Another one of my high school friends is finishing up med school. He isn’t someone I expected to pursue that path but one of my computer programming friends.
It brings up mixed emotions.
On one hand, I may not have a degree but I do have 2 healthy and mostly adorable daughters. I do get to live with a man I find fascinating, attractive, and good for my emotional health. I have a job that challenges me to learn new things all the time. And, I’ve had the space to work through a lot of the BS my particular flavour of religion fed me. I may not have these things if I was an MD.
I may not have enjoyed being in the allopathic culture. I spent some time in it while studying at the Nut-Farm (College of Nutrition and Pharmacy), and found it hypocritical, close-minded and fearful.
“No, no one should need to take a Multi-vitamin, we should be able to get all our nutrients from food that has been mass-produced in nutrient depeleted soils and bred to be large and pretty looking instead of nutritionally dense. Oh, except for this particular brand of vitamins that sends representatives to take me out to 5 course meals. This is the only multi worth anything no matter what the studies say. Don’t even look at other brands, they are bad!”
(Note- I’m talking about the overall culture, not individual professors, practioners, or classmates.)
People come into my store asking for the particular brand of vitamins their doctor recommended. Often, it is this same cheap brand that has poor absorption but is made by a pharmaceutical company that once took me and my classmates out for those 5 course meals. When I explain that we don’t have that brand but I have something better, those people roll their eyes at me and condescendingly tell me that they want what their doctor recommended.
I would love that sort of power. These people don’t care that the amount of nutritional education that most doctors have is less than the introductory nutrition course offered to anyone at a Canadian university. All those people care about is what their doctor said.
I love to diagnose. My brain loves finding patterns. And, I want the ability to order blood tests. I miss looking at charts.
But, maybe being a doctor would be bad for me personally.
A cousin was talking to me about her job as a doctor in a hospital. She said that basically she just walks around and plays with peoples’ meds. I didn’t appreciate the way she talked about her patients or the way she talked to anyone else. If being an MD comes at the price of losing respect for most of the world and severing ties with my family, I don’t want it. Of course, she is a different person than I and many doctors are not like that.
But I do love to know better than others. I know I would be both terrified and pleased at the power that people give doctors.
I think that the reason I have not resolved this issue is that I feel like the choice to pursue it or not was taken away from me when I got pregnant.
I didn’t choose for the birth control to fail, but I could have done more to prevent it. Now it feels like that door is closed forever. I do not have the unflagging energy required to pursue that type of education while taking care of a family.
Yes, there are many options still open for me and perhaps for opportunities that I would enjoy more. But, I still have a sense of loss whenever I read about amazing doctors or hear about former classmates’ studies. I wish I could just get over it. This is part of that process.