Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Internal Medicine, Class of 2005

One of the many pictures I've been snapping. In preparation for graduation dinner next month, I'm putting together a slide show. Graduation... how time flies. Didn't seem like too long ago (or did it?) when we were starry-eyed fresh interns. So idealistic and naive. And constantly afraid of messing up and killing a patient. Felt like I didn't know enough to treat people.
Now, although I still sometimes feel like I don't know enough, I suppose work would prove us wrong. We treat diseases, some of them acute, without thinking twice... and then when you look at things you suddenly realize that maybe you did learn a thing or two because you knew exactly what to give, where to insert that needle, or if necessary, how to shock like back into the chest. Maybe I'm not such a klutz after all. Or maybe I am
Friends too. People you've gotten so close to. It's hard not to, when you're working side-by-side with them up to 30 hours at a time. When you share the tears, when patients die. Or loved ones. Or just when work gets to you.
We started with 42 in my class. In the last 3 years, we've lost 5. 2 of them my close friends at a time. But this place got to them.
Come July 2005, we'll be separating. Some will stay on here, for fellowships. Some for a staff position (big BIG money!). Some will leave. Big places (Johns Hopkins, etc.). Small places. Cardiology. Gastroenterology. Hematology. Nephrology. Rheumatology. Endocrinology. The first phase of postgrad (residency, specialization) will be done. Next comes the final phase (fellowship, or subspecialty) in our long, long journey, one which I started 9 years ago. One which I consolidated when I took that oath 4 years ago.
The last few years have taught me a lot since my naive medical student days. Some pleasant, and not-so-pleasant things too. Like how love can endure even through death. How the human spirit can be so wondrously resilient. But yet, the darker side of Man. How some people really don't want to get better. How some people will just out and outlie to make you give them narcotics. How a human being can intentionally hurt another.
I've also learnt that life is precious. Time is short. And we all die, someday.


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