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I’ve spent the last 2 weeks in orientation and getting certified in various life support measures and now I’m just 4 days away from starting my career as a physician. To say the least, I’m terrified. It has been 4 months since I’ve actually seen a real patient, my medical knowledge has been dwindling since Step 2 which I took a year ago, and I don’t even know where the bathrooms are nor where my patients are located. As a surgical intern, the hours are long and the residents have already told me to rest up now because the hospital is my new home and any inkling of freedom will be gone after July 1st. There’s a reason you’re called a resident – you never leave. It’s a rather intimidating thing to be told by your seniors before you even start.

Luckily now that I’ve been able to spend a little time with my co-interns, I’m blessed in that they all are such compassionate and kind people that will be there during the dark times. Knowing that I won’t be going through this alone gives me some solace. Residency is a difficult time for all that choose this path and most people won’t understand what it means to live through it. It’s a time where you build the foundation for the rest of your career. There will be tears and blood shed (hopefully not yours), but you will come out of it a stronger person and a better doctor. I don’t know if I’m ready for this, but here goes nothing.

Photo by Luis Melendez on Unsplash

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Stephanie Nguyen


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Stephanie Nguyen, MD

A blog about life as a young physician

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