Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Finding My Purpose

I've been whining and ranting about my current state all along in this blog alright. For once, let me give justice to the profession and state of life that in the first place, i chose and learned to love. My rantings could just be the result of my toxicity. (why the hell can't i be benign sometimes?) I still could say however that i have made the right decision and that i am in the right profession - a doctor, a healer.

The even that happened this morning affirmed what i feel tonight. I have been witness to a lot of deaths. I saw how the family of my dead patients grieved. I heard their cries, i heard their screams. I felt how hard it was for them to accept the loss of a loved one. This morning however, i found my purpose. Goodness! After almost two years in residency training, it was just this morning that i was able to convice myself of the role that i've got to play. I am a doctor, not just a comforter of the sick. I am a doctor, a comforter of the dying and the loved ones that they're leaving behind.

A toxic patient of mine died this morning. This death however was quite different compared with the ones i previously witnessed. First, i had a hard time intubating him yesterday. That was the most difficult and the most memorable intubation i've ever done (save for the one i did to my own uncle). Thanks to those false teeth he has been wearing all along while he was in the hospital. That crap really took me almost 30 minutes just to remove it before i could intubate. After a pair of tore gloves, thousands of drops of perspiration, several finger bites, different positioning, i was able to remove those precious dentures.

Second, his family was the most understanding and open-minded kind. His mother was hysterical at first when he got toxic but she calmed down when i started talking to her. I could feel the pain of a mother towards her son who's slowly drifting away. I could feel the bond in their family. Bond of support to the patient, bond of support towards the living family members.

Lastly, this morning when he passed away, his mother hugged me so tight, crying. The warmest hug i felt from almost a stranger. She lost her son yet she was so thankful for all my help. She was crying, yet there was acceptance. She lost a loved one, she was in tears, yet it was i who felt the comfort on the contrary. Hugging her back, returning the comfort she was giving me, i felt peace, i felt acceptance. The day she accepted her son's death, is also the day that i fully accepted my role. It was through this death of a patient when i started to find purpose in my routine, boring work.

Yep! I am not here in this crap, government hospital just to train. I am not here just to help and serve the sick and the poor. I am here to bring comfort, not just to my patients, but to their relatives as well. Looking back, this was what ive been wanting to do. I might have been lost along the way but hey, the great architect really has great plans to bring me back to place. I wish though that it would not take another life to remind me of my real purpose in this crap, yet miracle-full hospital that i am in.

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