Being a med student is both a mental and emotional upheaval. It is a long, painful process that hopes to create an end-product that can withstand any harsh environment it is thrown into.
To describe it as “hard” might just be the greatest understatement of all.
And for that, we, medical students, apologize to you.
We apologize for the random angry outbursts and the constant irate and disinterested mood. We only had a total of 4 hours of sleep in the last three days combined and work just keeps on coming in like an avalanche bound to trample and suffocate us.
We apologize for the seen-zoned messages, unreturned calls and ignored invitations. It’s just that we had a very long and tiring week and we wanted to spend what’s left of our measly weekend off catching up on sleep and personal care, all without having to sound like a broken record for using the same excuse for being absent in every get-together you had carefully planned out.
We apologize if we sometimes spout nothing but negativities that may dampen your mood. We were just very hurt and demoralized by the two consecutive exams we failed despite studying hard for them, and we had no other way to let our frustrations out other than by complaining (which is, of course, not the healthiest way to deal with problems, but at the moment, we’re just too. Tired. To. Care.).
We apologize if sometimes we seem not to be mentally present when around you. Most of the time, it’s just because we were thinking of the lecture we had that day in an effort to retain as much information as we could to avoid cramming for our upcoming examinations.
We apologize for seemingly ‘not trying hard enough’ in our relationships. Gone were the days when we can never be too busy to spend quality time with our loved ones. We try, really, we do, but Medicine is one insanely jealous lover. It is equally painful for us to helplessly watch as our relationships crumble right in front of us. Thriving in medical school comes with a lot of sacrifices, and, sometimes, unfortunately, we cannot help but give up even some parts of our personal life for the sake of pursuing this profession.
We apologize in advance for all the birthdays, weddings and other important milestones that we will miss while we are in medical school. Time is not on our side, and believe me, it is painful to be updated with our friends and loved ones only through social media. As we look at photos of your latest travels, engagement, wedding and kids, we couldn’t help but wonder too what we have really signed up for.
We apologize if we don’t always have all the answers when you ask us medical-related questions. This is because we have yet to really master any subject in Medicine, let alone actually gain some self-confidence in assessing, diagnosing and sharing information. But hey, when we really do get a concept, we would waste no time at all in sharing it over dinner to sound like this path we chose is getting us somewhere promising.
We apologize if all we could talk about is our studies, because frankly, there’s nothing much we do aside from school that merits as an interesting topic in conversations. We always insist you to talk because we don’t want to sound too boring or alien if we get started on the pathogenesis of cancer and consequently make you paranoid about eating that burger we just ordered.
We apologize to our parents when we don’t get the grades expected from us. We don’t like to make excuses but the reality is, we are trying, and while it may not look much, every ’75’ we get is a product of blood, sweat, tears and prayers. We know you love us no matter what, but we can’t help but be apologetic for the times we feel like we have failed you.
However, amidst all these apologies, we also ask you to keep trusting and believing in us, because we are working our way towards achieving our dreams, and when we get there, the victory will be ten times sweeter with you, our loved ones, with us. We would like to ask for your forgiveness and understanding, because you are our inspiration, and without you, we would have long given up this journey. This med student is still your friend/lover/child, and while most of the time we may appear to be consumed in our own little world, deep down we are still the same person you’ve come to know and love.