Ever since we finished our last final of first year, there have been plenty of statuses proclaiming “MS2!” and “1/4 MD!” I wasn’t sure how I felt about that. Relieved to have passed every class and survived the entire academic year, even while pregnant, yes. But did I really feel like I was ready for the assumed maturity of a second year medical student? Not really.
I can’t lie: first year was difficult. Especially because I was pregnant. Getting out of bed was a victory in itself, some days. Making it to class with clean clothes after a shower was another victory. (Hot showers made the morning sickness worse…) Just functioning was a struggle at times.
How about now? It’s been a month and a half since I submitted that last final. Since I haven’t been studying lately, my mind feels totally empty. I definitely don’t feel like a medical student right now. Over the summer so far, I’ve been answering questions from our incoming MS1s about moving to the area, what books and equipment to buy, what extracurricular opportunities exist, how I liked my first year at ULSOM, what the professors are like… all of the same stuff I was wondering about myself a year ago. Yet I still don’t feel like there is anything special about being done with M1 yet… because there is still SO MUCH to learn, and I’m still just a beginner.
Our tuition bills have posted for the fall (YAY! /sarcasm), and the courses are listed in our gradebook. I get anxious when I think about second year. I’ve heard it’s a lot harder than first year (granted, I’ve heard every year, except for fourth year, is the worst), the material is more relevant to Step 1, gotta study for Step 1, work on my pet projects… and now add in Ladybug. I’m more than a bit unsure of how it’s all supposed to work out. Not being successful is not an option; not because of my ego but because of my family, and continuing to work toward the end goal. Someday, just maybe I’ll start earning a paycheck again, although that day feels ages away.
Not working bothers me. Not being as productive as I’d like bothers me. And yet, I couldn’t wait for this break from school. And yet, not long after finishing those finals while being miserable, swollen, and enormously pregnant, I already had the itch to return to the classroom. I must be an incredibly strange individual. In just a few short weeks, I get my biggest wish and fear, by returning to campus. As I sort out all of my anxieties, I’d really appreciate any prayers/good vibes/etc. Being a student and a mom is uncharted territory for me, and I’m hoping I can be successful at both.