Drama: The Persistent Weed Pt 2

This is a continuation of my last post.

I stopped writing last night because I have a race next weekend. This morning’s run was fantastic, and the endorphin rush and energy lasted me till 5pm. I’ve been so reticent about running in the morning in winter because the sun won’t have risen yet, and it’s usually windy/rainy/crappy. However, with the big race so close, I got up and ran a new personal best, which I’m quite happy about. 10.5km in 57 minutes = 5:25 min/km!!

The view at the end of a new PB run :D

The view at the end of a new PB run ūüėÄ

Anyway, my life is currently overrun with drama. Let’s talk about uni, which has once again become a large part of my life.

Teaching hospitals are hotbeds of politicking and drama.

1. My year is the first cohort of post-graduate students for this course. They gave us fanciful labels, like “pioneers” and “scouts.” Oh please, you mean “guinea pigs.”

I wish I’d gotten a photo of what MF from my study group wrote on the whiteboard one session:

Welcome to Journal Club. In your first year of uni, can you say that you’ve killed/sued/brought on a nervous breakdown on your professors?

Or something like that.

2. They have tried to treat us like the usual 17-18 year old undergraduates, who are basically children. When Nurse G tried to reprimand us, we immediately gave feedback to our class representatives, who got the staff to speak to her and say, “You can’t do that.” She got the message.

3. They are trying to dictate new clinic coat standards. P has told me there is no evidence for cross infection control, or research on the incidence of proven patient/patient transfer in our setting. But they remain adamant that we must meet their new requirements, despite the fact that students for the past 10 years have had short clinic coats, and neither they nor their patients are on anti-retrovirals. Fucking saliva splatter studies.

4. The replacement for the course coordinator who had a breakdown is a real piece of work. Why?

  • I can understand that you want our undivided attention, but it’s¬†unbelievably disrespectful¬†to snap your fingers at us.¬†Our cohort has students of a comparable age, qualifications, and life experience. Your attempt to avoid conflict by a dictatorial attitude is not appreciated.
  • We will be your future colleagues. Who the hell do you think you are to tell us to lower our screens because we don’t need to take notes?
  • I don’t want to hear your life story, about how you went to the best university in America, and “dated your professor on the quiet” and got married. I don’t care that your son has final high school exams, or about¬†your “amazing” daughter who’s never dealt with death before, but has taken on all the cooking for her friend’s mother’s funeral. Shut up. If you absolutely must, finish your lecture on the history of the topic, and then talk through actual important, clinically relevant topics, you twit! Jesus fucking Christ.

5. I’m not encouraged to excel with my practical work. Last week, I was ahead of everyone else for one activity, standing around, waiting for 45 minutes to get something checked in 30 seconds so I could proceed to the next step. The tutor asked me why I was rushing and the coordinator told me to hide my frustration.

But you know what? I get it. This is the way things are. I just need to keep my head down, use my time more effectively instead of standing around, get through, and then leave this crap drama behind. Water off a duck’s back. It’s not worth the emotional energy. I have more important things to worry about. Like study.

Today, I was ahead again. We were allocated 6 hours for our practical work. I finished in 3 and a bit. People started asking me to critique their work, so I did it a bit. And then more and more people asked. I felt like such a twat. I mean, I learned it at the same time as you and I’m ahead, but I’m not more experienced or anything. And here I am, playing tutor. Oh well, they asked for my feedback. It was better than twiddling my thumbs.

I have seriously considered transferring back home for the course. We’ll cross that bridge when it comes time.

There may be a part 3, on my clinic partner, and a small group of girls who have distinguished themselves in our cohort as bitches.

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Making An Effort

My dad flew back to North America recently. It was P’s birthday a few days later. After 6-7 weeks of parental hovering, I was overdue for some fun. I mean,¬†finally, a point where I wasn’t given the third degree on what I was doing, who I was going with, how long I was going to be, queries on why I wasn’t studying….

GOOD GOD I HAVE A PROFESSIONAL DEGREE!!!!!!!!!!!!

I have tried to assert myself beforehand, saying that if I failed this second one, it was on me. After all, I’m paying for it. But my dad has this inexorable persistence. So that left me with one choice when Dad left: spend craploads of time at P’s. I think I overdosed a bit.

  • We went for Korean for birthday lunch.
  • Dinner with my workmates, then had waffles for dessert.
  • For P’s birthday dinner, everyone came over for some champagne and cheese. I know it’s usually wine, but it’s not my birthday. Besides, I got told off for nearly cutting the nose off the cheese. Oops. “Dragged up” was how P put it, teasingly. And then we went for some delicious French food. But I was so full by the main, I couldn’t finish the ratatouille. And this is odd for me. I usually eat everything bar garnish. Hello, I’ve said it before, what’s the point of running if you can’t eat what you want?
  • Sleeping over nearly the entire weekend.

Now with exams looming, I’m getting organised. It’s nose to the grindstone, it’s crunchtime, it’s go-time, it’s non-stop, it’s DEFCON-1.

The invitations to go for drinks, for dim sum, to hit the running track with a uni mate.. they’re still coming.

I’m realising there’s a certain wisdom to my dad’s strict discipline:

The cost involved is always greater than what you think it is.

Lunch is more than the 2 hours to order. It’s travel time, it’s parking, it’s attention elsewhere. Star Trek Into Darkness this Thursday with P and P’s best mate is going to be more than a 2.5 hour movie. I’m going to be thrilled, my senses heightened… how am I supposed to come down from that and get my game-face on for study? Could I study after? No. That’s why I’m going to see it later at night, then sleep.

I’ve calculated the number of hours I need just to finish my notes (never mind studying them!) and doing my readings. All of a sudden, there’s that much more impetus NOT to go to lunch with my frenemy. I’ll write about that another time.

My dad was right. Dammit, how does this always happen? I can do this, I can say no. They will be there for me after my exams. Delaying gratification! I’m doing better with time management though. I’ve scheduled study for each day for the next¬†7¬†weeks till exams are over. I’ve studied from 8 to 6 today, with breaks for lunch and dinner. That schedule still has room for me to¬†have drinks in the city at 9 with uni mates. Don’t make that face, I’m staying for 1 hour and then to bed! Promise.