“You’re shy?” I remember my new freshman college roommate asking me. We were discussing what course of study each of us was pursuing, and the conversation had focused on why I had chosen to study medical laboratory science. In all honesty, I had chosen the major because I liked the idea of working by myself, away from people.
Now, almost 10 years later, I ask myself, “How is it that a shy lab tech is so excited about patient care?” I have worn many different hats in my life, but the one that I am currently wearing, that of a physician assistant student, has been one of the most rewarding ones so far. That is because I am doing the one thing that I was so hesitant to do when I was a freshman in college: work with people.
So, how did the tides change enough for me to decide to pursue a career where you interact with patients nearly all day, every day? The answer lies within the power of human connection. The relationship that occurs when people openly express their vulnerability, in the context of health care, pulled me out of my shell.