It’s an incredible privilege to watch someone achieve a dream. For the last 4 years I’ve watched Brendan dedicate hours to studying medicine, reading about physician care and practicing his specialty whenever possible. He’s truly given medical school his 150% and seeing him finish fills me with an immeasurable amount of pride. He graduates next weekend, but today is his last day of school – forever! He’s a lifelong learner, so he’ll never stop teaching himself more about his profession, but today marks his last day as a student of medicine. The next time he puts on a white coat, it’ll be as an MD-carrying doctor.
I wanted to share a bit of our experience in Honduras from a few months ago since so much of what we did and saw was truly once in a lifetime. It’s rare that we get to see people in their professions. I have friends who are teachers, but I’ve never seen them in their classrooms. We know people who are engineers, social workers, nurses, producers, designers and business owners, but we rarely, if ever, get to see them in those roles. This is especially true for those in healthcare, but while we were in Honduras I had to opportunity to see Brendan as “Dr. Payne”. Now, before I go on, please know that every individual seen below with Brendan gave their written consent to be photographed and for their pictures to be shared publicly. The images below were from an open-air monthly clinic in La Fe, a somewhat rural and very impoverished community in La Ceiba. The medical missions team spending the week with us provided a variety of care, from dental work to ultrasounds to prescription medication to an array of small procedures. Yours truly even worked in the pharmacy!
I had seen Brendan consult a patient once before in the standing clinic, but this day I got to watch him see patient after patient after patient. Young, old, healthy, very sick. Speaking in what he’d consider bad Spanish (Mr. Humble and Modest), he used the last four years of learning, attending guidance and clinical experience to provide them with the best care possible. All the while, I was documenting his experience and theirs. It’s probably one of the only times we’ll both be doing what we’re most passionate about in the same space at the same time. Given how very different our career paths are, that’s pretty cool, and it was probably one of my favorite experiences from our time in Honduras.
So, today is his last day as a medical student, but May 7th will be his first as a doctor, and given my experience (which now extends beyond the times I’ve cut myself or had a cold), I can say he’s going to be one of the best. B, I’m so proud of you. It’s been a gift to walk by your side the past four years, and I’m so excited to see you as a real doctor!
Emily is a destination wedding photographer. She loves natural light and is available to travel worldwide.