Sure enough, its over just as fast as it all began. From the 1st of July I'm going to be a fully registered doctor and my internship days will be well in the past. I'm also going to be unemployed until further notice and I'm actually quite looking forward to it.
Its been an interesting year. It wasn't as hellish as people paint it to be, but it definitely did have many shitty moments embedded within its fabric. Being a bottom feeder is never fun (unless you're a hamour, you'd love that shit if you were.. lying on the bottom of the sea, scooping up whatever falls your way.. which is interesting, the colloquial Bahraini term hamour draws on the size of the fish to describe influential public figures, especially businessmen, while in actuality the hamour is a bottom feeder in the most literal sense of the word). Being the shit-filter, the person that is inundated with stupid requests and showered with mind-numbing clerical work.. it takes you a few weeks to get a hang of it and a few months to totally master it and then you're cruising.
My work experience so far has been that of knowing how to manipulate the system. Sure, I picked up some teaching here and there, but my job has been to facilitate the lives of those more senior than me. The best intern is not the one who knows the most, but the one who makes sure everything is set up for the big boys to come in and make a decision. A demeaning existence were it permanent, but that's why its confined to one year. By the end of this year you've become a bullshit connoisseur, being able to smell it miles away and sidestep it with plenty of time to spare. Now that you know how to play the game, you can start practicing medicine in earnest, with more responsibility gradually being placed on your inexperienced shoulders.
So what have I gotten out of it all? Mainly confidence.. the knowledge that I can deal with any situation no matter how fucked up it is. Sure, you're always learning in life and in medicine.. but it has to go without saying that this abrupt introduction into the real world of hospital medicine has to be the blow that strips the largest layer of innocence and naivety from most of us.
I leave on the 4th of July. After seven years of calling the republic my home, its time for me to move back to where my family reside. I'm anticipating a sizeable enough culture shock, but it doesn't worry me.. I'm more focused on the bliss of unemployment at the moment, even though the regular income will be missed. As I see the new interns come into the hospital to sign their contracts and start moving into our vacated lockers, you can't help but get a tingling down your spine as you remember the beginning.. the very nervy, anxiety-ridden beginning to a year that would go on to shake you to your core.. a year that I've just survived but will forever carry the memory of.