I was walking around town today, and I realized something.
Last year, I was in totally different circumstances. New place, different working environment, different systems - I was almost anonymous when I first applied to a training program here.
Now I am returning to my old alma mater, along with other classmates who, for one reason or another decided to take their residencies at the old hospital along Taft Avenue.
I am actually apprehensive about the coming new year. Not unlike last year.
Last year my apprehensions were directed more towards my anonymity and a feeling that I wouldn't fit in, won't be able to adjust to my new environs. I imagined that by this time next year I'll be sitting in a ward, talking to my incoming junior residents and generally having a good time.
Fate had different plans. After what seemed like an eternity of losing streaks, I became committed to Joy, an exceptional person that I share a lot of things in common with.
I was also enlightened by the fact that, among other things, consultants are forced to take up Nursing and emigrate; a little over 50% of doctors earn P20,000 or less; and my current specialty did not allow any growth outside this country.
So I went into hiatus. And the time off was much needed - I was able to prioritize my needs and my career goals. I realized that my idealism and love of country could not provide for the financial stability and just compensation for all those years of study.
After a serious re-charting of my career path, I decided to embark on what I call as the "Third Pathway". An alternative pathway, if you will, that promises growth and improvement elsewhere.
This career change comes at a price of course. Joy kidded me, saying that I took a detour to Iloilo only to meet her. True. So it is a great trade-off that I decided to embark on this new path at the price of not being able to meet her regularly for three years. I am concerned about what the unknown future might bring us, but I am steadfast that my commitment is genuine and I believe that so is hers.
I have to console myself to the fact that I am doing this for our career advancement to be done with and for us to have a better life ahead. For her career too - I am already too much of a distraction.
Apprehension also from the fact that I haven't been 'practicing' medicine for about 6 months already. Proof is this blog and the many games I have been able to finish.
Coming into the new year, I can only grin and bear it. I have to face 2006 with these apprehensions in tow - if I waited on the sidelines, I might regret my inaction more.
Hopefully things will all turn out well for me, for my girlfriend Joy, and for my career. I pray that, in the next year I will be able to revisit this post and say that my apprehensions were unfounded or dealt with accordingly.
With that, I am taking temporary leave of this blog. I will be reposting as soon as everything is in order. A few posts back, I have lamented the lack of in-hospital lodging for me. It will take a substantial time to obtain this, and hopefully it wouldn't sidetrack my training.