Hello internet space. I have missed you. I didn’t think that time would come where I neglected you for so long because I got busy.
So, lovely space of mine, I thought I would entertain you with some updates on my absolutely riveting life. I jest. Why am I writing such a yawn- inducing blog, one asks? Because, friends, I have a growth mindset. That means I can look back at this little snapshot of my life and reflect on it and see what progress I have made since then. It’s also because I just really really feel like it. And there is really no need for me to justify how I feel, is there? Also, here is a photo of myself, right now, as I write. I can’t even tell you what this is, apart from a total inability to pose.
Here it is chums. Updates. Try not to jump out of your chair in excitement in the manner demonstrated above.
1. I actually love medicine now.
I must admit that last year drained me. There are things no one tells you about being a medical student. Like how crap it is when you’re wandering aimlessly around wards with a stethoscope stuffed in your pocket (but not around your neck, never around your neck, you gotta earn that privilege) not knowing what to do and always being in the way. Things seem different now. I have really noticed that being surrounded by people with a more cheery disposition and a willingness to just have you there makes all the difference. Maybe it’s a result of moving to another hospital… or maybe it’s because people have a little more respect for you as a fourth year because you haven’t just been freshly churned out of pre-clinical medicine, not really knowing anything. All I know is that I love being there now, on most days. I love sitting in clinic just watching consultations, scrubbing into surgery and putting airways in on anaesthetics. It’s easy to forget how privileged we are to see people during a truly intimate part of their lives… during their hospital appointments, or just before having a big operation. I feel myself wanting to be there and wanting to learn.
2. …But I am so done with med school.
I am so ready to have a job and an income and not live in a student house. Seeing other people having graduated, and watching them in full time work now makes me want it so badly for myself. It’s like I’m seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and running at it with full speed.
3. I have realised that when your best friend at uni becomes your housemate, your house becomes your home.
If there was ever such a thing as a game- changer, it has been this. There is nothing in the world more comforting than coming home, wherever home may be. The Dalai Lama says ‘A loving home is the foundation for your life’, and that extends beyond your immediate family. Home can just be that one friend who looks out for you in a way that no one else knows how to. After a long, hard day, I can return knowing that dinner might just be on the table already. A cup of tea will never get made without the offer being extended to the other person. All the buzzfeed posts apply and we proudly sit around thinking we’re infinitely cooler than everyone else because we have each other. We might even have merged our names. Backwards.
4. I still can’t drive.
Let’s get things straight. Firstly, I drive an automatic. That means I have no gears to worry about. Secondly, I have been at this for well over a year. Thirdly, every time I face another driving test my hands shake in fear, I get heart palpitations, I mess up at the first roundabout, followed by messing up the manoeuvre and then I go home and drown my sorrows in some form of cake or other diabetes- inducing substance. I might just be that girl who takes 46 tests before passing. But I’m a freaking soldier so watch out test number 47, I’m comin’ at ya.
5. I have officially given up meat.
And I’m scared to write that because it makes it real. I have wanted to do this for a long time but always found a way to put it off. It hasn’t been easy. For the last week, I have dreamt about fried chicken so anyone who makes this change and doesn’t get cravings has the resolve of a trooper. But I feel good about this particular life choice. I’m not pressurising myself to continue with it forever, but right now I think I’m doing the right thing for myself, the environment and the animals. The second Dalai Lama quote of today’s blog is ‘Be gentle with the earth’. For some reason, this single sentence spoke volumes to me, so I went with my gut and made the change.
6. I still dislike social media.
For social media rant number one, please see this.I never did get Twitter back. I still don’t have the Facebook app on my phone but I check it once a day on the computer so I don’t miss any vital updates. I don’t use snapchat at all anymore. Even with all the funky new animations. I kept my Instagram account, mainly because I follow cool things like yoga, vegetarian food blogs, headspace and the Dalai Lama, of course. My compromise has been to delete all the useless people-pleasing photographs on there and to make it a more accurate reflection of what really matters to me. All in all, I feel like I have my detached, pre-snapchat story brain back a little bit. It’s good.
7. I am really scared about what is going to happen to the NHS and royally pissed off that the actual contract can’t be found anywhere.
I’m not even going to start on this one because, frankly, enough people have blogged about it. But it’s there, it’s shit and I’m not impressed with Jeremy Hunt in the slightest.
8. I am in love.
I have spent a long time thinking about what those four letters really mean, and what it is to truly feel that way. The internet says that there are two parts to it; attraction, followed by attachment. I have come to the conclusion that true love is not necessarily about the intensity of emotion but about really growing with a person and wanting them to be a part of your life in a way that no one else could ever be. And there’s a whole lot more to it, but I think I’ll leave it there.
9. I am meditating lots.
Yes, yes, yes! I am keeping on top of my headspace journey. For the beginning of that, feel free to go clicking here. My morning routine has become my favourite part of the day. I’ll get up, put the heater fan on, fill the kettle, brush my teeth, and once the kettle has boiled, I’ll make a large mug of indian loose- leaf chai on the hob, come back to my freshly warmed room, switch my fairy lights on and linger over my tea. Then, time permitting, I’ll meditate for ten minutes. Even if I only reach the lingering stage and don’t get to the meditation part, that’s okay. But devoting that kind of time to yourself first thing in the morning changes your whole day. As for meditation? I can feel the benefits of it radiating out of me.
10. I don’t know how to do a clinical audit.
I am far too creative and airy fairy for this Microsoft Excel palaver.
11. I didn’t condition my hair for a week.
This was the definition of drama. Picture this… shower 1: the conditioner runs out, so you vow to get some more. Shower 2: You forget. Cue dry hair. Shower 3: You learn from the deep and dirty mistakes from Shower 2, and go to the bathroom armed with your bottle of Herbal Essences, only to realise… it’s shampoo. You have already shampooed your hair. And squirted more shampoo out of the thing you mistakenly thought was conditioner because you were too incompetent to read the label, so now you either have to double shampoo your already shampooed locks or try and squeeze the now contaminated shampoo into the tiny hole through which it was squeezed. Not ideal. Shower 4: You forgot… again. You see your housemate’s conditioner staring at you and think… ‘I’ll just take the tiniest bit and hopefully she won’t notice’. But your guilt is so heavy that you merely use a drop. It makes no difference whatsoever.
That sounded like a soap opera in more ways than one… but that was my actual life for a week. What even.
12. I discovered Pinterest.
And I look at beautiful bohemian style houses every single night before I sleep and dream of a place where I will one day live, filled with patterned carpets, cool lampshades, lots of colour and all the trinkets from all my travels arranged in the most perfect manner of feng shui imaginable. Get your cosmopolitan, mainstream, minimalistic, clean cut decor out of here. Now smell the incense and appreciate real beauty. In fact, if this doesn’t awaken your inner hippie, then maybe it’s time to book yourself a meditation retreat in the Himalayas.
Well there it is. I’m not entirely sure what that was. Maybe I just wanted to remind myself that I am alive and well and breathing and despite all the stress I put myself under… I am really freaking goddamn happy and grateful in life.
Keep dancing to the music inside you my loves,
P.S. I bought conditioner today. And I double checked that it was, indeed, conditioner. In fact, it was Herbal Essences ‘dazzling shine’, reduced to half price at £1.84 (yes, conditioner is extortionately priced). Winning. Bargain. The shine is real.