If you asked me when I was 4 or 5 years old what I wanted to be when I grew up, I would have said: ”I want to be a doctor”; and to prove my clear intention to you I would have brought to show you my toy doctor’s kit and a doll that had been operated on and whose life was now out of danger.
For years I kept this desire alive, fueled by the mystery and the appeal of my godmother’s presence and stories. I loved my godmother Paula. She was a pediatrician. Patient, kind and funny, she wore perfume, nice clothes and high heels. She was passionate about her work and enjoyed having me around. I loved being in her presence and was thrilled every time I went to visit, which was every week.
She’d let me do all the things that other adults did not. I was allowed to play with her jewelry and with her makeup and bounce on her bed. I was fascinated by her and adored her. Still do.
Even though I do not get to see her unless I travel to Romania, she is and will always be a part of me and I am grateful for her wonderful and inspiring presence in my life.
Another thing I loved to do when I went to her house was to pull her large medical books off their shelves and browse through them. Before knowing how to read, I would just study the anatomy/dissection pictures (these were sometimes scary, but that didn’t stop me) and look at drawings of joints and brains and muscles.
I wanted to be like her so I thought that one day, when I was older, I would go to medical school.
I did not.
Tomorrow I will share with you why.