Rambling Thoughts on Saturday

Life in a Cubicle
                My medical school is integrating this new program into our curriculum where we are in groups of 4 along with a resident/attending and we go into the hospital and do a full history and physical exam on a real patient. I think it’s wonderful that they’re trying to lower the shell shock from pure classroom learning to pure patient interaction. Getting to put on my white coat and interact with a real patient is a great reminder that what we’re doing these first two years really is important. For example – today I read a patient’s med list (with 18 different meds) and whereas a year ago I wouldn’t have been able to tell you anything, I could now say what every drug was for and (mostly) how or why it works. It is validation that I’m actually learning!

A full Review of Systems
                So while studying in a cubicle in the library all by yourself for 8 hours a day may seem unduly harsh at times, when we get a glimpse into the future it all seems worth it! I was also recently reminded of something  - that these lives that are going to be in our hands is a huge responsibility. I mean, that seems obvious. But it’s not just their life, it’s also their fears and goals, and their families’ lives. Every patient we will someday treat has people in their lives who will be affected by their illness and we have the power to determine their perception of medicine for the rest of their lives. Will we make that a positive encounter? I sure hope so. I know that death is inevitable as a doctor and that I won’t be able to save every life. But I also know that doesn’t mean there’s no after effects on their family and even myself and I hope that always remains a forethought and that I can do everything in my power to help not only my patients, but their families as well. [A little bit of time spent in the hospital, and I’m a little less cynical and the enormity of my future responsibilities causes me to really appreciate being chosen for this career path.]

What I feel I should wear some days
                In my other world…BJJ. I’ve realized lately that I’ve been my very usual harsh self in critiquing myself. It’s easy in medical school (or school in general) to know when you’ve EARNED a grade or an acceptance or whatever it may be because there is quantitative proof. It’s nearly impossible for me to accept progress without such statistics which is why I think I’ve trapped myself into thinking the worst about my jiu jitsu and feeling that I'm not where I should be or worse than I probably am. And then conversations like this happen: [insert name of new guy] “you really surprised me”. Actually, I don't think it's necessarily a compliment for me -  I think it’s a compliment to every single person at my academy who has worked so hard to make me better. I feel SO lucky that I get to regularly train with all of the upper belts and that their patience and continued helpfulness has caused me to get to where I am today. So maybe I should start listening to people who tell me that I am improving and stop holding myself back with my own negative thoughts. Guess that goes back to my post about fear dictating my life. Hmm. Side note - I also have reverted back into my "spazzy" whitebelt phase - I've got to chill out (I feel like I should wear this rashguard). It's probably because Chicago is so close and I'm *mildly* freaking out.

                Tonight is the first women’s fight in the UFC and that’s a giant step forward for women’s equality in sports. In a sport that has been so male-driven, full of testosterone and alpha-males, it’s awesome that women are not only being incorporated – they’re the main event! It's so important to have role models in life whether it's your mother or your favorite sports figure - and with all the rising black belt women in BJJ and now professional women fighters in the UFC hopefully it inspires more women to join us in these amazing sports! So to all the women who came before me who inspired women to be more and do more – thank you. Thank you for paving the way so that I never once felt like I couldn’t be a doctor or couldn’t participate in sports or that because I was a woman I had limitations on my dreams.

13 days until my next path/physio/pharm exam on the respiratory & nervous systems.
14 days until Chicago.

These next 2 weeks are going to be full of pushing myself hard both mentally and physically, but I’m ready and I’m actually excited. [And if anyone is willing to bring me coffee in the next 2 weeks, I would be extremely grateful!]

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