“Pursuing Passions”: New article on locum tenens physicians’ hobbies

MY LATEST ARTICLE for Locum Life magazine, “Pursuing Passions,” has quite possibly the greatest opening photo you’ll see in my written work so far. If you dig llamas, you need to jump over to the online digital image and see Dr. Sophie Dojacques, owner and operator of the Silver Creek Animal Sanctuary, with one of her rescue animals. The llama shares the farm with six of its kin, 84 goats (several of which you can see here), and a pride of cats. She’s one of four doctors I had the privilege of interviewing to learn how locum tenens doctors enjoy their hobbies while providing skilled medical care across the globe.

How did she become a ray of light for neglected and abused animals? Quite unexpectedly:

When she purchased 22 acres in Silverton, Ore., Sophie Dojacques, MD, didn’t foresee the animal-rescue operation and community resource it would become. But the goats had other plans.

“I bought the property in 2005 with the plan to rescue horses, but the first goats came in 2006,” she says of 46 poorly kept and malnourished animals from a nearby farm. “That’s when things just headed off running.”

It was plainly evident in communicating with her and my three other physician sources that they had arranged their careers to support their interests, and not the other way around. Whether boating across the seven seas, surfing off the Australia or New Zealand coasts, or exploring the seemingly barren wastes of northern Alaska, they had configured their professional lives around their core interests—a fantastic example for all of us, no matter how we earn a living.

This article had me half out the door with my laptop looking to become a wandering writer, to follow these docs’ example. My next article is no exception; I spoke with several travel nurses who have been working on the road for a combined 40+ years. You don’t enjoy such a long career without deeply digging what you do and where you do it, and in this upcoming Healthcare Traveler article, I’ll share these nurses’ tips for staying engaged with one’s work and not only surviving on the road, but thriving.

And as always, if you have a story that needs to be told—llamas or no llamas—I’d love to be the one to deliver it to your readers. Contact me here and we’ll discuss!

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