In the late 1950s, my grandmother was often told, “Medicine is no place for a woman.” As a result, she went to medical school under the guise of attending a teaching college deemed appropriate by her mother. It was a difficulty journey for my grandmother to gain acceptance to Yerevan State Medical University in Armenia.
System-based thinking describes a set of subconscious thought processes aptly named System 1 and System 2. The profession of medicine relies heavily on SBT — the ability to rapidly diagnose, treat, and improvise during stressful situations is dependent on these systems, which develop and mature throughout one’s training.
“Locker room culture” is a common trope that has been used to describe medical community of the recent past. Current practitioners will say that culture is, unfortunately, still prevalent.
I dance with hula hoops as a form of self-expression and catharsis. I have been practicing this art form for over four years now, and it always amazes me how much more there is to learn.
Mrs. Red Jacket sat at the bedside in her isolation gown which covered her red jacket. She had left her walker outside her husband’s room. Mrs. Red Jacket held his hand and gazed out the window while he was sleeping.
I often arrive before sunrise and leave long after sunset, enduring unpredictable and challenging schedules while juggling multiple competing responsibilities.
Every job is different, but my experiences so far have drawn a very stark contrast to life as a resident. Now imagine, if you can: you stroll into work at whatever time you want. You round on your patients, write notes and leave. The rest of the day you give verbal orders over the phone while you hang out at the beach.
On my first day of intern year, my attending corrected me in the hallway after I introduced myself to a patient by my first name. Following this, I sheepishly adopted a habit of saying “I’m Dr. Last Name” when sticking out my hand to greet a patient. In clinic, the nurses call me “Dr. Last Name,” even when saying a casual hello. When you refer to yourself as a doctor enough times, you start to believe it.
We coded the woman for forty minutes. She was forty-two, and had two kids, and was perfectly fine yesterday. Now she was gone, or going, her family in the lobby, and no one with any answers.
You are so soft / in voice and touch, / gliding through / the mines that are set in
I have always wanted to fly / but they wouldn’t let me / until I signed a contract / built on blood and tears
The grass grows tall outside my uncle’s home — he only cuts it when we play croquet. He blazes a crisscrossing trail through the sea of weeds to form a maze-like playing field. We push the white wickets into the earth, grab the mallets, and drop the balls to the ground.