Yesterday was my last day of medical school.
I remember as I graduated from high school I told a good friend of mine that I was now half way done with school - 12 years left. I was sort of right. Really, I had 8 years of school and then residency - which is very different from school. I realized that it is fairly likely that I will never again be in a classroom the same way - daily lectures for months at a time, etc. I will, of course, be learning. I will probably be learning more than I ever have before, but it will be very different.
The last four years have been pretty crazy! I started medical school in August after I graduated from the University of Dallas. Our first year mostly consists of basic science - human anatomy, genetics, cell biology, biochemistry, pharmacology, pathology, microbiology. First year ended in mid May, and I stayed in Saint Louis to do research for the summer. We had about 10 weeks off, if I remember correctly.
Second year started again in August and was systems-based - neuro, cardio, respiratory, GI, renal, endocrine, and skin, bone and joint. We finished again in mid-May only to spend our time studying for the next several week for Step 1 - the hardest and most annoying test I have ever taken.
After that, it was time for third year. We always start the week after July 4th - and then we have 24 weeks of school in the fall and 24 weeks of school in the spring. We did rotations in internal medicine, ob/gyn, family medicine, pediatrics, surgery, neurology and psychiatry. I had so much fun. It was such hard work - many times working 60 - 80 hours per week, half of that while pregnant, the other half with a new baby. BUT, so worth it. The amount you learn is amazing.
Between third and fourth year, there are 2 weeks off, which we spent in the Northwest visiting family. At SLU, during your fourth year you are required to have 36 weeks of credits/schooling/work. This must include one sub-internship and one surgical sub-specialty rotation. To me, 36 weeks looked like a lot less than 48 weeks! However, a lot of people need to take time off during the winter to go on interviews and take Step 2 and such. Fortunately, I didn't have to go on a lot of interviews as I knew that I only wanted to be in 4 different cities and pediatrics isn't the most difficult thing in the world to get in to!
So, at the end of yesterday, my required 36 weeks of activities was completed, and here I am, finished with medical school. It has been a long road, but it has gone by so fast. Now, Matt and I get to stay at home together with Isidora and focus on getting ready for the next three years of our life - residency. In the next couple of months we have a lot to do!
Really, all we have to do is move - but I think that is enough!