Farewell to year 1

Monday, November 10, 2008

It was nerve wrecking, but I am relieved as it is over. I woke up early that morning, looking out the window, the sky is still ill-lighted. Finally, the long awaited day has come. Axienty consumed me. The feeling of uncertainty is truly unbarable. " What kind of questions will the examiner ask me" I pondered. Switching on my laptop, I decided to go through all the steps and procedures again, trying hard to make sure that they remain etched in my mind.

There are 3 types of learners
1) Superficial learners
- They study for the sake of passing exams. They feel stressed whenever exams are drawing near.

2) Deep learners
-They study for the sake of their interest. Would not feel much stress when exams are approaching. They read widely to satisfy their hunger for more knowledge.

3) Achievers
- This is the group of people that study for the sake of their egoism. They want to be good in everything and percieve exam as an arena for competition. They strive very hard to be a "role model" student so that other students will look up on them.

I think I am somewhere between 2 and 3. No doubt that I have burning passion for medicine and in one of my previous post I did mention that medicine is my orgasm =), however, I still care
a lot on how people look at me. What do they think about me. I want people to know that I am competent, not just ordinary. And this is why, I feel stressed before OSCE. I guess the bench mark that I have set for myself is too high afterall. Yes, I did aim for perfection.

Looking at myself in the stained mirror, I put on my tie. Adjusting it so that It is proportional to my height. After making sure that the triangular knot of my tie is small enough, I put on my tie pin, reached for my white coat and put it on. I told myself I was ready, took a few deep breaths and I left.

The first sation was peripheral neurological examination. Dr Kelvin was the examiner. When you are facing your idol in the medical arena, I could feel the immense preassure pressing on myself. I was gasping for air. This is the only station that I think I screw up in the examination. It was unorganised as a lot of the steps are not required to be carried out for eg vibration, gait. I was interupted repeatedly, my mind went blank at some point but i still managed to keep cool. The patient was asked to put on a poker face. With no facial expression at all, I find it difficult to establish an rapport with him. When a doctor, fail to establish a rapport with a patient, I consider myself a failure.

" Candidate, any other tests that you would like to perform?" Dr Kelvin asked.
I was stunned. I thought I have finished everything, although it was unorganised. I stood there for 10 seconds looking at him.

" In a real situation, I would perform a SLR (Straight Leg Raising) test to comfirm the correct segment of lesion sir" I answered.

" Can you perform it to the patient?"

" But this is a neurological examination, SLR is actually under musculo-skeletal" I was confused. Nevertheless, I performed the test.

" Its ok, I will explain to you later why" Dr Kelvin tried to reassure me that everything is ok.

When you are the 3rd type of leaner and you somehow screw up in front of somebody you admire the most. This feeling is truly undoubtedly devastataing. I feel embarrased. Due to my
ego, I could not accept the fact that i performed ordinarily in front of him. I was disappointed.

But I guess the rest of the stations went pretty smoothly. I always tell myself that I should strive to be the best. On the other hand, should I accept the fact that I am always vulnerable to fallibility and uncertainties?

Anyway I do not wish to be like this doctor below. As I've said, It was nerve wrecking, but thank god it is over. Passed year 1 with my sanity intact =)

Guess I'll have to bid farewell to year 1, Its certainly hell of a year.

Cyc, signing off