Tuesday, May 18, 2010

5 years ago

15 September 2005. The day when I left my family and close friends behind. I can still remember what I wear on that day. A plain white formal shirt and black slack (which I can no longer fit today. Hehe) Donned with a black blazer on top (looking at the blazer now, I wonder why I even bought it in the first place!) With an extremely hard-to-put-on black and white scarf covering my head.

I can still remember how Papa gone mad at me for buying a suit without a pocket. "Mana nak letak awak punya passport and tickets nanti!?" He said. Haha. He ended up buying me a new handbag at the airport, a handbag that I still treasure til now (despite the fact a hole is growing larger at the corner of the bag. How I managed to get a hole in my handbag? Don't ask)

I remembered not knowing anyone at the airport. There were Capau, Nazri and Kenny whom I recognized but was not acquainted at that time. We ended up sitting in a row in the airplane. I don't think I cried in the plane. I think I cried a lot when I was bidding my goodbye to my family at the airport. I was too exhausted to cry again in the plane.

Arrived at Manchester Airport for the very first time. It felt so surreal. I was in UK. The wind was icy cold. I was literally shivering down my spine. By the time we got there, we took a cab to someone's house in Manchester for dinner. I was too knackered at that time, I did not even feel like eating. It was so nice of those people though to cook for a herd of complete strangers.

After dinner, we got a lift from Kak Ros and his husband all the way to Sheffield. In the car, Kak Ros was trying to show us around. I remembered her saying something about Peak District. It was too dark anyway at that time, hence making it almost impossible to figure out what is what from inside the car. I was too dizzy anyway at that time, not liking the winding road to Sheffield. I forced myself to sleep, knowing that that was the only way to stop myself from vomiting inside a nice stranger's car.

It was almost midnight when we arrived Sheffield. I was sent to 5 Filey to stay for the night. I stayed there for a few nights actually before moving in to my proper house. That night was the first time I got to know De'e and Jang, whom apparently went to KMB as well. Haha. Man, I seriously do not mix around well when I was in KMB. I slept like a log on Kak Syafa's comfy king size bed. Completely ignoring the fact that I will be waking up the next day to a new beginning of a new chapter of my life.

Sigh. That was 5 years ago?! Really? I am going to miss all of these. Definitely.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Last day as medical student!

Oh gosh. My blog has been collecting dust. Again. Dah bersawang siap. Haha. I just don't feel like writing.

Anyway, today is my very last day in medical school. To be exact, today is my very last day I will be going to the hospital with the Student Doctor badge hanging around my neck.

Headed off to Barnsley today with Alice and the others for our feedback session. It took us 40 minutes to get to Barnsley by car, and the session last for not more than 10 minutes. Which, frankly, was downright annoying! But, all in all, the session today marked our last day of placement. Last day of medical school. I am not sure if it was smiles or frowns that I see plastered on my mates faces today. Maybe a bit of both. Smiling because this means no more placements. Wohoo. Frowning because this means EXAMS! Boooooooooooooooooo.

After the session, we headed off to Alice's car. Once she started her engine, the song Celebration popped up in the radio. We all looked at each other and smiled. Haha. "This is a good sign" said Louise. Hahahhaah. Maybe it is. Maybe it is. Ben suggested we go somewhere to celebrate. Alice thought we should have a cake. However, in the end, after the song ends, we decided we should stick our heads to the books til exams are over. Hahah. Reality check. Wise decision, mates.

Where has my 5 years gone to? Has it really been 5 years? MasyaAllah, how time flies.

I can still remember my very first day in Medical School. Being an alien in a crowd of 250 people. Knowing completely no one at all. Sitting right at the back of the lecture theatre for our very first induction lecture. Clueless. Lonely. Scared. You name it.

And then I spotted two girls in hijab and thought that they looked friendly. I can still remember catching them in front of the RHH entrance, asking them if it is OK for me to tag along with them. Haha. I was flustered with a sense of relief when they said yes. Haha. And that's the start of a beautiful friendship.

I was so timid in my first year. I barely speak. I smiled, tried to be nice and friendly. The only people I talked to was my ILA mate and my 3 friends. Haha.

I cried a lot in my first year. I cried for a lot of things. I cried when I see my other friends in different universities hanging out with their Malaysian friends. I cried when I feel like I has no one to turn to. Heck, I even almost cried when I went to ASDA with my housemates because pushing the trolley in ASDA reminds me of going grocery shopping with my mom at Giant supermarket back home. Hahhaha. Now, that was random.

I remembered going home crying when one of my mates insisted on having a meeting in a pub opposite the hospital. They offered alcohol and I refused, rather persistently. I did not feel right at all when I was in the pub. Why on earth do we have to do a meeting in a pub when we have all of the other places in the world to go to. But after that incident, I learned to explain to them that I prefer to go elsewhere for group meeting. The wonderful thing is they are completely OK with this. Whenever we are going out for a night out or a meeting, they never fail to ask if I am OK with the food or with the place. Aren't they just the sweetest thing?

My circle of friends only started to grow when I started my clinical placements. Which was in Phase 2. During placements, I was randomly allocated to different group of people. Having different partners and different mates for each rotation certainly allows me to get to know more people. And I am quite please with that.

A lot of things has happened in the past 5 years. I don't know how I managed to sail through medical school. (Well, not yet, but insyaAllah, I'm getting there in 3 weeks time!!!) What I know is I am not alone, because Allah is always there for me. If not for Him, I would not have gone this far. If not for Him, I would have surrendered ages ago. If not for Him, I would not be the person I am today.

What doesn't break you makes you stronger. Definitely.

And now, I am left with only a couple weeks before OSCEs. So, if you find me not smiling when I bump into you, or not joining the conversation when everyone else seems to be talking, or not laughing at your jokes when everyone else is laughing, do understand that I am not being rude. My mind is simply occupied and I just could not be bothered with anything else. I am sorry! I will be nicer after I finish my exam, I promise. Hehe. Even nicer if I pass :)

Friday, March 19, 2010

Who needs a break?

Easter holiday has officially started. Well, at least for the non final year medics in Sheffield, it has. Yes, as sad as it sounds, I do not get a break this Easter. Apparently, we, final year medics, do not need a break from all of the strenuous placements and assessments for the past 3 months because we are made out of iron. We are expected to continue with the remaining 6 weeks of placement, which involves going in for placements (and I will be chucked in peripherals for this last placement and I know I will be missing the abundance of freedom that I am enjoying from my current placement) and not forgetting the hype of preparing for our final OSCES, without a holiday because we do not need a holiday.

After these placements, we have 6 days (?!) off for reading week, and then we will just go and sit for our exams. And then we have a week off to go all crazy and burn ourselves under the hot summer sun, but i expect this one week will be filled with frequent episodes of palpitations, insomnia, and maybe even a few bouts of hyperventilation as we will be getting our results in a week time. If we pass, insyaAllah, we will go straight in for another 2 weeks of shadowing in the hospital where we will be working and only then, FINALLY, we have our break.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

When the safest place is not safe anymore

Yesterday, the most unthinkable thing happened.
Justify Full
My day started off quite nicely. I woke up an hour late than usual and consequently was 40 minutes late to hospital. It was my last day of my first out of three final placements as a medical student. Right after I got Dr Donnelly to sign off my proforma, I headed straight home. Smiling, delighted that I have the rest of the day off.

Later in the afternoon, I decided to join Zatil & Zalina for the new netball jersey hunt at The Moor. Alhamdulillah, we found this one beautiful jersey and all three of us fell in love with us at first sight. Hehe. Later, we headed off to Costa for a cup of coffee.

Around 5, we rushed back home and I had to pray Maghrib and cook within 1 hour. It was one hectic hour, but alhamdulillah, I managed to finish cooking by 7 pm. Within a few minutes, I scrambled to gear up for netball practise and headed off to Springfield. We played til 9 ish and we were joking and bantering around, completely unaware of the unfortunate incident that is about to happen in an hour time.

I headed off home with Zatil, and by the time we got to the front of my house, I was shocked. Our front door was left ajar. Zatil and I cautiously walked into the house, giving salam as loud as possible but nobody answered. I went into Azian's room, and found Alina sitting at Azian's study table. Azian was no where to be seen. I asked her if she knows who was the one who did not close the front door, but she was clueless about it. I went upstairs to Mira's room and asked Mira and Tima the same question, only to get the same answer. "No, we don't know".

At that time, I did not think much of it. Perhaps one of them forgot to close the door properly. Maybe that is all it is. Hence, without further ado, I went down to have dinner with Zatil in the kitchen. Around 10 ish, I walked her to the door and bade my goodbye. And I personally close the door, tight. Confident that the door was locked, I went into Azian's room to talk to Alina and Tima. I spent roughly less than 5 minutes with them in Azian's room, which is the closest to the main door.

As I walked out of Azian's room, again I found myself in shock. The front door was opened. Again. Finding it completely bizzare, I slammed the door shut and walked up to my room. Without thinking much, I switched on the light and that was when the horror begun. I found a big built white man slouching over my bed. What the......???? The only thing I remember doing was screaming my lungs out. For some reason, I found my legs frozen, unable to run or hide from this stranger who is in my bedroom.

He himself was suprised with my shouting. He quickly dropped off whatever he was holding and ran off, walking merely a few inches past me. The next thing that I remember was I screamed at him "What the h*ll are you doing here?" I did not know where I had the courage to say that. His answer was completely unacceptable. "My friend gave me the wrong address"And he kept saying sorry as he tried to run out of my house.

Immediately right after he left, I went down to talk to Alina and Tima. As I walked down the stairs, I found my old Guess wristwatch (which is completely old) and Eica's mobile phone and pouch lying on the stairs. I knew immediately that these must have been the things that he was trying to rob from us. Mira got out of her room eventually and I told them about what happened.

Later, Azian got home with a few other mates after I rang her to tell her about the incident. Eica and Qilote also got home a few minutes later, saying that they saw a man suspicously lurking around the corner of our house. From their description, it sounds like the same man.

The cops came within 30 minutes later. I told them what happened and tried to describe that guy as best as I can. I obviously could not really remember much as I was too afraid at that time. I found myself shaking the whole night. Everytime I walked into my room, I kept imagining that guy bending over at the corner of my bed. I tried to sleep last night, but could not shake the memory out of my head. All of the "What ifs.." popped into my head and that brought shivers down my spine.

However, alhamdulillah, nobody was hurt and nothing was taken.

Who would have thought that I would have such an awful ending to such a lovely day?

Friday, February 12, 2010

The time is near

Oh my. My blog has been collecting dust. It has been so long since I scribbled a thing or two in this blog of mine.

I passed my written finals, alhamdulillah. Now, I am in my third week of my first four-weeks placement. Am currently doing Gastro in Northern. Which I find is quite interesting. Although majority of the patients that we see in what-is-supposed-to-be a Gastro ward do not present with gastro problems and hence I am not really achieving my goal to brush up my knowledge on gastro, but I still do enjoy my placement. Instead of learning pure gastro, I get to polish my knowledge on general medicine as a whole. I also find it quite challenging, which is a plus. A patient could come in with anything listed in our thick Kumar and Clark textbook, hence we have to always be prepared.

Our knowledge has got to be tip top by now. Supposedly, by now, we should know everything by heart. Ask us anything; the signs, symptoms, management, prevention; and we should come up with an answer straight away. The right answer to be exact. Well, that is at least what that is expected of us. Huhu. I have not reached that level, well at least not yet. I am still struggling to apply the theories that I have learnt into practical. Which I find is one big challenge. But I guess with practise, I will get there. I hope.

I am no longer merely a figure joining a crowd during the consultant ward round. Now, I am actually a part of the team. Which means I carry a small responsibility to the patients on wards. I am in charge of either writing down notes in the patients' notes during ward round. And oh man, to write whilst standing with one hand supporting a thick patient's notes is not easy. And apparently my consultant speaks at the speed of a bullet train, so that does not make it easier for me as well. I always feared that I might have wrote things wrongly or miss something extremely important!! And I do not like to see my handwriting turning extremely ugly because I had to write at a fast speed, which I am not used to. Oh well, hopefully I will get use to it with time insyaAllah.

I've wrote my first TTO. I've also arranged my first referral to a clinic. I've answered my first bleep when I was on call with my F1. I've ordered my first USS. And I think there will be more of 'my-first' to come, insyaAllah. Everything is just surreal. The time is near.

All the best, dear self.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Done for now

Only today, I feel like a huge burden has been lifted off my shoulder. I had just finished my final exam last Friday, and had 2 wonderful days off. And on Monday, I was all stressed out again as I was busy preparing for my deanery interview on Tuesday. I was SO not in the mood to prepare for the interview cause I feel like my post-exam freedom has been robbed by this interview! However, realizing that I would not want to ended up making a complete fool of myself in front of the interviewers, I decided to push the rebellious part of me aside, and sit down and read up for the interview.

The interview was today. I have to go all the way to Hull for the interview. Funny story, due to my stupidity, I missed the 7 am coach provided by the university. I was confused with the timetable posted by medical school. First it said 7.30 am. Then it changed to 7 am due tp the heavy snow. And now that it is not snowing, being a fool, I thought they have changed it back to 7.30 am. Without confirming with my fellow colleagues, I left home at 7 am, thinking that the bus would leave at 7.30. When I reached the bus stop and found neither of my colleagues were there, I sensed that I had made a stupid mistake. I laughed at my self for my own careless mistake. Alhamdulillah, my interview was at 12 noon so I had plenty of time to get myself to Hull by train. Alhamdulillah, I was surpised with myself for being so calm about it. Hahha.

So I took the train to Hull and it was a pleasant one hour and 30 minutes journey. Along the way, heavy mists covered the air, making it almost impossible to see! I felt as if I am on a plane, flying amongst the white clouds. Seriously. The visibility was really poor this morning. As I arrived Hull, I decided not to do anything stupid again, so I decided to hitch a bus ride to the KC Stadium, where the interview was held, instead of walking. That was one wise decision. Because it was one long journey, even by bus!

The kind bus driver and a kind lady directed me to the Stadium. It was almost impossible to walk and find my way in the heavy mists. Guided with His help, I managed to walk through the cloud of mist. I walked and walked and could not stop praying that I am on the right path. Seriously, I could see only very very vaguely. Never had I had such an experience before. I just walked forward blindly and only realized that I have reached the stadium when I am right in front of the stadium. Even a building as HUGE as this stadium could not be seen. MasyaAllah. I shuddered, thinking of the Almighty.

I arrived around 1040 am. Registered myself and went straight in to the waiting room. At first, I thought I was underdressed. I was not wearing a full suit, thinking that this is more like an OSCE exam rather than an interview. I relaxed a little bit later when I realized that only the guys donned in suit, whilst the majority of ladies just dress smart. Alhamdulillah, I was thanking Allah for giving me a knock in my head and preventing me from wearing a colourful top and scarf which I initially planned to wear for today. I would have looked like an outcast as everyone was in black and white. Hahaha.

The wait was a killer. I had to wait for 2 hours for my turn. Silently, I was thankful that I missed the early coach. If I did get on that 7 am coach, I would be dying of boredom for 5 hours, desperately waiting for my number to be called in. I might have vomited bile as well. Haha. So, I did not have much time to freak out or have a nervous break down within that 2 hours. I was a bit nervous, do not get me wrong. But, a bit of nervousness is good. It is abnormal I think not to be nervous at all for an interview. Unless you are a robot. Maybe then that would be normal.

I was called in at 1230. The three stations passed by extremely fast, that I did not even realized that I have been talking for the past 7 minutes. We had OSCE like stations for our interview and they allocated 7 minutes for each. It was OK, I guess. Well, my first station did not went so well. I was talking too much. Aigo. Consequently, the interviewer did not get to ask all of her questions on time. But the other 2 stations were not bad.

By the time I left the third station, I let out a huge sigh of relief. I could not belief I was done! Finally, I am freeeeee. Well, at least until Thursday. Cause that's when I am going to get my exam results. And then I will be back in placements again next Monday. Wohoo? Hehe

In the end of the day, I think I have done my best. Both for my exams and for my interview. What's left for me to do now is to pray and pray really hard to Allah, hoping the he would take care of everything for me. As He is the ultimate planner and executor. To Him, I surrender.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

One down, one more to go!

I had my first final written exam this morning.

The night before, I slept early, hoping that I would be all fresh and energized on the next day. But, suddenly around 3 in the morning, I woke up and could not get back to sleep. I squeezed my eyes tight, hoping that would make me sleep but failed. Suddenly the thoughts of MEQ paper seeped into my mind and that made things worst. Out of control, one after another disease popped into my head, and I was somehow forced to plan out the proper diagnosis and management plan. That gave me a panic attack and I ended up with a palpitation and was hyperventilating. Ya Allah, never had I had such a horrible panic attack.

Later alhamdulillah, after calming myself down, I managed to get some sleep. Not really decent sleep though because I ended up stuck in a nightmare of me where everything goes crazy and I almost missed my exams. Out of no where I was back in KMB, but all of my siblings were around. My mom was there too. And things go haywire and I woke up, feeling really alarmed. I looked at my handphone and let out a huge sigh of relief. It was only 5 am. I did not miss my exams. Huhuhu. I did not realize I was this anxious about this exams!

Then I woke up for Fajr and left home around 8 in the morning. Went to Syd's place as promised. Debbie was kind enough to give us a lift to the exams. I was thankful for that cause that saved me from walking in the crippling cold weather. Not to mention the deadly, slippery ice. We got in the car and Debbie tried to get her car out of her carpark, but thanks to the ice, she did not managed. Alhamdulillah, two nice men came out from a pub nearby and helped us out. At first, even the two strong guys did not manage to give the car a push. In the end, we all had to get out of the car and gave the car a push, and yeay, alhamdulillah, we managed. Allah has sent those two guys to help us out, just in time. We could not be more than grateful for that.

We arrived 30 minutes early and the exam hall was already flocked with medics. The paper itself was OK, I guess. One thing that bugged me most was a question about the anatomy of kidney surface marking. We were to draw the surface marking on a diagram, which I did. What I did not remember was the name of the line where it lies. I put down transpyloric line, which I knew even back then that it was so wrong because I knew that was the surface marking for gallbladder. Not kidney. But somehow I put it anyway. And out of no where, the word Addisson started to pop in my head. It pop a number of times, and I did not know why but I simply brushed it aside. Only to find out later that the answer to that question is of course, Addisson's line. I felt like knocking my head on the wall.

All in all, it was not so bad. But the more I keep thinking about the paper, the more I find silly mistakes that I've made and it is killing meeeee. I should stop doing that and focus for tomorrow's EMQ. I have to nail this cause I so want to pass this exams.

I think I have tried my very best for my MEQ. And there is nothing else left for me to do but to leave it in the hands of Allah and hope for the best. Let's nail tomorrow's paper, insyaAllah!