Year 1: That’s all folks!

by Lorien E. Menhennett

When I thought to myself today, “Year 1 of medical school is done!” this familiar cartoon song immediately came to mind:

The Looney Tunes reference seems appropriate in more ways than one. Being in medical school certainly seems crazy at times. I had a successful career in publishing, and I’ve given that up to go back to the bottom of the professional ladder, to live on student loans in a dorm, to spend most of my recent hours at my desk studying and most of my future ones (for a time, at least) in the hospital. Why would anyone do that? Well, it could be that I belong in a Looney Tunes cartoon along with crazy Bugs Bunny and the bunch. Or it could be that I know this is exactly what I want to be doing with my life, and I’m willing to do whatever is necessary to make it happen. (I’m going with the latter, in case you were wondering.)

The cartoon reference also reminds me how important it is to laugh. This last year has been a challenging one. I’ve had to learn to study in a new way, to process more information than I ever thought possible. I’ve had to adjust to a new city far from my family and friends. That can take its toll. Remembering to have balance in my life — to eat well, to exercise, to spend time with people I love, to sleep in on the weekends, and to laugh — has kept me going.

Thanks to all of you who have helped keep me going this year. You are dear to me, and I love you very much.

And now, on to year 2 …