“I see something inside,” said Dr. Mabie. The patient held still. Her mother and I waited in mild
suspense. The patient was a 14-year old girl who had come to see Dr. Mabie for severe soreness in her right ear. “Well, what do we have here?” He used his ear “scoop” and gently fished out a large piece of thin, clear plastic. We were amazed. The girl felt immediately relieved. No one could tell from where the plastic originated—let alone how it got lodged in the girl’s ear. But Dr. Mabie had found and removed it.
That was one of the many patient visits I was privy to during my internship with Dr. Mabie. For
months, I shadowed him and his three colleagues in their pediatric practice. I enjoyed every moment. Watching them provide the most sensitive, comprehensive care they could was truly inspiring. All of the physicians revealed their love of their work to me. Day after day, I thought, “this is it. This is what I want to do.” I admired the long term doctor-patient relationship clearly built on mutual respect and gratitude. Several children were second generation; Dr. Mabie had been their parents’ pediatrician too. The experience gave me a good sense of what primary care entails, from infant check-ups to teenage angst. Being there also reconfirmed my desire to work with children.
Working with children is my passion. After I graduated from college with a degree in English and Art
History/Studio, I went on to teach. I have taught children of various ages from diverse backgrounds—ranging from first graders in a private school to immigrant youth at a community center. In each setting, I strived to be both a role-model and a resource—providing guidance and (hopefully) sparking curiosity about the world around them. At Exploration, a summer enrichment program, I planned and led unique art workshops for junior high school children. Through daily journal/sketchbooks, students searched their imagination while I taught them color theory and laws of perspective. Like Dr. Mabie, I relished in helping the children to grow.
Students entered insisting “I can’t do it,” and left with final projects they produced with glowing pride. As the Multi-Cultural Alliance representative at Katherine Delmar Burke School, I designed a study unit on China for...