Specializing Is Just Work


You specialists thought that it was always going to be rewarding, that each day would be an adventure. Can it be possible that specializing is just work too?

I am not a south side of Chicago single mother with no food for her children, no money and no prospects. I am not an eighty year old widower whose breakfast every morning is the one egg that the manager of the Safeway store lets him steal.

Your neighbor had his McMansion foreclosed. You watched the moving trucks. The family drove away before the first light of the day. The wife grim-faced. The two teenage girls crying. You have your house paid off. Your biggest expenses are insurances and taxes. You are a medical professional. You won’t lose your job. The wife wants to take that long weekend at the south shore of Lake Tahoe. You told her that you’d rather get a flight to Cabo. You want different things. It is a problem.

You are not the poor kid who fought for his Ph.D. in Philosophy. He keeps trying to publish, but works nights at Borders to supplement the income from days checking groceries. You are a medical professional.

You may bitch and complain about the long hours on your feet. The boredom is killing you. (Isn’t it amazing that you can have the education as big as a hippopotamus? You are as fast with numbers and facts and details as a cheetah, but you still get bored). You have always hated weekend work and vowed that you would end that nonsense as soon as ________ fill in the blank with A. I have enough money…B. I have enough money… C. I have enough money. Isn’t it interesting that most of us think alike?

You specialists thought that it was always going to be rewarding, that each day would be an adventure. Can it be possible that specializing is just work too? None of us will get laid off, chances are. The paycheck will always be there every Friday. Most of us will always have the tip money for the valet parking at the club. It can’t be that bad. You are spoiled just like my grandson.

You are not an attorney. In tough times, they get put down at the bottom of the priorities list. You are not an electrical engineer. Shazam. That degree is outmoded in only 8 years. You aren’t working selling Barcaloungers because nobody wants Hummers and the dealership you sunk every penny of the wife’s inheritance into went bankrupt.

You are not a 19 year old American soldier, trudging down a close-in, dirt track between houses in a dark midnight neighborhood of Baghdad, Iraq, scared to death of an explosion any second. You are a medical professional in the United States of America. Life is terrific.

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