Hi, my name is Sam, and I want to be a doctor when I grow up.
This probably surprised a few of the people who know me in real life, because in high school I was definitely more of a fine arts person. If there was an artistic outlet available to me, I took it: dance, chorus, drama club, drawing classes, creative writing, marching band, you name it. I was that kid who always had a couple of notebooks and sketchbooks on hand in case inspiration took hold in the middle of science class. The only limit to my creative pursuits was my small town high school’s small town budget. It’s not that I wasn’t good at math or science — I was just more interested in the artsy side of things.
But then I hit my last year of high school and suddenly realized that I had no real plan for my future. You know how people talk about “senioritis”? I had the opposite of that — I was more stressed in my senior year than the previous three. I knew that I wanted to go to college, but I had no idea what major to apply as. A Music major is really only useful if you plan to double in Education and teach chorus or band, and I knew that I didn’t want to be a high school teacher. The same goes for Art, Drama, and Literature degrees. And although being a freelance artist is definitely an option, it wasn’t one that I personally felt comfortable pursuing.
I was stumped.
And then I had an epiphany.
I’d considered going into medicine several times during my teen years, but I could always come up with a reason not to. It was too much school, it was too expensive, I didn’t have the right temperament for dealing with gross medical stuff. And when I was fifteen, those arguments all seemed to make perfect sense.
My epiphany came at the very end of my senior year. A member of my family had just undergone a pretty major surgery and, being an unemployed, able-bodied young adult with nothing better to do, I volunteered to help out during their recovery. The post-op instructions for this particular surgery were complicated — there were medications that had to be taken at certain times, lots and lots of bandages that needed to be changed, and even blood thinner shots that had to be given once a day.
I was giving my family member one of said shots when I realized that, you know, this medical stuff was not grossing me out the way I had expected it to. Further more, I enjoyed it. Not the act of jabbing my loved one with a needle itself, of course, but being able to take care of someone, to know that I was really helping them and making a difference in their life. And, the older I got, the less and less intimidating that eight years of school was starting to seem.
So, here we are, counting down the days before I start pre-med classes this August. I wanted to make a blog for my college experience anyway, because I feel like there’s going to be a lot to talk about. The idea for this specific blog came to me a couple of weeks after the idea to switch my major to pre-med did — a blog about the pre-med and medical school experience, from the eyes of a recovering Fine Arts student. Plus, I need somewhere to talk about my creative interests, since my college schedule is shaping up to be mostly science classes. Something tells me my Biology 1 professor probably won’t be interested in discussing the finer points of Shakespeare with me.