Saturday, 30 July 2011

Where do we go from here?

Always Be Nursing
I've not blogged in a while and I feel pretty bad about that. It undermines the first rule of blogging, which is "Always Be Creating Content" (he said, paraphrasing Glengarry Glen Ross).

That said, it's been a busy few weeks for me. There were end of year results which were thankfully passes across the board. My school gives you percentages, the mean, the pass mark and (as I think I've mentioned before on this blog) a mark of A for acceptable, CC for cause for concern or U for unacceptable. So, for the first time in a while I'm a straight A student, though in real money I'm a slightly above average student which I'm totally happy about.

It wasn't until I received my grades for this year that I realised where I was in my life, academically speaking. I'd approached medical school with a "I wonder how far I can get" attitude - Which is to say at every step of the way I've not been living and dying by the result. I passed the GAMSAT (the Australian version of the MCATs) and was pleasantly surprised. I passed the interview and was pleased again, but I hadn't walked in with the fire of a zealot in my eyes (which I think helped - some people want to be a doctor so much it hurts their chances). Repeat for every exam so far, apart from this last set. I guess that previously I have been a nurse in my mind. Like some kind of interloper, a spy from the wards seeing how the other half live. Learning about the bigger picture beyond bedpans, food charts the myriad other tasks of nursing.

Not that I wish to denigrate nursing, far from it. Whenever people ask about why I went from nursing to medicine (something that happens with regularity on the wards whilst I'm bank nursing, I've discovered), my answers fail to satisfy. The best I can come up with is that I want a different set of challenges. The stuff that really stresses me out in nursing is organising discharges and chasing down junior doctors to remind them to do paperwork or arranging transport or chasing pharmacy for drugs I need sent up *now*. It was stuff that would forever plague me as a nurse and really took the shine off the stuff I genuinely enjoyed - people and their problems.

I'm sure there will be plenty of paperwork BS in doctoring, but it also opens up a world of other challenges that I think will outweigh the new stresses.

The point I'm trying to get across in a ham-fisted way is that having passed the first year has made me realise that I am all in. I really want to be a doctor and I'm less a nurse than I was this time last year. I am changing. There will always be a part of me that enjoys the intimacy that nursing affords, but I am becoming Other. It'll be interesting to see where this goes.

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