The Chaos of Medicine: Why I Love Medicine

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Why I Love Medicine

About three years ago I decided I want to become a doctor. Before then, I never really considered to go into medicine, for no particular reason. Then, suddenly, all my interests came together. I have an endless fascination for biology (the human kind, not the endless plant talk!). I always enjoyed science, from mathematics to physics to biology, but my test results have always ranged from exceptional to below-average, without any consistent trend, because I perform much better on oral exams. I like thinking and have always wanted a job where I could keep learning. It all made perfect sense intellectually.

And then I got my job at the nursing home. In a way, it changed my vision on medicine completely. There are things you just miss when you're in school.

The supposedly grumpy old man, whose face lights up when he sees you because you 'are careful and patient'. The lady who barely seems to have anything left, who one day proudly shows a picture of her great-grandchild. The moments when patients with dementia are relatively clear and calm and content. Or when you suddenly have the time for some one-on-one time for a less time-consuming patient who needed help but didn't dare to ask for it 'because everyone is always so busy. Those moments are far more important than my difference in aptitude for math and biology or other unimportant matters. It's the small moments in the chaos of medicine. I even consider nursing if med school doesn't work out. Try to explain that to my rational self.

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