Three weeks in…

After tomorrow, I can (somewhat proudly) say that I survived three weeks of medical school.

It’s Thursday night and I’m finally allowing myself to spend more than five minutes to write. Most of my recent journal entries consist of details about anatomy lab and how overwhelmed I feel with the volume of material I am expected to review and understand. No matter how long and efficiently I study, I still show up to class or lab feeling like I know absolutely nothing. While I know I’m far from the only 1st year med student that feels this way, this feeling can still be isolating, for me.

I’m homesick for California. I almost started a countdown for Thanksgiving, but decided against it, since that’s still awhile away. My anxiety levels have been all over the place. Some days, my anxiety wakes me up at 3AM. Other days, I am able to sleep in until 5 (not amazing, but two extra hours of sleep is better than none).

It’s hard being a student again. Having to study all the time, instead of working, volunteering and having ample free time to read and cook has been a rough transition. Of course, I’m happy and grateful to be here. For the most part, I enjoy most of my classes as well as studying 75% of the time. Yet, I miss aspects of my old life.

I also struggle with being in this bubble.

I miss having conversations about faith and social justice. I struggle with not having a faith community that I belong to. I struggle with not yet finding “my people.” While I’m grateful for the friends I’ve made so far, I feel like I haven’t exactly met my people yet. I’m hoping as I get more involved in student organizations, I’ll find my people, whether they are in my class or the class above.

All that being said, I am taking steps to help myself through this transition.

I’ve met with my professors and discussed study strategies, which helped with my anxiety. I’m working with a therapist on-campus, so I have someone to check-in with every week. I’m also looking into volunteering opportunities in my community. Lastly, I will be church-hopping until I find a faith community that I like and enjoy being part of.

I’m also reminding myself, multiple times a day, that I get to do this.

I get to be in medical school.

I get to study, day in and day out.

I get to become a physician.*

*If all goes well and I don’t fail out.

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