Throwback to the days i thought I had it all figured out, was going to volunteering in the er, become a surgeon and help people. Yet my world was closing in on me, I felt helpless, surrounded by overworked nurses, tired doctors and the endless flood of ignored patients, and a sudden realization that even after all the upcoming years of education, I’d spend my days in this soul crushing environment.
But I couldn’t let go of my desire to help people and believed western medicine was my only answer. I couldn’t imagine any other way… but a memory floated by, of a doctor welcoming his patients warmly, and relaxed happy patients after treatment…
I was a high school senior, eager to start my journey of a university degree and onto medical school, with one last hurdle to graduation, a report of shadowing an “interesting job”. With no brain surgeon agreeing to my request for shadowing, I begrudgingly accepted my mom’s friend’s friend’s offer of a chinese medicine doctor allowing me to visit his clinic and watch him work. I don’t remember any needles but was struck by the gentle and calming atmosphere of the clinic, of the patients embracing the doctor, of their relaxed demeanor after treatment. A brief thought passed through my mind, can medicine be like this? How can I help more people be happy, relaxed…? Fast forward to today, i feel so proud to tell people i practice chinese medicine and my greatest joy is for patients to be pleasantly surprised at the gentle relaxing treatment that improve their sleep and melt their pain away. I wish I could tell my young self to not worry, that the answer has been there all along.
Back in the clinic in full swing after my bout of stomach flu, looking forward to welcoming patients again!