on Wednesday Yesterday
We’re well into half of the first semester. This block of courses was Pulmonary (finished) and Cardiovascular. Mixed into our ‘classroom’ time we’re also scheduled for didactics training, and interspersed among everything we have workshops on medical imaging (X-rays, CT scans, etc). It’s our last year of ‘classroom’ time, from next year we take the boards and hit the wards and pretend to be doctors — I keep using the parenthesis with “classroom” because I don’t actually go to class unless it’s a discussion, skills training, or seminar. I spend most of my time studying like I did for the MCAT, at a cafe with headphones — I find studying in public really helps to break up the monotony, and it’s nice to strike up a random conversation with a stranger (I’m Californian).
In the summer between MS1 and MS2 I had a project in the cardiology department. In the project I made new friends, and I even gained a role model. With that project completed, and classes ongoing, I received an email asking to help with another project. I like having projects, it keeps me busy and out of trouble — idol hands. Monday, I traveled to pick up the proprietary software/laptop I’ll be using for the project. A week ago I received a batch of portal ECG device I’ll use with patients, and from today I started on recruitment. It’s going to be a tough schedule for the next few weeks, this pilot project should be done in two weeks. The neurology part of this block also has its exam in two weeks. There is free time in medical school, I’ll just have to use it judiciously in the next few weeks. Anyways, I’m really excited I get to help with this project because I believe the results will be generalizable. Selflessly, a large bonus is that I believe this project’s scope will help my own parents health. I want to talk more about it, but half of the project is still proprietary and the hard work didn’t come from me.
I believe it was around this time, two years ago, that I interviewed at my program. Because cardiovascular disease has literally plucked those I care about away, I ended up dropping all interests of PhD programs to become a MD. I have no idea if I’ll be a cardiologist, if I’m qualified to be one, or if I’ll still be interested when it comes time to apply for that fellowship. But, what do do know is that I’m grateful that I even have that as an open possibility.