Sunday, November 30, 2008

Medicine, The Calling

Last week, I finally told my dad about my plans for school; told him I was nervous to fill him in because I'd taken such a circuitous route in life and was worried I'd get the rolling of his eyes, or a blank stare. At the tender age of 44, this is no small undertaking.

He listened, as he always has.

When I was done talking, he asked his questions that appear normal: what do you want to specialize in, where do you want to go, what classes do you need to take to apply, when will you apply, are you going to work while going through pre-reqs, how are you going to pay for all of this, and finally, how can we help?

He knows all too well my desire to travel internationally has been well met. In the Philippines, I saw poverty that is beyond describable. Trying to articulate the sites and smells, and yet the utter happiness of the Filipinos is rudimentary and difficult at best.

Dad also has known my interest in helping the poorest of the poor often commenting on how I'd always talked about being a doc in Africa if only for a month or two.

He knows I've wandered through villages in "real" Mexico, worked in impoverished areas of my own Minnesota which sadly, are more akin to 3rd world countries than US.

So, as we talked, I wondered what it took to be a part of the DWB group. Fearless, confident, brilliant, and understanding, these physicians undertake a sometimes dangerous and heart-wrenching tour of duty to help those who otherwise, might never see a ray of hope, or a dawning of a new day.

In the end of my discussion with Dad, he asked me if the "burning bush" had finally wrapped it's branches around me. I smiled and said, "You know? I read somewhere on a forum that medicine is a calling. I'm finally answering, "Yes!"'

http://www.doctorswithoutborders.org/

1 comment:

Non Traditional Pred Med Guy said...

When did you go to the Philippines and why?? Just curious, cause I'm thinking of going myself.