Sunday, October 25, 2009

A Repeat of Second Year for a Month

Today was my last day to play outside and take the weekend leisurely. Fortunately, the fall foliage has peaked and winter is on its way. Unfortunately, my stress and flashbacks of last year and the impossible hurdles of vet school are back. This week I have a neuro exam and man is this stuff tough. To top it off I don't remember those cranial nerves and muscle innervations as well as I thought I did. Time to break out the flashcards. Next week I have surgery and 2 more exams, and 2 exams per week until Thanksgiving.

Deep down I know it is possible, but it will require another level of focus I haven't had most of the semester. I have not had it because I didn't need it. I have been having enough time to stay on top of things, but not anymore. Luckily it should go by quickly, and here's hoping for success. It was nice to have some pressure off, back to the real vet school I suppose.

On another note, Spokane has been doing well. She has amazing moments of listening, coupled with bouts of being stubborn. She knows her commands, but now chooses when to do them. We have started some off-leash fetching and training, which is exciting. She still has her bad days and way too much energy, especially when it is cold, but she is an amazing dog. I am sure I won't always be thinking that as I embark on a rough few weeks, but in the long run I think we are both happy to have her.

As usual this time of the semester I am tired and starting to get sick of school. I desire to be a 4th year, or better yet be working and living my life again. I will persevere and hopefully make it turkey, holidays and one last academic semester.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Mid Semester Blues

While 3rd year is worlds away better and more manageable than second year, we are all getting tired and the novelty of clinical relevance is starting to wear out. I once again long for more free time and mindless activity. I will admit the semester is going by very quickly and with 8 weeks under my belt, and only 4 weeks left of classes it is a downhill slope. That slope is of course filled with multiple choice tests, hours of studying and sitting, and the intimidating surgery practical final exam.

But the light at the end of the tunnel involves Thanksgiving break.

On a positive note, I have basically worked out my senior schedule and I will be going to the Chengdu Panda Reserve in China, Humane Society lobbying group in Washington DC and the wildlife center of VA as my elective blocks. Pretty exciting. It really does feel like I will be a 4th year, which seemed absolutely impossible just 2 years ago.

The trickier part of registration is figuring out what classes I don't want to take next semester. They seemed to have saved all the fun electives for the spring, but lecture burn out is definitely starting to seep in. I plan to register for a bunch and drop once the semester starts and I evaluate how burned out I am after 5 semesters of vet school.

To the downhill crunch of the Fall Semester!

Friday, October 2, 2009

End of Week 6

This week felt long. It was filled with lots of useful information for preparing for my first job out of school, but that information came with strings attached. It was very intimidating that in a year I will have to start looking for a job and decide for certain whether I want to do an internship or find a practice with good mentorship to start my career. I also thought I had my resume in pretty decent shape, but there are many more changes to make. The idea of negotiating a contract is intimidating. My one experience negotiating a job offer didn't go very well, and I don't know if I will have time to read the recommended book Getting Past No. While graduation and 4th year seem much more real now than they ever did last year, the career development class changed my excitement to stress about when I will have time to do all the leg work to make the right decision and study for boards.

Endoscopy lab was good, I went last in my group and made a few attempts at the pylorus, unsuccessfully. The rest of the endoscopy went pretty well, including intubation and anesthesia.

It seems like the heavier weeks of the semester will be coming late this month until Thanksgiving, but it is nice to enjoy a lighter load while we can. Third year is still my favorite so far, but the prospects of 4th year and after are starting t be intimidating. I know how much time interviewing for jobs required my senior year of college and in many ways these are bigger decisions with less free time to make them. I have also been feeling like I really could use a mentor with varied experience and some good advice on internship vs. first job and I haven't found that yet. The people I have connected with are very busy veterinarians that I have not been able to spend much time with. They just don't know me that well. I hope I find that answer or mentor within the next year.