don’t unravel the rose before dawn

A medical student at George Washington University Medical

Center in Washington, D.C.:

My name is Alexandra and I was born in Haiti. Growing up I always marveled at the thought that in the year 2000 I would only be twenty-five years old. This implied that I would be old enough to remember the old century and young enough to be open to all that the new one would bring in scientific discoveries, innovative ideas, and lifestyle changes.

While being very aware of the fact that the year 2000 is very close, I still have to pay attention to the present. I have to face challenges now because it is only by doing so that I could even fathom being strong enough to not be engulfed by the tidal wave of the twenty-first century.

The biggest challenge that I am faced with at the present time is going through medical school and keeping my inner being still intact. I remember that one of my mentors once told me that I had to do my best to ‘hold on to my soul’ as I went through the process of becoming a doctor. This truly is not an easy task in an environment that progressively dehumanizes by constantly subjecting one to the sometimes unbearable pressure to succeed, to do better than your peers, to learn more information than you ever thought existed and use it in an appropriate way. At the same time, they are asking you to be empathetic, compassionate, and respectful to patients at all times.

I realized that to protect myself from simply going through the motions of life and becoming dry inside, I had to stay very close to the feminine attribute of being able to continually give of one’s self. I saw that I had to be giving and caring first to myself, to not allow myself to simply switch to a survival mode that ultimately can transform into clinical depression.

This idea of nurturing the self allows me to create a world inside where no one can come in and move things around according to their belief system or values or lack thereof. This keeps the soul safe and steady and so becomes the place I draw from to be able to give the compassion that patients need.

My apprehension for the twenty-first century is that as women get more and more acknowledgment from society as to their ability to do
well in professions traditionally held by men, they will move away from that principle of giving and nurturing, seeing it as a sign of being too feminine, and so a sign of weakness. As for myself, I believe that it will not be possible for me to be a good physician if these attributes are lacking, especially in the twenty-first century. For one thing, we will be asked more than ever before to think about everything on a global scale. It is as if as women we will no longer be mothers or sisters, but ‘world mothers’ and ‘world sisters.’ As information grows to phenomenal proportions in the twenty-first century and is disseminated throughout the world, we might feel closer to each other.

Maybe what will be valued will be that moment of connection with another human being at the physician’s office. This will require simplicity on my part so that I can be a clear receptor that does not filter too much of what I hear through my beliefs but simply listens with the intention of wanting to understand and help. Spirituality is the tool that I use on an every day basis to bring back simplicity and stillness so that I can become a clear receptor.”

– Sue Patton Theole . “The Feminine Principle.” The Fabric of the Future: Women Visionaries of Today Illuminate the Path to Tomorrow, edited by M. J. Ryan, Conari Press, 1998.

a succinct life

A couple of days ago, I was struggling to settle with a theme for my blog that feels right for me, and I was frustrated that I couldn’t distinguish the superfluous from the essential. It then hit me that simplicity is a matter I, ironically, find very difficult and I began to ask myself why this was so? I felt that knowing why simplicity evaded me, would be a key stone in getting to know myself further. You know when you have a hunch but can’t put a finger on what it is exactly?

So, anyway, it just hit me; simplicity is focus. Simplicity is when you are unified in yourself. When you are grounded, and in touch with your intuition. Intuition is the filter of the soul. When we are tuned outwardly, our connection to our intuition weakens, which sets off a plethora of ailments like self-doubt, low self-esteem, a clueless,mechanical life void of warmth and passion.

It’s ironic how we take to excesses when we lack, and when we possess inward richness, we don’t need much. The true stuff in life is always unassuming, mellow. It creeps up on you. Serendipity. Love. Passion. It finds you when you find that inner focus.

I run away from my intuition because I don’t want to face the pain. So I take to excesses in everything to drown out that voice, to bury the sullen memory of who I am inside. I have 8 tabs open on Chrome now. I can’t be still, can’t be idle. Yet in all my busyness, I’m never actually doing much. My life is best represented by my coca-cola addiction; so full of pleasure, empty of substance. It’s not real pleasure when it’s followed by long-lasting pain. But I’ve mastered the art of self-deception.

Simplicity is knowing who you are, what you want, and going for that; nothing else. I’m tempted to keep on writing this post even though I’m done with what I had in mind , a force of habit. A reflection of the emptiness I feel inside. I fear I won’t be understood, that I won’t —

 

You talk when you cease to be at peace with your thoughts.

khalil gibran

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