Tuesday, January 1, 2019

Goodbye, 2018

I hadn't realised we'd reached December 31st already. All day I'd been writing the date in ward round notes, but only realised late this afternoon that it's the last day of 2018. And so, with only an hour of 2018 to go, I shall attempt to summarise the year as comprehensively and eloquently as I can.

To be frank, it's been an awful year. 2018 has brought a lot of loss - deaths, heartbreak, and everything else. My grandmother died after a bout of pneumonia that had necessitated ICU admission; she'd kept wanting to go home, and managed to do so before breathing her last. A primary school friend (who had been my age) died of metastatic cancer, which he'd told only a few about. I learnt that people are essentially self-serving beings, and will hurt you for their gain when push comes to shove, no matter how much they love you. Many bad things happened this year, and I almost can't believe I came out the other side intact.

When I say it's been a bad year, people automatically assume it's because of work. This is ironic, because for a long time, work was the only thing keeping me going. Sure, internship has been difficult, but I've loved pretty much every bit of it. I've learnt, done, and experienced so much, and it's amazing to see how far I've come compared to when I first started out. Internship has cemented my belief that medicine really is for me - it's something I love and am good at and can see myself doing for the rest of my days. I have also reaffirmed my love for Medicine (ie Not Surgery) over the past year, and am excited to begin Basic Physician Training (BPT) next year! Work has been hard but good, and I am so thankful to be doing something I love every day.

Of course, many good things have happened over the year as well. I saw Ed Sheeran in Melbourne in March, and he was absolutely incredible (how is one man, a guitar, and a loop pedal enough to captivate an entire stadium full of people?!). Over the Easter break in April, I went to Brisbane for the first time and loved it...and ended up getting a Brisbane job offer later in the year! My sister graduated with a dentistry degree in November, and I went home to attend her convocation; we're all very proud, and I know she will make an excellent dentist. Christmas was spent with friends in Hobart, and our gracious hostess with the mostest/Masterchef extrordinaire cooked up a seafood feast fit for pescatarian kings. There has been much to be thankful for in 2018.

Since signing my contract with Queensland Health, I've been doing my best to make the most of my time in Tassie. This year I've done more walks/climbs than I have in all my six years here - Cataract Gorge, Tamar Island wetlands, Quamby Bluff, St Patrick's Head, Narawntapu National Park, and Mount Wellington. I also went to see the tulips at Table Cape, stopping at Anver's on the way there (yum) and Van Diemen's ice creamery on the way back (double yum). Several Hobart visits were made this year as well, each one involving good food and even better company. In Launceston, we've had a fair few dinners, potlucks, and even a steamboat/hotpot session, spending time together before we all go our separate ways. I'm trying to meet up with as many people as I can before leaving; it's extremely exhausting for this introvert, but I know it'll be worth it.

All in all, it's been a rollercoaster of a year. 2019 will see me in Queensland, working at a much bigger hospital and starting BPT. I know hardly anyone in Queensland, but like to think I'm a fairly nice person, so I should make friends relatively quickly. It's scary, but also really exciting, and I can't wait.

Bye, 2018. You've been terrible. Please never return.

Hello, 2019! Bring on the fresh start!

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