One Sad Truth I Have Learned

Waking at 6am is now late for me….

I finally had the opportunity to sleep in, but my brain won’t let me. Guess, back to the grind.

 

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Medical School: second semester vs first semester

As far as I am aware of, at least most medical schools have it so that your first semester would consist of the basic science courses. In other words, it is second semester when you start going more into a system based system, studying the illnesses and drugs for that system. Since they are differently structured, how does second semester compare to the first?

You will hear a lot of different things because everyone is a bit different, so take what I say with a grain a salt. However, so far, second semester has been tremendously better. Now I know it is still the beginning, but I remember my state around this time last semester. Compared to that, I feel a lot more at ease and confident in learning the material, it also has a logical flow to it which is vastly different from the subject jumps you get with all your basic science courses.

Of course, there is an element of you getting used to the barrage of material. Furthermore, you do get better at studying and managing your time. At least you really should, else you will feel the burn again. However, with everything mentioned above, things will start to follow more of a smooth path and you start finding some time for yourselves, and this is very important. You need to take care of yourself, otherwise you might not be able to take care of others at optimal capacity. It doesn’t matter what it means to take care of yourself, though I’d say healthy eating habits, sleeping habits, and exercise are the biggest three. However, there is the mental aspect of it as well. That means some people find relief from eating out with friends on occasion, or playing video games for an hour a night. Find a way to do that while not compromising your studying, then you will find yourself able to continue to study for longer periods of time because there is that reward.

There might be several of you who know all this before school, because you learned it in undergraduate, high school, wherever. In that case, good for you! I truly mean that, I am just speaking of from what I had to learn about myself within just one year. This path definitely requires some maturity growth.

Thoughts during break

So for break, I have been traveling around, exploring. Upon this, I realized something about myself. I used to want to live in the suburbs or in a small town. I like the quiet and peace that comes with it. However, I started fancying the idea of a bigger city. I think it’s because of the energy I feel every time I just walk passed down the walls of the buildings. Everyone has something they are up to, and you just become lost in the sea of ideas and actions. There is life in it. It’s exciting. It’s adventurous, and I like adventure.

“What ifs” in Medical School

I feel like I see this more in medical school than in any other academic institution I have been in, and that is the “what ifs”. Having talked to several people, I know it is not just me. When school started, I was very optimistic and happy. The hardest part was over right? Well, no. It was just a bump on a long road. And that idea seems to aid in the manifestation of “what ifs”. There is so much done for that acceptance letter it feels like a contract.  I must continue on and finish otherwise all that hard effort would have been for nothing.

Now, I am not saying I regret choosing to pursue medicine. However, I am trying to explain where this what if mentality may come from. With all the pressures to succeed, the what ifs appear. “What if I can’t keep up with this pace of learning?” “What if I can’t get a passing score?” “What if I can’t remember this detail?” “What if I am not preparing enough for boards?” “What if I laugh at the word ‘frenulum?’”

While the last one might not be as relatable to everyone, the others probably are. The thing is not like I haven’t had similar thoughts before in the past. They just have not been as reoccurring and frequent. Even now as I type this, I am having these thoughts. This is interesting because of the development from when I first started. These thoughts while still frequent are becoming more like murmurs on a crowded street. I started not caring at them, and that happens. I am told things will get harder and worse. Yet, we will become so apathetic about the pain we move on. I get why things have to be this way, but just seems kind of unfortunate. But that is just my thought for today.

Thanksgiving is Tomorrow, What a Medical Student Will Be Doing

Thanksgiving is tomorrow and therefore, I do not have class for the remainder of this week. I, personally, am going home to spend time with my parents. But, I do know many people who are staying at school. While it is a nice break from everything, I probably am going to study for parts of it. I say this because I wanted to address different ways people are thinking about using this break. I know several people who are burnt out and just need a break from studying, so they are really going to relax and enjoy themselves. Now, I am not saying those people are not doing the smart thing. In fact, if they need a break then by all means they need a break so they can come back and study efficiently. I say this because I found myself in such a state about 2 weeks ago. I just could not look at a textbook anymore and retain anything.

Looking back it was actually an interesting experience. I have never reached a state where my brain actually rejected any new information of a subject. However, I just took some time to back away from studying and do some self-maintenance like going to the gym and lifting heavy stuff. I am feeling refreshed and functional again and that is probably why I am planning on studying through break. There are multiple ways to get through this, but like any other sappy Thanksgiving post you will see on the internet, it is nice to remind ourselves of the things we are thankful to have which ultimately factor in our ability to get through things (and I did just type that with a Ryan Remolds voice in my head). I am thankful for my family, friends, and SO. I am also thankful for you, whoever is reading this. This blog has been a great place for a pause and reflection which has been nice. And While it is very new, and personally I think it’s not that great of a blog, I still get a few readers who like the content and this is awesome!

Anyway, Happy Turkey day

Your friendly neighborhood student signing off.

Why I don’t trust News Articles about Science.

This was a recent topic of conversation among my friends and I thought I might as well write my two cents here for it. As the title suggests, I do not trust news articles about science, specifically ones that says, “New study reveals “blank”. The reason being, I tend to see a lot of articles getting the science wrong.

Now, I just want to say I am not trying to sound pretentious at all. It’s just I remember there being a time where I would get the latest science news from the news. However, with further education, I started to see more and more errors in these articles.

Sometimes, the statements were flat wrong. Such as a misunderstanding of what certain things are. I remember one article just missing the mark on the concept of Glycolysis. However, I usually find the articles over exaggerating a study and not really looking at it critically. For example one article may have looked into a small protein in the body that may rise due to a particular food and some studies seem to say there is a slight connection between that protein and weight gain. With that, the news article may boldy claim, “new study reveals blank to cause weight gain”. It’s just not an accurate representation and actually worrisome because that is how misleading information can spread more and more. Every new research needs to be read critically with what the findings actually mean and the experimental setup to obtain those findings. If we all do that instead of just connecting A to B or making up that A is B, then maybe we wouldn’t see things like, “anti-vaccinations”. But that is just my two cents.

Drama in Medical School

It is almost Thanksgiving which means it is also the winter holidays. Therefore, it is almost the end of first semester of my medical journey. Today, I’ve been thinking of all the things that took place already. One thing that caught me by surprise in medical school was all the drama. Not to say drama is bad. In fact, life is made interesting because of it.

In a way, I am thankful for the drama as well as saddened by it. I feel bad for anyone else who had a hard time with other things going on in their lives. The small glittery thankfulness comes from the reminder it gives. While I can’t speak for everyone, obviously. The drama in my life helped put some things in perspective and helped me remind myself that life is not just studying. Now I am not saying, medical students shouldn’t study hard. On the contrary, we should always be learning. However, we should not get bogged down on things we didn’t know, but instead get bogged down on things that can be learned, not just in medicine but in all aspects of life. Sounds cliché AF, I know. I know.