Sunday, June 3, 2007

The Master Plan

The Master Plan

I came to Stony Brook last June with a secret master plan. The plan was to kill my career in medicine. And the plan is almost complete.

That’s right. I hated medicine so much that I wanted to quit, but my debt wouldn’t let me go peacefully. I took a job so that I could use to pay off my loans and then be off to the next horizon. It wouldn’t be the first time. I’ve been a writer, a teacher and priest. Who knows what’s next?

Stony Brook was to be the tombstone of my medical career. After laying the last seven years of the bleak ugliness of modern medicine to their final rest, I could move on to next adventure.

Then I met you. The residents of Stony Brook.

You showed me grace under pressure. John’s easy laugh, Kyle’s indefatiguable enthusiam, Manny’s soft-spoken poise.

You showed me how to be a doctor. Jeremy soothing a crying child with pictures of his dog. Darryl’s care inspiring complete loyalty in his patients. Elizabeth’s inability to swear or be discouraged.

I tried to teach you what I had learned. I have tried to give you everything I had, but I received so much more. I looked forward to coming to work. I created new lectures and new lesson plans in order to make experience better.

The secret master plan is scrapped. The new plan is no secret. I plan to become the best doctor and teacher that I can.

I hate to have to leave you now, but you know I have my reasons.
I’ve leaving a different man from the one you met a year ago. I came to Stony Brook beaten and bruised from medical training. You restored my faith in medicine, in teaching, in doing good despite the system.

Emergency medicine is about giving people second chances. You’ve given me my second chance. I promise I won’t let you down.

Thank you, Stony Brook class of 2007.

Eric Schultz
Honorary 4th year resident

P.S. You’d better visit me, bitches. I know where you live.

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