“meraki [may-rah-kee] (adjective) This is a word that modern Greeks often use to describe doing something with soul, creativity, or love — when you put “something of yourself” into what you’re doing, whatever it may be.”
—Translating the Untranslatable, NPR—
What does it mean to practice a whole-hearted version of medicine?
Over the four days I spent at Telluride, the idea of full-hearted-ness came to me over and over again. I could see it in the looks of concentration and dedication in the residents, nurses, and medical students. I could hear it in every talk that told an important story or illustrated a new point. More than anything, though, you could feel it—feel the deep, deep importance of what taking care of patients in the best way possible meant for everyone in the room.
This long-lost word popped up: Meraki. To put a “something of yourself” into… Continue reading
I am a person who makes mistakes.
I am a student who makes mistakes.
One day, I will probably be a doctor who makes mistakes.
The first two statements are acceptable things, not life-altering, except perhaps mine. There comes a point in my career where suddenly, though, this intrinsic part of me that results in me spilling barbecue sauce on myself or tripping on the same sidewalk crack everyday or misremembering a famous person’s name could be the difference between life and death.
There is a clear divide where suddenly, moments of forgetfulness could become moments that change everything.
This is terrifying, all the more so because I know how hard I’ve tried to not spill things or not trip in important situations, and I still end up with a blotch on a white shirt or a slightly grazed knee on concrete. This is okay when my human-ness only causes… Continue reading