Saturday, October 31, 2009

525,600 minutes

A year ago, I was a scared, excited newly sworn-in doctor who was curious about his decision to train in internal medicine and fresh from a year of a great PGI-ship in Silliman (hence the title of this entry, piano music in the background).

I can't believe it has been one year. When they said time would fly by once you got into residency, they weren't kidding.

I'm done with first year.

Not that I'd miss having a ward with my name on it (as well as my phone number plastered all over the walls), the incessant nurses who page me every time anything went wrong from simple spelling errors on orders and deciphering unintelligible handwriting to actual codes, as well as the daily grind, DTR's (direct-to-rooms) among a whole lot of first-year stuff.

I'm moving on to subspecialties this year -- my first one is a personal favorite, neurology/endocrinology. I'll be going through a host of medical fields, cardio, gastro, nephro, you name it. Not to mention the added responsibilities of a second year medical resident.

And don't forget extended time at the ER and ICU - the dreaded rotations.

Sure, I'll miss my surgery dreams but I'll still practice shadow stitching and knot tying when nobody is looking, and I'll miss out on earning more and living the life moonlighting.

I guess I'm on my own adventure.

When I started out, I didn't get how people get into internal medicine. Yes, some part of it appealed to me then -- diagnosis, patient interaction, being in charge -- but I didn't get the dynamics of the field, the medication interactions, the fluid management and a whole lot of other stuff I could fill in but I won't. Now I have an idea of how much understanding it takes.

Not that I fully understand it yet, but trying to.

I'm one year in. Two more.

Two more and then the rest of my life.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

My vote

Elections are fast approaching, and each candidate who is hoping for a shot at the glory of the presidency are out there, reaching out to people through media -- written, radio, and largely TV.

I hate traditional politics but I cannot deny its entertainment value. When election time comes, you can't help but get the latest fix of who is stacking up the most dirt against who -- from affairs and corruption to digging up old unpassed bills.

Every election time, we renew the hope of reviving our country from traditional politics and the entrenched corruption, yet who do we have as candidates? The same breed of people who were running the country in the first place.

That is why I've always been drawn to candidates who offer a reasonably radical change from the usual suspects, the usual program of change and the usual traditional politics.

The last time I voted, it was for the late Raul Roco -- which was a good couple of years ago.

I don't know if I'll get to vote this year, with residency and all. But if I do get the chance, Noynoy will most likely be at the top of my list.

I think someone who is running that actually doesn't want to run qualifies as a good sign. Having someone who does not have a premeditated plan to grab the presidency is somewhat refreshing in this power-starved government.

Whether I change my current opinion and whether I actually get to vote remains to be seen. I challenge you to convince me.

I think Conrado de Quiros said it best that Noynoy would probably be the only candidate among the rest where people will not mind being cheated on.

I think that's funny.

It's probably true.

Friday, October 9, 2009


Definition: Days I dread because I have to have something on that day to show for an effort spread out over a given period of time.

In the span of the next two weeks, I've had deadlines shoved in my face from a thick wad of census papers and evaluation forms, case reports, my first medical grand rounds, journal appraisals, and presentations for each one. I've driven myself crazy, sleepless over the past few days just to keep up.

I've caught a few breaks along the way -- a cancellation, being assigned to the Outpatient Department (though ER assist isn't really an easy rotation) and of course Tonette.

But all through the muck, I realized that it has almost been one full year of internal medicine residency under my belt.

And hopefully, hopefully, I'll move up a year level come November 1.

That's one deadline I welcome.