School will soon be starting for some students. I’ve started thinking about a few things related to my studies. You’ve got to admit, at least to yourself, that there are pros and cons in every discipline. Studying in the field of health can come with certain unpleasant realities.
1- Being the family physician
It doesn’t matter how many times you tell your dad that you’re not a doctor, and that you’re actually studying acupuncture, he’s still going to call you every two hours to ask you if the pain in his back is normal. It doesn’t matter which field of study you’re in, or the level you’re at, you unwittingly become the family expert in all health related matters. It’s probably best not to tell anyone that you’re studying nursing if you want to keep your aunt’s calls from Îles-de-la-Madeleine to a strict minimum.
“Syrup for your back pain, papa.”
2- You become a hypochondriac
When you’re learning all kinds of stuff about your body and hyper contagious diseases, well, you start seeing bacteria in your soup. You just can’t help going to the hospital emergency ward when you’ve got a sore calf because maybe, just maybe, you’ve got a thrombophlebitis that might kill you within the next few hours.
3- You pester people about the virtues of a healthy lifestyle
Now that you’re in your second year of respiratory therapy, and you’ve become well acquainted with the effects of tobacco on the human body, you scold your elderly neighbour when he’s enjoying his evening smoke. Showing him pictures of smoke-infested lungs won’t make one iota of difference because, as far as he’s concerned, he’s already an old man in poor health. He might listen to the first five minutes of your litany before lighting a second cigarette.
4- You sort out all of your friends’ medicine cabinets
As far as you’re concerned, any medication that’s expired by a month or two is toxic. You certainly don’t want your best friend to end up going to the Poison Control Centre because she took a couple of Tylenols that expired three months ago. You quickly check all of her pills under the pretext of needing to use her washroom. Just to be sure. You never know, she could have a migraine next week.
“I got you, booooo!”
5- You’re not in the best of health
The endless hours of lectures and studying required every semester doesn’t make you the best candidate in terms of sleep. Let’s avoid talking about your eating habits which incidentally are likes those of every other student… Kraft Dinner and tomato sandwiches. You’re a strong advocate of good health but you ultimately don’t give yours a second thought. You know what they say about the shoemaker’s son.
By the way, have you met my good friend, Mr. Bones?
Bones, get it?
Travelling Alone: How Is It?