The Night Before The Final Exam of First Year

(Just a quick heads up, this has been dictated because I’m quite tired and I have very little energy to type. So there may be some grammatical errors and spelling mistakes, please edit slide this time!)

As I lie here tonight. I can’t help but think of the evening before my very first day here at med school. I remember feeling so nervous even though I knew I practically have nothing to do with that day. I thought about how lucky I was to be here and if I’m completely honest I still didn’t believe it.

I remember thinking how lucky I was to have such a lovely year group who had met at the meetups and in the pub the night before, everyone seems so supportive of each other and we were all raring to go.
I’m now the night before my final set of first yeat exams. (That’s if I don’t have to resit). I honestly cannot believe how quickly this year has gone. Only feels like 5 seconds ago I was learning about the liver, and now I’m just about to probably read an ECG tomorrow and do some cranial nerve exams (I don’t actually know what’s coming up but that’s a good guess).

It’s crazy how much we’ve all learnt this year. Even when I am kicking myself for not knowing something, I know that if I can pair my knowledge base from now to what I knew back in September, I would not have believed that I could learn what I have learnt.
You learn nearly all the human body. We started off with the stomach and the mouth and the oesophagus and the digestive system moving onto the liver moving onto the big and small intestine. We also learnt about the bladder the rectum and the kidneys, we thought kidneys were hard, boy we didn’t know what was coming.

Moving onto block 2 we dragged ourselves through the heart and the lungs. We studied the physics behind how our lungs expand and how we are able to exchange CO2 and oxygen, relate how asthma affects the airways and how COPD and asthma differ, we also learnt signs of heart failure and how to examine a heart. we also learnt the drugs that we need to administer when someone is having an asthma attack or if they are having heart failure and the precise mechanisms of how they work.
Christmas was a much needed break.

We came back in January to my favourite block. Block 3 , the brain. I enjoyed learning more about neuroscience from a clinical perspective (that sounds really official) I loved looking at how the tracks interact and working out the steps for lesions in the spinal cord and how we eventually perceive what’s happened to us.
I loved it more than I can say, that block showed me just how much I want to go into neurosciences when I eventually pass f2.
We then had to say goodbye to block 3 which I didn’t like.

We then moved on to what was the hardest block the year for me despite my love of anatomy. I just couldn’t keep up with the amount of information that was coming our way. If you think about it we had a lecture on the thigh and knee hip. There are over 12 muscles there. 12 muscles all supplied by different portions of a nerve or different nerves. All also supplied by different arteries and you have to know where those are going and coming from. I was exhausted. The exams began looming like this giant mountain that we just never were going to climb.

During Easter break I found a set of people who have become my closest friends. I revise for them day in day out and they became my family. I am so grateful to have them. They have got me through what was a stressful period with humor and sugar packets chucked around with every negative thought. It as nice to know you weren’t alone. I shared every worry and every lightbulb moment with these people. Thank you guys …….you know who you are.

We then moved on to what has been the most bizarre block. Babies, pregnancy and menopause. Even though I found this block interesting it was hard to focus as exams were getting closer and closer and closer. However, I really like learning about the menstrual cycle and how different hormones affect the body. I enjoyed learning about the process of birth and how babies can present when being delivered. I also strangely enjoyed learning about teratogens and how they affect a babies development.
And then it was here. The big 2 weeks. Exams, well I think the less said about them the better. The short answer question paper was ok, it was tough, but I could reason out some of the answers and I felt proud of the work I done. The first multiple choice answer paper was a bit of a different story. I found it so hard, and at times it was hard to figure out where my knowledge that I spent weeks trying to learn fitted in. I was dreading the multiple choice answer paper 2. However, it was fine and I came out that exam won the most happiest people in the world. I no longer had to spend up to 10 hours a day at a desk drilling information into my head.

And now we wait the night before my final day of OSCES. Today could have gone better, but there’s no use dwindling in the past. I just have to pretend like it never happened and smash tomorrow’s exams.

I’m so so looking forward to being able to have some time to myself. Able to walk around campus and actually explore Warwick. Able to work more on my blog which has become a bit of a sanity escape for me. Able to go home see my pets and my family and my friends who I haven’t seen since January. Able to have an amazing time with my new friends here at Warwick both celebrating the end of exams tomorrow and at the summer ball on Friday.

This year has been the hardest year of my life , no doubt whatsoever. It’s been challenging from the academic point of view, from the social point of view, and I’ve tested my limits in all areas of my life. There have been times where I thought I couldn’t get through it, times where I thought I wasn’t good enough to do this. And even though I still might not be good enough to do this (I could still have to re-sit everything) but I can say to myself that I gave it the best shot I could possibly give.

It’s now I’m going to stop all this reflective lark, and go to bed. It’s going to be one hell of a celebration tomorrow.

Night.

Abbie

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