Dr Palak was a leading anesthesiologist in a reputed hospital working tirelessly to make surgeries painless for patients and at home she had a supporting family of a loving husband and two kids. To everyone it looked like she had everything. Some were even a little envious of her seemingly perfect life. What most people didn’t see were the long working hours, demands from the family to be there for them. Juggling between hospital and home her life to her felt like a ticking time bomb, waiting for something to go wrong.

Lately something was off. She was losing weight, not being able to put a finger on what’s wrong, she shrugged it off. Till one day, while taking a shower, she noticed a lump,a lump that changed her life. She immediately got it examined and a biopsy later her worst fears were confirmed. She had breast cancer.Even when her world came crashing down, she didn’t let her spirit break. In situations where most people respond with panic, Dr Palak was calm and composed. She got her treatment plan and started following it. Surgery and chemotherapy sessions were scheduled and her family’s life savings were withdrawn.

Her routine completely changed. Instead of being at others bedside easing them, her family was by her side, giving her hope. After surgery the endless round of chemotherapy began. It didn’t take long for her hair to start falling.

A few chemo sessions later she realised that her family savings weren’t enough to sustain her through her treatment completely.

She had to start working again. Before the smell of chemo was out of her veins she was back to someone’s bedside, easing them into sedatives, numbing their pain while suppressing her bout of nausea. Slowly and steadily she was able to break even. Her income paced with her medical expenses.

After two years of this tiring cycle she was finally victorious. Free of any rogue cancer cells coursing through her body.

Medicine has historically been a demanding career. with odd working hours and paramount emphasis on well being of others. Even if that happens at the cost of one’s health and family life.

A recent survey by Curofy showed that only 29.73% of female population come for preventive health check ups. This shows how seriously they take their health. A health care provider who is looking after well being of others should be equally concerned about her own health.

Sometimes in order to fulfill the myriad of roles around her she often forgets to take care of the most important aspect of her life, Herself. In a race to be perfect in every aspect she often ends up ignoring her own needs.

Being a doctor is a lot like living with an unruly child.And for a female doctor the challenge is double.

These children take up your entire time, leave you with little energy for anything else, you can’t leave or abandon them because, well, you can’t, it’s morally incorrect and at the end of the day your house is a mess.

Similarly your medical profession takes the best of you. It takes up your entire day, leaves you tired, you can’t say no to any patient or abandon them because it’s ethically wrong and it leaves your personal as well as social life in a mess. But, just like a child’s behaviour can be managed with behaviour management techniques, similarly you can achieve a social and work life balance by managing your practice.

● Work in association

Instead of running a one man show, have colleagues to share your burden. You can’t be at all places at the same time and it never hurts to have some help. Applications like Curofy are always there to help you connect with like minded doctors of same speciality.Take up a hobby.Write poetry like you did in college, dunk a basketball or learn to play a new instrument. Anything to refresh you. There is no greater stress reliever than taking up a hobby.

● Get in touch with your old friends

After hanging around with clinicians all day, give yourself a little treat, call that friend from school who you were meaning to meet but couldn’t. Don’t limit your social life toyour professional circle. There are people you knew before you became a doctor,meet them!

● Don’t shy away from asking for help

Not all cases are a plain sailing, some are a tough nut to crack which can’t be tackled alone. On the bright side, the problem you are experiencing today, someone must have faced it before. And there lies your solution! Tap into the experience of other doctors to solve your cases more efficiently and accurately. So next time when the child gets unruly or throws a tantrum, tackle when you can but sometimes let your partner or the caretaker handle it.

Take a Break, You deserve it. Also, when you take a break to rejuvenate yourself, there is more energy and enthusiasm to return back to work

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