Eugenia Hines: From Russia to Jamaica
For 21 years, Russia was home for Eugenia Hines, but after finishing university she decided it was time she embraced the other half of her background.
Hines lived in Russia with her mother, Eugenia Mosiychuk, and frequently visited her Jamaican father, Livingston Hines, during the holidays. These occasions were ones she always enjoyed. There was something about the people and the weather she just loved.
"I remember when my father took me here when I was younger, and I loved it. The people were always so warm and pleasant. It was different from Russia. There is hardly any sunshine there. When the sun came out you could see the difference in people's personalities. I think in Russia we are more used to keeping our emotions in, while in Jamaica, people tend to be relatively open," Hines shared.
It was on a trip to Jamaica while in the ninth grade that she was nudged into the field of dentistry.
"The ninth grade was when you started to think about what you want to do in the future, and my father happened to take me to Jamaica for a visit. He took me to the dentist and it was after that I started thinking, why couldn't I be a dentist. I spoke to him about it and he thought that it was a good field, and the rest is history," she noted.
She went on to attend St Petersburg State Medical University in Russia, in 2004 and graduated as a doctor, then specialised in dentistry in 2009. It was time to figure out where she would go, and it was
her father who suggested that she come to Jamaica. Barely fluent in
English, Hines left all she knew in Russia and came to Jamaica.
The most challenging aspect of this transition was the part she loved as a child.
"It was not hard for me to move to Jamaica because I had always made frequent visits here. Everything is different about both countries - from the weather to the
customs. They could not be any more different, but I was OK. The weather was the only thing that seemed to get to me initially. It is always the same and just did not change," she added.
Getting integrated in Jamaica's work world was not something
that she struggled with. Practising in Jamaica has lived up to her expectations.
"I love dentistry. To interact with people and be creative using so many tools to give people the smile they want is something I love. I have always loved art and it is like creating art with people's smiles," she told Flair.
After working with Edna Manley Health Centre and the Kingston Public Hospital, Hines decided to open her own practice in July 2014 - Family ComfyDent. The com-pany has the motto 'No more fears, no more tears'.
plenty fear and tears
"You have children that are
completely fearful of the dentist and start crying before even coming into the parking lot. There are also adults more fearful than the children and dread the dentist, so this is something that I would love to change, hence the motto," she noted.
The business is still in its inception stages, but the customer base is steadily growing.
As the saying goes, all work and no play makes Tom a dull boy, Hines is not dull. She enjoys salsa and is learning Spanish at the Venezuelan Embassy. Out of the 12 levels she is currently at number 10.
She has become fully integrated in the culture as well and has been married for three years to Kevan Johnson. The union has produced a two-year-old daughter, Katalina, her pride and joy. Returning to Russia for anything more than a visit is not in the cards for her but she loves her home nonetheless.
When it comes to following a dream, she believes it is important that people just go after it. "The mind is a powerful thing. It might take hard work, but you just have to work hard for it. It might not happen tomorrow, but once you work hard and believe you can, you will get it," ended Hines.
Family ComfyDent is located at Suite 1, 13 West King's House Road, Kingston 10.