Friday, March 18, 2005

no more school forms, no more books, no more teacher's dirty looks

Today was my last day ever in Pediatrics clinic. After I saw my final patient, I took my name plate down and brought it home with me. The end of an era. Who knows when I'll be practicing outpatient office medicine again? Maybe never.



Not that I'm done with Peds entirely. For various reasons that I'm just too tired and annoyed to detail, the official date of my switch has been pushed back to July, before which time I'll still be rotating through the ER, the wards, the PICU, and wherever else the Chiefs decide to put the most malleable of their cheap labor force (read: me). However, because my old switch date was set for April 1st, and my clinic closed out my appointments anticipating that I would be gone, my two years in Peds clinic ended today.

Part of me is glad about being done with clinic. Just the thought of never having to fill out one of those Department of Education school forms again is enough to make me throw up my hat in the air and spin in a circle, all Mary Tyler Moore style. But it's sad to think about leaving my patients. It's sad to think that I'm not going to be anyone's doctor anymore. I mean, of course I'm always going to be someone's doctor, because duh, that's my job--but it's different being someone consultant, short-term doctor than to be someone's primary doctor, the person you think of when the commercials say "Ask your doctor if Cialis is right for you" or when your gym teacher says, "You need a note from your doctor saying that you can try out for the football team." Those are my patients. I was their doctor. Some of those kids, I've been taking care of since they were born. Now they're walking, talking kids. True, they're not talking a whole lot, I haven't been around that long, but enough to get the point across most of the time.

Now I'm just a free-floating Pediatrics resident. A mercenary. I don't have my practice anymore. All my patients are going to other people. Some of those kids I'm really going to miss. Especially the cute ones that didn't try to kick me in the face or pee on me.

And yet...no more school forms! Woo hoo!

Currently reading: The New York Times review of the new Woody Allen movie, "Melinda and Melinda." Not that it really matters what A.O. Scott says, because I'm going to see it anyway. Much has been made in the decline of Woody Allen's work in the past decade or so, but it doesn't stop me from perpetually pinning my hopes on the next film. And in case you want to know, the best Woody Allen film of the past five years is "Sweet and Lowdown." The worst, a tie between "Curse of the Jade Scorpion" and "Hollywood Ending" (though now that I consider again, I think "Hollywood Ending" wins by a hair, what with the casting of Tiffany "Kelly Kapowski" Theissen and all).

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