Thursday, June 24, 2010

I Conquered World!

Okay, so I didn't conquer THE world per se, but I did finish USMLE World question bank. It's ~2300 questions long, and pure misery. I finished it late last night. I know, I know, I said I was going to finish it before the wedding last weekend, but there were just things that needed to be done before the festivities began. Then I needed a day or 2 to recover it seems like.

I take the big test Monday. So what will I do until then? Well I've just used my most OCPD characteristics and made a list of the subjects I did the worst on in World. I'm going to start my review by reading those sections in a review book, then reworking the questions I missed for that subject. Maybe that will help me learn just a few things in the next 3-4 days. Wanna know what I suck at? Here 'tis:

1. Poisonings - don't come to me if you overdosed. I will likely kill you in the process of trying to save you. Sorry.

2. Infectious Disease - don't come to me if you're um, well... sick? But really, if you do come to me and you've got pneumonia I'll likely just look up the most appropriate antibiotic at the time. Or ask my attending. Then I'll write the order for it. Then I will have learned it. I can't learn all this crap by skimming it on a page, but I digress...

3. Genitourinary - but Allison, I thought you wanted to be an Ob/Gyn? Don't worry guys. That section is separate. This section is a little more Urology-ish.

4. Endocrinology - I just don't think organ systems should exist that have little pieces in the brain, above the kidneys, and in the throat.

5. Gastroenterology - I'm kind of surprised about this one. It's one of my favorite subjects (it's just a long tube y'all). I think I've gotten better at it as my studying has progressed and I get really relieved once I realize it's a GI question being asked.

Okay, so now y'all know what I suck at. Do you wanna hear what I'm good at? Well I don't care if you do or not. This is my blog and I'll do what I want :)


1. Psychiatry - I'm betting this is everyone's best subject.

2. Dermatology - I'm as surprised as you are.

3. Preventive Medicine - I'd rather prevent you from getting sick than have to pick the appropriate antibiotic once you've gone off and gotten sick.

4. OB/GYN!!! - See, I told you not to worry.

5. Biostats - This makes me laugh. Because we took this class 2nd year. And my grades speak quite the contrary to this being on the list of things I'm good at. I think I still remembered some of this because I had to study so hard for that last test. You know, to pass the class.

So that's that. I guess I'm about to study some poisonings and infectious disease. I've already made a list of things I want/have to do once this test is over and I can't wait to tackle some of it.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Things I'm Loving Right Now

Since I've mostly been staying at home and studying the last few weeks in preparation for STEP 2, I've been taking mental notes of all the little things I'm loving in and around the house right now.

1. Saving money. How, you ask? I've been cooking a lot more. It's a much needed distraction and it's easy on the wallet. We get our next loan disbursement on July 6th but knowing our institution, it will most likely be a week late. I ran out of money sometime around the end of May. Thanks to my lovely husband and a credit card with a high limit I'll be fine, but it's still nice to feel like I'm saving some pennies by cooking more.

2. ULTA Smoothies. Most of you know I indulge in a daily bubble bath. That can get a little expensive if you're not careful. I had been buying the cheap-o Wal-Mart bubble bath but due to it's dilute nature it ran out rather quickly. The scent selection is also a little limited. Enter a coupon at ULTA and their smoothies being on a buy 2, get 2 free sale. I think I ended up paying about $20 for 4 bottles of the stuff. It's really a good deal because they are uber-concentrated. 2-3 pumps and the bath is full of bubbles. I currently have Pineapple Passion, Creamy Cocolada (coconut), Key Lime, and Candied Caramel Pecan. Pineapple Passion is by far my favorite. It's fun to mix them up though. 1 pump of pineapple, 1 pump of coconut. You get the drill.

3. My new treadmill! Most of you know the saga of my last treadmill. It was a craigslist find. I paid $225 for it. That's approximately $100 for each week that it worked. Sadness. After scouring the internet/Academy sports/Sears for the best deals I came across the one I wanted. It was $377 at Wal-Mart - an amazing deal for a brand new treadmill. Enter the problem. We don't own a truck. Solution - Wal-Mart will ship stuff to your house for $0.97. Yep - 97 cents. Bonus - it arrived 2 days early. I have enjoyed studying on it because Lord knows you get sick of sitting on your butt all day long and studying. Kris and I were able to assemble it in about 2 hours. It was relatively easy, but definitely a 2 person project. I've been very pleased with it so far.

4. Splenda with fiber. Because Splenda is good. And Splenda with fiber is better. Because I do not eat a bowl of shredded wheat with strawberries on top of it every morning, or barley with lentils for lunch. Sometimes I just drink coffee til noon - or until 2:30 if I wake up at noon.

5. The fact that my best friend's wedding is in just 4 days. It's going to be so much fun! Just gotta work on my speech for the toast the night before. I'm not so good with words... or public speaking... or public speaking with words...

6. Wingback headboards. I'm thinking about trying to make one of these once Step is over (June 28th for me). I've read a lot of how-to guides online and I think I can make it happen. Besides, one time I took an aptitude test in junior high and it told me I should either be a carpenter, race car driver, or doctor. I feel like I'm the last 2 on most days, so why not try to embrace the 1st one more?

As for the step studying, it's coming along slowly but surely. I feel a lot more prepared than I was for Step I, but that's not very hard to do considering I only completed half of the USMLE World question bank. True story. Right now I have about 500 questions left. I'm planning on being finished by Friday afternoon so I can party it up at the aforementioned wedding all weekend and then review the next week. I do confess that I wish I was a faster studier and could just cram all this info in in a 2 weeks or so, but I know now that's not how I learn. I need lots of time to digest the information, then review it again. I am getting very, very tired of studying though. Less than 2 weeks as of today :)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

I Have Decided

I have decided that from now on all major STEP exams should be held the first week in February. We could all start studying in January, when it's brutally cold and uninviting outside. We would all be so full of pep too, since it's just after New Year's and all. The resolution would be to do well on the Step. Christmas would be over. There would be no major holidays to look forward to/procrastinate about. It's cruel and unusual to make us trudge to the hospital in the snow and rain and freezing temps of January and then have us stuck in the library/coffeehouse/house/classroom wing during the BEAUTIFUL summer.

I'm feeling a little sorry for myself (and the rest of us M3/M4s) today.

I had to turn down a boat ride and dinner on the Reservoir with my bestie today (for the 2nd time this summer) and it almost made me cry.

I hate the STEP.

That's all.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Not Feeling It

This marks day #3 of not feeling so hot. It all started Friday morning. I felt a tiny bit sick to my stomach, but blamed it on too much greasy Waffle House with Kris the night before. (Always a good idea the night before a big standardized test, amiright?)

Things got worse as the day went on. My sweet mama tried to take me out shopping and I could only make it through 1 store. Thankfully it was Pier 1 and I was able to sit down in chairs throughout :)

Went home, got in bed and hibernated most of the night. Kris got home with some Pepto Bismol which worked the absolute opposite of how it was supposed to. Funny, I didn't know Pepto was just Syrup of Ipecac...

Saturday I managed to feel pretty okay in the morning, made it to a good friend's wedding. It was a gorgeous morning wedding with a reception following at the Old Capitol Inn. There was a jazz band called Dr. Jazz - made up entirely of older doctors who play weddings for fun. They were great! I was wondering how many of them had families though. I don't imagine they're ever at home if they're off playing gigs on Saturdays.

Today I woke up thinking I could finally get to studying hard core, but I was wrong. I'm jut still not feeling it. I slept until 11:00 and then fell back asleep at 2:00 and just woke up. I've got absolutely NO appetite so I'm trying to force the gatorade and fluids down. I'm pretty sure it's just a viral gastroenteritis, but if that pain starts heading down to my right lower quadrant.... I'm gonna be pissed! (That means appendicitis, hospitalization, and likely surgery for the non-medical people. Aka - lots of lost study time)

Hope everyone else is getting some work done and not being sick!

Thursday, June 3, 2010


I just ate a BLT.

And I grew the L part in my backyard.

Because I wanna be Martha.

But just a little bit sassier :)