On a random afternoon, I had access to my hospital case note and because I had just completed my first rotation in clinical school, I wanted to see if I could interpret the doctor’s notes.
Sometimes in September 2012, I had a surgery in the area of my first clinical posting so I read through the notes and I understood every single term! I remembered that sometimes ago, about 4 years, I read the notes and wasn’t able to discern any of the pages. Here I was, with a clear understanding of everything. I even remembered that the surgeon showed my parents’ the organ removed (in a sample jar for transport for pathologic examination) while I was in the ward. I saw it, black patches surrounding a red mass, now I know what it was. I was in my third year of junior secondary school eight years ago, now I am in my fourth year in the university, a first year clinical student. I cried, time had passed but growth did happen! (I get really emotional sometimes)
I remember one of my all-time favourite quote each time I get worried about how long I still have to remain in medical school while many of my mates studying for four years would graduate at the end of the year. The quote is “Worried about how long it will take to achieve your goals, the time will pass anyway, it’s best not to regret later”. I remember a lecturer I had an encounter with in preclinical school, he recalled how he had taught my mum in preclinicals over 20 years ago, she’s his colleague presently and he still got a chance to teach her daughter! Grand teacher, 20 years, a lot had happened.
I also get motivated by a dear sister and friend, who remained firm in her resolution to study medicine, she completed the course she was admitted for in her first attempt and decided to pursue her medical education afterwards. She’s in her final year of medical school now. I am encouraged by mentors and models in this path, some of them now consultants, senior specialists, residents, all climbing up the ladder in their desired fields. I think about how far the road is but I am consoled and reassured by how much regret I would have if I do not follow my passion. Sometimes, I think about how I would feel in 5-10 years when I see some of my colleagues who have weathered the storm.
Today, I am an encouragement to myself, because the trickles of water have filled a bowl, I am hopeful about filling an ocean, despite the hurdles. Whatever you are doing, whichever stage you are now, think of the top, the highest achievement you would want for yourself, the end goal(s) of all that you are now. It might take time but you can achieve it!
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