Monday, December 15, 2008

Rotation Update...

So I am in the last week of my 5th rotation... I only have 3 left!!! I have already one: Women's Health in Bar Harbor Maine, Outpatient Internal Medicine at the VA in Togus/Augusta Maine (where I meet Jason), Emergency Medicine in Lewiston Maine, Surgical/Trauma Intensive Care Unit at Maine Medical Center in Portland Maine, and currently General Surgery at Providence Medical Center in Everette Washington! The ones that remain are as follow (as long as nothing changes that is): Rural Family Medicine in Gorham New Hampshire, Emergency Medicine (again) at Harborview Medical center in Seattle Washington, and last but not least, Family Medicine (not rural this time) in Bangor Maine! If all continues to go as planned I will graduate on May 9th 2009... Not soon enough I can tell you that for sure! I can't wait until I can actually get paid to work this hard! Right now I work full time (usually 8 to 12 hour days depending on the rotation) and... that's right I don't get paid for it! I mean I know that just the way it goes but still, its getting old! The worse part of not getting paid to work full time is the fact that technically I am PAYING to work this hard! I still have to pay tuition! That should be illegal! I guess in the end it will all be worth...

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Home sweet home...

Well I am back in Washington. I have been very busy on this rotation- it is far from my moms house so I spend a lot of time driving which is no fun but it gives me lots of time to talk on the phone! It has been nice to see all the friends that I miss while I am in New England I just wish I didn't have to work so much! I will say that being out here makes me miss New England- I am not just talking about the people (don't get me wrong I miss them VERY much) but I have become accustomed to life out there- like the fact that there is no traffic in Maine! I do NOT love being back in a state with lots of traffic after spending so much time without it! I am happy to have all my favorite restaurants again however now I miss the ones that I had out there... like Dunken Donuts! I would have bet a lot of money that I would never like DD- and when it comes to coffee I still prefer Starbucks, but I do like the breakfast that you can get at DD. The other morning I really wanted a nice toasted bagel with cream cheese and I was like "where is a DD when you need one!"
Today I got to spend Thanksgiving with my family- my sister came into town with her husband and three kids! YAY! Anyway, it is Thanksgiving so I thought I should say that I am thankful to be home with my family for the first time in a while, I am thankful that everyone is healthy, I am thankful that I have such great friends- they can make me laugh at the drop of a hat, I am thankful that I have a wonderful boyfriend who treats me so well, but most of all, I am thankful that I am almost done with school!!!

Thanksgiving 2008

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Jet setter

So I am trying to get all my ducks in a row so that I can head out to Seattle for 8 weeks... Little did I know that was not going to be easy or fun to prepare for... How do you plan what to pack? Knowing that you have to pay extra for added baggage and weight, do you just bite the bullet and pack two suit cases or one really heavy one? Has anyone done the math on which is cheaper? I bet it depends on the airline... I did find a place to store my car while I am gone, if I was already in Seattle I would not have this problem, we don't have to worry about moving the car when it snow because it doesn't snow in the city! I am looking forward to seeing my puppy for an extended period of time- I am hoping he will remember me! I am not easy to forget so I think he will. I am hoping to do a New Years party or something while I am out there, Jason will be in town for the week so we have to show him a proper time!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The fall is here!

I, unlike may others, welcome the end of summer and the beginning of fall... why you ask... well, because fall is my favorite time of year! And it means the end of gross hot sweaty days with no air conditioning. I love when the weather gets brisk, not so cold that you can't stand to be outside, but just cold enough that you like to cuddle up with someone or something warm when you get back inside! I love watching the leaves change colors- one of New England's biggest perks... In Washington, most of the trees stay green all year- it is the evergreen state after all! Here in Maine, everyday on the way to work I notice more colors! Fall also brings soup season... man I love me some soup, I just wish I had more time to cook it and more people to cook it for... Its hard to cook soup for one if you have no place to freeze the extras. I also love being able to drink tea and Apple cider every night. Someday I will have a hot tub and I look forward to sitting in the hot water watching the stars during the fall... Lets see what else about fall do I love... I guess I can stop there. YAY FALL!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Hello Lewiston...

Well I just finished the first week of my emergency medicine rotation and all I can say is wow... I LOVED IT!!! I worked 4 ten hour days and then a half day on Friday, I feel like I have already seen more patients than I did in the previous 12 weeks. I have seen broken bones, plugged ears, sore throats, over doses, central retinal artery occlusion, subdural hematomas, pneumonia, lacerations, chest pain, shortness of breath, back pain, tooth pain and all other kinds of pain. I have seen intubations, suturing, splinting, EKGs, CT, X rays, blood gases, and everything else imaginable all in the first week. Part of me wants to say it is nothing like on TV, I mean I have yet to meet Dr. Carter (I keep hoping), but another part of me thinks it is a bit like on TV- the early years at least. Especially when one of the Docs asks me a question and I get frazzeled and I just start spiting forth information. I usually get half right, maybe one day I will know an entire answer. Although there would be very little learning to do if I already knew all the answers. I guess I have a lot of learning to go...

In other news, I went to the Bangor Folk Festival this weekend. The weather was PERFECT for it and the company was great! This was the first fair that had real "fair food" and not just sea food (blah). I was very excited about it. I got lemonade, Chicken on a stick that I ate like a cave women (stains and all!) and best of all Fresh Kettle Corn... Just like at Sea Side in August... (Family- did anyone go this year?) Now I am relaxing and resting up for another long week in the ER.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Good-Bye Togus

Well it is time to move on from Togus and while I really enjoyed working with the Veterans, I will NOT miss Togus Maine. There was no Internet so I had to drive to the state library anytime I wanted to do anything online and I would inevitable remember something else I "meant" to do online as soon as I got back in my car to leave the library. The housing was questionable, I mean, I know it's free but I really don't like sharing my living space with bats and bugs... I am pretty sure the the house is on the Verge of condemnation. Anyway, I am done there, I got all my stuff out and I made it out Rabies free so that is a plus.
I spend the next two days on campus in Portland doing presentations and other busy work and then I start on Monday in Lewiston Maine in the Emergency Department. Yikes, I nope no one really sick comes in on my first day... On this rotation I will be living at the house of one of my classmates who, conveniently for me, needed someone to live there and watch the dogs during the week. I jumped at the opportunity but not before ensuring that she had Internet because there is NO WAY I would willingly sign up for another six weeks sans Internet.
I don't have any pretty pictures to post of my time in August because really, there was nothing there to see. Maybe next time I will have some photographs for you all.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

The rain in Maine

When someone learns that I am from Seattle they ask two questions: "How did you end up in Maine?" and "Doesn't it rain all the time out there?". Well people I have news for you... it rains all the time in Maine, that is when it is not snowing. I feel like I have not seen the sun in days. I try to tell people that at least in Seattle it will sprinkle for a while and then stop... it doesn't stop here. The upside is there has been a lot of thunder and lightening which I enjoy. I am kind of tired of having to defend Seattle though... however, now that I think about it, I am not really sure why I am defending it at all- it will just make more people want to go there and those of us from there know that once people come to Seattle, they never want to leave. From now on I will say that it never stops raining, we can go for two years without seeing the sun, the city may fall into the ocean with the next big earthquake and the volcano will erupt at any moment. That should do the trick and keep people away...

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Saturday morning pass time...

I have discovered my new favorite way to start my weekends. Coffee, Breakfast, and Backgammon! We went to a really cute coffee shop this morning in Ellsworth Maine, me with my Travel backgammon in hand ready for some coffee and food! The placed had some really nice overstuffed leather couches and chairs so after we placed out order we grabbed a couch! The coffee was good, when I ordered I just said "I want the biggest vanilla latte you make" and the breakfast sandwiches were delicious (we both had ham, eggs and pepperjack cheese on an english muffin). We sat and played Backgammon for over an hour! The competition is heating up, which I like, each game gets a little bit closer- soon I will be losing more than I win! I would love to start every Saturday that way from now on, unfortunately that is not practical but it makes for a nice image...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Taco time in Portland

.... No not the fast food resturant- I am hanging out with my good friend Holly in Portland and we are making chicken tacos!!!! Yummy. I have not been back to Portland in 2 months and the people in the campus mail room were getting a little angry at my FULL mail box! Boy was it full, I like getting mail but this is a little overwhelming. I don't even know where to start. Have of the stuff is so old that I really dont know to open it all. At least it will give me something to do over then next few days. Well back to hanging out with Holly!!!!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Borestone Mountain...

So this past Saturday I went hiking with two of the girls from my class. Now I went to Quebec with these two girls I knew from experience that one, Lindsey, is still learning to love the outdoors- I can tell you that her favorite new quote is "I am outdoorsy in that I love having cocktails on the deck" and that fits. Now don't get me wrong, I am no major hiker myself, in fact I was just tagging alone with them. The problem is that Jessica, AKA the mountain goat, is somehow unfazed by gravity. So while Lindsey and I are gingerly crawling along on out hands and knees, Jessica is just skipping along... But lets start from the beginning shall we...

None of us were in top shape come 8 am Saturday morning and I blame the Alcohol consumed by all on Friday night; non the less we made it out the door in a timely fashion to start the adventure. We head over to the mountain and get out of the car, we spray ourselves down with a nice thick layer of Deet bug spray and contemplate whether we need to bring food, it was after all, only a four mile hike. Lindsey was driver and she only has ONE key to the car (it is not cheap to get a second key made for a Lexis I guess) so we tie the key to Jessica's boot. We lock up the car, take two steps and decide we should bring the food. So instead of untying the boot to get the key off, Jessica does a very impressive car/leg straddle thing while Lindsey turns the key (I wish I got a picture of this). We get the food, lock up and head out. This time we made it across the street almost to the entrance gate when we decided we should bring out student ID's so that we can get in cheaper (you have to pay at certain trials out here). So its back to the car for another leg/car straddle move, get our ID's and we're off!!!

We get through the gate and find the trail map, there was some debate about where the trail actually began but in the end we went the right direction so we were off to a good start. Now it had poured down rain the night before and this particular hike included a lot of big rock steps and a lot of steep tree roots to climb up. We are hiking a long, Lindsey and I keep finding nice things to take pictures of, AKA we need an excuse to slow the mountain goat down. The hike was progressing nicely with no major incidents- little did we know we were just on the "warm up" hike. We get to this nice little peaceful lake where we meet a women who knew all about our school and program, we chatted for a while and then it was off to the real mountain. Now, everyone said "make sure you go to the second peak, that's the better view", So that was our plan.

We didn't have to go very far beyond the lake to realize that this was indeed, the "real" hike. Things started to get steep and precarious... At one point there was a steel rod with a make shift step thing to go up because the rock was too big to get over without help (where was my chalk bag when I needed it). It was at this point that Lindsey decides to look down and she suddenly realizes that maybe she is afraid of heights! She had a mini hyperventilation attack but she was able reel herself in like a champ and we continued up the mountain. At this point I was leading because the mountain goat went too fast and we were afraid to let Lindsey take up the rear, in case someone need to be there to catch her. When we got to the top of the first peak we stopped to take pictures and stuff. We ran in to a couple that we had seen at the start and they said it was about 10 minutes to the second peak and that it wasn't too hard of a climb... They lied.

First it was a real challenge to get down the back side of the first peak so that we could start climbing the second one. There were some challenging moments but everyone made it to the second peak in one piece! We were very excited, we took all kinds of pictures and just sort of hung out for a bit. In the mean time it had started to rain a little bit but we weren't concerned, it actually felt nice because it was really muggy out. We should have been concerned, the slippery rock thing didn't occur to us at that moment. We started to head back and I was leading again, only this time as well are headed back down, the rocks are wet... and slippery. There was one spot in particular that I took one step and my foot started to slid down the slope, I instantly started screaming "slippery rock, slippery rock" and dropped down into a squat/fetal like position and tried to grasp the rock. My foot stopped sliding but every time I would try and move it would slide again. The other girls are just behind me laughing and taking pictures... But they soon saw that I was not crazy. We ended up having to do a very impressive crab type walk to get off that particular spot. As the descent continued we realized that we should have been concerned about going down, the up part was apparently the easy bit. I think Lindsey went down twice (maybe 1 and a half, I can't remember) but every time we would think things were getting easier, someone would roll an ankle. We kept running into "real" hikers who had to wait for us to finish decending from which ever difficult spot we were in and since I was leading they all just thought I was an idiot I am sure. I keep say "this will really be entertaining for you when I fall on my face". We also kept running into people who knew of our program or a professor or something. Did I mention that Lindsey and I were both wearing UNE PA T-shirts, unplanned of course. Thats how everyone knew who we were...

By the time we got back to the lake we were a mess. We decided to walk back to the car on the service road instead of back on the "warm up" hike because we were really hungry for lunch.

This is of course the part where I roll my ankle, yeah not on the actual mountain but walking down the gravel road... I was fine, I didn't fall all the way down or anything it was just really funny. We made it back to the car in one peace! After the hike we decided to go check out this river that we had driven past because we were all really hot and sweaty! The river was beautiful, we were able to take our shoes off and walk out on yet more slippery rocks to just relax! After that we drove over to Moosehead lake, the biggest lake in Maine, for lunch. All in all we had a really great time, even better- no one got hurt. Here are some of the pictures from the event!

Hiking in Maine

Monday, July 21, 2008

It's about time!

I think I finally know where I go after Togus... I just got confirmation that I will be in Lewiston Maine working at St. Mary's Regional Medical Center in the Emergency Department! I think it will be exciting. I am not sure what I will do for housing yet but I can always live on campus at UNE if I need to. It would make for a long comute (like 40 mins) but at least there will be Starbucks! Anyway, this rotation at the VA is going well. I spent the first week in the Spinal cord injury clinic then I spent a week in Cardiology with a day in Gastroenterology. Today I am with Neurosurgery and I don't know where I will be tomorrow. I pretty much just show up each day and go where ever they tell me to go.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Don't know where I go from here...

So I found out today that I have no idea where my next rotation is. I was going to be in Northern Vermont but for some reason they canceled that rotation. Now they are not sure where I will be. I do know that my forth one will be in Portland ME. I don't know about my out west rotations for sure now because they are trying to fit me and another girl into the slots- so they can't make up their minds on who will go where when.... ARRRRRRRGGGGGGGG. Oh well- I guess I shouldn't really worry about it much right now as I have only been in Augusta for one week and I still have five to go. I am enjoying my time here so far except for the extreme heat!!! Ok- well I guess I will be off. Have a good weekend all.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

First day of Rotation 2

So yesterday was my first day in Augusta at the VA and boy was I busy- NOT seeing patients. No instead I ran back and forth down the half mile long- 4,000 degree hallways getting paper work done. I came out here about 2 weeks ago to get the ball rolling on the finger printing and badge work, well that was a waisted trip... they lost everything so I had to do it all over again. The I had to go to get a parking pass at the on site police station, then I had to go get my keys to the house. On the bright side, the house is next to the on site fire station so there might be some good viewing opportunities. All I can say about the living is I am glad I have lived in a run down house with stangers before (the seattle house). I am the only girl living with three men- no internet and no TV. On that note, I did buy a new laptop yesterday! I love it, its a HP and it is really pretty.
So not only was I running around all day yesterday and moving in to the house but it was 94 degrees and REALLY humid. I was pretty much dripping with sweat all day. Nice first impression. All right I had better get going- back to my computer training!!! Yay for electronic medical records!

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Goodbye Bar Harbor

Well today I am moving on my way to my next rotation in Augusta. I have really enjoyed my time on Mount Desert Island. I just want to say thank you to the ladies that Women's Health Center, you guys made my transition into the world of rotations really easy! Thanks again to the Hudson's for letting me live with them and playing tour guide for me! Here are a few albums of other pictures I have taken while on this rotation! They include: Thuya and Asticou gardens (FYI- Thuya means Cedar), Various Harbors and places on the Island, and then Park Loop Road- which includes pictures of Sandy beach (a rare thing- most are granite), Thunder Hole- where when the tides are changing the waves push pockets of air out with a big splash and a thunder- hence the name, and then some pictures of the carriage bridges. You will notice that it was once again foggy for my site seeing adventure but it was really cool anyway!

Gardens on MDI

Harbor's of Mount Desert Island

Park Loop Road, Acadia National Park

Touring the sound...

There is this radio station out here called Boat Talk- people call in and talk about boats I guess. Now I don't have a radio but Hilary's husband Steve listens to it all the time and they mentioned a crusie around Somes Sound that they were doing for like 10 bucks. So we went and it was a great time. We say a lot of really big house, like where the Rockefellers live. We saw the top of Martha Stewards house... At which point someone brought out cookies that were made from one of Martha receipes. They were REALLY good. We saw an Osprey nest which has been there for like 50 years. We went through the Fjord, the only one in North America- although there is talk that it has been down graded. What is a Fjord you say... well it is a long, narrow inlet with steep sides, created in a valley carved by glacial activity. The waters go straight down so big boats can go practically right up to the shore and they are no where near the bottom. We of course saw a ton of really big boats. We went past the original Hinckley boat yard (very fancy boats). I was hoping to find Captain Jack Sparrow on one of the big sail boats but alas I did not. As the tour came to an end, the skies were getting dark, but it made for some good picture taking! Anyway, Enjoy the photos, they are not perfect but it is hard to hold a camara steady on moving boat!

Boat tour, Somes Sound

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


Tonight I saw a firefly for the first time!!! (At least the first time in recollection) My time here in Bar Harbor is almost over and it will be time to move on. How quickly the last six weeks have gone by... I hope you all have a great forth of July!!!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Kayaking fun!!!

I went Kayaking on Thursday. I have not been kayaking in a very long time so I was excited about it! Fortunately the weather was perfect! Some of you may wonder- where did Stacy get a kayak... well, the family of a woman that works at the clinic owns a camp ground, a really nice one at that- and they have kayaks for their campers. She was kind enough to let me take one out for free. I spent two hours paddling around Somes Sound- boy were my arms tired by the end. I really want to get some pictures but I was a little afraid to take my camera just in case I some how ended up in the water. In the end, I decided to risk it. I set my camera on the dock while I got in the boat (a likely overboard movement) and then I tied it around my neck- I was off! This particular picture took me about 20 tries to get, it really is a miracle that I didn't drop the camera in. This Jelly fish was bigger than my head (by gross approximation, I did NOT measure for real). I was a little afraid it would some how manage to jump into my boat to sting me but it didn't... Nice Jelly fish! Any I had a really great time, I just wish I wasn't leaving the island in a week. Here is the whole album of my kayaking adventure!!!

Kayaking on Somes Sound
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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Nova Scotia

So I went to Nova Scotia on Monday and I think it was pretty... Let me tell you what I saw... FOG... fog... and more fog!!! Apparently one year they had 86 straight days of fog! I had a good time but I must say that the majority of the fun was had on the boat over. A girl fainted pretty much in my lap from sea sickness/dizziness- the boat goes really fast and rocks A LOT! Then I won 42 dollars at the casino on the ship. That was pretty much the high point. When we got to Nova Scotia after the 3 hour ride- it took almost an hour to get through the customs line because, even thought it is written EVERYWHERE and all over the news, people still do not know what they need to bring when traveling into Canada. I was getting ready to scream when finally it was my turn. With my passport in hand I had no trouble at all. Then it was on to the bus for the tour! We drove up to the light house- no that impressive since I have spent the last year touring the light houses of the coast of Maine but I was an apple core style one so that was different. Then we went around on the bus and saw a lot of sea captain homes and things like that. I think the tour guide was trying to convert everyone to Canadian wannabes because she spent the entire two hours praising the virtues of the Canadian government. Needless to say- It got old. But have no fear, after the two hour tour- it was back to the boat! And I was on my way home again... I could only afford to do the day trip because it is unearthly expensive to try and stay out there for the weekend- just the boat cost (if not same day return) is almost 300 dollars!!! Anyway, in all it was a good adventure and not one that I am sorry about! Just for future- if any of you are thinking of making the trip from Bar Harbor Maine to Nova Scotia- make it a weekend trip and be prepared for fog! Here are the few pictures I was able to take through all the fog.

Nova Scotia

Sunday, June 22, 2008

What comes next...

Well I am still in Bar Harbor at the Womens Health Center. I FINALLY found out where I am going next... Augusta, Maine (the capital). I will be at the Veteran's Affairs Medical Center there. I am going from all women to mostly all old men- should be interesting. I will be doing internal medicine, starting at a clinic for spinal cord injuries; I will also be spending time in the Cardiology clinic as well as Urology.
I am really excited because tomorrow I am going to Nova Scotia for the day. I am taking the CAT over- its a super fast ferry type thing. I am not sure what to expect but I figure I had better take advantage of the opportunity to go while I am still here.
In other happy news- my sister had her baby!!! Thats right she gave birth to my third Nephew on the 1st of this month, I am so proud of her and her husband! I can't wait to meet him- I will have to wait until like November-sad... but I do love to hear him make noise when I talk to them on the phone (I think she pinches him- just to make me happy =p). It sounds like the older two boys are being very good, loving brothers!
Well, I should really get back to studying... oh on second though, I think I will do some online shopping!!! (Neighbor- thats for you!)

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Dermatology clinic

So my preceptor does not work on Mondays- she is technically only part time right now. We are suppose to be working full time as students so I needed to find a place to go on Mondays. As it turns out, another student that was at my site last year spent time with a Dermatologist in Ellsworth, about a half an hour away. So I thought to myself- "well I suppose everyone that I will ever see will have skin- and they will very likely have some 'thing' on their skin, it would be nice if I was able to tell what it was"... So I opted to spend Monday at the Derm clinic.
Originally I thought I would be there all day- apparently the Doctor didn't get that memo, more specifically- I did not get the memo that he would only be in after lunch. So I got up all early and headed out to Ellsworth only to find out that there was nothing to do until 1. Fortunately there is a library in Ellsworth so I spent some time there studying up on the different types of skin conditions we might see that day (one of the Medical Assistant had told me what was on the patient list for the day so that I could study). The medical assistant was like "its a lot of rashes today! Hope you don't mind looking at the same thing all day" I said "thats ok, I am in a womens clinic normally so I pretty much spend my time looking at one "thing" all day anyway..." She got a laugh out of that.
After lunch it was off to the races... this Doc is the only Dermatologist in Maine that accepts a particular type of insurance so he is always really busy. In just 3 and a half hours we saw 11 patients and that included 4 procedures which take longer, to say the least- we were running around! I also found out that we had some cancellations so we could have been even more booked up! In the end, I thought the day was awesome- Dermatology is pretty cool (I know it doesn't sound cool, but it is). I plan to spend the next few Mondays with him and I look forward to seeing more cool stuff.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Day one, Rotation one

Well it's offical- I am a second year student whether I like it or not! Today was my first day at the women's health clinic and I can already tell that I will love the next six weeks! We had a pretty relaxed day (which was good considering my nerves) but I already feel very comfortable with the staff and the job. I am also loving Acadia National Park! We went hiking yesterday and it was the most outdoors activity I have had in over a year!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

My life in my car...

Well I have packed my car up to head up to Bar Harbor Maine tomorrow. I just hope that no one gets a smart idea and tries to steal it tonight! That would be NO good. Somehow over the last year I have accumulated a lot of crap- even after giving away a ton of stuff, it still all barely fit! My biggest fear (other than a stolen car) is a flat tire- knock on wood! I can just picture myself on the side of the turnpike unloading my trunk (which has about 50 pounds of books in it not to mention all my clothes) just to get the spare tire. What a story that would be... My first day at my first rotation is Tuesday. I will be at Mount Desert Island Hospital in Bar Harbor Maine working in Primary Care/Women's Health. I am looking forward to it mostly because I heard that it is an easy rotation to start out with. I have some classmates that are starting out in surgery or the ER- If that were me- I would be crazy nervous! I am fortunate because Bar Harbor is located inside Acadia National Park and its the perfect time of year to be up there! I hope to get some good hiking in during the six weeks that I will be living there. I am still not sure where my second rotation will be- I think they like to keep us on our toes, much to our dismay! Anyway- next time I write, I will be three hours north of Portland in the middle of nowhere Maine! Wish me luck!

Thursday, May 22, 2008


Life is survived one small surprise at a time, for example today- I thought it was Friday (and I am moving on Sunday) so I thought "I really need to get my act together". Then about an hour later I was checking my E-mail and low and behold-- ITS ONLY THURSDAY!!!! Back to my coffee and book I guess, I will worry about moving tomorrow!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Graduate School

I never would have imagined just how hard Grad school was going to be, I mean they say it but you never really understand it until you are there. For me, "there" is Portland, Maine, I am attending the University of New England and I am going for my Masters of Science as a Physicians Assistant. Fortunately, I have completed my first year already- but far the most difficult year of my life! We spent 8 hours in the same class room for 11 months and countless hours in the library until the wee hours of night. I worked harder than I have ever worked before- I mean I never really had to "study" before this- and all that hard work paid off. I passed all my exams and apparently learned the basics about everything I will need to know to be a clinician. I say apparently because you could ask me a question from anyone of the many exams and I would most likely have no recollection of ever having learned about it. Yikes!!! They say that we will remember so much more than we think and that the information will just come flying back to us once we are in practice, we excuse me if I am a little sceptical of this- I mean I can hardly remember how to do long division and my calculus almost never comes back to me while I am trying to figure out if I can beat the train through the intersection. In fact, I took 48+ exams, 58 semester credits in in 45 weeks of class- now that its over, I am not sure how we managed to do it all. We learned how to do everything from a complete physical exam- including a rectal and/or a pelvic exam- we learned a little bit about pretty much every area of medicine from Rheumatology to Dermatology to Cardiology- we learned how to intubate, splint, suture, scrub into surgery, draw blood from arteries and veins, we learned how to talk to patients and doctors, we learned more than I ever thought possible. The tricky part is that now, I have to start using all those things on real people! In just under one week I will be starting my first clinical rotation...