Going into clinical years, I feel as though this needs it’s own blog post since I wrote about my feelings when starting uni and this is a new beginning all together. Whenever I think about leaving Manchester and moving out to my base hospital I feel so many emotions, so now let’s see if I can articulate those feelings here…
Little background: the Manchester course works so you have 2 preclinical years where everyone is on campus, we have sessions in te medical school, lectures etc. We have a few half/full day clinical placements, but that’s about it. From 3rd year your year is divided in to 4 and you’re sent off to 1 of Manchester’s 4 base hospitals. For the remaining years you have everything in your base hospital and its surrounding area, any teaching also be done there.
Firstly, I am so excited to be moving on to 3rd year, I feel as thought it’s when the real medicine starts. It’s going to be so much more practical, so much more hands on and we’ll see so many more real patients. To be honest, I’ve been getting a bit sick of just theory, so to now step into the hospital setting is going to be incredible.
Starting something new is of course exciting, but along with that comes the nerves and fear. This is so new and I can’t help feel a little anxious about it – I feel as though moving from pre-clinical to clinical is bigger than moving from A-levels to university. The fear is of the unknown and also the idea that we’re now going to be out there in a professional setting, surrounded by real patients so we don’t have the liberty of turning to a friend and saying “what am I supposed to next” or asking the simulated patient if we can “pause” the consultation because we don’t know where to go next. It’s scary, it’s a challenge, but I am really looking forward to it.
The small taster of Medicine I’ve had so far, it is challenging, it is stressful and “emotionally exhausting”. And as everyone says, going into clinical years is lie bringing along the emotional exhaustion from the vast knowledge, but adding physical exhaustion along with it. Sounds tough, but sounds like an incredible opportunity.
The above emotions, excitement and a little anxiety, are what I would have probably expected – I’d say they’re the norm. But an emotion I dint expect to feel is sadness. I can’t feeling a little heartache when I think about the fact that I’m practically leaving the university. It’s such a bizarre sensation, best described by heartache. I’m going to miss everyone I knew and it makes me a little sad to think there’s people I probably will not see again. Manchester’s a really big medical school, so there’s a lot of people I never met in my year group, but I find myself feeling like I’d miss all the people I don’t even know (as bizarre as it sounds). Just the familiar faces when I go the lecture, knowing we as this big community where we were all stressing through the same work and now we’re all getting split up.
When I think about it, another part of this comes from the fact that (as anyone who’s applied for Medicine will know) you spend so long, so many years thinking about applying for Medicine, preparing your application, willing with all your heart that you get in. And during the period your go to open days, talk to med students and you find out what year 1 is like. You gear yourself up to get into Medicean and think about what those pre-clinical years will be like, but now for me they’re over. It’s like a chapter of my life is over and it’s gone way too fast.
It’s such a bizarre mix of emotions, I cannot explain it any more than I have done. And the weird thing is, I’ve had so many new beginnings in my life till now: schools, college and even university – yet this emotion I’ve described above is unique to this beginning…