Honduras
Mercer On Mission

2015 Blog


Thursday-Week 2: Meryssah

All of the clinics ares officially over and it feels like it has gone by too fast. Each day presented our group with new patients, new challenges, and new strengths. Two main themes I focused on during the two weeks I was in clinic was gratitud and vocational callings. I experienced a great deal of both on this trip. It continued to amaze me how thankful these people could be even when sometimes all we can do for them was send them home with some Tylenol and multivitamins. One of the patients I saw during the first week of clinics came in with a chief complaint of a headache and body aches. While the med student and I were questioning her, she began to tear up and mentioned that it her pain started after her mother passed away three months ago. We called in our family therapist Dr. Meyer and I began to translate for her while she consulted the patient about these feelings. During this conversation, we discovered a few things. One, we learned new things about her culture and deceased people. Second, we asked her if she had any family members that she could talk to about her mom’s death, like her dad or her sister. Her response was that she didn’t trust anyone as much as she felt she could trust us. The patient told us that after meeting us, she knew she could share her story with us and that she could trust us to understand her without judgement. At the end of her consult, she left feeling much better after being able to simply talk to us and know that we are listening to her and that we cared. Before she left, this woman gave us all a big hug and a kiss on the cheek showing her extreme gratitude towards us. It was a very good feeling knowing that we put that smile on her face as she left our clinic, even though all we did was give her some pain reliever and listen to her story.

        The second recurring theme that I focused on this trip was vocational calling. Since I was young I always knew I wanted to go into the health care business. I was never sure exactly why that was, perhaps because I took more trips to the doctor than any other 5 year old because of my growth hormone deficiency or maybe just because I thought band-aids were a fashion accessory. But on this trip, I was reminded that the gut feeling I had when I was younger was the right one. Erika, one of the medical students I worked with, showed me how to perform a physical exam on a patient the first week of clinics. Sounds pretty standard, I know. But it was the feeling I got when I heard the first stomach gurgle through my stethoscope as I listened to the patient's’ stomach. It was the excitement I felt when I heard the first shortened breath sound from an asthmatic patient. And today, it was that feeling I got when I heard my first heart murmur. You know, that feeling when you are so excited you can’t stop smiling because the human body is so incredibly amazing and complex that it amazes you. It was the little things like that that reminded me why I chose this arduous career path. I could not be more thankful for Mercer on Mission and all the amazing experiences they have provided me with over these past two weeks.


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