Thursday Born

The everyday life of a medical student (who was born on a Thursday).

Never too many stories

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It’s easy to forget that how varied the path post (and pre) MD is.  I had the opportunity to participate in a lunch talk with Dr. Gretchen Berland, an Internal Medicine doctor who also happens to make documentaries (and who had a career in the industry before going to medical school).  Her most recent documentary is Rolling, which follows three wheelchair bound individuals. Part of what’s different about her work is that instead of following her subjects around with a camera crew, she instead gives them the camera and allows them to choose when and how and where and why and who to film.

She’s an incredibly interesting person and I find her career path and her work rather fascinating (I really want to find and watch Cross Cover, which is about Residents newly experiencing being on call overnight), so I could easily write an entry all about her, but that’s not what I’m going to do.

There is so much one can do with an MD. It’s easy to either outright forget that there are so many different creative options, or to get so lost and overwhelmed with  the possibilities that you just have to ignore their existence. I oscillate between the two, but I think for me a large part of the problem is that I have yet to merge my interests outside of medicine with the idea of my eventual medical career. And they don’t have to intersect, I know, but it’s nice if they do, and even if they don’t, they need to co-exist.

I really need to write entries the day I get the idea, because I know I had somewhere concrete to go with this post and yet now as I write I can’t quite remember what it was. I’ve lost the creative window within which this could have been a solid post. Perhaps I can salvage it but I am currently doubtful.

Here’s something:

I remember once, as a child or a young teenager, being upset at the realization that there are probably lots of books that I will never even have the option of reading because they will never be translated into a language I know.

I am fascinated by stories; all kinds of them and all aspects of their telling. I love tv shows, movies, books, comics, plays, music, musicals, listening to people talk, etc. I am fascinated by blogs and youtube and twitter and facebook. I greatly enjoy participating in theater productions (off the stage; I hate acting) and while I am terrible at telling stories out loud, I have relative talent when it comes to writing.  And it’s not really plots that I love. It’s people/characters.

This is why I was going to become a Clinical Psychologist. This is why, introverted and easily exhausted by people as I am, I want to go into a specialty where I get to interact with them, maybe where I have long term patients I can get to know. The stories. People have stories, people are stories, and I want to listen.

But I also want to tell stories. The urge persists. Medicine has done little (so far, and it is very early) to erode my desire to identify as a writer, and I’m glad. Still, I need to do something with it, and it’s good to have it re-affirmed that I can, and while still seeing patients.

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Written by Aba

October 21, 2009 at 11:53 pm

Posted in Medical School

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