So now that we're here, what exactly is going to be going on at HeartHandsEyes.com? Why do I need this website instead of just posting my status on Facebook or Twitter or even Tumblr? Why do I think I even need to 'post' anything at all?
I have been blessed with a wonderful life. As some of you know my childhood was not the typical experience for a child growing up in the United States, and maybe one day I'll elaborate on that as it directly affects my worldview. But ever since I hit college life has given me so much and allowed me the opportunity to see and do more than I could ever have imagined.
Flash-forward to today. I am a physician practicing a specialty that I adore: full-scope Family Medicine with an emphasis on taking care of pregnant mothers and babies. I get to travel the world meeting fascinating people, and most of the time I get to help others when I am in those places. But this is how things are now. In the Spring of 2012 I realized I was very unhappy with the rushed pace of typical US medical practice, especially in New England. I was seeing as many patients as could be fit into my schedule and rushing through visits. I was (not) balancing far too many work and academic projects. My health was waning, my relationships were suffering, and I felt useless. It was a very strange place to be- practicing a profession that by its very nature helps people, but feeling that I was of no use to anyone, especially to myself.
So during a short trip to beautiful Asheville, North Carolina that Spring I stood back and assessed where I was and where I needed to be. The result is where I am today. I love medicine again, I am becoming spiritually focused, I already have been around the world once, and my mind, body, and spirit are becoming stronger. I am in the process of trying to lead a more remarkable and creative life- one that is of service to others, and one that is interesting and inspires me. It was a big mental leap to decide to do this, and it involved a lot of improbable logistics. If I had not made irregular leaps I wouldn't have been able to see the forest for those trees. And before I could move forward I needed to restructure, I needed to center, and I needed to rest. It took a lot of help from my adopted family, and there was saddness and loss along the way.
This website and the words and photos exist as a record of what we do and what can be done. Words and photography have been important to me during my entire life and have been the lens I've used to really access our world meaningfully. I hope that now they can be an effective medium to share with others.
To be more granular:
HeartHandsEyes.com exists to relay the stories of the people, places, and issues I encounter in my travels and in my work as a locum tenens, mission, and expedition physician, and as a photographer and writer.
We'll have discussions about making hard decisions, setting goals, physical and spiritual health, professional burnout, and the logistics involved in seeking out meaningful experience in our lives.
There are a lot of tools I've used to be able to pull everything off- hardware, software, books, gear, services, and techniques to be able to do the things I get to do. I think they're interesting and would like to share them. I'm a boy, and boys love gear.
And of course, there is the very real matter of finances to discuss.
I don't think I am so important that everybody should come and hear what I have to say. But I do think that our lives and our world is fascinating. I don't think anybody needs to become burned-out doing the thing they love- especially physicians and nurses. For now I just want share ideas and stories.
I think that will be interesting.
Aaron A. Davis, D.O.