The First Week of Residency
The journey culminating in the start of my residency program in Internal Medicine has been a mix of excitement, 'hussle', 'grind', sweat, 'burning the midnight candle', several highs, lows and of course joy. To read about my journey into residency, you can read here.
After completing two weeks of orientation and getting acclimatized to what was “coming” through several lectures, simulations, boot camps, group activities, BLS course, the ACLS course, fundamentals of critical care course, etc.
I would say many of us became close to being information ‘overloaded’, but they were all useful and relevant. Trust that I had them all written down for future reference. However, the excitement of starting work as a doctor in an entirely different continent for me, was almost overwhelming. I simply could not wait to adorn those cool hunter green scrubs. Who wouldn't?
The most optimistic way of putting completion of the first week of residency is to say one week done, one hundred and fifty-five more to go! Similar to when my toddler child asks if it is Christmas yet in April.
The first week was indeed full of a lot of “firsts” for me. I got to write my first note, placed my first order, do my first transfer order, make my first presentation to the attending, I had my first day call and a host of others.
I met a lot of wonderful people at work. Friendly nurses, super-helpful colleagues.
However, there was always the constant anxiety and feeling of not knowing what you are doing, at least the first couple of days, but I realized that the anxiety only reduced with each day. When you perceive the extent of your naivety is being titrated against the enormity of your responsibility, then you know you are in for a big deal. Nevertheless, I realized that the anxiety actually subsided with each day. The beauty of it is that I cannot complain, because this is exactly what I prayed for.
Still working on gaining speed with my notes so that I stop spending extra hours after my official closing hours.
On my very first day of work, in a bid to get to the ICU seminar room for hand off meeting early in the morning, I had left the headlamp of my car on. Unfortunately, the battery ran down in all those ten hours I was at work. I had to call the ‘triple A’ road assistance. Of course, I had to wait for over an hour. It was so frustrating, but the brighter side of it is that while waiting for the guy who came to jump-start my car, I found someone to take a nice picture of me. Another lesson learnt to always see good even in every "storm". Better put, silver linings!
With the baptism of fire of having to start with ICU rotation. After the initial shock, I chose to embrace my new reality with gratitude. Even though this is my third internship, in three different continents, you would appreciate that my passion for medicine is genuine. So bring it on residency!
In summary it was a good week and I trust God for more beautiful weeks to come.
"Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence". - Helen Keller.
Dr Funmi Folaranmi.