Faith and Medicine

15027569_10207380262686360_3664955331966927908_n.jpgIn my first blog post I introduced the name of my blog and where it was derived from. I find the word golden means to be true, pure, and full of optimism. Gold is a bright color that signifies passion and power. I have kind of adopted the phrase “golden soul” to describe my outlook on life. I believe that having a pure and genuine soul, remaining optimistic and positive, and being bright and bold with my actions are what makes me, me. Also, my favorite bible verse, Job 23:10 “But He knows where I am going. And when He tests me, I will come out as pure gold” really adds to my love for the word golden & the definition behind it. So naturally, A Golden PT was the perfect name for my blog!

Today, I want to talk about my faith and how it played a role in my trials & triumphs in my PT program as well as how it will play a role in my career in the health field. A lot of times I’ve heard that science and faith cannot mix but I’m not a believer in this whatsoever, and I know many other healthcare professionals might share my outlook with me.

First, I’d like to start by saying that my faith journey has been just that, a journey and it’s my own journey ungeneralizable to anyone by myself. I want to share my story just to shed some light on how my faith has played a role in building up my confidence and self-love, kept me focused and positive, and surrounded me with supportive individuals.

As a kid, I went to Sunday school and attending church regularly with my parents. I enjoyed it and even received my first communion as a young girl. When my family packed up and moved from Massachusetts to Florida we jumped around searching for the perfect church. At some point, life picked up, Melanie got injured, and the regular church routine started to fizzle away. At this point church became something we attended for Christmas Eve but I still prayed and believed my Grampie was looking over me from Heaven as I was told when I was a bit younger.

Through high school, undergrad, the application process, and even the first year of PT school my faith was a small part of me, at times I even questioned it. It wasn’t until my good friend’s baptism that things started to change. Following his baptism, I spoke to two of my closest friends, Joanna and Jenae, about how much I really enjoyed being at his church, singing the worship, and being in a room full of faith and love. With that, came an invitation to Vous Church in Miami from Jenae. We went the following Sunday and the second the service began my heart filled up and I knew I found something I was missing.

As I’ve eluded to previously, the application process really broke me down and made me question my own abilities. Once I was finally accepted to UM and I began the program I was ecstatic but things got crazy quickly. As school ramped up, so did my stress and some more self-doubt, was I deserving of my position in this program? Would I accel? I tore myself up and let negative vibes fill up my heart. I think that both Jenae and Joanna saw that and knew I was bottling up a lot of things. Looking back, I’m not sure how much longer I could have gone without that first day at Vous.

15894893_10207822312217322_2101881818203603170_n.jpgVous Church is a place where it’s impossible not to smile, it’s second nature to love and be loved, and where generosity overflows. The values of the church aligned with my general outlook on life. The worship filled up my heart, the pastors related the stories of the Bible in the best way, and I re-learned how to pray. One of my favorite parts of Vous is serving in the nursery, it gives me the opportunity of seeing the raw and genuine sweetness of the babies as well as watch a variety of babies develop (things future pediatric PTs say, LOL). Vous also offers Vous Crews, small groups of people gathering to share their stories, pray for and praise each other, and ultimately support each other. This support got me through several late nights study and big exams and practicals! For me, I always had distant support from mg family and friends but having a group of people that I see weekly to hold me accountable added a new factor of motivation for me.

So how does my faith fit into my career? I’m going to be working in the field of Pediatrics, where so many sad stories may be attached to the children or unfortunate circumstances may arise. Might that cause some individuals to think “how could there be a God?” Yes. But for me, my faith and relationship with God is what will give me the strength to be happy and positive and fill these families up with love and good vibes. Yes, there will be nights where I come home and wonder why innocent children are dealt less than ideal decks of cards, but my faith is what will help me deal with that. This runs true to everything involved in my sister’s story as well,  more recently I’ve learned to cope with it all (way better than I had been without my faith being this strong.) What if Melanie’s purpose is to use her amazing personality and strength to inspire others fighting invisible illness? If it is she’s sure doing one heck of a job.

I would never push my faith on anyone, but I would encourage anyone who’s feeling a little empty to find whatever it may be that might fill you back up. Maybe it’s church, maybe it’s not. For me, within the same exact timeline that I began attending Vous regularly, I gained more confidence in school which resulted in my performing better.  Within that same time period, I became a more joyous and generous person. I became more aware of my words and actions. The changes I’ve seen in myself following a just under a year and a half at Vous have made me a better person and a better future physical therapist. These attributes will add to how I procide patient care and how I interact with other health care professionals. I’m so grateful that I was able to find a way to believe in both faith and medicine, I hope it continues to take me further and my positivity gifted to me by faith shines through to my patients.

And as we say at Vous, “The Best is Yet to Come!”

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