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Thursday, February 09, 2006

It's a love-hate relationship (I)

Why I hate my job:

1. Long hours and having to work overtime for no extra compensation/kudos. Patients don't care that you've had to cancel your plans for the evening because you've had to spend an hour answering their questions for the 10th time or sorting out their outpatient follow-up. My patients seem to expect me to be free to chat whenever they want and they get angry whenever I spend more time with another patient who happens to be more sick than themselves.

2. A weekend off counts as annual leave.

3. Not being able to take annual leave when I want it - my leave is fixed according to my rota, no requests allowed. This means that I can't get time off to coincide with MDH, or I can only take off one week at a time. There is very little flexibility in my rota for swops - it'll mean that both parties involved will have to work ridiculous shifts.

4. Not being able to eat or drink or go to the toilet whilst on the job - I am perpetually dehydrated, malnourished and

5. Going for days without seeing sunlight or not being able to sleep at night - I'm either working, or getting over a time lag, or obsessing about a patient, or I've been ordered to do an extra shift during a major incident.

6. Being exposed to infectious diseases at all times. Handwashing and the use of gloves doesn't stop people from coughing/breathing/spraying their lergy all over me. And being continually half-starved, my immune system is not up to scratch. I teeter on the edge of infirmity.

7. The contract. Has anyone ever signed a contract 3 weeks after starting a job? It is a non-negotiable contract which also states that my salary can change without prior notice, amongst other things. Last year, I took a paycut after 3 months (even though I was working the same hours) and there was nothing I could do about it.

8. Constantly looking for new jobs - training posts are only 6 months long. Job-hopping is not an optional extra for me, it's a bleeding curse. I spend all my free time filling out application forms. I do not have job security as a doctor, contrary to what everyone else thinks. I envy all those people who say 'I've been working for this stupid company for 20 years'.

9. Having to do very nasty things to people or to children everyday. Try holding a screaming child down with one arm whilst jabbing it with a needle. To them, I'm suddenly the most evil, cruel person in the whole world and they hate me. Some of the looks I get from the parents sometimes...well, it makes me feel like a monster.

10. Having to meet with angry or unreasonable people and not being able to say "if you don't like it here, just leave and go somewhere else".

11. Watching someone die not because there was nothing else that could be done for them, but because a lack of resources meant that it couldn't be done now.

12. Always having to sit for more exams. There is no end to studying and exam taking in this field of work. Between studying and filling out application forms, I've no time for hobbies. My guitar lies in cobwebs and my singing voice has gotten harsh and rusty.

13. Watching my enthusiasm wane with each passing day. I try my best not to become another bitter and cynical doctor...but it's hard.

14. Watching my ability to make decent conversation wane with each passing day. I try my best not to continually discuss my work with people...then I find that I don't have anything else to say.

15. Knowing that there is no other job that I could do with my training. Can I quit and become an accountant or a banker or a secretary or a journalist or an interior designer? No. I don't have the training or the experience or the knowledge.

16. Knowing that there is nothing else I'd rather do. So I'm stuck here forever, because this is the life I chose. Stupid, stupid, stupid me!


Blogger ketsugi said...

I can't wait to see Part 2, in which you are uplifted, encouraged, and reminded about all things good.

It's not a job unless you let it be. Otherwise it is a diving calling, a personal call to you from He Who Is Love, and which you've obediently answered despite the many challenges.

Bravi, bravi, bravissimi.

12:39 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cheer up ! There are definitely many more ppl out there who appreciates you for what you have done for them and what you are doing right now. ;)

Jesus loves you lots lots.


4:50 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not many people are blessed with the intelligence to be a doctor. I am not one of them. You are making a difference in the lives of others. It's not the world, granted, but it only takes one... - D W

9:55 pm  

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