Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Reminiscing New Life

"I changed a diaper today and fed a newborn. I love paediatrics." ~ Facebook status. Not mine.

I'm not a big fan of paediatrics. In fact, once upon a time, I wanted to do paediatrics. 40 hours of volunteering on the paediatric ward prior to applying to medical school and I knew it was not something I wanted to do...anymore. After spending a 4 week rotation on paediatrics...it's not...awful.

Regardless, that Facebook status made me recall my time on Obstetrics & Gynaecology delivering babies. On our paediatrics rotation, we spend some time on the neonate ward...examining babies and getting little activities signed off our little procedure cards, like changing a diaper and feeding. The thought of examining babies brought back memories of examining babies just as they had popped out of their mommas.

And then, it hit me.

I brought lives into the world. Me!
Birth isn't pretty. This one actually looks pretty good though.
I know I'm about 2 months late on this realisation, but I've reached it nonetheless. I was just suddenly overwhelmed by the emotion of having aided a new life in its entry into the modern world of light, colour, temperature, sounds and food. This did register with me before, but I never really sat down to think about it. At the time, I was merely concerned with getting all my signatures for all my deliveries. I didn't stop to smell the roses, so to speak.

Now that I've found the time to reminisce on those experiences, I'm in as much awe in myself as everyone else. 

*Pats self on back*

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Picking a Specialty

"What do you want to specialise in?" 

A question posed by many...from the stranger on the street to the supervising consultant. As a medical student, everyone wants to know where our interests lie.

At this point in our lives as a medical student, the answer to that question is going to be either clear and stated or, as is the case of the majority, "I'm still not sure but I'm considering -X-, -Y- and -Z-." Many individuals in my class are well aware of my interest in pursuing 'alternative medicine'. But in an environment where alternative practices are considered phony, I choose not to tell most people what I really intend to do with my preferred practice and, so, my medical student answer to the big specialty question falls with the majority's.

I just completed my elective at home in Anaesthesia & Intensive Care, chosen because of all the clerkships I've completed, it was the only one that could capture my attention the past year. It also had the advantage of exposing me to many things that I would encounter during my final year without imposing a great demand of my time during my elective period. Turns out that my choice in doing it was a good one! So good in fact, that if I were to continue in conventional medicine, it would be in this specialty. Interesting, too, because it's got a lot of focus on the use of drugs but I prefer the ICU setting where the drugs are really just emergency short-term drugs. If there's anything I can appreciate in allopathic medicine, it is the appropriate use of drugs and their short-term effects that help save lives in emergency situations. The long-term use of many drugs, I don't really like.

So, my new reply has been formulated by the impression of my time in Anaesthesia & Intensive Care:
"I'm really interested in Anaesthesia & Intensive Care."

I wouldn't really be doing it but it's no lie that my interest is in it. 

What I want to study: Naturopathic Medicine.
What I intend to do: Integrative Medicine...a practice binding 'conventional' with 'alternative'.

If I got a buck for every time I've been asked the specialty question, I'd probably be able to purchase a Music Factory, Spring Edition 2012 ticket...with a couple dollars to spare...for AnimeKon? =)

Choose what grasps your heart and mind most. That way, you can enjoy it.