I can’t…I’m in PA school.

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I just completed my first semester of PA school, and after two full days of catching up on sleep, television and snacks- I’m finally back to writing! To be honest, I thought I would be able to keep up more with my blog during these last few months, but LOL, no. Between my hours-long commute, class schedule, and study time at home, there weren’t many opportunities for me to focus on anything else. The good news: I’m learning new things! The bad news: it’s taking up a lot of time.

My schedule wasn’t terrible, but I have a feeling that they were doing us a favor and just easing us into things. Mondays were my favorite because we only had one class: Human Anatomy lecture until noon. Tuesdays, we started with Cadaver Lab at 8:00am (a rough, unpleasant start to the day, if you ask me), then switched gears over to Pharmacology & Pharmacotherapeutics until 4:00pm. On Wednesdays we had Diagnostic Skills lecture & lab from 9:00am-1:30pm. This class was my favorite! We got to learn hands-on basics like venipuncture, strep throat testing, blood typing, and more. It felt more real-life scenario and less text-book, if that makes sense. Thursdays consisted of our Patient Interview & Standard Data Base class, where we learned proper interview techniques, and how to approach patients’ histories, and then we finished around 8:30pm with Medical Spanish. Lastly, Friday consisted of two classes: our Professional Roles & Responsibilities course which centered on the history of the PA profession, but focused primarily on creating community-centered projects aimed to decrease health inequities, and a 4-hour Pathophysiology lecture, which finally took us into the weekend.

I just got my tentative schedule for next semester, and there are more 8am-8pm days on there than I’d like to see (to be clear, I’d like to see none). But! It’s better than having classes on Saturdays, which one of the cohorts before me had to do, so I will keep it positive and count my blessings. I’ve come to value my weekends as uninterrupted study days, and I am grateful for them. My goals for the next semester are simple: start studying earlier so I don’t feel as stressed having to cram for my exams (harder than it seems for a lifelong, dedicated procrastinator who naively believes she “does better under pressure”), and to create a better school/life balance. The title of this blog is too accurate- I found myself saying “no, I can’t” way too often. I missed out on seeing family, my boyfriend, and my friends (I didn’t see my best friend for two & a half months), and I want to do my best to not do that as often this new year.

But for now, I am enjoying my time, and giving my brain a well-deserved break. I’m excited to see everyone I love, catch up on my blogs (maybe even make a vlog or two if I’m feeling extra crazy), and celebrate the holidays! Although, I gotta say, it hasn’t been feeling very Christmas-y lately…does anyone feel the same way?

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