My first experience with the community in white coat came today while volunteering at a festival not too far from my school. One of the student organizations had a booth taking blood glucose and blood pressure readings. Having never taken a blood pressure before, I was really nervous about doing it but the second years taught me and let me take them on our “patients” (people who were enjoying the festival and decided to stop by)! I remember writing my personal statement and thinking about the community service that I had done in the medical field. You know, that feeling of complete awe in the way that medical professionals have the ability to touch every aspect of their patients’ lives. I have wanted that ability for so long and then finally with the first blood pressure that I took, I felt it happening, like a invisible cord that enabled me and a total stranger to connect and allowed her to trust me.
During the encounter, I was able to reassure this woman that her blood pressure medicine was worth her time with the first normal blood pressure reading that she had gotten since starting the medicine. She told me that she thought it was a waste of money at first but was happy that it was working. We talked about how taking the medicine as directed by her doctor would help to control her blood pressure and she was able to leave our booth, knowing that taking better care of herself was actually making an impact on her life. It is a story the we hear all to often in the medical community except in most cases patients just quit taking the medicine. Today, I made a difference in someone’s health and life not counting all of the others that came to our booth. Things like this makes the 12-15 hour-long days of studying and anatomy labs and lectures worth it.
I have also found that apparently flashcards aren’t going to work for everything. I had to use concept mapping to study the embryology lectures. I really didn’t think that it would help but, ehh what do I know? For the lab, as much as I dislike dealing with the cadavers, I have accepted the fact that I will have to spend seemingly endless amounts of time in there in order to be successful. Prematric was a great help to this material and to getting me through this class! I’m continuing to push ahead, I am officially one TBL ahead of my schedule just as I wanted and now I have 3 days to review for the next one and 5 for the one after that! Talk about stress relief! Until next time, I’m off to study. The Autonomic Nervous System will not study itself!