Why does Friday take so long to arrive, but Monday is just around the corner?
Why are the most beautiful colors of fall actually a physical depiction of ending?
Why do the hardest struggles result in the greatest personal growth and deepest introspection?
Why is it that the simplest questions, are the hardest to answer?
It has been a pretty crazy last two months — I guess that’s to be expected since the last time I made an appearance here was at the start of August. That wasn’t actually a long time ago, but in so many ways, it kind of feels like a lifetime.
Things that have happened since then…
- I’ve taken 5 exams — 2 anatomy lab practicals and 3 much longer (neurology-related) exams of the multiple choice variety
- I’ve raced a half marathon — the fall Chicago Half Marathon at the end of September
- I’ve moved out of my first ever “big kid” apartment
- I’ve moved into my first ever “holy-crap-I-bought-this” condo
- I have a car (my hand-control adapted car) in Chicago that I can use to drive where I want, when I want, including making a surprise visit home after the Psychiatry exam last weekend.
Yea, just a couple highlights of the past two months (with some pictures to go with). I think there’s so much I could say about each one of those experiences that I don’t really feel the need to say anything. I guess that doesn’t make much (if any) sense, but sometimes “making sense” isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.
I love where I’m at — physically, mentally, and emotionally. I adore my new place and the fact I now have a bedroom and a patio. I’ve survived what most consider to be the hardest modules of medical school and am starting quite a few activities (classes, co-curriculars, etc) that I’m truly excited and passionate about. It’s a great place to be and it’s a place I intend to cherish and embrace. I guess that place I’m referring to is more related to where my head is than my physical person.
The last two months have been really challenging. Don’t worry, nothing crazy has happened. My family is doing well. My health is as good as it always is. I’m financially stable and still surrounded by so many great friends, colleagues, and mentors in the Chicagoland area. Yet, the day to day grind of life that never seems to stop, information you need to learn, assignments you need to complete, random to-do list items that won’t do themselves — was draining. I was exhausted. Stressed. Burnt-out.
It’s embarrassing to admit that. To recognize that I can’t always “do it all,” that I’m not some infallible being, that I have a limit to what I can manage, and I found where that limit lives. We talk about wellness and taking care of ourselves in med school all the time. I think I was listening to all those conversations, but I don’t think I was really listening. I don’t think I was processing through the obvious knowledge that the things we hear about in our lectures and see in our “medical life” can impact you in unexpected ways. Psychiatry was definitely a module of surprise and (slow) realization. Continue reading