The most conflicted point in my recent life was leaving The Movement. Not the entire Movement, per se, but its large arm to which I had devoted painstaking hours and handfuls of my hair. While it's true that I never had any intention to join The Movement to begin with - though I had always been something of a fan - I lamented my new inability to touch another person's life in that unique and unheard-of way. Maybe it's a vestige of our generic childhood dreams ("to help people"), or a sense of duty ("who else could do this job?"), or even the elusive welling-up of emotion at having single-handedly solved a problem in a very real way ("God bless you, Miss Nautica!"). Whatever the reason, I was unable to shake The Movement; it was under my skin, and so I came back for more. Who'd 'a thunk it?
Now, lest we forget, I have recently steered my life in a completely different direction. I have, however, carved out a nice little slice of my week to rejoin the masses. Just a taste, but enough to satisfy my need to "stick it" to the opposition. Everyone needs to do a little sticking every now and then, and so I feel pretty good about the degree to which I stick. But what I never would have expected was the twinge of envy (of all things!) to see another's name where mine used to be, of nostalgia to see my back-slanty handwriting everywhere, and of grief to know that my clinic friends would soon be back to business with a new partner in crime.
Ah, sweet sorrow!
I guess I had taken for granted all I had learned, all I had done, and all I had changed during my time in The Movement. Well spent, I should say. Amidst all the screamy angst I supposed I had learned a thing or two - about others, about myself. And who can forget an experience like that, or detract from its significance? So while my long-term plans no longer involve The Movement, I will always feel the unity and the strength of everyone who contributes - docs, patients, supporters - and recall that for a time, I too was making history.
Bon voyage, Abortioneers!