The musings of a final year medical student

Saturday, 27 May 2017


At school I was very ambitious. I would set myself targets and I would give 100% of myself to those targets. I loved it. I loved pushing myself.

The comfort was that when I set those targets, I had a lot of self-confidence. I almost always achieved those ambitions, and so whenever I would set the next target I was pretty certain that it would happen.

All of that changed when I got to medical school. My physical health was suffering, my mental health was suffering, and my confidence was knocked by a few of my teachers and consultants on the wards. I felt very unwelcome and undeserving of my place. I started to question if I could do this, if it was worth trying.

I started to believe that I could never excel in medicine. If I passed, that would be a miracle. I resigned myself to never being that person who gets published. I stopped asking questions – I stopped challenging myself. After all, several doctors told me I was going to be a GP in various ways. And without bashing general practitioners, of whom I have a tremendous amount of respect for, I was made to feel like it was a predetermined path rather than my own choice.

I love studying medicine, but my confidence has taken a real bashing. I’m trying to be the old Kate who wasn’t afraid of trying to be better. Who wasn’t afraid of a challenge, but relished it.

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