Feeling of a surgeon-mentor over a former mentee

Today, January 11, 2017, I was happy to have a former student, Dr. Sheila Macalindong, assisted me in my difficult operation.  Sheila was a graduate of our general residency and surgical oncology programs in the Philippine General Hospital.  She is now a consultant.

I recalled and assumed that years years ago that my mentors, Dr. Antonio Limson and Dr. George Eufemio, felt the same way when they would ask me, a young consultant then, to assist them in their difficult operations. They trusted me. They were happy to see how I operated that they would ask me to assist them several times.  Most important of all, I assumed they had this feeling as mentors, they were happy to have produced such a skillful surgical graduate.  They never mentioned the last statement to me.  I just assumed because they repeated me asked me to assist them in their difficult operations.

When I was operating with Sheila, as I said,  I was happy.  Sheila had asked me to take a break or rest during the 9-hour operation (she knows I am old already) and she would continue doing the operation for me.  I declined.  I told her I was enjoying watching her operate. I saw her in her my operative moves and decision-making style.  It looked like she had learned from me.  It looked like she was my disciple, my replica. It looked like she had inculcated my operative moves and operative decision-making.

After the operation, I thanked her for assisting me.  I told her I enjoyed watching her operate.

I repeat, as a former mentor, I felt and was happy that I was able to produce a skillful surgical graduate.  I also enjoyed learning new things from her.



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