24 September 2007

halfway done

well, i've made it through part one of the exam. it took me 3 hours to complete the written exam of 150 questions. i probably would've stayed longer and re-checked everything (the professors, i kid you not, misnumbered the exam, causing mass panic among the students. we had two #4s and no #71. fun!), but we've got the practical this afternoon, so i figured that rather than perseverate, i'd come home and review my labs.

the written was actually not as bad as i feared. it would've been as bad as the rest of the exams, except i finally got a bit of advice before this test that seemed to really help. i met with one of my pbl-mates from last year on wednesday, and he explained to me how he studies for one of these exams. he said that it's all about relationships--that i need to be able to take the 2D slide and translate it into 3D, because they'd be asking questions that are relational. maybe it sounds obvious to everyone else, but it dawned on me, in talking to him, that this business of "memorizing the lecture slides" doesn't help if i can't picture, in 3D, how the structures go together.

(aside: i guess i should mention that we're working on prosected cadavers. i'm beginning to think that perhaps this isn't such a good way to learn. staring at a cadaver isn't a heck of a lot different than staring at rohen's, you know?)

so this weekend i spent a considerable amount of time going through the cross sections in netter's atlas. i tried to view each picture and really *see* where things were. not only was it more fun to study it that way, but i started to feel like i had some direction to my study for a change.

i'll probably miss all the minutiae questions on the exam, because i didn't spend time memorizing little facts this time, but i'm hoping it doesn't matter too much. an overall understanding of the big picture will help me more in the long run...i think....

at any rate, it'll be interesting to see if my study changes made any difference.

as for the exercise some of you mentioned, i've been feeling a bit stymied lately. we're in our late summer weather pattern where i live, which means that the days are brutally hot and the evenings consist of a deluge of thunderstorms. it hasn't let up long enough for me to get on my bike, and it is starting to bug me. i need some exercise and some time outdoors. i snuck away last weekend to study in a quiet place with no interruptions--fortunately this place is on the beach, so i did get to swim in between my study sessions. <--that was really nice. i guess this is all to say that i'm waiting for a break in the weather. i'd ordinarily ride during a rainstorm (i don't melt when i get wet), but i currently live in one of those areas that's known as lightning capital of the world. seriously. so i figure i'll leave the golfers to get struck and keep my butt indoors. at least, for now. but i may go join the ymca. i'm not as into gym exercise, but something is better than nothing....

speaking of exercise--another side note--my brother completed another triathlon yesterday! he came in 5th overall in his age/gender bracket (39th overall out of a total of nearly 1,000 participants!)--for someone who has only been doing this for about 10 months, his abilities are incredible. he acts like it's nothing, but--damn--he's not far behind the times of the professional racers! it's amazing!

alas, i best get back to my mental triathlon. onward!

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a little disclaimer...

i'm a medical student. just a student. so please, don't take anything i say too seriously. remember that i was an english literature major as an undergrad, so there is much fiction to be found in these pages. do you think i'm telling a story about you or your illness? more likely, you're tapping into my sense of "everyman"--that is, your story resonates with what i write here because it's not so uncommon after all. need help? please, please go see your physician. <--i'm not her. yet. ;-)