Thursday, May 10, 2012

I won't look for a house up on a hill

See, and this is the part where it all makes sense. Two days in a row now, I've had some ridiculously long work days. Broke work hours two days in a row. There's been a real lack of harmony on the teams I've been on of late, and it sometimes sucks the joy out of working on a team.

So I came home late tonight, frustrated, annoyed, tired. And as I was in my kitchen looking at the latest hurricane that had gone through there (the result of a cupcake extravaganza earlier in the week- Mexican chocolate cupcakes with dulce de leche frosting and... of course a dab of chocolate ganache on top, thank you very much), I suddenly thought, in a fit of rage, screw you, you don't deserve any more baking!

Then, just as suddenly, I started laughing. Really, I find anger pretty funny. Especially anger that results in some kind of threat involving baked goods. It just makes it all the more clear how useless rage usually is, when you channel it into something that absurd.

And when I'd exhaled, and realized I still had some homemade pizza for dinner, I took stock of my day again, the last two days, and everything felt, well, just fine, and maybe better than fine.

The great thing about medicine is that there's always some weird yin-yang thing that happens that makes everything alright. You have a day in which you lose heart, because your patients are combative or keep repeating the same self-destructive pattern that lands them in a hospital bed over and over again. But on those days, you find some fellow resident, some colleague with whom to commiserate, and you know you're not alone. And you have a day in which you feel like all of your colleagues have lost their souls, are joyless, and are actively trying to make more work for you. But on those days, you have some of the most satisfying interactions with your patients. Today was such a day. And on such days, once you've gotten the Hulk-like fury out of your system, and set aside your fatigue, then you relax.

I relax and realize that, even though it may not always feel that way in the moment, I am exactly where I need to be.


pied piper said...

Is the equilibrium a natural and fortuitous one, or are you seeking and finding the balance to make sure you have precisely what you need? That's my quasi-profound question for you. Either way, this was a wonderful post to read.

brimful said...

It's a little of both at any given time. I think you have to fight the temptation to be imbalanced; a lot of my colleagues decide it's more fun (and easier) to just remain angry and bitter, but honestly, that's just not a sustainable state for me. So maybe as a result, I'm more open to the natural, fortuitous equilibrium shifts that bring me towards some steady state.