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Published: August 27, 2019

Reflecting Back and Looking Forward

by Robert Assibey, PGY-3, San Joaquin General Hospital

July 1st is a momentous day at every teaching hospital around the country. It marks the day that newly graduated students are officially called "doctor". I remember walking through the halls of San Joaquin General Hospital with so many emotions: feelings of excitement, feelings of joy, feelings of fear, and feelings of inadequacy. I had been dreaming my whole life for this moment and it had finally arrived. 

It's remarkable how differently I felt on July 1st of my second year. The feelings of fear and inadequacy had slightly faded, and there was a different, much more confident form of excitement. I was ready to have my intern crutches taken away. But was I ready to be a more senior resident? Was I ready to lead an intern? 

On July 1, 2019, I began my third and final year of residency. Like previous years, all the feelings came back as I walked through those hospital doors: excitement, joy, fear and inadequacy. This time - for different reasons. I am thrilled to be finishing my training in family medicine. In less than 11 months, I will leave the familiar walls of my residency program and enter the real world - and sometimes I wonder if I’m really fully prepared to be on my own. I didn't expect to get to this moment so quickly. Looking back, the emotional journey has been equally as formative as the perspective I’ve gained, the relationships I’ve built, the friendships I’ve made, and the personal and professional growth I’ve experienced. My residency training might be ending soon, but the work is just beginning. 

I wish all the new interns, who will most likely experience similar emotions, good luck. You will make it through, and it comes quicker than you think.

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