What Happened?

Holy crap, I am really a doctor! That was essentially the title of the Evite I sent out for my graduation party that happened yesterday. And it pretty much sums up what I am feeling today. It is really surreal. After four long years, that actually did move pretty quickly overall, it is all over. I cannot believe it. And to realize that the State of California has conferred an MD upon me, when I feel I know very little at this stage, is a bit daunting. But logically I know that this whole journey is just beginning and eventually I will have the knowledge and confidence to be a good provider.

The graduation itself was quite good. Given that there were only ~100 MD graduates and about fifteen MPH graduates, the whole thing was under two hours. Our speakers were very good and it was a nice touch to have the same faculty member who welcomed us at our induction ceremony send us off into the world as newly minted physicians. Davis has a unique tradition where each student could have two family members/friends walk across the stage with us. My parents walked with me, which was very nice, and all of my guests said they got good seating and had a good view of the action. My only minor complaint about the ceremony was how hot it was. The heavy, black velvet doctoral robes were hot, especially under the stage lighting. And being hooded was interesting--a bit tight on the airway. The hood was green, the color of medicine, with blue and gold trim for the University of California.

After the ceremony we all hung around for a reception in the lobby. It was nice to get to say goodbye to some of the faculty members who had been very supportive and for them to get to meet my family. Unfortunately, it was so crowded I did not get to see and say goodbye to some of my friends who I will likely not see for awhile. It was strange to think that after spending so much time for the last four years with my classmates that I will likely not see many of them for a long time. As with any transition, we will all be moving on to new places and experiences. But I know that I will stay in touch with the people I became close to over the last four years.

My party the next day was a fun celebration and it was fun to see some people who I have not seen very much over the last four years. It will be nice to re-kindle some of the friendships that medical school and its time commitment put a damper on. Then again, who knows it residency will be much better. We can only hope... at least going into pathology I have no traditional intern year, so that's a start.

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