I was living in a three-bedroom house comprised of four generations, in a country whose idea of purposeful being was to punch in at 8AM and do as you were told. It wasn’t until after the horror of Chernobyl that my parents fled communism with my brother and me to Italy and then to Canada, with the hope of a better life.
From a very young age I was taught that nothing is impossible; with sacrifice comes opportunity and the inherent value of selfless existence.
It’s these fundamental principles that have sustained my life and created an inner compass for my soul.
The innocence of my childhood, obscured with the unexpected challenge of caring for my ailing mother, profoundly impacted my view of the world, but it wasn’t until age 11 that I began to question the very meaning of selfless existence. I became captivated with the act of serving humanity; involving myself with various volunteer organizations. Upon entering high school, I discovered a volunteer position at the hospital; one that for the next decade would inconceivably transform my life and propel my fascination with the healing art of medicine.
Further fueled by my desire for serving others,
I waitressed at several restaurants over the course of the next few years. Unforeseen at the time, this job illuminated the breadth of diversity encompassing humanity and was the answer to earning enough to fund my trip to Belize. More than simply a journey of serving the underserved by offering them free health clinics, my experience in Belize significantly eternalized my passion for medicine and my love for people.
An appreciation of the human form and function
led me to my honors degree in Kinesiology from McMaster University in Canada. Learning the science of nutrition and biomechanics to the concept of mind over matter, the next four years would advance my understanding of health and become my foundation for medicine. Kinesiology emphasized the need for balance in life, from which I learned the importance of preventative and holistic aspects of health.
Shortly after graduating I was accepted into medical school at Poznan University of Medical Sciences. Never in my wildest dreams did I envision moving back to Poland; a country once bound by the confines of communism was now the haven for acquiring what I love most. The next few years were some of the most challenging, but genuinely the most humbling and rewarding. Each experience re-enforced my decision and reignited my infinite passion for medicine. I completed my last few years of medical school in Chicago and San Diego. I officially obtained my medical degree from Poznan University of Medical Sciences in Poznan, Poland and moved to the United States to begin a life in Arizona.
Life was amazing. I became a medical doctor, married the man of my dreams and moved to the United States to begin a career in medicine. Unfortunately, it’s very true that oftentimes life has its own plans for you. Over the next couple of years my world came crashing down with one obstacle after the next. It was then that I sank into the darkest place of my existence.
Miraculously, over a year later, I was thrown a life raft during a lecture I attended by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn about preventing and reversing heart disease using a whole food plant based diet. Feeling elated that I had learned something so profound and yet at the same time feeling completely bewildered and misled to say the least, that I was never taught this crucial and potentially lifesaving information throughout medical school, I felt a fire burn within me.
I knew this was my new beginning.
Medicine was the answer, but just not entirely in the way it is practiced today.
With my medical degree as my backbone, I dove into a world of self-education, reading journals, books, attending lectures and conferences, relearning and rediscovering the art of medicine. It was then that my unwavering love and passion for medicine grew more than ever before.
I view medicine as a way of life;
a spiritual endeavor that’s a commitment of its own dimension. I truly believe that medicine is just the beginning; a doorway to healing and empowering humanity. Medicine is the answer to my journey of selfless existence, one in which I hope will inspire and encourage others on their journey to health.