Finding Oneself Outside of Medicine - 4th Year Med Student

Finding Oneself Outside of Medicine - 4th Year Med Student

Millennial In Medicine, Sadaf A. 4th yr Med Student

It’s around February, interviews are over and I am sitting in my room thinking about what I can do with all my spare time. I already cleaned my room, hit the gym, watched Netflix, pondered over my match list, and caught up with the latest news. If you talk to any fourth-year medical student, it’s a little-known secret that halfway through fourth year you embark on what’s called “summer vacation”. “Go home early, you deserve it” says the attending on rounds, while the third-year student looks on with envy and rushes to present the next patient. After all you worked your ass off to get to this stage. So after years of sticking myself in books, it was time to rejoin society. You see for the last few years, I have been programmed to dedicate all my time to studying. In fact, one might argue that prior to that I have dedicated all my time getting into medical school. Medicine became that needy boyfriend that consumed all my time, energy and emotion. He took me away from friends, family and most importantly from myself. As I sat there trying to list all my hobbies before medical school, I came to the stark realization that I don’t know myself outside of medicine anymore. In fact, I haven’t had time to pursue any of my hobbies for the past four years. Do I still enjoy reading mystery novels? Can I still win a tennis match with my killer backhand?


Interesting enough, I wasn’t the only one who was going through a bit of a life crisis and found all this new-found time a bit confusing. In fact, some of my colleagues felt that they were processing emotions and events which they never had time to ponder for the past few years. As one of my colleagues put is so eloquently “the wheels have finally stopped turning but there is no one left to help me down”. So for those of us that feel left behind, it’s time to pick up that mystery novel. But don’t get too invested because in a few months with the start of residency it’s time to get back on the wheel and keep on turning. 

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