Friday, April 30, 2010

Another Hurdle

Well, just finished a pseudo-midterm - feels like I've been doing nothing but study lately - and in my spare time, computer games. I really need to get out more and exercise... Feels like I'm trying to do a million things at once, but I guess that's nothing all that new. I can't believe I'm almost done with my first year of medical school. It's rather intimidating because sometimes I feel like I've learned a lot, and other times I feel like I haven't learned anything. Now with the midterm done, I plan to just relax as much as humanly possible between now and Saturday night - Saturday we have a semi-dance thing on campus, it's a fundraiser for the group that is going abroad to Ethiopia and Tanzania. Unfortunately they're more established, better organized, and have the Global Health program director in charge of their group, so they have been putting on a lot more events than my group (Bolivia) and the Taiwan and Israel group.

The latest stuff we have been studying is all the respiratory illnesses - mostly those that cause pneumonia, bronchitis, that sort of thing. There was a section on pediatric illnesses and upper respiratory problems, which was okay. I'm not a fan of babies in general, and learning about the millions of ways that babies can turn out wrong frustrates me, since there are no laws permitting parents to relinquish their responsibilities for an incredibly unfit offspring. Definitely a controversial view, which as far as I'm concerned will only apply to myself and my future offspring, not the patients for whom I care (so don't worry), but human societies have practiced infanticide since before they were even humans - all animals practice infanticide if they do not have the resources or the animal is too unfit to survive and care for itself. It seems a crime to force parents to spend say, 5 years of their lives caring for a child that is 99.99% doomed to die - that's 5 years in which the child will be suffering, becoming progressively more mentally retarded, and slowly wasting away until its inevitable demise. It's an emotional drain for sure, not to mention a financial drain on the parents.

Like I said, I know it is my duty as a physician do everything in my power to keep a patient alive, and I will do that wholeheartedly - I just don't want to end up a slave to any offspring I produce with conditions that are incompatible with life for which medicine can offer no acceptable end.

In other news, still doing bacteriophage research. My medical Spanish classes have picked up again, so we're practicing those and we have our practicals next week. The trip to Bolivia is essentially ready, though I still need to get all my vaccinations...mental note: call the travel center. OMM is going well, I suppose - we're learning the high velocity, low amplitude techniques (the cracking techniques). I've had mixed success with them, so I definitely need more practice. Thank goodness we don't need to make an audible crack for it to be 'treated' - otherwise I don't know how we could get anything to treat during a practical after we've been practicing on each other for days.

Still working on balancing personal life with school, but everything's a work in progress these days... Now for the joy of computer games!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Spring Break

Hooray for spring break and being done with blocks exams for the time being. I ended up going to Monterey for a week, and then down to San Diego for the remainder of the passover time we have off. I have done essentially no medicine-related stuff all break - a welcome change and break for my brain. Looks like we get to start out with venipuncture and the respiratory system next block. Makes sense, as we just covered the cardiovascular system. It should be interesting.

In other news, we're needing to raise some money for the Bolivia trip (as in, get money to buy supplies for the hospital, mobile unit, and for the impoverished down there). I'll be returning to my research soon enough, and want to exercise a bit more so I'll join in the weekly karate class and do pilates on the side. I also got a LASIK checkup and my eyes are still healing perfectly and there are no complications. I also need to start making my own food more often - as much as I like letting my parents cook everything, sometimes I really prefer my own cooking. Anyhow, back to enjoying the last couple days of leisure that I have...