Getting to know me, Real Medicine

Paediatrics: How Do I Love Thee

I noticed that four out of my last five posts here were sad posts. With good reason too: some scary things have happened.

But guys: I’ve had a fantastic two months. I’m on a four-month paediatric service and it makes me so… happy?


Is happy really the word? Because I’ve seen babies die and parents grieve and I’ve felt my heart torn with them; and I’ve asked myself if I can do this, how could ANYONE do this?

And I’ve been angry with the parents who fed their newborns gripe water, and the ones who locked their disabled babies in shacks and run away.

And yet… I wake up in the mornings looking forward to work.

Sure, I wish I could stay in my warm bed a little longer, but it’s easier to get up and at ’em.

Children are… well, aren’t they just wonderful? Until a certain age, they don’t embrace the sick role. When they’re sick, you know they’re sick; and even before they’re entirely better they play again.

They don’t know to hate. Sure, some of them have never seen a white person before, and they get scared of strangers, but all the same. This is entirely unscientific but I feel like for children, their default position is wonder at the world. Joy, even. Especially babies. Babies are my favourite and best.

I’ve always said I would not do paediatrics as a specialty – a lifestyle decision, and a fear of growing tired of children, and the tragedy that would get me down, and yada-yada. But it is beginning to feel like less and less of a choice and more of a calling. I am even beginning to consider applying to a children’s hospital for next year’s Community Service posting.



Children are the embodiment of hope. I look at them, and I see the hope for a brighter future; and I see that maybe I can have a role in that future, even if it is only to care for its leaders.


10 thoughts on “Paediatrics: How Do I Love Thee”

  1. Congratulations on finding your calling. The opposite happened to me. I was set on paediatrics until I did the placement. And even though I enjoyed it, I came to realise that it wasn’t for me.

    1. Thanks! I’m not sure it IS a calling, but I’m beginning to wonder if it is. I’m a little skeptical about the whole concept of a calling though, so… 😉 I’ll give it some thought. Paediatrics has plenty downsides too.

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