Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Mama said there’d be days like this

Updated 3/2017--photo/video and all links (except to my own posts) removed as many no longer active. and it was easier than checking each one.  

(cartoon photo credit)
The above is a cartoon that was in the paper on December 2, 2008. In reviewing my twitters that morning (prior to reading the paper), I saw this one from Vijay to which I responded.

scanman wondering if @Bongi1, @rlbates & @DrCris have such days :P

rlbates @scanman Regarding: have such days Fortunately not in the OR, but with quilting and life. Worry about it sometimes.

This has been on my mind a lot lately. I have been trying to find a way to put it into words. Another female surgeon who sews, the Stitching Surgeon, recently had a day like this with her sewing.

stitchinsurgeon spent the last 3 hours with my embroidery machine...every project ruined! going to the YMCA to work out some of this frustration! 1:32 PM Dec 1st

Then the next day she posted some lovely work she had done and said this:
I set up my embroidery machine and while it is working I am hard at work on my Bernina.
I'm just "sew" efficient.

When I am sewing and I find that things aren’t going right, I’m ripping out every other or every seam and having to redo them or making cutting errors and “wasting” fabric, then I just put the project aside for the day. I go do something else just like Stitching Surgeon did. If I had a day like that in the operating room, I would not be able to do that. I would have to finish what I had started. It would have to be done right. I do think that there are days for me, both in the OR and in sewing, where things just seem easy, almost magical. There are other days when I seem to struggle more than I would like, but I haven’t had any days (thankfully) where I have felt like I would (and by extension, the patient would) be better off if I could do the surgery another day. Still the thought lingers with me.

So let me leave you with the song (video) the title was taken from


Vijay said...

I guess the mark of a wise surgeon is to know perform with more care when s/he realizes it's "one of those days."

Nice post. Great song :)

Jabulani said...

$300 for the quilt? That's MUCH more like it!

I wholeheartedly relate to this blog ... I am currently making a costume for my daughter's gymnastics display. Last night, I sewed on the frill the wrong way round and spent 2 hours unpicking the whole thing. I am about to go back to it (and, please God, it will work out) but up til now, I've not even been able to look at it!
I have every admiration for you surgeons who have to work thru' your frustrations and doggedly keep at it. Particularly if "one of those days" becomes 2 or 3 ...

DrCris said...

I have had those sort of days at surgery and research. The tricky part in my surgical career is I have a supervising surgeon watching all the goofs and foot-in-mouthisms. So I have to reassure the patient, and still manage to keep the surgeon trusting.

I medical research, I have had some days where everything goes wrong, which means an experiment that starts with 8 subjects ends up with four. Any variation means that test is excluded from results. Temptation can be to make do, and lots of my colleagues do. However, I guess I know how important basic research can be in the long term, and it is worth making sure the data is quality, before everyone else bases their results on yours.