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25.03.2022

This is Going to Hurt: My Experience

This is Going To Hurt gives us a painfully funny and heartbreakingly honest insight into life in the NHS. It paints a bleak picture.

Characters repeatedly pay forward their traumas by snapping at each other and throwing one another under the bus. It’s brokenness stacked upon brokenness that collides with others’ brokenness.

I’ve experienced this in part during my seven years working as a junior doctor in the NHS. But I’ve also experienced that work need not be a one-way trip towards self-destruction.

The series follows Adam, a junior doctor in an understaffed obstetrics and gynaecology department. In the first episode he makes a mistake with life-threatening consequences. The series follows him and his junior, Shruti, as they continue to work whilst navigating disciplinaries and managing their personal lives.

The coping mechanisms displayed in the series range from socially acceptable caffeine addictions right the way through to, most tragically, suicide. Our protagonist returns to his job each day like an abused partner who won’t let go. It raises difficult questions, not least for Christians. Where is goodness, where is love, and where is Jesus in this place?

When I first began work at a hospital, it was as if Jesus dropped me off in the carpark and picked me up when I clocked out. Working without an awareness of his presence with me, around me, and in me robbed me of the ability to hear his constant voice speaking through my colleagues, patients, and situations at work.

During the final episode of the series, we meet a priest officiating a wedding. He preaches: ‘Love completes us. It fulfils us. It makes the half, whole’. Love offers something that the character’s work cannot.

These days, during procedures I pray God will protect patients and bring success. In difficult communications with colleagues, God gently nudges me about moments I’ve failed to be kind. He also nudges me to be kind to myself when the aforementioned procedures don’t go as I hope. There have been a few of those.

And Jesus has prompted me to take care of the staff I work with. One receptionist thanked me three times on the same day for just asking how she was after a stressful patient interaction.

Even in broken places and amidst broken people, Jesus is at work. My task is to see my workplace as he sees it: a place full of opportunity to put his goodness and love where his goodness and love are most needed.

 

Dr James Lainchbury
James is a GP trainee and Youth leader based in the East Midlands. You can reach him here.

 

Comments

  1. Wonderful sensitively written piece. Thank you

    By Jacqui  -  25 Mar 2022
    • Thanks for your encouragement Jacqui!

      By James  -  27 Mar 2022
  2. Wonderful to hear a doctor’s perspective, thank you James!

    By Rachel Smith  -  25 Mar 2022
    • Thanks Rachel

      By James  -  27 Mar 2022
  3. I enjoy many aspects if the material and live they it relates to exposing the Christian message to everyday life and HOW we can be conduits to discipling God’s kingdom message of love in action.

    By Victor magowan  -  25 Mar 2022
    • Thanks for your encouragement Victor. There are few easy answers, but I am grateful to have experienced God’s love and his grace whilst at work in the NHS. Bless you

      By James  -  27 Mar 2022
  4. Amen James. Thanks you for the reminder that we need to follow Jesus and the gospel message not the broken and fractured culture we happen to occupy.

    God bless

    Gary

    By Gary Stacey  -  25 Mar 2022
    • Thanks Gary. Absolutely, and it is humbling to receive God’s mercy and grace for where we will inevitably stumble.

      By James  -  27 Mar 2022
  5. thanks for this, helpful insight for all walks of life & work

    By Bruce Gulland  -  25 Mar 2022
    • Thanks for the encouragement Bruce

      By James  -  27 Mar 2022
  6. Thanks for sharing, needed these reminders to bring grace and love in the workplace!

    By Ben  -  25 Mar 2022
  7. This is such a great piece, providing hope to those of us outside it, that believers in the NHS can find the daily strength and hope they need.
    May God bless and empower you to continue being salt and light where you work ?

    By Deborah Jenkins  -  26 Mar 2022
  8. Thank u very much for sharing – very encouraging

    By Sue Cryer  -  28 Mar 2022

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