In August of 2009 I started with Middle Tennessee Ear, Nose & Throat (MTENT). On May 15th of this year I will say farewell. That was nearly 8 years ago. Throughout my time with MTENT, I have seen nearly 40,000 patients, my wife and I have had 4 children and I have cleaned out nearly 6 pounds of ear wax! (That’s only an estimation of course, but who is counting anyway?)
As I leave and start the next part of my journey I have reflected on what I have learned and received throughout my time here. Here are just a few of my thoughts:
- Being in medicine is much more than a prescription pad and degree hung on the wall. It is a calling to make life better for others. In turn, you hope they will take their gifts and do the same for someone else.
- Family is only second to God. They are there when you leave for work in the morning and are there when you come home at night. Invest in them and be present when you are home.
- Sometimes when you look around at the hurt and pain in the world you get overwhelmed by the sheer volume of work to be done. I’ve learned all we can do is treat the next patient in line or (in agricultural terms) cultivate the ground beneath our feet to the best of our talents and abilities. Then have faith that someone else will fulfill their role and that God will lead others to do the same in order to fill in the gaps.
- Medicine is a relationship between real people. Providers have lives, families and feelings. Patients are whole persons-not just walking health problems. Everyone is more fulfilled when they realize they are more than just an account number, a pay check, a Google review or a walking prescription pad.
- Patience…Patience…Patience. Beautiful things come from basic elements when given time, focus and love. In our fast paced, my-way-or-the-highway culture it can be difficult to give things time to develop, but I am thankful I did and thankful it is hard to leave.
- Finally, I have learned that to move on to good things, other things must end. My family and I are very excited about our future serving overseas in Central Asia. We will be teaching and training national MD’s in western/evidence based medicine. Without saying farewell to this very good portion of my life I could not accept this new position and all the potential it carries.
So with that, THANK YOU for allowing me to participate in your and your families care over these years. It has been my honor and pleasure to do so. Farewell to coworkers and patients.
In all you do, do it well,
Dan Johnston PA-C