Thursday, March 16, 2017

Medicowesome secret project: Exam time

What is the secret project? How can I participate?
Name: Jaskunwar Singh
Passion: Writing and photography

The Final Exams - The time when you have to spend most, and sometimes all of it at one place and study thousands of pages of books and grasp everything important that is not so important actually, but it seems important because teachers or seniors say so.. And those topics or chapters have been asked in previous year-examinations. And of course the negative influences from others as well as your own self, and the limited time-scale that you are provided with for the preparation of the whole syllabus - It just gets too much for a medical student to deal with it!

"I am so fed up with the never-so-ending studies. Leave me alone now please. I don't want you anymore.'', I said to my medicine book.
"Nooo please don't go mate. You are still left with fifty-odd pages of the chapter and you have an exam tomorrow.''
''But I really want a break now. I can't make myself sit with you. Please let me go.''
I stood up to drink some water. The clock on the wall of my room gave another warning- 2:15 am! I was already suffering from headache and cervical pain. But somehow I had to get back to my chair and study.
''I told you not to leave me. Complete the chapter now and sleep.''
''Okay fine. I am sorry!'' :(

2:30..  3:00..  3:30.. The time seemed to travel so fast and  I was still there struggling to finish the last ten-odd pages. Five mugs of coffee, a can of Redbull and two doses of painkillers already taken, I struggled to focus upon the words and illustrations given in the book. The various types and forms of cells in different stages of leukemias and lymphomas, the photomicrographs of blood smears in a wide range of anemias and the classification of anemias itself, the coagulation cascade and its implication in various disorders and factor - deficiencies still haunted me that night. I completed the chapter somehow and laid on bed at 4.

But was I able to sleep? Even worse.. I was so much stressed and with the pain in my head, I couldn't even lie down. I got freaked out and started overthinking about the exam in a few hours from now. Bad thoughts and ideas of failure or inability to perform well engrossed my mind. All of a sudden I was forgetting everything that I had just read a few minutes ago.

I tried to calm myself down and gulped plenty of water, took some deep breaths and prayed to God. I again checked my phone. It was 4:30 am. I had to wake up at 7 and revise the whole syllabus, get ready and leave for exam at 9. I stopped thinking about anything and slept.
*Alarm beeps*
7:15 am
I tossed out of my blanket and started looking here and there for the books.
''Where have I kept the books now??? Damn it!'', I asked myself.
I rubbed my swollen red eyes and looked again. On my study desk, there it was. ''Start revising now!", I shouted it out. More than one hour of revision and my alarm again beeped. 8:45 am ''Get ready now". I got ready and left for exam at 9:15.

I reached out towards my bus and went all the way to my examination center along with my batchmates. Forty minutes drive seemed like just a couple of minutes! I talked to mom and dad on the way for their blessings and prayed to God before the exam. The three hours of exam from 11 to 2 reminded me of my empty stomach. I had not eaten anything since last night. Of course I couldn't focus on the questions and write the answers much efficiently now. I had some chocolates with me which I ate before exam. So I did it somehow.  I came out holding the question paper in hand. "Finally, it is over."  *sigh*

''Hey what was the answer of 5th question in part-B? '', a friend asked me when we stepped into the college bus. ''Sorry buddy, but I don't really want to discuss the paper right now." Some of my friends in the bus were glad because they already knew they did really well in the exam.. and they were the only ones who were discussing the questions and telling everyone how well they have performed. Others? Haha.. they were busy thinking about their own performance and counting scores.
We reached our college by 4 pm. The hostel mess got closed by that time. And we didn't have much enough energy to go out and eat something. So we just went back into our rooms.

Lying on bed, I started reviewing the question paper and all the answers I had written. Midway through it, my phone rang up. Dad called to ask about the exam in the evening. "How was it?" I could sense his dull voice and languor after long hours of work. "I did good, dad. It was easy but lengthy. I completed on time."  He encouraged and supported me to work harder and achieve great heights of success. He was happy and relieved. His tiredness seemed to disappear. Then I talked to mom. She reminded me of my empty stomach and how much crave I had for food at that time. I really wanted to eat something made by her. I missed her a lot. But she was worried because her child had not eaten anything since last night. I didn't tell her but she sensed the lack of energy from my voice. She's a mother after all. Soon I was in the mess to have some evening snacks- my favorite French toasts and a mug of coffee, with my friends.

At the end of the day, no matter how it was, talking to your parents always makes you feel good. And when the parents are happy due to you, it is the best feeling ever. :)
At 7, I lied down on my bed and slept. That was probably the best sleep I had after so many weeks. :D

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