May 27, 2017
Today is one of the last days before I start another beatdown semester of medical professionalism and I can’t say I’ve felt more ready than not. In fact, despite that there are days when I wake up, totally prepared to conquer all 72 chapters of adult health and week after week of 12-hour rotations, I have to admit there have been more days where I spent more time doubting myself than eating or sleeping.
And no matter how I break it down—next year, four more semesters, a little over a year, only two more Augusts, one more Christmas and new year’s, less than a thousand days—it still sounds… awful. It still sounds like the 15 months I have left until the next biggest chapter in my life, and not even the chapter I’m really waiting to get to.
I’m not normally one to submerge myself in self-doubt or to marinate in dread, but all I can think about is how I could possibly get through this quickly and painlessly. And every which way I conjure up eventually becomes exhausted, leaving me in a fit of desperation and anxiety, trying to find another way to allay my worries, forget these stresses altogether.
I think I just want it all to pass me by while I simply have to just live through it, be the slow-moving figure within the blur of a fast-paced world around me. I think I want to gain the knowledge and experience right now and just be done with it. Everything seems to be tumbling down over my head and I can’t bear the weight. I’ve never felt more alone. And I know I shouldn’t compare myself to others, but shoot—the others are doing one hell of a better job than I am at knowing what they want to be in life at this age. The world is calling me by my first name, waiting for me, and I’m just itching to see it. I’m trying, with every ounce of power I have, to be optimistic, as I normally am, as I swore I always would be, but the cost-benefit ratio isn’t doing anything for me; it’s exhausting everything, every resource I have.
This all probably sounds like something you’d read from a psychology textbook about adolescent identity crisis or something of the sort. And maybe it is, maybe it isn’t.
I don’t know.