Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Miles To Go Before I Sleep



“You really want to do this?” asked Amma.

“I feel I should…” I replied quite earnestly. 

It was that time during my life, the one which most of us doctors go through, that critical period when we have to choose an area of specialization. Trust me when I say this, if getting a Medicinae Baccalaureus, Baccalaureus Chirurgiae (MBBS) degree, mind you ‘the one that you deserve’ is like scaling the Mount Everest, I tell this because there are a hundred other ways in this country, getting through a Medicinae Doctor (MD) is like scaling Mauna Kea underwater! And I made an unusual attempt, while some people who found it absurd and not so clinical asked me:

“Why Microbiology?”

“Why you? Such a good student!”

“Is that a medical subject?”

“So you don’t see patients? Poor you!”

What do ‘you’ get to do in the lab?”

“Don’t you miss the stethoscope?”

 These and hundred more, of course I have reached a point in life where I feel answering these questions is like nailing jelly to the wall. Diagnostics is beyond the four walls of a clinic, treating a patient and healing a person are two different things. I value my perspective and share it with those who do, like my Amma. Through my journey of learning Medical Microbiology if there was one person who stood by me, through thick and thin right from the time I made this decision, and even before that it was her, she is my special someone. I remember her words even to this day:


“If there is one thing that will help a girl all her life...it not her father, neither her husband, not her brother neither her friend, not even her mother…it is her EDUCATION”

Her opinion is the mantra of my life, and she knows this is one of the million reasons why I feel special about her.

 “If you feel you should, then GO AHEAD!” she had remarked without a second thought and encouraged me to strike a. I remember how relieved she was  on that particular day. I knew I had to make her proud. I had finally decided where I would be heading with my career. I was up to becoming a Medical Microbiologist, a doctor who chose to become one. And right since the first day in my medical college where I did my post grad it has been an exceptional journey. Those three years have taught me all the science and medicine, all the dreams and aspirations that I know of. 

The days when I processed a fifty and more samples of patients in the bio safety cabinet in the laboratory, the nights when I rang up my other clinical postgraduates and helped them diagnose a tuberculosis or a meningitis case, the seminars which I presented after all the blood, sweat and tears and received  a pat on my back, the hours I spent with my books in the library , the hundreds of bacteria and viruses and parasites and fungi and antigens and antibodies and antibiotics I studied, the thousands of situations when I had to decide how much and why they mattered in my patients; the thank you that they said when I collected a sample or handed them a lab report, well these were a few things that brought all the magic. Mind you again, magic is in something we create for ourselves, in the choices that we make and the decisions that we take. I had listened to my heart’s calling and the results turned out to be perfect. Ask why?


 A picture indeed speaks a thousand words. I had received the best outgoing post graduate student award a couple of months ago, and if you can imagine a place somewhere higher up than cloud nine, that is where exactly my parents were, look at my Amma! :-) 


Coming to the kind of questions people ask me today:

“Which lab test do you recommend?”

“Which antibiotic do you think will work?”

“When will I get my report?”

“Which test is more sensitive?”

And most importantly:


What is your opinion?

I love my microscope ;-)

Which is…’No matter what you chose to do, do it with all your heart’

I did a 
 You do too!

PS: I am participating in the #DilKiDealOnSnapdeal activity at BlogAdda in association with SnapDeal.”




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