I hate to say it, but here it is.
If I wasn't bound by locale restrictions by my visa, or by our home mortgage, today probably would have been one of those days I would have handed in my resignation.
Maybe I'm just not cut out for private practice. You're gone for 2 days, and you already have 2 inches of charts and 20 phonecalls to catch up on. The patient traffic in unbelievable; I'm seeing at least 1.5x the number of patients my colleagues at my alma mater sees. It's rush in, rush out. And I don't think we're even the exception amongst nonacademic centers. There's no breathing time, I don't feel like I'm having enough time to properly chart, to explain things to patients. And then, on a day like this, all you need is one pissed-off patient to really, really make you feel horrid about yourself.
I'm trying to remind myself that you win some, you lose some. You help and heal some patients; yo lose some. Kristin told me to look at the numerous cards I've gotten from patients, to remind me that thankfully most patients are grateful. I'm also trying to remind myself that that particular patient has some psychiatric issues and has been verbally abusive to numerous staff. And that she's obviously forgotten, that the very thing she is pissed off about was something we were doing voluntarily, as a charity case, because she couldn't afford things. And there she was, in our office, yelling about how I'm a terrible doctor because she didn't get her free samples on time.
Don't get me wrong, I don't hate my job, but there are days I wish some things were different. I wish I didn't start Mondays (or calls) with that constant deep chest pressure/tighness and anxiety that you know is stress. I wish I didn't feel like I had to rush the patient out the door on time, otherwise the next 6 patients would be left waiting. I wish the clinic wouldn't try to fill every single minute with a patient. Really, I don't care if I have a 30 minute lull here or there. I could catch up on notes, call my patients to review labs rather than punting that to my nurse. I could finally complete my thyroid nodule manuscript that's collecting dust on my table. Heck, I could even be blogging or reading CNN; I don't care.
Work is stressful. And then, wham, on days like this, really, you just come home feeling horrid. Your logical side tells you you're doing a good job, but that emotional side takes to heart what one crazy patient said.