BMJ(British Medical Journal) has a small unit called Doc2Doc, last week they had asked all the medical students around the world to describe how their first day was as a med student and the winner could win up to 1000 dollars worth credit, the offer was tempting but I just passed out the offer because I have a much longer story to share and it does not only involve the first day.
There were many people who did not want me to join this profession, they shared their guts out with me, and they described their painful days of studying night over night. But at that moment, I just had this stubbornness which was beyond anything. I was not compelled to get into a med school. Nobody understands the reason why I joined this profession; people still think that it was because of my dad and his post here in Dhaka at the time. In fact my parents were not much up with the very idea but I was reluctant and I was lucky. I got a seat in Bangladesh’s most Sophisticated and Respected University.
I still think about that day when I took my mom to the emergency room at the Teaching Hospital in Kathmandu, she was suffering from UTI (Urinary Tract Infection) at the time, she was having excruciating pain. We had to wait for the culture reports to come and at that moment I observed something that changed my life forever. Doctors were passing from one room to another, with their white aprons and stethoscopes. The sight of doctors brought so much awe in me; I developed respect for their profession. My mom’s saviors! I told myself silently: I am going to be there for my family when ever this kind of situation comes. I made my mind before my dad got transferred to Dhaka. I eventually became a nerd after tenth grade, pushing every moment to get better grades. I was told that they did not take any exams for Foreigners for entrance exams. Achieving a GPA score of above 8.0 was all that I wanted at that time, so I was a social outcast at that time, gave my friends less time and lab work and tuition the first preference.
The first day was rather a surprise for me, all of us were placed in the Lecture Hall, the Vice Principle clarified that our college was a government one and was directly under the Ministry of Defense. People often ask if AFMC is a government or Private College. Later onwards we were taken to the dorms, we had to share a room with four other seniors.
Most people would expect heavy ragging instead we were treated with chocolates and we were told some rules about how to behave in front of seniors. I was quite perplexed about this; we were supposed to say “salam walakum” to each senior that passed by us, which were followed by some other rules about senior respect. This still is a huge factor in AFMC, Respect and I guess this college did teach me something about that, It’s not that my parents did not teach me this but this college , enforces it in our day to day life.
We had to go through one tough month. We were practically grounded in the college dorm for a month, and we did physical training everyday followed by Drill and Games in the evening. We were constantly active and we had to adjust to the circumstances that we were in, complaining was not an option but compromise became the new word for that. The first one month, we did not do any regular classes, but did some introductory classes on Anatomy, Physiology and Biochemistry and Etiquettes. We were rewarded with Epaulette after the first heavy training in a ceremony.
Life goes on as a medical student. I had many low and high days and still do. I always fret before giving an exam. It’s tough and it becomes tougher as the boards near. The Journey which started from Jan 2007 had many bumps in between but I guess I was too optimistic to let the bumps slow me down.
The most memorable moment that I ever had till now was when I was in my third year. I was in Medicine Ward when I was examining a patient; I was palpating his lymph nodes of the Axilla (armpit). Another patient next to that bed, an old man said that he will pray to god so that I become a great human being/doctor one day. That day was a remarkable day for me. I feel blessed to have joined this profession!
Happy Deciding People!