Day 79: More sweets and exam rumination

Today’s inane image of the day:

A surprise gift from a dear friend [come exam-time, I tend to increase my intake of fried carbs… so this was extremely appropriate!]

This week really started off well — although I’m not a huge fan of Halloween [it stopped being fun when we got too old to go trick or treating…], our class found a slew of candy and treats sprinkled throughout the day [I feel my arteries clogging just thinking about how much saturated fat I consumed yesterday]. The weekend was relatively productive and I had a much needed lunch date yesterday [Palm Palace is amazing… did I ever mention that I love garlic?]. All in all, I can’t really complain.

Another thing that has been helping my mood lately is the fact that I’m starting to settle into a new set of study habits. For the first exam, it’s really a miracle that I passed because I seriously crammed the weekend prior [and apparently memorized the right things!]. The second exam really showed me how terrible my study habits truly were — the heap of microbes that had to be committed to memory never made it there and I didn’t have nearly enough time to even glance at some lectures. Furthermore, I was not making effective use of my class time [Facebook, Twitter and Klout really didn’t help me memorize that Neisseria genus appear diplococci and resemble coffee beans]. Add that all to my lack of motivation to study after returning home from school, and you have a pretty terrible set of circumstances leading up to that exam.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m still really nervous. I find that when someone asks me something on the spot [this happens often with Dr. Bee in Anatomy lab], even if it’s something that I drilled into my head… I am at loss for words. But while discussing topics with my peers or Mike, I find that things flow nicely. Today as I drove home from school, I recited basically every anatomical structure I observed today in Anatomy lab. I don’t quite have all of the origins, insertions, actions and innervations down, but there are significantly fewer muscles to memorize for this exam and I am more confident about committing those to memory within the next few days. Taking an exam sometimes feels just like when I am asked something on the spot — I tend to stare at the question and find myself at loss for concepts I thought I knew inside-out.

I distinctly remember this happening during the MCAT — after settling into my workstation, I started the exam and found myself faced with a physics question about the gravitational constant. Even though I’ve seen this concept so many times [I am an engineer!], I completely froze in panic. My mind was absolutely blank. To top it off, the test taker in the workstation across from mine kept shaking his leg against the desk, which led to the shaking of my monitor throughout most of the examination. After 5 or 10 minutes of wasted time, my brain finally decided to wake up from its untimely nap and started firing off electrical signals [my Physical Sciences section ended up being my best score… what!?].

Hopefully, my new approach to this whole medical school studying thing will turn things around. I’m saving what I’m doing differently for discussion after the exam [that way I’ll know if it actually worked…].

Today’s medical school fact of the day: In the majority of the population, the sciatic nerve arises inferiorly to the piriformis muscle. –Dr. Bee’s lecture

P.S. This post was my 100th published one! =)

3 thoughts on “Day 79: More sweets and exam rumination

  • November 2, 2011 at 2:23 am
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    Hahahaha, I’m an engineer and physical sciences ended up being my *worst* score…

  • November 2, 2011 at 11:56 pm
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    Palm Palace… LOVE at first fatoosh.

    -Dino

  • November 5, 2011 at 4:25 pm
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    @Sarah: I was *definitely* expecting my physical sciences score to be my worst…

    @Dino: You crack me up.

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