Becoming A Physician Essay

942 words - 4 pages

The summer after my freshman year in college, I went back to Honduras to volunteer with the children who had leukemia at the National Public Hospital. I have never been as intimidated as my first day, when I followed the attending oncologist, while he was showing me the pediatric unit. He also explained my duties, which were attending and playing with the children. When I was left to start my job, I felt almost as nuisance in the midst of that hectic hospital room. Unsure on how to approach the patients, I looked around and found a tender smiling face. Although I was nervous, the warmth of his expression gave me the confidence to walk towards his bed. After a long and pleasant talk, I learned that Diego was from a remote rural town, and that his father visited him three days a week because he had to work to support his family. Diego suffered from a severe form of leukemia and had been hospitalized for nine months. Due to his poor health, he was unable to walk or even sit up in his bed. Hence, he developed atrophy in his legs causing them to lose strength and mobility. Yet with a huge sparkle in his eyes, Diego shared with me his dreams of becoming a great soccer player. As I turned away to retrieve the board games that he requested, I was moved by his courage to dream despite the hardships he was enduring at such a young age. This encounter was the beginning of an important turning point in my life. What initially began as a job became a real duty for me. I felt compelled and obligated to the children whom I interacted with, gaining satisfaction in doing so. At first, it seemed I was doing them a favor but rather it was the children that made an impact in my life. After I left Diego’s bedside that day, I was heartbroken to see him apparently defeated by his cancer and only left with his hope. The next year when I went back, Diego recognized and received me with his usual smile, but I cannot describe how proud and sincerely happy I felt when he was able to walk to give me a heartfelt hug. In my life I had never felt so accomplished, as when I realized I had made an impact in the life of a boy, I consider a hero. I knew then I was not being a nuisance in that room. Instead by making the children laugh despite their illness, I provided them an escape from leukemia. I gave them my dedication, but what I received was incomparable. By showing me their positivity despite their situation, the children encouraged my enthusiasm to become a doctor. In addition, by witnessing their victories against cancer, they taught me one of the most important lessons of my life: to always fight and persevere regardless...

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