10 February 2012

Mercenary Medicine AND Botox



6 weeks away from my career suicide... OR my major paradigm shift in how I earn a living....Guess it's just a matter of perspective!

Emergency medicine is based on working with a group of people to cover the staffing needs of an ED 24/7/365... and for the most part, the docs that cover those shifts are pulled and pushed between day shifts, night shifts, swing shifts, weekends, holidays, etc...  While I am all for taking my turns with the "undesirable" shifts (i.e. weekends when the family is available, holidays) I have totally burnt out on the concept that I have NO consistency each week.  I can't plan Monday night book club meetings because I don't have a set day off.  I can't enjoy a Sunday school class because most Sundays I am either working or coming off a night shift, or just exhausted.  I can't be flexible with attending a play my niece is "starring" in because the play date was set after the work schedule came out and no one is wiling to swap a Friday night shift, particularly since she is not my kid.  :(

So.... I have decided to go mercenary.  I am ending my full time contract with my current "group" at the end of next month.... I am avoiding joining any group full time, and will be relying on my wits to secure enough part-time work to create a full-time schedule.  Hence, the potential career suicide!
Based on a current part time gig that I have had for the past year and a newly negotiated locum tenens agreement with another hospital in the southern part of the state, I believe I have enough work to be able to pay the mortgage AND feed the cats!  But it is a bit scary to go out there as a hired gun with no protective contract....

And as of this week, I believe I have added an entirely unexpected new dimension to my "career"!  Stepping out of the ER a bit, I will use my new found "freedom" to declare a dedicated day off for myself plus a dedicated clinic day to practice - AESTHETICS!  Yes, I may have finally found my "in" for doing Botox, fillers, lasers, etc...  I had my orientation today - now to just work out the details of the business of doing FUN STUFF!


So here I go, embarking on multiple career changes in one fell swoop!  What is it the psychologists say about the stress level of career changes??  I'm sure I'll remember shortly.....  As an aside, I find it funny that I am doing all of this at the same time as my friend Lisa has been asked to write a monthly column about her experiences as a rookie ER doctor for our society's newsletter.  It will be interesting to me to see how her "rookie" perpsective on things meshes with my mid-career perspective... how her idealism and excitement reminds me of how I used to feel.  It will be very interesting to me to see if I even recall a time when I did not feel jaded and need to escape my career life.  I wonder of those readers of ACEP News would want to read about a mid-career crisis and how one crazy woman "copes" with it?  Ha!  NOw THAT would be funny - to run beside each other columns written by a rookie, a mid-career, and a close-to-mythical-retirement...






5 comments:

  1. “20 years from now you will be disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the one’s you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

    -Mark Twain

    This was recently posted by my friend CBF... thought it was fitting...

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  2. What sort of training have you had to do "aesthetics?" Will you patients know about your training?

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    1. Well, since you ask, I have had quite a bit of hands on training in the botox and fillers, and I am about to get some intensive training on the lasers. And yes, I'll be happy to tell my patients about my training. Nothing I'm trying to hide here - except wrinkles and tattoos!

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  3. In September ob 2003, I did just that, cast off the lines and sailed away. Have a lot less money, but a lot more happiness in my current years. I watched my family and neighbors all head for work at the hospital, and took pictures for all those things they missed while taking care of everyone else. Might as well take the gravy road, because otherwise you will be passing out pills to the slum people. Whaaat! Yes there are slum people and they are degrading our society. By the way they come in all colors and shapes, I am equal at calling it like I see it.

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    1. Slum people? What? I don't think I have run across those in my 17 years of practicing medicine...??? OHHHHH - you mean those TROLLS! I agree, trolls come in all shapes, sizes, colors and tax brackets!

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