Medicine is something I wanted to pursue since I can remember. It was my biggest wish to be able to help people and to be accepted to med school of course. My education was always my first priority because NO ONE can take away your knowledge. I knew that I have to maintain good grades and ace the final exams if I want to be accepted in medical school. When I was a senior in high school, I was very concerned whether I was ready for studying medicine and whether I could do it. I was afraid it won’t be what I expected and that it would be too much for me. So if you are about to start studying medicine or just thinking about applying, here is some information that I hope you’ll find useful and will help you with your desicion.
This is my subjective experience and how studying medicine influenced my life. The experience is different for every individual, but I think we all have some feelings in common.
My First Day Of Med School And How I Survived
I remember my very first lecture in med school like it was yesterday. It was anatomy of the trunk (thorax). The professor came in and started explaining the orientation and directions (what is superior, inferior, dorsal, ventral, sagittal plane, frontal plane, etc.). She then drew a ribcage and started explaining the thoracic walls. There were a lot of new, Latin expressions and this was my first encounter with Latin. She spoke so fast it was impossible to follow. At this moment I was just sitting there not knowing what to do, feeling like the dumbest person on the planet not being able to follow the lectures the first day. I remember thinking how am I ever going to do this and just feeling scared and anxious. So my first day in med school was filled with thoughts that I should just drop out now and feeling absolutely terrified. Things got better after a week, Latin became logical to me, and I kept track of the lectures easily. We also had some other subjects such as biochemistry which I found very interesting and not hard at all.
I did get cold feet at first but now I think applying to medicine was the best desition in my life. Even though there is a lot of work and a lot of stress and there will always come moments of weakness, you should give medicine a chance if this is trully what you want to do (and try to picture how good you’ll look in your white coat).
How My Life Changed Since Med School
- I always feel like I need to study but also blessed to be able to study what I love and find interesting.
- I plan my life around exams and studying, meaning having to say no to plans with friends often.
- I’ve tried so hard to get into med school but sometimes it just feels overwhelming, like there’s not way I can do it, like I’m not supposed to be here and my place shoud be given to someone else. I’ve read somewhere this is called an imposter syndrome and that a lot of peope get it, so this calmed me down a bit.
Imposter syndrome is a psychological term that refers to a pattern of behavior wherein people (even those with adequate external evidence of success) doubt their abilities and have a persistent fear of being exposed as a fraud.
- I’ve learned that I have to keep up with my work and revise daily to stay on track, othewise it can get very overwhelming very fast.
- I have less free time than I had in high school which is normal, but still you have to be prepared to spend more time studying and more time in school. I sometimes come home at 7 or 8 p.m.
- I plan my studying very percisley and very far ahead and strictly stick to the schedhule.
What To Expect When You Start Studying Medicine
- Feeling scared and insecure; like I think most of us did in the beginning. Don’t let that stop you from pursuing your dreams.
- Feeling under a lot of stress and pressure; especially during exams.
- Feeling like there’s never enough time; you’ll feel like you need to study 24/7, then there are papers to be written, and you have to sleep, eat, and be in lectures. Sometimes you just have to slow down for a moment and breathe; it’s going to be okay.
- Family and friends asking for medical advice; when people hear you study medicine they automatically assume you’re already a doctor and start to ask you a series of medical questions, telling you symptoms and asking about diseases you know nothing about. That will happen A LOT, trust me. I usually just smile and nod and tell them to see a doctor.
- Feeling indescribably happy and proud and capable when you learn the whole human anatomy, or get a good grade in any of the other subjects.
- Feeling excited when you’re in the hospital on rotations and seeing what your future will look like.
- Knowing you’ll have the most rewarding job there is and feeling absolute calmness, knowing you’ll be able to help people and improve their lives.
So if you think all of the above is worth the most rewarding job in the world, then medicine is right for you. All your hard work will eventually pay off, you just have to remember that you don’t study for yourself, you don’t study to pass, you study for your future patients, for saving a life one day.