Balancing Life as a Wife, Mother and a Dermatologist

My usual day starts at six in the morning.  I wake up my daughter and get her ready for school.  My husband who is an early morning person is awake by five in the morning.  He checks his phone for updates from his resident physicians about his patients admitted in the hospital, or he prepares his lectures for his medical students. The morning gets chaotic sometimes when my daughter demands for more time to sleep. When time struck seven o’ clock that means it is time for them to leave the house.  On week days, we share the usual oats and cereals meal in the morning.  During weekends, when there is plenty of time in the morning can we enjoy Filipino rice meals.  My husband drives my daughter to school then he proceeds to his morning classes or meetings.

I could not dream of any profession or field than being a dermatologist. It may not be a very demanding field compares with my husband, Ely, who is “on call” 24/7 a day, as an interventional cardiologist. I feel becoming a dermatologist had put a balance to my family. Should I choose a more demanding field same as my husband, I would be compromising a lot of time and care that I should be giving them. Being a dermatologist, I can manage my own time, as most of my clinic schedule is in the afternoon. I can simply be a wife and a mother in the morning, and be in my profession in the afternoon and until evening.

My husband and I enjoy many conversations and laughter as we discuss in the evening about how our days went by.  Often times, we talked about how different our world is. It is very ironic, how extremes our life situation can be, he talks about how he hopes and prays that his patients would survive a heart attack. While I talk about the effect of whitening an underarm. We see the world differently, I am the perfectionist, and maybe that is what being a dermatologist is about when beauty and look are at stake. I am more of a visionary always laying out a detailed plan.  My husband on the other hand, lives day by day or one moment at a time, as time is his enemy or his friend. He has no control of his time, as we can’t control who will suffer a heart attack next.

From my husband, I learn to value the importance of life, the importance of quality time. If we can spend the whole Sunday together, that’s already a miracle.  Since Holidays and Sundays can be interrupted by emergency calls from the hospitals. I play a major role in parenting our daughter, since I have more free time than him. Making sure to be home by nine in the evening especially during exam week when I have to personally tutor my daughter.

Often times, patience and understanding are being tested. Waiting for him at the wee hours as he finish his cardiac monitoring on his patients.  Leaving a deep sigh if he fetch you on the wrong clinic. His mind is already pre-occupied by many things.  I could not complain more especially I know it’s been a long day for him as he helps his patients on their battle for life.

To live at the present moment means giving realistic expectations to my patients as to the outcome of the treatment and never giving false hopes.  In these roles I am playing, being at today and not on tomorrow, doing what I can do for today. Pursuing my own passion, be in writing, art works, yoga or getting a massage. Getting connected to my Derma friends, having a lunch out together or attending conventions and workshops together. Appreciating the people around me. Being grateful for all the things we have. All these help me to balance things out so I can be at my BEST on everything I do, and on every situation I am into.

When you are a dermatologist, you live to inspire, to help people look better, feel better so you can make the world happy, contented and beautiful.