Falling Short

Dear readers,

a long time has passed since I last thought about this page. Certainly, a lot has happened since I last posted on here. I’m not at university, studying….Biology. Who would’ve thought? Someone so dead set on pursuing a career in medicine, not actually studying medicine. Well the truth is, it’s still there, the dream. It just also came with a few hurdles, like just falling short of the A level grades required. Just falling short. The pure disappointment I felt when receiving my results was unlike anything I’ve ever experienced before. I cried for days. But, I’m here to tell you that things get better. More opportunities will arise and my determination will not fade.

In some ways, this was a blessing in disguise. I am at a fantastic university, studying an entirely fascinating degree, THAT I LOVE. Before coming here, I didn’t realised how completely unprepared I was for university. Nobody tells you how hard it is: leaving home, being surrounded by unfamiliar people, unfamiliar places, and being expected to ‘have the time of your life’. Freshers was particularly hard for me, everyone seemed to have completely settles into their friendship groups immediately, which left me thing that there was something seriously wrong with me. I never expected to feel as homesick or lonely as I did; I questioned whether it was worth it numerous times. But then… it got better. I met some of the best people I’ve ever known, I joined the SCUBA society, I got really into my course, I can now officially say that university is fantastic… but I need more sleep, haha!

Throughout all of this, there’s been the underlying issue of, this really isn’t what I want to do with my life. I find myself becoming jealous of my med student friends. I find myself wishing I were them. But then, I take a step back and realise how lucky I am to experience university without quite so much pressure the first time around, to be able to (hopefully) study two degrees that I love. To be able to gain more life experience before handing over my life to medicine. To be able to adjust to independence, and truly realise that medicine is the career for me.

I’m sure that there will be a number of disappointments in life, falling short of med school entrance being just the start. I’m also sure that medicine is what I want to do, and I will do it. One way or another, it’s just taking me a bit longer to get there. So for all of you out there that are in a similar boat, chin up, see you in med school.

 

 

Dissection

A levels. Before sixth form started, I expected my chosen subjects to e challenging, I expected hard work, dedication and a whole lot of motivation to come into play throughout the year. What I didn’t expect was how different my education would be, I have freedom, more responsibility.

One of my life-long loves has been biology. The study of living organisms. Last week, was the week everyone had been looking forward to, or maybe dreading. It was the week of heart dissection. I for one, thought that this would be the highlight of the year within Biology, my friends however, did not. There came a food of “Miss, may i be excused from this lesson”, and the class whittled down to around 3/4 of its usual size. The preperation came. Pick up your scalpel, scissors, lab books, wonder boards, rubber gloves. and finally….the heart.

Opening up the organ that was previously keeping a body alive, it was indescribable. The class was filled with a chorus of “ychafi”, I, and a select few however opted for “wow” instead. It’s hard to sum up the experience, after all, it was just a dissection. Except it wasn’t, it was the start of something within us, in that moment, character’s were defined. Goals were made.

The exploration of the valves, ventricles an atriums brought the whole study of the heart to life. It wasn’t just a diagram printed on paper anymore. It was something real, life. The study of how the heart works within the body, and how, without it, we wouldn’t survive. They all began to mean something, other than just passing an exam.

Options…

An aspiring doctor’s life, consists of the driving hunger that enables us to endure the long nights of studying, the excitement and somewhat frustration of open days and choosing Universities, and the terror of ‘what if’. What if I don’t get a place at Medical School? What if I don’t get the grades at A Level? What if i don’t get an interview? An offer? What if I can’t do this?

What if I jump all of the hurdles and I achieve my dream?

Do I want to be a surgeon, a psychiatrist, an obs and gyne specialist? It’s all so far away and there will be twists and turns along the way that I’m sure will shape my decision. One thing I thought was a certainty was that I did not want to be a GP. Not at all. Until…I started considering it. Last week I met with a local GP to discuss her journey, it opened my eyes so much, we discussed the challenges of her job that I’d never before considered. The difficulty of diagnosing a patient when they don’t speak the same language. Having to use a language service. Having the patient bring their young child with them to translate. We discussed the benefits of becoming a GP over a hospital doctor. She has more time for family…and sit down with aspiring Med Students such as myself. She has a more personal relationship with her patients due to continuous consultations. She mentioned how enjoyable and beneficial home visits can be. Whether or not I get into Med School as planned or whether I’ll face more challenges on the path to my dream isn’t known. But one thing that I now understand is that I have options. Enviable options that come with the highly demanding but thoroughly rewarding path that I plan to take.

DJ Enzyme

Attending the Medlink Conference opened so many doors for prospective Med Students. One of them being the fantastic opportunity to genetically modify my own organism. Naturally, we group together with the friends we’ve made, and while attempting to suppress our excitement, my Medlink friends and I sought to make a group for the GMO project. The hardest part of the GMO project? Our group name of course! Scrolling through the the list of names of existing groups on the HotZoc website we were seriously lacking inspiration. A friend came across “Designer Jeens” and the whole group agreed that it was utter genius, but, of course, the name was taken. Heartbreak and misery followed; our winding, and seeming endless, road of inspiration free thinking continued. Finally, the epiphany came. DJ Enzyme…we like to break it down.

 

Hello world!

So, this is blogging. Hello world! I’ve decided to record all of my expereiences leading up to my (hopefully) medical career, and share them with you. I’ve recently attended the Medlink Conference at Nottingham University, and honestly, it was one of the best experiences I’ve had so far!  It was refreshing to be in an environment where everyone there could relate to the challenges of applying to Med School. I made some fantastic new friends and the speakers were truely eye-opening.

Going forward this new year I aim to update my new blog weekly and share the trails and success of my twisting journey with you!