10 Things that have changed since medical school.
1) The amount of sleep I get- Pretty obvious; I like my sleep. Now, I don’t get so much. First I get cranky, then I just fall asleep in random places (like class), then I wake up and I’m slap happy. Then I’m grumpy again. So I give in and nap. Then I hate my life because I’m so behind. Rinse and repeat.
2) The amount of caffeine I consume- I used to be an occasional coffee drinker. And every once in a while, I would crave soda. Now I’m flooding myself with coffee at least twice a day and I always want pop! Its not like it makes me feel better, either. I just need SOMETHING to give me any kind of pep most days. Caffeine is not without its side effects, friends. Acne, heartburn, poorer sleep, inflammation. I get it all. Really just the junk food in general has me feeling like a big blob of blah. Chips, sugary goods, and frozen things that you microwave are easiest to come by and it makes my tummy hurt.
3) The camaraderie- It wasn’t until senior year at OBU that us science majors got into the nitty gritty and bonded as friends and as a group even though most of us didn’t hang out outside of class. In medical school, though, one of the things we came into quick is togetherness. Its not like I talk to everyone everyday, but everyone is approachable and friendly, helpful and nice. Even if we never hang out, there’s always someone to chat with and complain about the lecture to in the computer lab or student lounge. Plus, out class Facebook group has saved my life once or twice. My classmates are the bomb. Just the best and brightest and I can’t believe I get to be among them.
4) The level of complication- Everything is sort of simplified now. There’s no time to worry about silly stuff. It’s either studying time or relaxation time. I take both very seriously.
5) My reliance on other people- Particularly my parents. I liked to pretend I was pretty independent and self-sufficient before I started medical school. But now, no way. I hate to admit it, but its the dang truth; a secret to a lot of how I’m getting through is because of my parents. My mom brings me food, wakes me up in the morning, picks up my medicine, etc. It takes a lot of planning on her part to take care of logistics for me so I can just try to
not rip my hair out focus on school during the day.
6) The amount of people I touch- I’m affectionate, don’t get me wrong, but before medical school, it was only a few select people. Family and close friends. Now, I’ll grab whoever, wherever, and palpate their PSIS, ask to translate their cervicals, and volunteer my own “Woah feel my iliac crest!” We are a touchy bunch and its not unusual for classmates to rub my shoulders as they pass by me in class. We’re nice like that.
7) Running- Unfortunately my running is suffering. Sweet naive little me before anatomy started thought I had everything under control, getting my first 8 mile run in for my half marathon training. Then anatomy hit me hard and was like “HAHA you arrogant, silly girl. No running for you” There are several marathoners in medical school and I. Just. Don’t. Get. It. How?! How are they doing this?! Now I stare longingly into the gym and just take my scrub-wearing self into the anatomy lab.
8) Disbelief at the End of the Day- Every day. I make it home. While I get ready for bed and just think about the vast amounts of information I’m shoving in. I cannot believe how much I’m learning. I can’t believe I’ve made it through 7 weeks of medical school, or even just finishing one more day. I still can’t believe I got in, or that I’m really going to be a doctor at the end of this. You look at all the lectures they give you each week and you’re like, “I can’t learn all this! It literally impossible.” And then the whole week zooms by and you did it. You’ve really forced that much more into your head somehow and its just amazing.
9) My obsession with EVERY. SINGLE. LAST. POINT.- One time in undergrad, I asked my organic professor for a point back on a quiz. I had him on a technicality and had never gotten a 10/10 on his quizzes. He even admitted I was right. So, sitting at a 9/10, I asked him if he was gonna give me the point back. “Really?” he said. As in “Really, you’re gonna make me log in and change your grade over this one point?!”
Well, I learned my lesson and never made a big deal of it again- though I am still a bit bitter. But now, oh man!, I deserve every single last point I get and you bet your sweet little keister I will fight for every single point. Something about medical school feels like it matters more and so I’ll fight tooth and nail to know this stuff and be able to PROVE I know it on the tests. It’s just more important to me now.
10) Nervous habits- If I had nervous energy before medical school, let’s multiply it by ten now. I’ve always been a little high strung. I tap my feet and pens and chew gum and bite my nails again, and pick my skin and my face and my hangnails. I pick my split ends and pop my knuckles and just general. Also, just another weird thing, it has me doing is obsessively wanting to pick EVERY. LAST. BIT. of skin and fat and fascia off of my cadaver. Just absolutely meticulously. I could sit in there all day trying to satiate this desire to completely clean him off down to the structures we need. Ok, have I creeped everyone out now? I have problems… OCD maybe. That means its time to quit.
Peace out cub scouts.