My tutor asked me as a first year medical student to write down the qualities that I aspired to emulate as I learnt to be a doctor and to carry this piece of paper wherever I went. So whenever I felt that I was losing myself, it would remind me of why I was here. The months flew by: a blur of exams, ward rounds, rotations, belittlement, deaths, and, lo and behold, my final year.
Gradually, the pressure built up, and as I was helping treat a patient who'd had a heart attack, I mumbled “Are we done? Let's finish up with this cardiac arrest quick, I'm getting hungry.” To my surprise, I no longer saw the patient on the bed as a person but as another disease that I had to treat so I could get rid of it. I had become the very person whom I swore never