Jan 1, 2017

Dread & Responsibility

Finally, it's my second time having a day off since I started working. Remember how blatantly optimistic and cheerful I was in my previous post? The last two paragraphs were written in some sort of superficial tone and I was feeling so goody-goody writing it back then. Wait, let me scratch those paragraphs because as of right now, I'm feeling the 180 degree opposite.

Every morning waking up begins with a mental grunt that goes full to the brim as soon as I stepped outside my dormitory room. Every morning I have to rush things; to have my shower early, to pray immediately after that, getting dressed and rush to the canteen to have a quick bite of breakfast. In between the fast stride of my walk, my thoughts filled up with the dread of the anticipated fatigue I will accumulate by the end of the day.

The bulk of my strenuous mental drain comes from my poor hands on skills. Up to this very moment I still unable to do branula for my patients. When dire situations arise, I actually ran away or asked my colleagues to do it instead. I feel painfully ashamed. More than shame, I feel useless. I feel stupid. I feel I have no worth value. I think I know the theory and how to do it, but when the time comes for me to do it myself, I can't seem to do it correctly.

The biggest dread when I'm thinking about the constant routine that I'm stuck doing for the rest of my life is the daily ward round. I freaking hate it. Even when you become the MO or the registrar or even the specialist, you will still cannot avoid from doing it. It's the long hours of standing and walking that tire the hell out of me. It's been a week now and yet I can't still get used to it. My left knee has never been the same after the Nuang hike sometime last year, and the pain exacerbates somewhat nowadays. 

Another thing that goes beyond my expectation is the sheer responsibility of being a doctor. Sure, at first when I read about other doctors' experience yada yada I didn't really understand much about the actual weight of the word. It's actually the capital R. The Responsibility. The whole shebangs. The part where if something happens I can no longer just inform other people like the nurses or the MO. This is the part where I actually have to do something. Re-examine the patient, re-do the necessary blood test, endorse new drug regime, and present the whole case to the MO.

Truthfully, this thing scares the shit out of me. I don't know what to do if suddenly patient goes into labour in the ward, or when someone shout CAESAR (meaning there's an emergency operation and we need to run to the OT to assist), or how to inform who of what regarding what and where. Nurses will call me and say,

"Doctor, patient ada temperature spike."
"Doctor, dah book bed kat labour room belum?" 
"Patient ni dah kena masuk OT, doctor. Mana lagi satu branula?!"

I feel suffocated. I will either freeze or wanting to run away. My legs will actually twitch to go away and not dealing with it. It's just the amount of Responsibility that is too much for me to handle. Often I will feel brittle, like an iceberg in the ocean waiting to break apart and causing massive global warming. Anytime soon I will freeze, or do the wrong things. Anytime soon I will make mistakes so big everyone will shout and yell at me, and that is something I don't think I can take.

Usually I will end my post with a tinge of positivity and a spark of optimism. But doing so will incur the disgust in me when I'm back to the lowest slum later in the future and frankly, writing down my plan to change things won't exactly mean I won't experience it again. Right now all I want to do is to pour these emotions out, in writing, so at least in the future I can read back and said, "Oh yes, this is the time I already start figuring out when the life has been sucked dry out of me."


  1. i feel like that most of my working days. having all that responsibility making me scared of what coming ahead but i always put it back in a positive ways which it will make me become stronger over any obstacles. i am afraid of mistakes too. but when i already did it and it was wrong, i just pray that it won't ruin my career entirely and hope i can clean up the mess. alhamdulillah i still survived! hehe

  2. I'm gonna start my HOship this May and I'M TERRIFIED. I panic easily and tend to make mistakes when I'm under pressure (in medschool). Reading your entry makes me feel a teeny tiny bit better bcos I know I'm not alone. But of course, what you've experienced were thousand times worst cos you're actually in the real world. Anyway, congratulations ok making it through your first posting! (Ive read your latest entry). Any advices for me?