A few days before the start date, my current rotation was switched from Surgery in Bend, OR to Women’s Health in Portland. I had been mentally preparing myself for rigors of the OR – brushing up on anatomy, thinking through the steps of a cholecystectomy, reviewing sterile technique. When I found out I would be heading to an OB/GYN clinic, I felt a bit nervous.

Open wounds, blood, ventilators – these are all elements of medicine I have become familiar with from my previous work, and ones that would facilitate a transition into the OR. Pregnant women, speculums, sensitive gynecologic issues? It’s true – I am a gal, but a gal with very little experience in these things! That certainly changed…

My days have been filled with obstetric visits, annual gynecologic exams, problem-oriented visits, as well as OR time. I am much more aware of the unique health needs of women. I am developing diagnostic intuition and learning the current standards of practice in Obstetrics and Gynecology. Formerly a weird metal thing, I now see the speculum as a vital preventative and diagnostic medical tool.

I never would have predicted how much I’ve changed over the past several weeks. I was never the person to coo at babies or revel in the wonders of pregnancy, but my perspective has definitely evolved throughout this rotation. Right now I feel less like a student, a 26 year-old, or an East Coaster…and more like a woman (my ToDo list begs to differ!). During my time at the clinic I have met some truly amazing providers and staff who work hard to provide holistic care for women. I am motivated to make Women’s Health a focus of my future work – whether that means within the context of primary care or as a broader population-based initiative. I look forward to coming rotations, and all the learning opportunities they hold. Next up – Emergency Medicine!

One response to “Change

  1. Isn’t it amazing how these unexpected detours in life somehow manage to forever change us for the better? One never knows how life will mold them, but somehow, against all odds, we become the people we were meant to be when we allow ourselves to be shaped into something better than ourselves.

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