I know that it's perfectly natural to go through up and down periods within medical school, but I swear that I swing back and forth faster than a bipolar crack addict.

This morning, I had a great amount of difficulty dragging my sorry ass out of bed to study. I walk through the cold over to school, and as soon as I get through the front door I can feel my shoulders sag and my posture slouching and the joy being dragged out of me as I head into the library for a little bit of light reading (Viruses...hooray). 20 ounces of black coffee couldn't even get my sorry butt motivated.

Later this same day, I head to a mandatory small group session with one of the fourth year students and I almost enjoyed interacting with my small group in yet another extremely inefficient clinical correlation exercise...the leader actually managed to get a discussion going and some interesting tidbits were addressed and some of her knowledge was thrown down and the session actually ran itself instead of morphing into mandatory lecture time like usual. I finally felt like I was actually learning something that might be clinically relevant in my career, instead of staggering through endless lists of cell markers, random correlations pulled from pubmed and obscure diseases that have an incidence of 1:10,000 in a tiny corner of Bulawayo province of Zimbabwe.

Then again tonight, I head on back over to the library with my dinner and my virus reading, same life-sucking feeling, same slouching posture, same falling asleep in the pages of my book out of sheer disgust. I try chewing gum...still can't concentrate. I try taking a dinner break...still can't concentrate. I try commiserating with some of my study buddies...can't focus. Finally after about 6 hours of on and off productivity, (consisting of 2 class transcripts, phone calls to mom and the girlfriend, an hour of screwing around with classmates, 30 minutes of dinner, and at least 6 bathroom breaks) I threw in the towel and headed for home, defeated by viruses and my own demotivation.

All I can do is remind myself of a few things:
  • 903 days until graduation.
  • 1.5 years finished, $117,000 spent on school
  • 7 months until I am released onto the wards and Step 1 and the end of this pointless suffering in the bowels of the library.
  • Most importantly, 2 weeks until Winter Break: sleeping in, skiing, family and friends around, no Robbins, no Murray, my dog, and contact with the real world outside of my personal hell. Basically, I get the things that matter in my life back firmly in my possession for 2 entire weeks (probably for the last time until 4th year, but I'll face that realization later on...with a healthy dose of angst and scotch)

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