Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Obstetrics posting 2

Do we talk with utmost respect and reverence to our mother?

Do we answer her instantly when she calls for us?

Do we comply swiftly to her requests when she asks something of us?

Do we offer her a glass of water when she is thirsty, or carry the shopping to take a burden off of her?

When I chat with an obstetrics patient and more so when I enter the labour room, I ask myself these questions and I wonder in amazement: How is it possible for a child to not love, respect, revere, and cherish his mother with the crux of the meaning of these words.

I have heard stories of children hitting their mother, even killing their mother with their own hands because of something as trivial as a television programme!!! My mind simply cannot accept that such abomination can exist.

The pain and complications that a mother goes through to bear us throughout the pregnancy. Even an uncomplicated pregnancy is a hard thing. What more one riddled with hypertensive disorders, diabetes mellitus, anaemia, placenta praevia, abruptio placenta, and the list goes on.

As if bearing a pregnancy isn't enough comes the delivery. I just can't find words to describe it, and I was only an onlooker, and one that will never have to face the ordeal at that; but after watching mothers give birth, the pain they have to go through to bring us into the world, I cannot even imagine someone talking roughly to his mother.

"Thy Lord hath decreed that ye worship none but Him, and that ye be kind to parents. Whether one or both of them attain old age in thy life, say not to them a word of contempt, nor repel them but address them, in terms of honour".

[Surah al-Israa'/bani Isra'eel 17 : 23]

Maybe people that don't respect their parents - their mothers especially - should be shown a delivery.

That's the pain part. On a brighter note, obstetrics patients are the brightest patients I have seen so far. Well...who wouldn't be excited to get a cute, cuddly little baby. But even better than that...yeah there is something even better than a happy expecting mother...is the sight of a mother holding her newborn...

It is more beautiful than watching sunrise on a clear, balmy morning with a sweet zephyr serenading around you.

I wonder to myself: how can a child who is loved as such come to show disrespect to his mother? Even an onlooker can feel the warmth of that love and be moved to tears.

To everyone, especially to myself: please, please, please respect, love and cherish your mother. For me, this is the most valuable lesson I got from my obstetrics posting. Alhamdulillah, all thanks and praises to Allah for showing me this.

May Allah place my parents among those who follow in the way of Rasulullah SAW and the companions.


Obstetrics posting

An illuminating posting indeed, interesting - surely - fun...well...maybe not so much as some of my friends, but enjoyable enough.

Most if not all other universities combine obstetrics and gynaecology as a single posting. Luckily for us - i think - our first stint at this major posting was made half as hard as it should be. It was kind of awkward not knowing the gynae and only doing the obs part since the two are kind of a single inseparable entity. Still I am thankful that we didn't have to do both. Just obstetrics alone was hard enough...Actually just completing the delivery requirement was enough of an ordeal. There were loads of other stuff in our log book, and not to mention tons to read.

OK OK so the part about reading is a bit of an exaggeration. 'Obstetrics by Ten Teacher' isn't exactly what most people would expect of a medical book(it's less than 10 cm thick and isn't the size of a tombstone). The average bookworm medical student could probably finish it in two weeks or so. My 'not so little' little brother(As super duper of a bookworm as you can find) could probably do it in two days(while reading two or three other books at the same time).

Interestingly enough I didn't manage to even finish a single chapter. Just a bit here and a bit there. Funny isn't it? I - and the rest of group B(not sure about the supposedly harder working group A) - somehow managed to get by with the 'DUMEX book'. I wouldn't suggest my juniors do the same thing.

Your main focus from day 1 should be reading up 'Obstetrics by Ten Teachers'...And don't bother too much about completing the delivery requirement. You won't fail if you don't get enough deliveries, but you will fail the posting if you fail the clinical exam.

Monday, December 29, 2008


More than a week has passed since the start of my holidays. In fact the holidays are actually officially over. It's only a one week end posting holiday after our obstetrics posting, but since we're doing our GP posting next, and everyone has chosen a GP establishment near their homes(which is an obvious choice), the next three weeks is almost as good as a holiday.

One month with almost all the time in the world in our hands. It's a privilege medical students especially appreciate. We have almost no time for ourselves during the semester.

The first question that crossed my mind after I finished my short case was: "How should I spend the holidays?". It's not that I didn't have anything to do(other than studying medicine), in fact I have loads of stuff I would like to do. The real question is spending that time optimally so that it give maximum benefit.

So then another question arose: maximum benefit for what, or for whom? Doing stuff is easy, but doing it so that it gives the best results requires a clear purpose, and finding a clear purpose is not as straightforward as it sounds.

Without a purpose, we're just like bubbles. Pushed around hither and tither, going with the flow without our own will.

So then I decided that the the first thing I had to do was find a pristine clear purpose. And what greater purpose does a man have than the very purpose of his creation. What is the purpose of mans creation then? Our essence, our reason for existing.

It's not a question that any man can answer, because we're not the ones who created us after all. You can't ask a car "Hey you the Proton Saga over there, why were you created?". If the car can speak, it might answer: "I'm just for show", which is a stupid answer though it might be the only thing the car in the show room knows.

Another Proton Saga might answer "I'm for taking my masters children to school", which is partly true, but not the whole truth is it.

The reason we man make cars is to facilitate our travels, be it to take our children to school, to go to work, to go to the market or any other traveling purposes. Of course only a man can know that because we are the ones that make cars.

Similarly the only One that can know the true purpose of mans creation if the One that created man. It would be folly to ask another human the purpose of our creation just as it would be a folly to ask a car the purpose of its creation.

Only God can tell us the purpose of our creation since He is the one who created us.

So I decided then that I'd start my holidays by clearing up this question, the answer to which has been somewhat dirtied throughout the last few weeks. The book 'Apa Ertinya Saya Menganut Islam' by Ustaz Fathi Yakan is one of the best choices to find the answer. With the Quran and Hadeeth as guides, Ustaz Fathi Yakan leads us towards understanding our purpose as human beings, as true muslims.

It is a splendid read, even after going through it for the umpteenth time. I have put up a review in hafizh's books. I highly suggest this book for everyone.