chest would I know it is his heart or his lungs?Think about it, if some one has tummy ache, there is a stomach,liver, spleen, 2 kidneys,pancreas, not to mention about 7 meters of intestines, and still so much more.How the hell is one supposed to know what is really hurting.I got no X-ray vision and I got no super powers.I wasn’t the only one with that fear and doubt.Oh and incase you are now totally worried about those useless doctors, we do learn in time how to recognise the symptoms. Don’t you worry. Breathe.
It irritates me when people go, oh wow you are a doctor.Really what is so wow about this profession.We study 5-7 years to get a basic degree depending on which system of education one studies in.That degree leaves us in a worse position than a BSc graduate.My options after graduation, getting a job in some small hospital which will fetch me salary less than my mother’s home help.Beating a gazzillion people in the Indian post graduate system to get into a PG programme.Coming abroad, cost, visa, licencing exams.There is no end to it.
Well what ever I do, I am not going to be established for another 5-6 years after my first degree.While most of my school friends are well established, married, and already making plans for a retired life.Mine hasn’t even begun yet.When I say mine in this context,I talk of my brethren.
I am not even looking at the personal front.Mine to be specific.Don’t even think there is a personal front anymore.
So then what makes me love my job.What makes me so passionate about being a doctor.Good question if you ask me.I don’t really know.
I do know, it isn’t a place for everyone.I am not being big headed about it.I’ve known some one for last 3 years.He breathes, eats,sleeps, talks, lives surgery.If you ask me, I think he is born to be a doctor.I have seen him interact with his patients, I have seen his work, I know about his research interests.He belongs here.However only recently did I get to know that he is planning to do an MBA and change careers.I don’t think anything has shaken my confidence as much as learning about his decision did.Life is tough, it never promised to be otherwise.I think he has buckled under that pressure.I hope it is momentary.I don’t know if I ever will.
I would remain a doctor only if I really had it in me.I know that exams aren’t over yet.They never will be.Each patient is an exam.You pass it, because failing isn’t an option.That MD badge on your lapel earns you the trust of absolute strangers, when so many times it is so hard to even trust your closest of friends and family.You get the chance to make a difference in some one’s life every single day.Being a doctor isn’t about being smart or intelligent even.It is about patience, persistence and perseverence. It is about strentgh of conviction and character.It is about never giving up. It is about that adrenaline rush and drive.
I am still not convinced actually.I do wonder if I should start believing in Rahu kaal and planetary and star positions and the science of Divination, because I don’t really know what I was thinking when I decided to become a doctor.It must be the stars I tell ya..