Grieving a person I used to know....
Hello again all - I've decided to repost this from the daily forums to create a new special project for myself in order to try and reach a specific aim. I will be adding in the future as things become clearer. The last month or so has been hard as poor internet so I've been a lax attender whereas I did find some value in being reasonably regular here. So here goes - -
Monday 17th February - midnight
Grieving ideals, not yet distraught...
Well I come to you all again as I come down from my 'high' of Denial. I am going to fail two important career exams on Friday. Again (this will be third time). I think i only have one more chance in july/aug on this training pathway before they'll kick me off. But I'm not even so panicky like I used get - 'each' time my reaction is more like grief, letting go of a childhood dream, of an ideal of myself, of the image I have projected (and maybe been projected to some degree) for 10-20years. Its more than an image - I have spent my whole high school, two degrees and 4 working years to this 'dream', this 'idea', this version of me. Its heartbreaking in many ways to see drifting away this persona I have work so hard to keep the dream alive and achieve so much. I have worked very hard for significant periods of time.
But there is a another idea of me that is also in the way of my dream - someone who can come home from work and ENJOY life, to switch off. My last 4 years have felt like every moment should be studying that is not spent at work. And the preceeding 4 years were spent always feeling guilty and not worthy if not studying. And to a point I could do that. Then the point came when I couldn't keep up with that inner driving voice.
I struggle daily, sometimes every minute with my inner critic - it pretty much only concentrates on this area of my life now. And it has tenure: my job is important (I'm an Emergency Doctor, peoples lives and the lives of their family and friends depend in many degrees on me). I know I'm not dumb or stupid although I may not be as 'quick' as some of my colleagues. I make a good doctor (and good feedback from my bossess) and I honestly enjoy most aspects of my work. But I cannot seem to 'knuckle down' and 'just do it'.
And is it worth this cloud that is always over me, that wakes me from sleep in cold sweats with dreams about work, that never lets me enjoy relaxation time, that always taunts with the next skill - 'good enough' is NEVER enough - and maybe it shouldn't be if you're a doctor. Can I live up to that? Maybe -just. Do I WANT to live up to it for the next 30years of work? Do I honestly think that if I pass these exams, those stresses will melt away? NO - I know they will not - I will not know 'everything' or even 'enough'. And what happens in 4-5 years time when I have to sit the next level of exams? And then become a boss with even more people depending on your assumed knowledge. I can't imagine that my same habits of thought/my inner critic will be much better then when the expectation of knowledge and real life time responsibility is even greater.
I refuse to feel a failure because deep down I know I'm not:
- I believe I am intrinsically valuable - my job and ability to 'contribute to society' does not dictate that
- even though at I could have studied 'harder' at various points in time, its not that I've not worked or studied hard, it just hasn't been the 'right' 'hard'
- I know I am good at my job and I work hard
I'm not sure if its useful or not to be dreaming of a different 'me' - I would be good as a real estate agent, or a bookkeeper. Maybe outdoor education teacher or primary school. I have other skills or could develop them, I'm NOT lazy - I'm just twisted with my time when my upstairs inner critic is in full voice.
I have been to two psychologists over the years about these pressures and they've been very helpful in identifying why I do what I shouldn't be doing - recognising a deep fear, paralysis, expectation, surrealism. But those insights and various techniques haven't made much of a dint with this endeavour.
And its not a case of praying more and trusting more - I know that my higher power loves me for me and that maybe there will be no medals at the end to keep up with something that eats away at me ALL THE TIME.
I get that there is reward and satisfaction for a job well done and making most of opportunities. I know we have burdens to carry and that its not about making life 'easy'. But I think this is a bit different - I don't think this deep battle I have has to do with laziness and structuring my time. It has to do with paralysis, and fear. Maybe I am not 'strong' enough for this - and maybe that's okay...
Is it time to cut my losses and walk away...? I'm not talking about sudden drastic changes: I currently have a job I enjoy and that I'm useful in as a doctor.
So: I will sit the exam on friday - mostly since I'm being paid to attend by work as part of professional development leave. I will sit the exams again in August/Sept. In the meantime, I will have 5 full on months of study to cover alot of material - it will be hard work. I will have to figure out some way of getting useful accountability and be serious about it so that I can drown out this voice.
And IF that doesn't happen... maybe its time to start afresh in something new. It will be scary and unknown - is it a case of the grass is greener and will the same demons follow me through...? I turn 30 in late December and will make a decision by then. Seems fitting.
- Login to post comments
Back Home - Here at PA....
Hi friends, I'm back amongst the fold.
Updates: so failed my oral by 1 point! So I wasn't totally hopeless. Next siting in 80 days so have to get back into healthy habits which means, spending time with you all.
You were so close :) You'll totally pass it next time :)
@ unstuck-ing: Solidarity
Sending supportive thoughts your way.
(Unstuck-ing) Happy to hear your news!
Maybe your trust in higher power has led you to the right direction. Wonderful that you have found something you really want to do.
Something truly crazy!!!
I've realised whilst doing my paediatric term that I love paediatrics and am thinking of doing a dual fellowship of paediatric emergency medicine.
I had to laugh out loud at myself as the idea so beautifully crystallised in my mind - my sister had to laugh out loud too but her first reaction (after that) was of excitement and encouragement even though she knows my struggles. I have been strangely spurred on with my study last two nights to 'get it over with' as I've just considered adding another 3 years on!
Crazy but exciting - who knows but I would hate to give up on myself due to procrastination.
@ Unstuck-ing re: May 25th
I admit that I am powerless over my procrastination and debt and that my life had become unmanageable. I came to believe that a Power greater than myself could restore me to sanity and I made a decision to turn my will and my life over to the care of God. I humbly ask God to remove my shortcomings. I pray constantly and unceasingly only for knowledge of God's will for me today and the power to carry that out.
Its not about the tasks - its about listening to the moment and going with the flow of the spirit - today and NOW.
Its not about the money, its about listening to the simplicity of need and contentment - today and NOW.
THis week has been very productive for basically everything EXCEPT study.... lots of important jobs but I know I'm avoiding some inner feeling becUSE:
- big online shopping spree
These are red flags - pay attention to them girl!
This afternoon, you've done everything you needed to do this week - so play some classical music and get into the pharmacology - remember you do actually enjoy the inner workings of the body! No pressure, just pleasure!
This week aim to do something study wise everyday, to post everyday in order to be centrered.
Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action.
Lots of love and solidarity to you all...
Keep coming back. A friend told me about this book, don't know if you read it,it helpeed me very much.
Exerpts from THE FOUR AGREEMENTS by DON MIGUEL Ruiz(Don Miguel attended medical school, and became a surgeon.For several years he practiced neurosurgery with his brothers, and he realized that what needed to be healed was not only the physical brain, but the human mind as well.)
"If we adopt the first agreement, and become impeccable with our word, any emotional poison will eventually be cleaned from our mind and from our communication in our personal relationships."
"Now let us see what the word impeccability means. Impeccabilitymeans "without sin." Impeccable comes from the Latin pecatus, which means "sin." The im in impeccable means "without," so impeccable means "without sin." Religions talk about sin and sinners, but let's understand what it really means to sin. A sin is anything that you do which goes against yourself. Everything you feel or believe or say that goes against yourself is a sin. You go against yourself when you judge or blame yourself for anything. Being without sin is exactly the
opposite. Being impeccable is not going against yourself. When you are impeccable, you take responsibility for your actions, but you do not judge or blame yourself.From this point of view, the whole concept of sin changes from something moral or religious to something commonsense. Sin-begins with rejection of yourself. "
" This is the first agreement that you should make if you want to be free, if you want to be happy, if you want to transcend the level of existence that is hell. It is very powerful. Use the word in the correct way.Tell yourself how wonderful you are, how great you are. Tell yourself how much you love yourself. Use the word to break all those teeny, tiny agreements that make you suffer."
"It is possible. It is possible because I did it, and I am no better than you.No, we are exactly the same. We have the same kind of brain, the same kind of bodies; we are humans. If I was able to break those agreements and create new agreements, then you can do the same.If I can be impeccable with my word, why not you? Just this one agreement can change your whole life. Impeccability of the word can lead you to personal freedom, to huge success and abundance;it can take away all fear and transform it into joy and love.Just imagine what you can create with impeccability of the word.With the impeccability of the word you can transcend the dream of
fear and live a different life. You can live in heaven in the middle of thousands of people living in hell because you are immune to that hell. You can attain the kingdom of heaven from this one agreement:Be impeccable with your word."
Hi to unstuck-ing!
FYI, you may have noticed that the forum menu is temporily broken and we cannot start new threads, but we can reply to existing threads.
We are currently doing the group check-ins on the existing daily check-in thread, because we cannot start a new one, as explained here:
That is being worked on by the forum admin, whenever/however time and energy and technology allows.
So glad you were able to find your own existing thread and give us an update here!
I have appreciated your posts through the months. Glad to see you and sending solidarity! May you find the path in life that your higherpower lovingly guides you to!
And good to be back amongst friends in good & hard times. Also thanks for the thread update as was a bit confused when couldn't find right date. Ah technology- allows us to communicate across time & space- I'm amazed it doesn't go wrong more often. thanks to those helping to fix- I hope its simpler than anticipated.
...and of course big thanks to clement and Jolla for your support - you don't know what it meant to me at that hard time.
Getting ready to gear up again...
So I've been steering clear and settling into my new town and new job for the last 5 weeks - its going well. Great team of people and great feedback.
Good news came - I passed one of the papers!! What a relief!! So only one written paper and 4 oral papers left for Aug/Sept. 5 months (20 weeks or 141 days...) to go. Time to get ready to gear up again.
Ironically (and true to form) the exam I passed was the one I concentrated less on this time. Don't get me wrong, I'd studied it in the past however I almost didn't even turn up to sit it and my wise sister told me just to go - & I passed!! So it is another demonstration of the lack of insight/self esteem I have wrt my own skills! What an encouragement that I'd worked so hard in the past and that 'without' trying, my knowledge got me through a 70%pass mark! You have to laugh...
So I've had a few days off and 4 more days left - been catching up on sleep, doing some major hikes and exercise to get out ad about, made some new friendships and now ready to make my plan of attack.
-load documents to print onto stick
-print out study plan
-print out anat viva
-print out path viva
-take USB stick to get pharm master list
-TO GET BACK INTO FOCUSED CONCENTRATION
- 2 SESSIONS PER DAY ON DAYS OFF
- 1 SESSION PER DAY WORK DAYS (EXCEPT NIGHTS)
ONLY DO PAST QS AS PER TIMELINE - NO TEXTBOOK READING (ALREADY DONE THAT 3 TIMES BEFORE)
- 1 SOCIAL EVENT PER WEEK
- 2 TV EPISODES OR 1 MOVIE PER WEEK
-INTERNET AND PHONE TIME (Ive noticed I'm checking almost every hour- 1 email x5mins and 1xfb 5mins every other day)
'3 T's: TIMED. TASK. If not - TOMORROW.
-EAT HEALTHY - 3 CHEAT MEALS PER WEEK
- 3 HIGH INTENISTY
- 2 LOW INTENSITY ACTIVITIES PER WEEK
-SLEEP - 7HOURS WORK DAYS. 8HOURS OFF DAYS - NO LOLLING ABOUT IN BED
Here's to Healthy Habits...
YAY!!!!CONGRATULATIONS on passing that exam!!!!!BRILLIANT news!!! Best of luck on all your study in coming months. you are such an inspiration. Keep up the GREAT workxoxo
Please see my reply to your post Monday the 17th. To summarise. You are doing a brilliant job. Thank you for what you do. I will be thinking of you on Friday and sending you the very very best wishes and for the coming months as you head into the next round. From my recent experience over past few years as a patient there is so much more to being a good doctor than a grade or a tick of an academic box. Your calling , your kindness and no doubt your people skills in spades (and humanity that shines through in your posts when you write about your work )-these in my opinion are the A1 tools you have that you utilise day in day out in your job in the ER and that sometimes might seem 'less important' to a grade or a result. From a patients perspective these qualities are golden and sometimes cannot be taught but are innate in a person attracted to healing as a profession. Just my rambling thoughts!! I have no doubt you are an AMAZING doctor. I think you should be very proud of yourself. i wish you all the very best on Friday and in the coming months as you prepare for the next round of exams. Your patients will tell you that you are more than any 'number' to them as will your superiors- no doubt about it! Keep up the great work. Will be thinking of you Friday! xoxo
I relate to a lot of what you said.
You're saying that *if* you can focus, avoid procrastination, over the next 5 months you might be able to pass those exams?
As for trying other careers, i know for me the grass is always greener, and i when i get to the other side of the fence, i procrastinate watering the lawn and it turns brown :P
So at least for me my "issues" would follow me to whatever endeavor i undertook.
I pray for recovery for you to achieve your dream.
fall down seven times, get up eight - japanese proverb