As I gear up for a new year as a PGY-2, I can’t help but to take a moment to look back and reflect upon the challenging, inspiring, and memorable moments of this past year. It is difficult to put into words the amount of emotion and fortitude that was put forth by the MGH/McLean team and community during COVID. Courage and passion emanated through the hallways of this hospital, and it was a privilege to serve with this team through every moment of each day facing an unprecedented virus that called heroes in scrubs to stand at the bedside of the most vulnerable.
In this light, I ask myself: what do I love the most about these institutions? The people: the team of attendings, residents, nurses, PA’s, security guards, social workers and all those who wear the MGH/McLean badge. One thing I remembered about my interview day at MGH/McLean was the feeling of family. Through this year, that feeling amongst the MGH/McLean psychiatry department has not wavered.
Currently working on an inpatient psychiatric unit at McLean Hospital, I have the privilege of working with a dynamic team of leaders and mental health professionals, while learning from and with patients facing bipolar disorder, psychotic disorders, depression, substance use disorders, personality disorders and so much else. This experience has undoubtedly presented some of the most rewarding, humbling, and educational experiences. On most days, my co-residents and I start the morning with lecture, then proceed to rounds, attend weekly case conferences, learn from our supervisors for teaching and guidance, and spend hours at the patient’s bedside. On some days we have outpatient clinic, for which we meet with patients for psychopharmacology or therapy appointments. It can be a striking comparison, working in inpatient and outpatient settings. However, in both environments, the patient’s stories, strengths, life experiences and values come through the interview. It is easy for me to remember the reasons why I fell in love with the field of psychiatry.
Certainly, PGY-2 year has its own unique set of challenges. However, even through the long nights on call and the toughest patient cases, I find myself fulfilled with a sense of purpose and happiness to serve patients in their most vulnerable times. I love the job; it is just as simple as that.
I hope wherever you are, and if you had read this small excerpt, that you are doing well. If you find your way to MGH, I hope you have the same positive experience I have, or even better.