I remember her so vividly, like it was just yesterday, though one year have since elapsed since my clinical experience in the Federal Medical Centre Owerri. She had a solid reputation, a gold-star reputation, of doing excellently well in a “Man’s World”.
Do pardon me, I should have made an introduction. Meet Dr X, a Senior registrar and the highest ranking doctor, second only to the consultant, in my Obstetrics and Gynaecology unit. Even among her colleagues, she was revered, though they would never publicly agree to that. But this simple truth was so obvious to me.
Let me illustrate this a little more. Being our unit’s most senior doctor, she would almost always be present for rounds, clinics, calls and even grand-rounds. Dr X had an answer for every problem, a woman undergoes. This is not typical, however.
In a Department that is predominantly manned by male doctors, females who find their way into that department may hurriedly switch to another sub-specialties, or are generally cowered and prevented from being a shiny beacon for others to follow.
I got a taste of her academic prowess in one of the early morning seminar organised for by the department of O&G, for the various units. She had only entered into the already heated conference room, and gave her contribution to a question thrown to all present. At the very instant she uttered the answer, there was an unwritten agreement for the whole chaos to cease.
While in the clinic, she proved to be very resourceful, eager to teach and willing to listen. But when I heard that she was not married, I was not surprised.
I hardly know any professional who excelled brilliantly like Dr X did, and still manage her home; take care of the kids, domestic chores, etc. It is more like, ‘you cannot eat your cake and have it’. But is it really possible to for a female, who is a professional, to balance very effectively her rigors of family life and the workload of her work?!
Dr X decided against pursuing her family life and focus rather, on her job; focus on being the best ever Obstetrician and Gynaecologist. Her effort paid off, as she passed her consultancy exam and now, a consultant, she may decide to start up her own family with whomever she likes.
Remember to always do what suits you and hopefully your dreams may become a reality.