Thursday, 7 July 2016

Becoming a Doctor: What I'll Miss Most About Being a Student

I'm going to miss a lot about being a student.

I'm going to miss using the "I'm just the medical student" phrase anytime anyone even looks like they're going to ask me something. It's a cop-out but it works every time. If someone wants to know where the catheters are kept or when their dad's going to be discharged: I don't know but I'll get someone who does. That excuse is no longer going to fly as an F1. Gone are those days, where you would sit idly at the desk because there's nothing for you to do; all the other jobs require an actual doctor to complete it.

I'm going to miss having it easy on the wards. Technically my job is to learn and I'm doing that by observing (from the corner). As an F1, I'm going to have to get stuck in and actually be required to get stuff done. No one really pressures you as the student because they all know that this precious time we have is probably as good as it's ever going to be.

I'm going to miss automatically getting at least two weeks off for Christmas, one week off for Easter and all the bank holidays as well. I don't know how I'll make it. That sinking feeling when the rota is released and everyone quickly eyes up Christmas day to see if they'll be working. Only 27 days off a year! It's going to take some time getting used to.

Clocking off before 5. No one needs me and I'm not doing anything. It would be rude to argue with the junior doctor who's telling me to go home. Those are the best days: when you could miss an hour wait in traffic because you left 30 minutes early. No night shifts and scarcely any long days. That is the good life.   

I'm going to miss just listening to patients. I usually don't have much to do so I don't mind if they start telling me stories about their holiday 2 years ago or what they did before they retired. Hospital admissions are generally boring and sometimes patients are in the mood for a good chat.

I'm going to miss being able to ask 'stupid' questions because it's OK, I'm still learning.  I've realised over the years I've wanted to ask less questions because in my mind I think "I should probably know this by now". I imagine this feeling will grow once I've actually graduated. On the other hand, I've been told that no one expects an F1 to know anything so that's comforting.

5 years of medical school has gone by so quickly. I can't even fathom what the next two years will bring. A lot of good, I hope.


  1. Congratulations. You're a doctor and all that hard work and dedication has definitely paid off. If you were able to handle the journey of getting to your destination I am sure u will be able to handle being a doctor. Good Luck and I hope to one day follow in ur footsteps.

    1. You always have kind words. Thank you. And good luck to you too.

  2. Think of all the things you have to look forward to come August. Good luck!

    1. Can you tell how nervous I am? You're right though, I have a lot to look forward too! Thanks for commenting!