Diary of a stressed house officer| 5 coping tips. 

Hey guys! How’s it going?

I’m currently in Lagos for just two days. 😦 I wish I could stay longer but i have to go back to work on Monday, yes I’m aware it’s a public holiday but when you’re a Doctor, public holiday is nothing exciting. It’s just another day. Especially if you’re on call, it’s pretty much like a weekend call. 

Anyway, im home and wide awake so I decided to type this post. 


Let’s get right in, shall we?

1. Prepare your mind for the worst. 

I don’t mean to scare you but it works well for me. I prepare my mind for the worst and  nothing can really surprise me anymore. Just know it’s going to be one long year and once you’ve accepted the fact that you’re in for struggle, you’ll be fine.

2. Eat. 

I really have no shame for confidently writing this because I have a terrible eating habit. I go from not eating to binge eating and the cycle goes on and on. It’s very easy to be overwhelmed with work and forget to eat. Yes, I didn’t think it was possible to forget to eat either until I started housejob. Have snacks in your bag. Work can go from zero to one hundred real quick and before you know what’s happening, it’s 8pm and you’ve not had a proper meal all day. 

3. 

Be nice but not too nice. 

I know it’s like I’m contradicting myself but I started house job with the ‘I’m going to be nice to everyone’ mentality and it didn’t take long for me to be like ‘uh fuck it’. Nigerians don’t like nice people. Nigerians respect you when you’re mean and you yell. Sadly. I mean, I’m not saying disrespect anybody but don’t let people walk all over you especially the nurses because they tend to think they know better and they always want you to do what they want you to do but if you really know what you’re doing, they can’t bullshit you into doing anything. Bottom line is know what you’re doing and stand your ground. Respectfully tell them to do their work and do yours. Nurses can be your best friend and your worst nightmare. 

4. 

Don’t forget to read. I can count how many times I’ve opened my book to read. You’ll learn everyday and it gets overwhelming sometimes but get a small notebook and write down things you see/hear/learn so you can find time to go over them. I can’t promise you that you’ll find time. From being on call and not sleeping to doing 5hour ward round to being yelled at. Honestly, all I think about is sleep. I can’t come and die. Housejob kinda makes you better at clinical skills than theory because who has time to read honestly? 

5. 

Rest. Rest. Rest.

I know this might sound like a foreign term to you but you gotta find time to rest. Even if you have to ’tissue’ to sleep. Do what you gotta do smartly. Except you’re ready to overwork yourself and burn out/collapse. I’ve heard stories from people i know and random people of how doctors faint at work from exhaustion. How sad is that? I have friends that have collapsed at work. It’s really not that deep. Do your work but try to rest. If you’re known to do your work well, no one can fault you for taking some time off to rest. I know it’s hard for some people *coughs*. I’m a workaholic and I barely rested these past few months but hey, even if I can’t take my own advice i can help someone out there! 
I hope you enjoyed reading this post. 

Want more tips? 

Drop a comment!

– TOSIN 

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Life! Oh wait…..

How’s it going guys?

  • I’m currently typing this in my room and i’m on call.
  • My call has been okay. So far, so good.
  • I am half way done with my surgery posting!
  • I am almost done with housejob y’all! Isn’t that crazy?
  • I can now sort of say i’m in a long distance relationship. LOL. Hate it.
  • Well, technically it’s not that long.
  • I finally got a room to myself in the hospital.
  • It’s such a purple room. I love it.
  • I almost forgot…. I’m 26 years old now. OMG. I’m old.
  • I had a weird birthday.
  • I was kinda depressed because i put too much pressure on myself and i felt like i’m not where i want to be in life.
  • I felt so much better the day after though. I realised how blessed I am and for that I was really grateful. I mean, I have the best family.. super supportive and shit… I have the best boyfriend. Super kind and amazing tbh.
  • I wish i wasn’t on call today. I would’ve been watching a movie with bae.
  • He went without me. Imagine that?!
  • March is almost over… Where is the year flying to. Not complaining tho.
  • Hope you guys are having a great month so far.
  • I will blog about my plastic surgery posting soon.
  • I am tired of seeing wounds. It’s disgusting tbvh.

6 months….

My nephew turned one last week. Cutest boy!

So…. Can y’all believe it’s been six months already since I started housejob??? I can actually. Ive basically stopped blogging, reading non medical books, going out and doing so many other things I love. The whole process has been exhausting but I can’t complain because I met the most amazing person in this mess of a place. 

I’m officially done with Obstetrics and Gynecology and Paediatrics and I’m currently in Lagos for a family event. 

Everyone said Paeds would be horrible. I actually expected the worst. I was pleasantly surprised though. I met some amazing people and I had a blast. I’m not here saying I didn’t feel like slapping people everyday but it wasn’t as bad as they made it seem. Paediatrics was stress sometimes. It was frustrating meeting Parents that obviously have no plans for their kids. Some did not even care. Highlight of my paeds rotation would be the moment we discharged a premature baby I was so attached to. His parents just got married so it sorta hit me like ‘damn, this could happen to anyone I know’. I met baby Miracle when I started my SCBU posting this month and the baby went from stable to really sick to stable.  It was just really a roller coaster. At some point he was the only male baby on the ward. Lol Even when we were distributing patients, the parents insisted I made him my patient. Long story short,  baby Miracle got discharged and guess who wasn’t there? Yeah. Me. I was so happy nonetheless. Watching a baby almost die is the most depressing thing ever. 

Guess what? The most random thing just happened. I just got a call from Baby Miracle’s parents. They were calling to say hi and tell me Baby Miracle does not miss my daily pcv checks and frequent pricks. Lmaoo

My worst moment in Paediatrics happened when I was doing my ward posting. I was in pulmonology unit. I was on call on the haemonc ward. Immediately I started my call, the nurse told me a patient is complaining and I should probably go see her. I went over to the bed side and asked the mother what the problem was. She said her daughter is in a lot of pain and she’s a strong girl so for her to be moaning, the pain must be intense. I asked what analgesics the child has been on. Luckily for me, the primary doctors were still on the ward so I asked them what they usually give her for the pain and they said she reacts badly to opioids so sadly, it’s just the usual IV paracetamol. I was like damn. Well, I went ahead and gave her some, collected my worklist, dropped my phone number and left the ward. I went back to give drugs at some point that night and the girl was not looking good at all. Thankfully, my reg was around. We both walked to the bedside and the mother was just complaining that something is off with her girl. Before we could even ask her what she meant, the girl started gasping. The mother started singing that ‘ You are great.. every single thing about you is great’ song. Said that’s her daughter’s favourite song. Then she told us that whatever happens, do not resusitate. The girl took her last breath and we just stood there looking. The mother did not stop singing. I didn’t even know when I shed a tear. It was so depressing. Then the part I couldn’t handle was when the father came and the mother who has been so strong all along started crying… They basically took turns crying for like 30minutes. Then the mother came up to me and brought all her unused consumables. (In Nigeria, patients buy their own consumables- needle, syringes, water for injection, gloves, cotton wool e.t.c) and gave them to me that she knows they’ll be useful to someone else.

Yeah, that call was the most fucked up call ever. The song was stuck in my head for like a week. so very dramatic. 

Btw, the lil girl had nephroblastoma. 

Ok enough about Paediatrics! 

Starting my Surgery posting next week and I’m not exactly excited because I don’t like surgery either. The consolation right now is that I’ve done my least favourite so how bad can this one be?

Apparently neurosurgery is the worst unit so I’m praying I don’t get posted there but people have done it and they did not die so we move!

I’m in Lagos and I’ve not even done anything. I was supposed to get a new phone but everyone has been discouraging me. I’m just tired. 

I’ll probably go visit my friends and sister and buy a couple of things. 

Oh and I need to do my hair. Ugh 

What phone should I get? I need one with a badass camera. Okay maybe not badass but good enough. I’m thinking iPhone 6s or Samsung s6 edge. Epp me please! 

January is almost over. I am excited just knowing I’ll finish housejob this year. 

Are you excited for the rest of the year?! 

Life as a house officer. 

Hey guys. First of all, I’m pretty sure my followers/readers outside Nigeria might not understand what house job is all about. 

Its basically your internship year. Your first experience as a Doctor after med school. It is also when you start earning money. 😉

We are at the bottom of the chain as the consultants here keep emphasizing. So basically, we do three months in each department (medicine, obgyn, surgery and pediatrics). 

I’m starting with Obgyn and for the first month I’ve been posted to GOU (Gyne oncology unit). I wasn’t particularly thrilled by this. I mean, who wants to wake up to see cancer patients everyday? Not me! It is quite depressing but I’m not so sad because I hated gyne oncology in med school so I guess this will give me an opportunity to learn and know it by force. 

So, during the three months posting in different units in O&G, you get to do one week in labor ward, another week in Gyne Emergency and then your one week leave. One each month. 


Guess who started with labor ward? Me. I was initially not excited because its usually very busy and unpredictable but I’ll still do it anyway and apparently to get your leave, you must have done your two weeks outside posting. 

First day in labor ward was not bad. They only allow scrubs and slippers in labor ward. I still dont understand why bathroom slippers sha. It was not as bad as I thought it’d be. I heard it was a punishment zone like if you do something wrong in your unit, they might post you to labor ward. The have the first stage area, the second stage area and then the post partum area where they stay till theyre transfered to the warda. The most common diagnosis here from my one week there is preeclampsia.  Basically, we do ward rounds with the registrars, snr registrars and consultants, review patients, fill investigation forms, take blood samples, assist in any procedure being done, assist in the surgeries being done, give IV drugs, take vital signs and deal with any complaint the patient has. Its not as easy as it sounds. I barely got a chance to just relax but the thing is its very unpredictable so it might get quiet for like an hour and next thing you know, they’re wheeling three patients in.  I was excited though. 

If you’re not on call, you get off work 5pm (5 was never really 5 tbh)  but if you are on call, it’s till 8 the next morning and you resume your normal duty. Stress. 

I did my first call in gyne emergency. Bruh. I never hexperret it. I barely slept for two hours. The emergency room here is under construction so it was just chaotic. I learnt a lot though and it was exciting. 
I’m back to my unit on Monday and I have a ward call that day. Hopefully, it goes well. 

This post is mainly for those that asked for house job update. 

So far, so good. I’ll try to keep y’all updated.

Have a good weekend! 

– TOSIN

July/ Update

Hey guys. How’s it going? I feel like now that I’ve started working I won’t have the time and energy to post things but I’ll sure update y’all on what’s happening because I like gisting and sharing. 😏

July was a stressful month for me tbh. I started the medicals for my new job and these people are so dramatic. I’m not complaining tho because its all for my health and to make sure I’m fit and protected from some diseases I could get while working here. I legit got over 6 injections, did a bunch of blood tests, found out I was underweight ( I gained weight in July tho) praise jah. 

So I found out I’m starting my internship year in Obstetrics and Gynecology. I was so happy. Its so funny cuz I was talking to the guy sitting right beside me about how I wanted obgyn and they called all the Doctors posted to that department and my name wasn’t mentioned. They initially posted me to pediatrics and randomly changed their minds. I was like ‘look at God!’ 

I just like and feel it’ll nice to transition from Obgyn to pediatrics and not the other way round.

So, I’m doing obgyn for the next three months. We apparently get to go to different units every month so we get to experience and learn as much as we can. That’s really exciting.

Day 1 selfie

I met some really nice people in July and I think I’m going to be really close to some of them. We all just clicked.

I would share more but July was really not that eventful. I was sad I missed Eat Drink Festival and the other  food fest in Lagos but I was eating Amala in Ibadan so life wasn’t so bad and I can’t complain.

How was July for you? Are you excited for the new month? Got plans for it? Looking forward to anything? Share with me in the comments section.

I hope this month goes well and hope I don’t lose weight from the stress but I’ll definitely keep y’all updated. 

XO!

TOSIN