Sunday, May 30, 2010

I Found a Love

As salaam alaikum,

Yep, you guessed it. I'm totally channeling Wilson Pickett for this one. I've actually only heard this song once, but my mother used to sing it at random when I lived at home.

[Of course, being the perpetual student semi-scrub that I am, I still go home for 1-2 weeks at a time each year and still have a large amount of property at home and yeah, still depend on the folks to help me out with my rent, so me talking about "when I lived at home" as if I'm so far from home is kind of funny, even for me. I talk to my mother at least every other day, too, so I'm really not far from home. I'm trying this new format where I bracket off digressions...bear with me.]

But I've found the love of my life. That's right. I've found a Family Medicine!

There was no day when it became official. It's just been...a comfortable co-existence, and then, it just happened. I just realized that I was waking up more and more days happy with family medicine, making future plans within the realm of family medicine, and I realized that this was the reality I was most comfortable living in for now and for the rest of my life. It makes the most sense for my values and personality, it fits with what I want for myself for the future, I see myself being content within the field, growing and growing old within it...

And I'm really not meaning to be corny and hackneyed by relating this to a romantic love or companionship or courtship or whatever. It really feels like this, so the analogy isn't so much of an analogy as it is how I really feel.

Some people found their loves roommate, for example, she's been in love with pediatrics for a long time. People discouraged her against it, she tried other things for a while, but she found pediatrics again. Her love is in pediatrics, and people get tired of hearing her talk so much about it. She's so in love, she can't see how anyone wouldn't love pediatrics.

Some people still haven't found their love. I was one of those people before I did my pediatrics outpatient week at Chelsea and, when discussing my career plans with one of the pediatricians there and how I really loved women's health but I wasn't sure about obstetrics/gynecology as a career, she suggested family medicine.

"They deliver babies as well."

And from that moment, I was intrigued. I looked up everything about family medicine, researched residency programs, found a brochure with descriptions of people's practice, and I began to realize that it made the most sense for my life. Family medicine doctors were very happy with their careers, were able to do the things they love and have families, and by virtue of working within the family paradigm as the career does, the importance of family permeates or rather, is central in your career in a way that seems so organic, it's crazy.

And I began falling in love with family medicine as is characteristic of me to fall in love...without realizing it until later, not putting it into words until the acute phase is almost over.

I can't believe I didn't know that this career path existed! And after a sideways mention in pediatrics clinic, followed by a "Well, you know, Harvard isn't really the place for family medicine," it came into my world.

So this is a lot of flowery talk, but seriously...I'm considering focusing on maternal-child health. I want to do women's health, prenatal care, deliveries, focus on a bit of early childhood development with the kids, and work with adolescents, especially young women. My greatest love is women's health, but I was hesitant about obstetrics/gynecology because I was not in love with benign gyn surgery. I like being in the OR, and gyn onc was pretty cool, least favorite surgery behind the placement of the minimally invasive sling is the vaginal hysterectomy. If I'm given the choice between children and hysterectomies, I'll choose the children every day.

How I'll shape my career plans in the future and what exactly I'll do with that MPH remains to be seen.

But this is really love as I understand it. It's kind of validating in a way because sometimes I wonder if I'm just a little bit full of crap sometimes when I imagine love and what it should be like...[like, every time I'm feeling kind of like a b** when I reject some poor unsuspecting guy who clearly had no idea what kind of crazy person he was dealing with before he talked to me.] But this is it! It came when I least expected it [quando você menos espera, el[e] chega... - "Nega Música," Itamar Assumpção], I'm amazed that it exists in my realm after not having known about it before, it inexplicably fits and feels comfortable to who I am, and I find it slipping into my plans for the future...

Hah! Alhamdulillah...

So that's it. I found a love. It's family medicine. And for me, it just has to be true. I have to know a little about what I plan to do in the future before I feel comfortable planning and living in the present. I thought I needed to know who I'd end up with, but eh, knowing my career also works, too.

{Currently listening to: "Bad Habits" by Maxwell}