“No man is so foolish but he may sometimes give another good counsel, and no man so wise that he may not easily err if he takes no other counsel than his own. He that is taught only by himself has a fool for a master.”
Hunter S. Thompson
Three months have passed and I feel that it´s time for a résumé. The tanlines and memories of the tour back in September have faded completely respectively slightly and I am now in mid January, not quite the dark month of the soul but not far off (in the northern hemisphere at least). Getting stuck into a new job has been challenging in various ways, the job itself is very different from my old one, I´ve needed to learn a lot of new material which is, on the one hand refreshing but also strenuous, I wouldn´t say that I´ve reached my comfort zone yet but at least I´m out of the wind. I do also miss surgery, the time in theatre when you can just focus on one thing. I miss radiographs and their mystical clarity. I miss clear surgical speak. I don´t miss endless on-call nights and weekends and being physically whacked most of the time. I don´t miss the feeling of being a sideline participant in an uphill battle that never stops and never can. I am very glad that I´ve been able to start getting involved in regional politics and have begun to understand the “politics buzz” but was also stunned by the difference in perspective between the political view of public health and the grunt´s eye view on the ground. I am beginning to understand the magnitude of the problem.
I was thinking today about my current “new” job. I have certainly learned quite a lot of new perspectives and new material and am glad about that, I am trying to focus on the positives but, as you have probably noticed, I am wondering how long term it will be. Maybe it´s ok to see it as a good current temporary solution, a sort of industrial rebound, one stepping stone of several without which I could not cross the river. It doesn´t feel right to judge it yet so I shall wait with a verdict and give it a bit longer concentrating on the bits I enjoy.
Something that has improved a lot is the family situation at home. For the first time ever I (we) have the feeling that we´re “in it” together, the children have become used to having two parents at home both of whom are “there”. I have spent a lot more normal time with the kids and I get the impression that we´re all the better for it. Definite plus there and one that I don´t want to lose.
To briefly summarise the situation: in retrospect, at the moment, I am glad that I took the step when I did, the family benefits are more than tangible and that alone is worth it. The job side is still a work in progress and the final verdict is still out if indeed it is even final. I loved being in surgery but the price was getting too high, I think I need to find something which gives me that same “buzz” as surgery but with fewer of the negatives and I have the feeling that somewhere might be in politics …. we shall see.