Becoming a doctor through the eyes of a medical student
Excitement, terror, pure joy and anxiety; this odd mix of feelings defines my first two weeks as a medical student. I moved to a new city and immediately embarked on what is undoubtedly the most difficult journey I’ve ever experienced but also the most thrilling.
In the first two weeks we covered material that took two quarters as an undergrad. I have class from 8a-5p Monday-Friday, and somehow I must find time to study and digest it all for our weekly tests. I’m exhausted 95% of the time and constantly feeling unprepared and two steps behind where I need to be.
Despite the challenges of medical school, I eagerly anticipate class and don’t mind (well, not completely) spending 12 hours at school and then going home to work some more. It’s a constant balancing act of studying and self-care and pursuing the endless opportunities medical school affords.
For the first time since I decided to pursue medicine, I’m not stressing about whether or not I’ll get to be a doctor. I know that if I put in the work I’ll graduate in four years with an MD. The hardest part is far from over, however. Many long days and very important exams lie ahead but there’s no longer uncertainty over where I’m headed in the future.
At the end of the day, I remind myself that I have the privilege of studying medicine and pursuing my dream. Not only that, I get to do it at the same place my mom and dad followed theirs. Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) is my parents’ alma mater but this wasn’t the deciding factor when I chose my school. Now that I’m here I’m realizing an incredibly special bond. I get to call my parents and talk about what OHSU was like 30 years ago and how it compares to today’s curriculum. In fact, just yesterday I spoke to my dad about learning the basics of a heart exam. How many daughters get to do that?!
Stay tuned for future Molly blogs about balancing education and non-maleficence, the first patient, what simulation lab is like and more.