Monday, September 24, 2012

It's 1723h and I am Still in My Pajamas

The main thing I am currently trying to do is decide if I should or should not have a hot chocolate right now. I am still in my pajamas, and unshowered. All I've done today is clear the dining room table of stacked medical books. And I've eaten some snacks. And stared at the wall, in the typical now what? post-exam flat lined brain.

The exam was, a marathon of concentration but not too bad (except that I accidentally brought a mint chocolate flavored nakd bar with me as a snack---ahh I HATE MINT CHOCOLATE!) I am sure the prometric center lady thought I was a loon when she saw me pulling out the reams of food I had to declare prior to the exam. I just never know what I am going to crave or need to eat during times of extreme panic/stress but what I do know is that if I get hangry then I might throw the computer through the window. Yogurt, coconut water, almonds, apples, nakd bars, granola bars, water, more yogurt...I had a little tower of food placed atop the filing cabinet. I ended up chucking the bar in the bin after one bite, drinking a yogurt at race pace, and slamming the coconut water. I used almost all my time, just finishing the last few questions at the 3h 54 minute mark. I blame this on being ridiculously fastidious for the first 80 questions and then realizing I had 100 questions left and just over 100 mins left. It's been a while since I ran an exam marathon, cut me some slack.

After finishing I sped back to the hotel to shower, and check out. Then I zoomed over to the Operation Smile Dublin office to meet some of the staff involved in organizing my upcoming mission. While sitting in my car outside of the office, about 1hr after leaving the exam, I felt my pulse and noted that it was still >100 bpm. I tried to tell my adrenals to cool it. The saber toothed tiger was gone, I no longer needed 180 degree vision. I probably looked like a feral insurance saleswoman when I clunked in, suddenly very hungry and slightly wild eyed with a twitch to the right side of my mouth.

It was a very relaxed meeting and after chatting for a while the two of them stated that due to my arctic experience they should send me on one of their "really remote missions". Yes!! Well maybe they also were thinking that based on how I presented myself to them: better to tuck me far far away from any promotional material photo opportunities.

After that I was able to kick off my heels and head for the hills. (Well, shortly after a trip to my favorite deli in Dublin to stock up on essentials like Chile Hot Chocolate, truffle oil, and nice cheeses!) Drove out to the wild west coast and spent the weekend by the sea eating fantastic food, drinking Champagne, climbing up mountains, sleeping in, strolling around manicured gardens, sipping coffee, and just generally remembering how it felt to be human.

So thanks a million for all the lovely comments and emails of encouragement. It really means a lot coming up to an event like that.

Of course there are things already tugging at my sleeve to get started, like CaRMS, writing up my Grand Rounds presentation, school work...but not today. Or at least, not until after that hot chocolate.


Solitary Diner (Also Known as The Frugalish Physician) said...

One definitely should always have hot chocolate when the opportunity presents itself.

Congrats on being finished your exam. I hope you have a good chance to rest before the next hurdle.

Anonymous said...

Despite your irrational hatred of mint chocolate, congrats on being done that wretched exam!

dolce vita said...


(from a fellow mint chocolate hater. It seems like a good idea in theory :) )

Just Me said...

Congratulations with being done. Look after those adrenals! I remember being giddy for days after mine.

Elizabeth Shouldice said...

I'm totally serious about this comment...remind me to tell you about the first time the MCCQE1 was written on line at my alma matter (the year ahead of me). Whole exam got shut down because someone upstairs in the building was downloading porn. Seriously. Shut down the fire wall.

Mama D said...

Congratulations on being done! Take deep breaths and enjoy it. :)

NurseWho? said...

When will you find out your score? Congrats on being through with it!