cmc362 Posted August 20, 2012 Share Posted August 20, 2012 Avoiding a ride down a mountain behind a ski patrolman in a toboggan had always been a lifelong goal of mine. As my femur snapped like a gunshot echoing thru the trees, board still attached to my feet, I knew I failed at accomplishing this lifelong goal. The brigade of no less than ten paramedics arrived on scene, assuring me that I was in for an experience. As they inserted an IV into my arm, administered Fentanyl, and pulled my leg into traction, I could not help but to think back to my training in medicine and dwell on the recovery that lay ahead of me. I had heard after the surgery that a man named Dr. Dorf was responsible for inserting the 18-inch titanium nail down the center of my femur, but he was a myth to me. However, I did meet an amazing physician assistant named Annie Bowen, who was bed side throughout the surgery. She assured me that the surgery was successful in realigning my bone and that I would be back on my feet in no time. Little did I know at the time that this woman would play a major role in finalizing my decision to become a physician assistant. Over the past several years, my family has struggled with copious amounts of health issues. My grandfather on my father’s side of the family passed away from kidney failure along with leukemia. Before he passed, he also struggled with MRSA, Necrotizing Fasciitis, and many other ailments. My other grandfather struggled with Alzheimer’s disease up until his death a few years ago. He also had a brain tumor removed earlier in life that may have been a risk factor for his memory loss. I lost my 17-year-old cousin Erin to a heart attack due to low potassium levels directly correlated to her cystic fibrosis. Her brother Keenan suffers from crippling Cerebral Palsy and Epilepsy. On top of the medical problems, my father donated a kidney to a colleague’s wife in order to save her life. Needless to say, I have spent my fair share of time in and out of emergency rooms, hospitals, and special care facilities. During these times, I remember sitting in the hospital feeling helpless, wishing that I could personally do something miraculous for everyone in my family to overcome these issues. I was impressed with the medical care my family members were given every step of the way, but I was inspired by those who could sit down and compassionately explain in simple terms what we were facing. I have always had a passion for lending a hand to someone in need. While growing up, I played numerous seasons of baseball with handicapped teams. During these seasons of baseball, I was paired with a special needs child and played side by side with them. I also spent years as a swim coach, where I worked with autistic and physically handicapped children and taught them how to be safe around water. These activities helped to shape me into who I am today. I enjoyed watching these children develop and gained a sense of accomplishment for being an aide in their success. My passion for the sciences, along with my background in working with people propelled me to study exercise science at Northern Arizona University in pursuit of someday becoming involved in medicine. My family’s health issues and my childhood desires to help the needy played a major role in my decision to strive to become a health professional, but my experience with breaking my femur was the determining factor in my decision to be a PA. Annie Bowen was happy to sit with me in the hospital and discuss my leg along with why she loved the profession so much. She invited me to shadow her at the Vail Summit Orthopedic Center in Frisco, CO. During this shadowing opportunity, I learned that her first job as a PA was working for a Cardiologist and she had experience in physical therapy as well. She explained that as a physician assistant, she had the opportunity to work in many different disciplines of medicine. Annie Bowen helped me to realize and understand the other equally beautiful side of being a PA. Taking care of the broken, the sick, the healthy and dying requires more than knowledge of the mechanisms that cause these problems. It requires a kind, loving heart that can relate to the experiences that people go through on a day-to-day basis. I find myself relating to doctors and PA’s in the sense that, even in heavy situations involving health and wellbeing of a person, I am a glass half full type of guy. I often look for the good in people and strive to help in any situation that I can, whether it be using my skills as an EMT or helping handicapped children play baseball or learn to swim. I have the disposition to sit beside patients, connect with them on a personal level, give them empathy and explain the medical procedures and recovery they are facing. I want to be a physician assistant because I feel I can make an impact on the lives of the people I will be working to fix and cure. It may sound ironic, but wrapping my leg around a tree may be the most defining moment in my life. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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