My grandfather was a military trauma surgeon. My parents used to tell me the story of how he saved many lives during the Second World War. I was fascinated to see his name in the Martyr Hall of Honor. At a grass root level this was my childhood inspiration of being a Doctor. I have travelled and studied in my places in the world, namely: Qatar, India, Oman, UK, and Canada. In each of these countries I saw a diverse cultural community. My exposure to people from all these countries led to be open minded and considerate to different cultures.
Each of these countries had a different degree of health criticality, but all of them viewed and respected the work of a physician as a miracle worker. At the age of 12, when I was in the Middle East | saw my friend’s brother being bitten by a dessert rattle snake and due to the lack of hospitals in the vicinity he died. I decided then that I was going to become a doctor for the sole reason of saving a life and being appreciated for my work. Therefore my childhood experiences justified my calling for the sciences.
My reason to be a doctor at this stage in my life was very naive and it did evolve as I moved to different places. During my time in the undergraduate schooling, I realized that a doctor requires many additional skills to work in the healthcare sector like communication, leadership, teamwork etc. Hence | started took a leadership role in a university student club called Medlife where I learned how change in the community can be brought about through teamwork and innovative brainstorming. I organized mobile clinics and fundraisers to provide healthcare resources for children in Lima, Peru.
Furthermore, I volunteered in the Hospital Emergency Room. I learned how to work in a fast paced medical environment. This volunteering in particular gave me a complete scope of what a physician does besides treating patients. I saw the importance of charting, documentation and clear communication. My passion to be a compassionate physician evolved over the years by meticulous exposure to new experiences and my instinctive drive to strive towards being a positive influence in my community and beyond.
I started volunteering in an old age home where I got a chance to work with residents affected with paralysis, Alzheimer’s, and other terminal diseases. One evening during my volunteering, I was alerted that a resident was buzzing the alarm for help. I went to check in and I saw this resident in a wheelchair sobbing. She told me that she could no longer walk and could not go home. There was an immense fear of loss of independence in her eyes. I sat by her and reassured her that she will always have help here and that she could still be independent without walking.
Then we played the game dominoes, and as I was leaving, she said to me “Thank you for treating me like a human being and not like a helpless resident”. I felt like I had mentally helped her and reinforced that people still care for her well being. I left that day reminding myself that | made a positive impact on her. This experience of mine gave me a narrow scope into the healing process of people. Humanistic art is the process wherein people connect to the painting by forming relationships. I studied about this in my undergrad English course.
It sparked an idea that Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece painting The Mona Lisa is not just colors on a canvas, instead it is an artwork that has a complex emotional depth that human connect to. Hence the artwork establish a relationship with the viewer. Similarly, I thought that a physician is not someone who just reads medicine books and orders tests, but also goes beyond by connecting to the patient and their family members to enable them to make informed choices regarding their health.
This humanistic approach in medicine transforms the clinical practice outside the conventional cientific approach by incorporating a novel doctor-patient relationship. In my numerous volunteering experiences, I have learned and adapted these social skills which have led me to understand the holistic role of a physician in the healthcare sector. I have learned that empathy and consideration for others can also be transferable to other non-clinical settings. As a member of the Healthy Campus Crew and Suicide intervention team, know that sincerity and discretion are vital for people to openly talk about their personal health.
I have been actively helping out in monitoring a confidential email service and helpline for the campus in coalition with the university clinic. Over the past two years, I have seen more students being benefited from these services. As a student I am cannot directly counsel the student in need have help but I delegate these student to the appropriate professional help. At the end of the day I am immensely satisfied that I got to help these students in guiding them a step into their recovery. During my undergraduate years, I have been a researcher in Biophysics, Physiology, and embryology labs.
Each of my research projects showed me the fascinating side of science behind medicine and emphasized the idea that revolutionary change in medicine is in close proximity. While working on the stem cell project, I conducted scrupulous data analysis and mastered many dexterity skills. I was soon absorbed into the pathological origins of congestive heart failure (CHF). The doctors I corresponded with were not just reading about CHF like me. They were operating and actually regenerating the patients heart tissue, I was envied by their involvement.
My work in the research fields gave me an insight into a physician’s responsibilities. Additionally, I learnt to make detailed observations, documentation, and the importance of health and lab safety. Every week after my workout I head back to volunteer in the Hospital Emergency Room. On my way, all of my workout imposed body pain alleviates as my muscles relax. I then enter into the Hospital and as I walk toward the ERI am filled with a void of unhappiness. I witness ents on stretchers lining the hospital hallways. I see excruciating pain on each patient’s face, posture, and helpless stare’s as they watch me walk by.
Many of these patients feel trapped sitting in their wheelchairs, unable to live a free life. This make me think that it is just unfair that I am able to workout while these patients around me can barely move. My compassion creates an instinctive drive in me to help these people in relieving their physical agony. I ask them if they need water, warm blankets, or just someone to talk to. As a volunteer, I can only offer these patients a mental support system of care. I truly want to help them like the doctors in the hospital.
Therefore, every week my aspiration of becoming a doctor grows stronger. After a hectic weekday of university, lab work, and volunteering; Tusually walk back home by myself. This gives me time to reflect on my future goals and aspirations. I know that the path to becoming a good surgeon has no fixed distance and is a process of continuous learning. Nevertheless, it is the only path that I am most eager to undertake as I feel most passionate and prepared to work for, entirely commit myself to, and religiously follow to accomplish whatever it may require of me.