Especially on tough days, when frustration is abundant and patience is not, I’m sure you’ve asked yourself sanity self-assessment questions along the lines of “What I am doing here?” or “Why do I bother?”
We’ve all been there, and with that, the more challenging question to ask is “Would I do this all over again?” I’ve asked myself this question a number of times over the years, and each time I do, the answer is the same.
In all fairness, there have been many periods of high stress, between the professional and personal side. It’s been a roller coaster ride that has been unique, although no doubt you have had your own version.
When asking this question, it turns into an exercise of introspection and personal accountability. It serves as a mental checkpoint that can lead to adjustments in planning, attitude and a perspective that is based in the reality of experience.
Why do I answer “yes” despite the option to escape into a fantasy where everything is nearly perfect?
It’s because the final chapter hasn’t been written and the experiences of the past have led me to this point, which is one of continued optimism. Sure, the past has been rocky at times, but the people I’ve met along the way wouldn’t be in my life if I hadn’t taken this path. The friends I have made in the wound care community, whether they be colleagues, patients, or members of industry, have become my greatest gift. I’ve been able to help others along the way, shared laughs and tears, and wouldn’t have missed a moment if given the opportunity to rewrite my history. I probably would have done a few things differently and wish I had a few “do-overs,” but that’s part of the human condition.
Try to imagine your life minus the experiences and the people you’ve encountered in your clinic and career. Would your life be better without them? So once again, I ask, would you do it all again?
Dr. Desmond Bell is the Founder and President of “The Save A Leg, Save A Life” Foundation, a multidisciplinary non-profit organization dedicated to the reduction in lower extremity amputations and improving wound healing outcomes through education, evidence-based methodology and community outreach. He also serves as Chief Medical Officer of Omeza, an evidence-based medical technology company and consumer healthcare products company initially focused on healing chronic wounds and preventing their recurrence. In 2020, he joined MD Coaches as an Executive Physician Coach, serving as a peer to peer mentor.