Friday, July 20, 2012
It was around 4pm on that sunday evening when I drove my car with a family member into one of the poorest counties in the U.S. Little did I know my summer experience in this little town would change my life forever. Ten minutes after my arrival, I stepped into Bromley, my home for the next 6 weeks. This was the beginning of my medical journey. I remember my Uncle whispering to me, work hard, but play hard. Playing was easy, but staying focus was the challenge. Nevertheless, I was determined to succeed. My uncle opened my folder and said, "I see you will be taking Gross Anatomy." When I heard this, my heart sank since I had never had any experience with Anatomy, talk less of cutting cadavers open. This fear caused me to develop a stress- release outlet, my sister. I can tell you she didn't see this coming. After settling down in my room and meeting my colleagues, I decided to take a walk on a street perpendicular to court street. I reminiscized about my past struggles, my fights against failure and this opportunity to prove myself. An hour later, I was ready to win by all means. Through blood, sweat and tears, I had two options; go hard or go home.
I had never met so many smart and intelligent people in my life. Everyone had a story and wanted to show how intelligent they were. My nervity increased when I saw this, so I decided to give my all, make the best of friends and enjoy the game. Within a couple of days, I developed friendships with several colleagues that would become memorable. We woke up at the same time, went running together, ate together, studied together, went to classes together and did every other thing together besides taking a shower together.lol.
I remember cutting my first cadaver open. At first, I was so fearful that the cadaver might show up in my dreams at night. By the end of the first week, I was eager to cut more cadavers open and I had no doubt that bestowing the gift of health was my life's calling. It was like doing surgery on a patient. After our first round of exams, we all found ways to celebrate our successes. We had all spent at least 8 daily hours of studying but we were never jaded. I hated the process of studying, but I loved it. I hated the stress, but I loved knowing that I was not in it alone.
Six weeks later, my life had turned around. I made friends from different cultures and was excited to be part of the process. Overall, I realized that success is less of a result but more of enjoying the process towards one's goals.
Moral of the story: Enjoy life and never give up!