“If I were not a doctor, I would be…” is a difficult sentence to complete. Honestly, I cannot imagine myself other than being a doctor. But there will be instances, especially when I’m exhausted from duty, unable to go out with friends or attend family gatherings, that I undergo some “med life crisis.” It felt like I just wanted to get out of the hospital and have an easy-going life. In an alternate universe, I would be a human who is alien to the medical field.

The Thunder Universe

As a child, I was very engaged in the performing arts. I entered piano and keyboard classes early, went to a Nursery school which emphasized on kinetics, and was said to be talkative. My late mother was a doctor though, but she thought I was  not going to be like her.

A photo album write-up by my late mother, describing my childhood dreams.

In The Thunder Universe, this tiny human will probably be a an active teacher in pre-school, an attorney who just passed the Bar examinations, or a gymnast training to be an Olympian.

The Lost Universe

My love for books, dancing, tumbling and bending went on until I grew up, but not my love for talking. Peculiarly, I became introverted due to several reasons. In grade school, I experienced being heavily bullied and was always questioned by my classmates when I do well in academics. I did not have too much friends then, and all I do during snack or lunch breaks was to play jackstone by myself. Sometimes, I was invited by others to play Chinese garter with them, but I was a last resort.
After my mom passed away, I became interested in being a medical doctor. Almost everyone is saying, “Gusto mo maging doktor gaya ng mama mo?” or “Ayan, mag-do-doktor ‘yan.” [“Do you want to be a doctor like your mom?” or “She will be a doctor.”] Every career week, I dressed up as a doctor. With my mother’s stethoscope, I wear it with pride—well sort of, because I don’t like my tomboy hair. 😂

Encircled is my young self with a very short hair. I cannot seem to find my Career Week photos.

The Mind Universe

In late grade school and high school, my dancing took a break. Being an avid reader led me to be a writer. Initially, I was just making poems as a school requirement, eventually, that became a hobby. As a newcomer in a new school at fourth grade, I wanted to start fresh. I tried out for the school newspaper the year after, and I was one of the youngest who got a high position—Literary Editor. From then on until Nursing, I always write for the school organ, with being the Feature Writer as my last function.

An article I wrote for the UST Nursing Journal.

Another thing I should mention is that I’m the only doctor in the family, surrounded by artists, architects, and engineers. They influenced me to be interested in the arts, and probably that’s why people always complement my Histology drawings and penmanship, “Ang ganda ng drawing mo! Hindi ka sulat doktor!”

In The Mind Universe, this human would probably be a writer for a newspaper or magazine, be an author, or be a graphic artist.

The Limbo Universe

In college and medical school, dancing became a way to relieve school stress. I was involved in interschool competitions, and had performed in in-college activities and medical school parties. Other than that, I am still the introvert that I am. I only attend parties if were invited to dance, that’s it.

Backstage at MedGroove 2014.

After the boards, I temporarily hung my stethoscope, took a rest, and went travelling. It was my first time to breathe freely outside the hospital, not thinking of my duty the next day.

A rainy day at Paradise Pier in Disney California Adventure Park.

In The Limbo Universe, this is where I can possibly be the most alien that I am. I would probably be a jack-of-all-trades and master of none. Or maybe, I would be soul-searching by travelling around the world! That would be fun.

The Universe

Back to reality, our universe is just called… The Universe. In this universe, I was destined to be in a service-oriented profession. Thinking all about these alternate universes is just making me have another “exacerbation” of “med life crises.”

A flower loom band made by our patient in Pediatric rotation during clerkship.

If I were not a doctor, I would be…” is still a difficult sentence to complete. There will never be an alternate for it. 👩🏻‍⚕️

P.S. This human won’t ever be in Miss Universe. Thank you very much.

This entry is part of The Blog Rounds (TBR) 3.0: Alternate Universe, initiated by Pinay MegaMom MD.