A Hobby or a Passion
Author Nicolas Sparks once said: “Passion and satisfaction go hand in hand, and without them, any happiness is only temporary, because there’s nothing to make it last.”
Taking a cue from that statement Pinky Patel decided to not only pursue her passion of pharmacy, but successfully compliment it with Ikebana to satisfy her creative desires.
After working as a pharmacist for two decades Patel had her first encounter with the Japanese art of flower arrangements Ikebana in 2001, and was completely absorbed by its beauty and simplicity.
She said: “A friend had given me a ticket to go and watch a demonstration by a visiting professor from Japan. The simplicity of the arrangement was the main attraction. The arrangements gave each flower or branch its own space and there seemed to be a harmony between the materials used.”
Since she is a part of the pharmaceutical industry one would have thought the terminologies wouldn’t be that difficult to grasp. However, during the initial stages getting the hang of saying words such as Nageire, Seika or Moribana seemed like a tongue twister.
Talking about her journey, Patel recounts: “When I started the terminology was difficult to grasp. I think it took me a few terms before I knew the terminology by heart. Even now with the more traditional and complex arrangements, I need to refer to my notes.”
But despite the hard work and the gruelling learning phase Ikebana gave her immense satisfaction. When juggling between her family and her passion for pharmacy she felt tired and Ikebana proved to be a soothing saviour. “It is like meditating when I am doing my arrangements,” she expresses.
For Patel, Ikebana slowly became an important part of her life. As she got more involved in the art, she started running the Ikebana group and then joined the committee as a treasurer. While pharmacy will always be her first love, this gave her the whiff of fresh air that added a sense of novelty to her life which otherwise revolved around family and work.
She said: “I feel it is very important for anyone, be it male or female, to have some form of a hobby outside their work environment. It can be anything from playing golf (which could double up as exercise), playing bridge, dancing to keep fit or as in my case, Ikebana.
“I feel if work is all you do then your brain becomes stagnant and is not able to think outside the box. So one needs to switch their brain off from work.”
Not only did it give her peace of mind but also increased her social circle by meeting new people and making new friends. She goes on, “We have 45 members in our group, the age ranges from 40 to 70+ and some of them have now become very good friends. You also learn life experiences from meeting people from all different ages and backgrounds.”
Today, along with being confident around patients and medication she can create exquisite table arrangements for events thanks to her acquired talent. Patel said: “I thoroughly enjoy the whole process of coordinating table arrangements and venue decor. Whenever there is a wedding coming up I get asked by my friends and family to help them with the venue decor and flowers.”
Upon asking her if her love for Ikebana has superseded her love for pharmacy she nonchalantly said: “I love both my work as well as Ikebana. As I have been a pharmacist longer than have been practising Ikebana, I am not sure what I would like to be known more for.”
But she has one message for her pharmacist friends who just eat, sleep and dream pharmacy: “There is so much more to life than pharmacy. Take time out to spend quality time with your family and friends. Because once that time goes, you can never get it back. Take regular holidays to recharge your batteries. Take up a hobby or two. Find another niche you may have that you thought you did not have and which may give you a lot of joy.”
Pharmacist Work & Lifestyle
PWandL Media LLP
8 St Johns Parade
Tel: 0207 993 2541
To advertise in Pharmacist Work & Lifestyle magazine or this website, please contact our sales team on:
Tel: 0207 993 2541