Personal Experience: My Experience In Shadowing And Shadowing

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As physicians, we are foundations for our patients. We become sources of strength and emotional security for them, in trying times. We do more than fix others back to health (spotting signs of illness, giving diagnoses, drugs or treatment). We must understand the concerns of those we help and be there for our patients—through pain and sorrow. ================ In short, the practice of medicine requires we become always better caregivers—and always better people, in turn. This is what my experiences in shadowing and volunteering have taught me—and it is a truth I take to heart. ================ I was first exposed to medicine while physician shadowing in grad school. I shadowed Dr. Isaac Kim, aurologist at the Cancer Institute of New Jersey. …show more content…

I wanted the challenge of being a docotor; and I wanted to have a meaningful impact in others’ lives, as well. Dr. Kim was the first of many along my career path who inspired me, this way. As such my shadowing of Dr. Kim was, for me, my entrance into the field of medicine. I was on the path I wanted to walk. ================ There would be challenges, for sure. But I was ready. I was ready to learn and do whatever I had to to ensure I was a foundation for others. ================ Then came my first challenge: working for a hospice. Here is where I learned harsh realities that no schooling could prepare me for. The hospice was difficult for me, at first. It was hard to speak with patients suffering from memory loss, dementia, anxiety, depression, or other disordes. It was hard to experience death on a regular basis; the death of patients that I interacted with and started to befriend. I had to learn to keep a fixed, professional demeanor to mask my sorrows (for my displays of sadness could affect the other patients). I had to foster a personal, caring commttment toward the patients—without becoming too personally attached, myself. …show more content…

Every time I walk past room 215 I’m reminded of what happened that day, so early in my career. ================ I had just walked into Annie’s room to find her screaming in pain. I ran to find the supervising nurse and rushed back to comfort Annie. Shortly after, the nurse came, fed Annie her medications, and walked out. Not a word was said. But I knew Annie was afraid, confused, upset; managing deep pain in her body. I knew she did not want to be alone, so I stayed beside her for a while, holding her hand until she fell asleep, telling her she would be okay. ================ For a few days after she seemed recovered, happy to see me and her mood was livened. But the following week, I passed by Annie’s room again. ================ Suddenly her bed was empty. Her room was empty. The nametag on her door was gone. Annie slept most of the weekend and, one day, just didn’t wake up. She was gone. I was shattered. ================ I wished I could have helped her more, if just to better her last moments on Earth. With all my hours in clinical shadowing or volunteering, with all my coursework as a graduate student in biomedical engineering—I was not preparred for this. I was not ready to cope with the sense of powerlessness I felt that day.

In this essay, the author

  • Opines that physicians are foundations for their patients. they become sources of strength and emotional security for them, in trying times.
  • Opines that the practice of medicine requires us to become always better caregivers and better people. their experiences in shadowing and volunteering have taught them this truth.
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