Sunday, December 14, 2008

Gone in 24 Hours

Evicted in 24 hours

Tomorrow will be my last day as a resident in the Department of Medicine. It's just another day, I know. There's no sense trying to be sentimental and emotional about it. It's no big deal, really. It's not like I'm going to die. But why does it seem to feel like it? Here I am, on a Sunday afternoon, sitting around in my messy cubicle that has served as my office for the past 365 days (++ because I started too soon), immobilized, terrified of what would come next.

I have removed the framed pictures of my batchmates from my walls, brought home my poetry books and my Harrison's. All that remain now are the documents Dexter would have to organize (because I can't) and some office property that I am obliged to leave behind. I have also finished showing Dexter around, how to do things, where to find things, what to expect. In a little more than 24 hours, I have every right to leave, and every right to jump around and scream all my bottled up exhilaration, all my frustrations, my anger, my excitement, my angsts. Finally, it's over.

In less than 24 hours, someone more fit to be called chief will sit on my chair. I will no longer be known as Ma'am Jean, the IM chief resident. Dr. Mejia will stop bugging me for additional tasks. Dr. Tangco will be texting someone else for his cath lab patients. The fellows will have to complain to someone else. I'll stop listening to disputes with other departments. I will no longer be relentlessly calling deliquent residents to attend conferences. I will just be an ordinary internist who had the honor and the privilege to be trained and to have served in the country's premier medical institution.

Up to this very day, I still can't believe I did this. Sometimes I wonder if that person known as Jean during the past year is an entirely different individual. Or how much of that new person would I be carrying with me through this life. There are several unresolved issues and unfinished business I'll be leaving behind, but perhaps today is not the time to think about them. I have to remind myself again and again that tomorrow is just another day.

I'm allowing myself a little indulgence though. I'm giving myself every chance to be grateful.

To everyone who helped, to everyone who shared, to everyone who stood by, to everyone who caught me when I slipped, to everyone who endured, to everyone I neglected, to everyone who became part of this amazing year, thank you. It has truly been an awesome time for me.

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