Meet Eve

Hi, my name is Eve and at 23 years of age I am a newly minted Chinese Medicine Practitioner.

I grew up in southwest Victoria, in small towns along the coast where healthcare provider choices are limited but where more ‘alternative’ medicines are quite popular. I remember my parents receiving Chinese Medicine treatments at different times during my childhood. They would bring home herbs from Melbourne and always complain that they tasted horrible – I wondered if being sick might be preferable! We had this cough medicine that I remember tasted great (I would pretend to be sick so I could have some) and was covered in only Chinese characters instead of English. These kinds of medicines were a normal part of our medicine cabinet while I was growing up, but it wasn’t until I had acupuncture for the first time that I considered it as a career option for myself.

Like many young children, my first few career choices were somewhat unrealistic (in early primary school I wanted to be a songwriter despite having very little appreciation for rhythm). When I was old enough to watch crime shows, I discovered my interest in human anatomy and firmly decided to do forensic pathology (I suppose I wanted to BE Bones Brennan). As I got older and my personal values developed, I realised that what I would really find most rewarding was helping people and with a fascination of human physiology, healthcare seemed the most logic place for me to go.

Throughout late high-school I changed my mind about my preferred career many times, but it always had an underlying healthcare theme. These aspirations included: Psychologist, Psychiatrist, General Practitioner, Neurosurgeon, Paediatrician, Aged care nurse and Midwife. As you can see, I spent time contemplating just about every kind of healthcare practice available.

It wasn’t until I started getting sick that these choices came into question. During VCE I was regularly sick with a cough (thankfully this wasn’t during the pandemic) that lingered for days each time. At one point I was sick for one week every month. I saw five different GPs and was at one stage referred for a tonsillectomy (later advised against this by yet another doctor). Since my parents had had success with Chinese Medicine in the past, we decided it was time I gave it a go.

I was very nervous for my first appointment because I hate needles. But the doctor sat down with me and instead of asking me to briefly describe my main symptoms (as other practitioners had done), he looked at my tongue and took my pulse and said “wow, you are so stressed, huh?”. Now of course, he was talking to a VCE student who was very keen to go to uni and who was missing classes due to being sick regularly so, unsurprisingly, he was right. But to me, this question meant he was magic, and I instantly wanted the power to diagnose people this way. Every question seemed like he already knew the answer and after a couple of months of treatment, I stopped getting sick.

While I laugh at myself now thinking about that story being my initial inspiration for joining the Chinese Medicine course, I know that I have chosen Chinese Medicine because I believe its holistic approach can help fill in some of the gaps and because it allows me to connect with my patients and community to improve not only chief complaints but overall health and wellbeing as well.

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