This appeared in our bathroom last week in preparation for Crunch Month.
Allegedly the shower is the best place to study anatomy, since “you’re already naked!”
Previously I’ve teased The Husband that whatever specialty he wants to go into is “Pediatric [Current Class].” That streak came to an end with the current unit, GI. Simply put, it’s gross. Not surprising. Rectum day was by far the worst day of Anatomy.
Recently, our sink has been draining slowly. Yesterday I was about to head out to run some errands and The Husband asked if I would take care of the sink when I got home. I pointed out that cleaning the sink drain was probably way less gross than anything he encountered in class this week.
The drain was cleared when I got home.
Why does it feel like we’ve done so much, yet still accomplished nothing?
Still to Do:
Okay, not so much to still do, but the painting’s a big one, and one that really has to be done when The Husband’s around.
We’re already halfway through break! Yikes!
The MS1s transitioned to MS2As* finished a week ago and there was a flurry of “First year of med school done!” posts on Facebook.
First, 4 months <> 1 year. Second, you haven’t even taken anatomy yet!
*MS vs. M is to distinguish the new curriculum from the old.
About three days before his Microbiology exam (which was yesterday), The Husband made a confession. “This is the least prepared I’ve ever been for an exam. I’m going to fail.”
And I am a terrible wife, because I have absolutely no sympathy. I would have more sympathy if a) he had ever come close to failing any of his exams, or 2) I hadn’t heard this exact same “confession” a few days before every. single. exam. for the past year+ (perhaps with the exception of the first one).
And I tell him that he’s said this every time. And every time he gets his normal score. He is amazingly consistent. All of his exams, except for Anatomy,* are within about a three point spread.
So yesterday when I went to pick him up from the exam I was a little worried because he looked pretty glum. Maybe this was the time that a stopped clock was actually correct and he failed (or at least didn’t do as well as normal).
He got in the car, and ready to swallow my pride I asked him how it went. He did better than normal! He was bummed because I was right (again)!
And so I leave him with this:
* Anatomy is different from other classes because it’s rote memorization, not problem solving (which The Husband is good at). Also, he’s not as good at 3-D spacial visualization which also made it tougher. He still did better than average though!
Anatomy, Books, Breaks, Commissary, FCM, Fellow Med Students, Fort Lee, Friends, Fun, Grocery Shopping, Groupon, Gym, Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, Military, military discount, New Hampshire, Preceptorship, Restaurant, Sick, Weather
New semester, new adventures!
The Husband re-started classes on Wednesday, and since there were only 3 days of class to fall behind on, and despite our slow-to-return health, we went out this weekend.
Friday night we went with friends to the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens to see the Gardenfest of Lights. Military Discount FTW! The Toddler enjoyed running around and staring at the Christmas lights and model trains. We also unexpectedly ran into a college acquaintance of mine who also has a toddler, so we’re going to try to meet up sometime for a playdate/catching up session.
Saturday morning was our long-awaited trip to Fort Lee for the Commissary. As we drove in we passed some very nice officer housing, a golf course, fitness trail, track and nicely manicured lawns. Allegedly the Air Force stations are nicer than Army ones, so I think we’ll be pretty happy staying on base.
The verdict on the Commissary is that it’s great for dog food and cleaning supplies, good for meat and frozen items, and about even for produce and dairy, with variation within the categories. Kielbasa and ground turkey were really cheap, chicken breasts were about the same as the local stores. Yogurt was half-price. If you already shop mostly generics though, it won’t save much money. Everything there was name brand. There was a great selection of produce, international, and luxury* items, so I’ll definitely be heading there again to stock up for parties.
I’m glad we went, but I’ll stick with the local stores for most of my grocery shopping. I’ll probably go once a month or so to stock up on meat and dog food.
As we left, we saw a platoon? (troop? brigade? About 30) of army privates sweeping the parking lot.
Finally, on Sunday we met a larger group of friends at Alamo BBQ. There was a Groupon, so we decided to check it out. It was pretty good and we’ll probably go back, so Groupon accomplished? We were a little taken aback that it wasn’t really a restaurant so much as a food stand, but there was a tent and it was gorgeous out according to the people from Canada, Seattle, and New Hampshire. To the Southern Californian, not so much. He ended up borrowing my jacket. We talked about books we read over break (Abraham Verghese seemed a popular choice), about the upcoming preceptorships (15 miles away is apparently considered “close” to school) and how we all (me included!) were glad Gross Anatomy was over.
That evening I met up with my gym buddy for the first time since early December. Today my pecs are sore!
* Fancy cheeses, salmon, etc.
While looking at a video of testing newborns’ hip flexibility:
Friend: She doesn’t look too happy.
The Husband: She? How can you tell?
Friend: [blank stare]
The Husband: I just thought that was a weird-looking penis.
I was about to write a post about how The Husband’s brain has checked out and he’s given up all critical-thinking and decision-making skills since Winter Break started, but apparently the brain left even before the test.
Hello. I’m The Husband. I’m 1/8 (or so) of a medical doctor. I’m also a Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force.
It’s been roughly 18 weeks or so since I posted anything here, so here are some updated musings about this adventure.
I’ve completed four courses gross anatomy, biochemistry, population medicine, and genetics. Next up, histology, embryology, and physiology!
I’ve learned how to take a medical history and do blood pressure. In theory, I know how to do a knee exam, shoulder exam, breast exam, chest and abdominal exam. I say “in theory” because I’ve only practiced those once, on a standardized patient.
I’ve learned how to screen for alcoholism and counsel a patient to quit smoking.
I’ve been alone in a laboratory with 38 dead bodies.
I’ve sawed through a skull and cut open a rectum. I’ve cleaned out feces that’s been inside a cadaver for months. Note: The smell does not improve with age, and rectum dissection day was EASILY the worst day of medical school.
I’ve felt like a genius and a moron. (I think The Kate is going to post about why I felt like a moron.) [ETA 12/12: Story here. ~Kate]
I’ve held what used to be someone’s heart in my hands.
I’ve seen the blackness that covers lungs after a lifetime of smoking.
I’ve participated in cancer surgery and removed moles from a patient’s back.
I’ve visited a man whose been in the hospital for over 8 months, waiting for a heart transplant. Despite his predicament, he was in pretty good spirits, surprisingly.
I’ve given injections of saline to oranges. Despite my best efforts, the orange didn’t make it.
I’ve been told by multiple doctors that if I had any brains, I’d have gone into dentistry.
I’ve learned the difference between empathy and sympathy.
I’ve met plenty of people I would never want as my doctor.
I’ve got a touch of medical student syndrome (where when you become exposed to new diseases, you think you have them). My finger started hurting, so I diagnosed it with some sort of median nerve issue. Nope, it was just tendonitis caused by the anatomy dissection. That’s why you don’t want an M1 to do diagnoses.
Next semester, we actually work with patients. My preceptorship is at http://www.crossoverministry.org/. Should be interesting.
Before I started medical school, I heard that the other students studied 9 or more hours a day. I thought, I wouldn’t have to do that since I’m so much smarter than they are.
God, I was an idiot.
Medical school is like a cave of studying. The sheer volume of material that we get hit with is whelming. I feel like I go into my cave, then emerge hours late to see my wife and son for a bit. Then, I re-enter the cave.
In moments here and there, I’ve missed some of our friends from NH. To any of them who are reading this, we’ll be up around Christmastime. Give us a shout if you want to get together. (Brad & Jenny, Steve and Karen, Bob and Lauren, Mike and Val, Justin, Deb and Will, Diane & Dave, Evan and Carolyn (BTW, congrats to you two!)).
Exercise has pretty much gone out the window, though I manage to get a run in here and there. I’m on a three week break (THANK GOD), so I hope to get that party going again. I’m going hiking on Tuesday, so I’m excited about that.
Yesterday was our last anatomy exam before the break. I suppose I should be jubilant, but mostly, I’m just tired. Sometimes, I stop and wonder a) how I ended up here and b) why they let me in.
I had a good job that paid well and had every other Friday off, and I left it, moved my entire family, joined the military, and started med school.
I haven’t regretted it for a second.
Since I seem to answer this question a lot in my face-to-face conversations, here it is for my fingers-to-eyes monologues.
Modules (my term, not official) are 2 to 8 weeks long and are one or more classes. These classes are in the morning from 8am until noon, 5 days a week. This year started off with Population Medicine and Biochemistry. Pop Med ended and was replaced with Genetics while Biochem continued on. Then Biochem and Genetics both ended and Anatomy started. In Anatomy, morning class is divided between lecture (1 hour) and lab (3 hours). Anatomy/Embryology will continue through mid-January and then replaced with Histology, Physiology, and Behavioral Sciences. At some point, Immunology will get added in and Neurology will finish out the year.
At the end of a class, there is usually a study/review day where the various professors (each class has at least several) have an hour each to highlight difficult concepts/answer questions.
The day before a test that is not a final exam is usually a seminar/case-study type of day.
About 2-3 afternoons a week are other classes like Foundations of Clinical Medicine (FCM) or Ethics. The “free” afternoons are spent in the library (or the Anatomy Lab right now).
Every other week or so The Husband will go to a lunch lecture, where a club will bring in a speaker and provide lunch.
Normally at night, The Husband will put in another 2 hours of studying at home, and on weekends about 4ish hours a day. Anatomy has not been “normal” for him though. It’s been much more difficult than Biochem, etc. and he has upped the night and weekend hours and spent more of those at the local library instead of at home. Part of that may be that The Baby transitioned into The Toddler and is much more able to grab papers and keyboards up high, however.
We are still battling fleas. It’s been over a month and we’ve tried just about everything. We even had the dog shaved. She looks ridiculous. Also very svelte.
Professional exterminators came last weekend and the fleas left for a few days but we are seeing them again. New hatchings? So frustrating.
I went out and bought another $30 worth of vacuum bags. The vacuum hose attachment has stopped sucking. Maybe a clog? I’ll try to see this afternoon when The Husband gets home and can watch The Toddler because The Toddler is terrified at the sight of the vacuum.
On the weekend, we now have “Cat Bathing Night.” We are wild and crazy, let me tell you! The cats were so mad last night, they didn’t even come down the stairs to eat their dinner. I believe this is unprecedented in the history of the world.
Product Endorsement: Welding gloves are not just for hacking out rose bushes anymore!
My parents came to visit the weekend before Thanksgiving. We didn’t see The Husband much since the second round of Anatomy tests was on Tuesday and Wednesday, but the rest of us went to Maymont (where The Toddler walked around and around and around), and fixed the leaking washing machine, so it was a good visit.
Speaking of Anatomy, so far the worst day of Anatomy (according to The Husband) is Rectum Dissection Day because of the smell. He still has not brought home his scrubs to be washed. I will provide the bleach, but otherwise he is on his own at this point.