why did I choose this profession?

There will be days when you wake up in the morning and ask the universe – why did I choose this profession?

Most people who’re doctors are those who start reading for the highly competitive medical entrance after their 10th boards (some start earlier but I believe one should enjoy their childhood instead of running to coaching centres when they’re 15).

The “perfect” portrayal of a doctor is what they show in every Television series, be it Indian or American.

There are so many things wrong with this portrayal –

• You cannot and should not be rude to any patient. Or sarcastic. Unless you wish to get beaten up in return.

• Violence against doctors is a reality. Nobody shows it on TV.

• Every doctor doesn’t walk around the hospital wearing a stethoscope and make quick, on spot diagnoses. To arrive at a conclusion, a physician needs a complete history with added reports from Radiology, Pathology, Biochemistry and Microbiology. Sometimes, a single possible conclusion may not be reached at all. Medical science is not magic and no doctor is supernatural.

You do not go around the hospital saving lives all day. That happens only on television.

• This is a hilarious impossibility:

Pic: Google images, movie reference: Kabir Singh

I’ve never come across such an eccentric and awkward doctor during my entire UG course.

• The idea that getting into a great college would be the end of all problems is a huge myth. That is the notion I had when I joined my undergraduate course. The best part about joining a good college is that one meets amazing people from all over the country, has a memorable campus life and has a chance to be taught by world-class faculty. That however does not guarantee a great future / dream life. You still need to work day and night to be successful in whichever branch you choose.

• MBBS doctors in India now rarely have good prospects, no matter where they do it from. The ratio of PG to UG seats in the country is dismal. We’ll always have a shortage of doctors in India.

• Passing medical school is not a smooth journey. There are tears and heartbreaks in proportion to the joyous moments.

• One needs to start all over from scratch for post graduate entrance. And this is where the real “fun” starts. The Indian education system divides seats subject wise and category wise. Someone who was attending the same classes with you and with a rank that is 5 times of yours will get a “top” branch.

• There will be a lot of negativities in life coming from different people. From dissatisfied patients to inquisitive neighbours to far-off relatives, everyone will have an opinion.

• For a great section of the society, a big doctor means an orthopedic surgeon or an Obstetrician or a cardiologist. Anything other than that gets a vacant stare from a lot of people. I’ve come across people who think Psychiatrists are “pagal wala doctor” / the madman’s doctor.

ln the beginning, everything feels really overwhelming and impossible to deal with.

And then there comes a day, when every doctor who has had his/her own share of struggles and immense pain puts a full stop on the ‘care for all’ button and life has a new meaning after that!

Because after all, life happens only once. And for doctors, it starts on the day they decide to live for themselves, first.

And, there’s a big beautiful world out there-

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