Elective Mummy Blog: Week Three

by Elective Mummy
02 Jul 2017

The bird mites are still crawling around my babies’ room. The ‘entomologist’ hasn’t finished analysing them apparently, in order to decide on a suitable poison. I hadn’t imagined this to be such an involved science. Child no.1 is quite happy with the ongoing ‘camping out in one room’ situation however, so it’s not all bad.

I’ve stepped up the pace this week. Gone are the leisurely 30 mins with each patient. I now have 20, which sounds like a lot, but not when you have to fit in a consult with an actual GP too. My BP and otoscopy has definitely got slicker but I’d be lying if I said I could see anything at all with an ophthalmoscope. Will this suddenly click in fifth year or will I just get ‘found out’ in finals?

I’ve finally built up the courage to do some actual procedures too. I dipped my toe in by squirting some fluorescein in a patient’s subconjunctival haemorrhage. Underwhelming. Reassuringly though, that meant a good outcome for the patient. By the end of the week, I’d attempted to remove a ring pessary (and failed), done some swabs, a smear test and a D-dimer! I know that doesn’t sound remotely impressive, but to feel as if I’d restored a fraction of the skill set I had in third year was frankly quite elating!

The highlight of the week, however, had to be the patient who came in for some reassurance that the normal x-ray of their hip was accurate, and the disconcerting crunches and grinds were nothing untoward. On examination, they almost took out the light bulb with an impressive gymnast-like kick, which assured me all was well. I could only wish for hip flexion like that. Needless to say, the rest of the consult digressed in to non-medical chat whilst we waited for the doc. When the doc came in, my gymnast said, “Isn’t she just lovely (yes about me!!), I think she’s going to make a wonderful doctor”. Aaaah.

Speaking of real doctors... It was heartwarming to see all my comrades from the last two years splashing their deservedly smug, graduated faces all over Facebook this week. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have a pang of envy when I think back to being in the year above them and now they’re all docs and I’m still a bloody student (and still bloody broke!!!). I only have to glance over at child no.2 smashing hell out of the metal bin with a metal saucepan (which now has an appearance akin to a kettle drum) and child 1 careering towards child 2 like a superhero on a three-wheeled stool, to realise how lucky I am. Prolonging the agony of being a student and exterminating my brain cells with sleep deprivation has been worth every minute.

Date night was great by the way. All 48 minutes of it.

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