The medical drama is one of the staples of the television world. It also happens to be the source of some of the longest running dramas, that include "Grey's Anatomy," "ER," "House." In their years on television ("Grey's Anatomy" is currently on its 15th season), it provided us entertainment in the forms of relationship drama, extreme medical cases, emotional connections and more.
Even though that main purpose of these shows is to entertain, they have also served as a source of knowledge, teaching us things about the medical community. In addition to medical knowledge, they have also provided us with endless knowledge about life itself.
I've watched "Grey's Anatomy" since the show started in 2005. When you take into consideration that the show started in my childhood and continues into adulthood, you can understand how it could become a large part of your life. As an adult, I started to realize that a lot of the things that I've learned over the years, especially medically, have come from watching my favorite medical drama.
Here are a few lessons that I've learned from watching "Grey's Anatomy" over the years, from a personal perspective.
1. There should be an appreciation for scientific and medical knowledge.
Science can be interesting, but all you have to do is appreciate it.
If you're like me (who graduated with a degree in Biology), you understand how amazing and cool it is to be a science nerd. "Grey's Anatomy" not only taught me to have an appreciation for scientific and medical knowledge but how to love it. After episodes would air, I would spend time researching and learning about the cases that were the story for the week. However, not all of us find science enjoyable, especially in school. The show teaches you that when applying it to real-life perspective, you gain a whole different view.
You may not love it, but appreciate the gifts it's given us to cure and prevent diseases, perform life-saving procedures, and thus...give us long-lasting and healthier lives.
2. Women in science are important.
Women are powerful.
I spent the majority of my life knowing that I wanted to have some type of career in the medical world. Even though I knew it was always possible, watching the females on the show encouraged it.
On Grey's Anatomy, there are female doctors from a variety of backgrounds, creeds, races, and ethnicities. In their fictional lives, we've watched them become doctors while balancing their personal lives, including relationships, kids, or just time for themselves.
It's here where you realize that representation is important on screen, but also in real life. The ability to see people who look like me inspired me (and many other women) to this profession.
The representation (due to inspiration) translates over into real life and gives us medical professionals from all backgrounds. When you achieve diversity, it allows medical professionals to be able to relate to more patients and bring experiences that will only enhance the medical community.
3. Alzheimer's disease is a difficult thing.
Ellis Grey in her "awaken" Alzheimer's state
Alright, now that we've talked about some personal lessons, here comes some medical ones.
My first introduction to Alzheimer's disease came from "Grey's Anatomy" in the case of Meredith Grey's mother, Dr. Ellis Grey. We learned how the disease robbed the Ellis Grey of her outstanding surgical career, leaving her in a care facility.
In later seasons, the disease also affects Dr. Richard Webber's wife, Adele Webber (who experiences the same fate as Ellis).
I began to understand the impacts the disease not only had on the individual but also the family. It was an opening act to the things I would begin to experience in my own family as I became older.
4. Therapy can be a great thing.
That's right. You can talk it out. Or you can dance it out. I prefer the latter.
As a young and innocent child, you don't realize that sometimes things get tough. There are times where we need to check-up with the mind. "Grey's Anatomy" established at a young age that therapy was perfectly normal. It didn't matter if it was for an individual or a couple, therapy could be a good thing.
5. You need a person.
Find your person. They're out there.
Meredith Grey and Cristina Yang are the inventors of the "person" thing. However, it's reflected across all the "Grey's Anatomy" friendships (and relationships).
Callie Torres had Mark Sloan (I'm crying writing this.)
Arizona Robbins has April Kepner.
Miranda Bailey has Richard Webber.
Owen Hunt has Teddy Altman (that's debatable now.)
The main point here is that you need someone in your life that you can depend on. They are the person you can go to for anything and is always down for the journey. You may have a lot of friends, but they're just friends. When things get rough, they may take off or not always be there. Find your person and never let them go.
6. He is not the sun. You are.
You are the most important person.
The last scene between Cristina Yang and Meredith Grey will always make me tear up. Cristina Yang taught us a lot of the lessons along the way, but her last one will always stand out. When it comes to understanding this quote, your sexuality isn't the question, because it means the same thing to everyone.
You are the most important person in your life. Your significant other (or anyone else) should not take priority over your life and dreams.
Cristina Yang always held her own and never wavered on the things and the life she wanted. We should all remember to do the same.
There are 15 seasons of "Grey's Anatomy" that contained loads of storylines that taught us many things. These are just a few, among many that we all could learn from and need reminders of from time to time. In the end, television shows have the power to transform all our lives and teach us lessons if you watch closely enough.