It's official: I've graduated from residency.
We had our graduation dinner last week. I was anxious about it all day and my husband kept asking me why. Somehow it wasn't a good enough explanation that I was scared my two year old daughter would scream her head off during a ceremony attended by professionals in my field that I highly respect.
One other graduating resident had a child and we conspired to sit at the same table, thinking that at least this way, nobody would be able to differentiate one screaming child from another. Right off, things didn't go well when Melly didn't seem to get that she was only supposed to clap when everyone else was clapping. Neither of our girls made it through the ceremony and our husbands had to take them outside. Apparently, her husband said to mine, "So this is what our lives have become."
In general though, I was very proud of how well Melly behaved. As long as there was food in front of her.
I'm proud of myself too. I still think of myself as very very early in my career, but when I see high school kids shadowing our doctors, I realize that I've come very far. They've still got to graduate high school, go through all of college, take the MCATs, go through med school, take Step 1 through 3, do internship, and do residency in order to get to where I am right now.
It was not easy. I am a little ashamed to admit how many times I came close to quitting. There are a lot of people who started med school with me in 2001 that have been lost along the way... they will not be graduating now or ever. There are so many ways to get tripped up on this journey: students who flunked out, switched into other fields, quit to raise children instead, or worse, are no longer with us.
But I made it. I'm licensed to practice medicine and will (hopefully) soon be board certified.
So has anyone warned you not to get sick in July?