In her essay, Gray shares how she has explained to others for years that she is not nervous or jittery because of caffeine. Her shakiness is due to essential tremor although she didn’t know this for most of her life. The explanations resumed, she writes, “Most recently as I have begun the clinical portion of my veterinary education, and perform spay and neuter procedures on dogs and cats.”
As the shaking in her hands progressed and affected fine motor control, she grew concerned about her ability to perform as a veterinarian. “Being accepted into veterinary school is no small feat, but I worked hard through my undergraduate program to graduate cum laude with a degree in zoology. I felt as though nothing could hold me back from my dream. It is for that reason that the progression of my seemingly benign hand tremor was so scary for me. “
Gray met with a neurologist that diagnosed her as having ET. With medical treatment, the tremor is now intermittent and generally does not hinder her abilities. Confidently, she views her professional career ahead with bright prospects.
“To this day, I have successfully completed two canine spays, two canine neuters, two feline spays and nine feline neuters (including my own cat, Otis). I am confident that essential tremor will not hinder my future, and I will go on to be a very successful veterinarian.”