Best 3 advices I got before PA school

Congrats! You got accepted into PA school! 🙂 Get ready for the most rewarding and most challenging journey of your life. Here’s my top 3 best advice I got before PA school. Hope it helps! And I’m so proud of you for taking another step towards your dream!

  • Do NOT study. I PROMISE you will study way more than you ever have in your entire life during your didactic year of PA school.
  • Instead, take this time and enjoy your friends and family! Remember how before going to college, there was a bitter-sweet moment where you were excited for a new chapter in your life but you were also sad to leave your friends behind? Yeah, it’s kinda like that for PA school. You’re filled with this really exciting feeling, but just know that it will also be filled with a lot of doubts and tears and you’re leaving all of your college besties and work peeps. Take this time to surround yourself with your support system. You’re going to need them in this new journey you’re about to embark…and you’re probably not going to see them as much (I thought people were joking when they told me this..they were not…). Take a fun vacation. Do something  you normally wouldn’t do. Make some memories.
    • Confession: During my first month of PA school, I would day dream about how fun my last family vacation was. It’s totally worth it! And then I’d have to study anatomy 😦
  • Pick 3 things. Pick 3 things and make a promise to yourself you will keep them as a priority in PA school, no matter HOW busy or chaotic things. These 3 things will keep you sane.
    • These 3 things keep you, you. My three things that I kept were: my spiritual life, my friendships, my family.
      • Spiritual life. I can’t speak for you and what spirituality/religion means for you, but I can speak for myself that continually growing spiritually put a lot of things in perspective for me in PA school. Truly with this, I learned about my insecurities and learned how to cope with them. God has taught me the idols I coveted in my heart, and how to surrender them to Him. When the going got oh so tough and I began to see how I could NOT do it all, I learned how to surrender my control and place my trust in HIM – not the hours I studied, not the number of practice questions I did (or usually not get to), not the number of power points I had left, but placing my trust in Him that He will use me in ways He deemed best. My hope and purpose in life was placed in Him, not a test score. And like that, test anxiety started to fade.
      • Friendships. You end up meeting some special people in your class. Cultivate them. Grow them. Y’all are all in this together. Don’t ditch gatherings after class to go home to study. Stay with them. Go to happy hour with them. Laugh with them. Wine with them. Cry with them. Nobody will understand the feelings you feel at that moment better than those around you in class.
      • Family. I talked to my siblings almost every day in PA School. I’d text or snap them and give them my highs/lows.  A lot of times, I’d complain and they’d listen and then share a little bit of their lives. They’ll send me pictures of our family dog. They kept me grounded and sane. They reminded me of home and what love feels like when you’re 300+ miles away from each other. And of course, my parents. Typically, I’d talk to them when I was really stressed and a lot of the times, our conversations resulted in me crying on the other end of the phone because I felt so overwhelmed. But there’s nothing like a parent’s love and support that gets you through. When I started school, my dad made it a point and told me that he wanted to be informed of how I was doing in school – socially, emotionally, and academically. He wanted me to know I wasn’t in this alone, and I want you to know that you’re not alone either.

Welcome to the next chapter of your life. I am so proud of you. I am so excited for you. I can’t wait for you to learn  your limits, learn your passions, and push yourself to be the best version of yourself so that one day, you can care and love others the way you want to.

What an honor and privilege is it for programs to believe in us, for patients to trust us, and for this opportunity to learn about the intricacies and beauties of the human body so that we can somehow, someway, make someone’s life better.

Welcome to medicine.

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