Four years has passed since I entered the medical faculty, but it feels just like yesterday. A lot of things has happened, and I sometimes ask myself, “Why did I choose to be a doctor?”.
Honestly, my decision to choose medicine as my major did not only come from myself. Four years ago, it was mostly about “popularity of the faculty of medicine”, “parents’ suggestion”, and “following friends”. I was young and immature, and didn’t used to make a decision for myself. I did always “go with the flow” and was more naïve.
So, there it was. I became a medical student. I was so proud, boastful, and thought myself having “the most prestigious future job in the society”. But after about a year or so, it became so hard, so frustrating, no one could understand that I started questioning myself, “Am I doing the right thing?”. I faced that, apparently, the condition of being a medical student is neither the same with my former imagination, nor people’s talks. All problems such as difficult classes, tight schedules, seniors’ bullying, racism issues, and some private problems made me almost gave up.
I saw my friends in other faculties and thought, “Look at them! Why is everything easier for them? This faculty is somehow like ‘people’s choice’. There are hundreds high school students will fight each other just to be in my place right now. So why am I not happy being in here?”
Yeah, those times were very hard. “What the f*ck am I doing here?”, “Why can’t I be like my other friends out there?”, etc filled my head. And I did really almost give up. I really ever thought to give up and drop out from my faculty. I had enrolled in another place, and had already been accepted, but (un?)fortunately, some things made me stay and didn’t leave medical faculty.
Second year became easier, so did the third. I was graduated, thus entered the clinical stage. Surprisingly, I enjoy this stage a lot. Well, sometimes I miss my preclinical stage, with no night shifts, no “real jobs” to do, and absolutely more holidays. 🙂 But if I had to choose, I’d prefer the clinical stage, in which I am now.
In my clinical stage, I found some good reasons why I want to be a doctor. When I face my patients, give them some medical suggestion, or just check their condition periodically, or even only smile to them, I realize that I have made their day better, anyhow. I realize that only by caring for them, smiling to them, or even praying for them, it could make them happier. And how could they not be better if they are happier? And, yeah, I think that is the main thing that makes me survive, ‘til now.
By doing a doctor’s job, I realize that, even people out there refer to doctors as “the riches” or “prestigious” or whatever; those things will never be my main reason to be one. Maybe I do want to be rich, maybe my future job will be really prestigious, but the most important thing for me is I can make my patients feel better, even though it’s just a day, or an hour, or even a second in their life. It’s something you could not compare with. And the feeling when you succeed in saving your patient’s life – nothing can beat it.
I know I am being an idealist right now, but it’s the honest truth I feel. Maybe as time goes by, I will change a little, but I do hope that this thought will never change. In hard times, I will read this note again and again, and hopefully I will feel better after that. So, if you see me change sometimes, please do tell me and remind me about my real reason of being a doctor. 🙂
I hope I can be a social-worker-doctor someday, in which my payment is mostly my patients’ smile. I have always dreamt of this. I’d rather be remembered as a kind person than a clever one. I know what it feels to be clever; I also know what it feels to be kind. And trust me; being kind is much more priceless than being clever.
So, if someone asked me, “Why did you choose to be a doctor?”, my answer would not be as good and as cool as another answers, maybe I even don’t have an answer yet! But by being a doctor, I wish I can do something useful for other people, because the most wonderful thing for me is to make other people happy and happier. 🙂