And I know I still have a long way to go, I might still have ten years before I get to practice independently as a specialist, but I can’t help squealing at the fact that I am four years closer to getting that MD. I’ve learned a lot, and I’m really happy about it. If anything, it fueled the fire to my desire to become a doctor.
It was challenging, but I told myself I don’t have the right to complain because a lot harder things are in store for us. It was basically just like college, except five times harder and more time-pressed, although not as stressful as I thought, because our school was relatively more relaxed. In college, we used to have a lot of oral reports and oral exams, and my introverted self doesn’t really appreciate being subjected to those kinds of torture. Plus, they give us enough time to study, although studying never really gets done. There will always be reading material left untouched. I guess it’s normal with med school.
I haven’t mastered how to study smart, but I believe I’m improving, although it kinda sucks it took one year. I’d like to think I’m excused, because my dad died last September and it took a toll on all aspects of our lives. But second year is a whole new different journey. Plus, they tell us it will be more clinical, and there are a lot more subjects. I’m scared it might be ten times harder than first year, although I’m also excited to experience it for myself. I just hope and pray I will be able to do what I have to do efficiently. Plus, I am aiming for that scholarship, so I can study for free in Third Year. I know that seems pretty far-fetched considering my grades were a bit of a disappointment during first year, but nothing’s impossible with God, right? Plus, I really need to help with the family finances. It would be a huge privilege to be a scholar.
In terms of exciting things that happened during the first year, cadaver dissection probably takes the top spot. I remember being excited and nervous at the same time about it. It got to a point when it was normal to poke scalpels at muscles, even a point when you’d want your group mates to do the dirty work for you (remove the fascia, take feces out so you can try to find the iliocecal valve), but it was always fascinating to see everything for yourself. It was very much like discovering a shipwreck. I couldn’t believe I also had that set of organs working in me, and it was amazing to think there were more than a hundred hearts beating in the classroom, or more comically, there could actually be feces inside the room and you wouldn’t even know it.
The final exams were the most nerve-wracking for me because we had to study lessons we took up for the whole year. Nevertheless, it was part of the process, and there really was no time to panic, because energy and time should be allotted to studying. After the finals, we were taught how to suture on pork skin, which I consider a milestone. I now know how to do basic wound stitches! Isn’t that cool?
For the second year, I’m particularly excited about knowing how to auscultate, or better yet, to get my own stethoscope! I think I will never let it go, literally. I will sleep beside it. I will probably even wear it to the bathroom. Oh, just kidding.
It just goes to show that if you really want something that much, some F’s along the way won’t even matter. You realize you’d do anything you can to reach your dreams (as cliched as it may sound). Just the thought of not continuing with med school makes me cry. To others, being in med school may look like hell, and it is sometimes, but I believe it will be worth it. I believe I’ll learn to love it even more.