med school

Thousands of young people are working their butts off to get accepted into one of the med schools. No wonder. A doctor is a prestigious profession. You are saving people’s health and lives. Isn’t it beautiful? And you know, the salary. After some time, you don’t really have to worry about the money anymore. You are wealthy and respected. You are a superhero. Who wouldn’t want to be in that elite environment after getting a chance to join it?

Me. This is not my place

Wait, what?!

I worked my butt off, too. And guess what! I got accepted! Then I was in med school for a year. Two weeks ago I quitted. I discovered that I don’t want that. Why? That’s a long story. But first…

How the hell does it feel like to quit, gurl? I came here for that!

When first thoughts “I want to quit” appear, you don’t even treat it seriously. Med school is hard as hell and such thoughts appear on a daily basis. In every future doctor’s head. Such thoughts come and go. But mine was growing stronger and stronger every day. Even passing hard tests didn’t banish them. Quitting became real.
When I made a decision that I want to quit, I felt terrified. Actually, it was so unreal. I got used to the lifestyle of constant stress and studying. Starting living a new life seemed just unbelievable yet appealing.
When I told my parents I want to quit and presented them with my new plan for life, I felt motivated and happy. Again. After a long time of pursuing something, I’m not fond of. Living your dreams stopped being a poster cliche for me. It became my reality!

Why did you quit a med school?

Pre-med school time

It’s simply not my thing. However, admitting it took me a long time.
When I decided I want to be a doctor, I wasn’t really sure what can I do with my life. I haven’t seen a chance of earning money from my creative interests such as writing or art, so I abandoned these fields. Hey, if I have no clue what to do, I should use my potential to the maximum! And I did it!
My joy from being accepted lasted only for a while. Then, a horrible fear appeared. I wasn’t able to enjoy my achievement anymore. Why didn’t this negative feeling alarm me? I’m a quite sensitive person, so before every school year I was stressing out. Thought it was my usual reaction, but relative to the scale of my new life chapter.

I’m there!

In the first month of studying, everyone was freaking out. Natural freshman reaction, nothing to see there! Time passed by, we get used to the new lifestyle study-classes-eat-optional sleep. However, my anxiety didn’t abandon me. I suffered from a lack of will. My focus was absent. I couldn’t remember things even after sessions of work that supposed to be productive. My small victories like passing a hard test didn’t make me happy. I felt miserable almost all the time. I couldn’t find myself in this environment. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. That was the time when I did a reality check:
“Do I even want that? Is high salary worth spending my time away from my closest ones? Do I want to spend my youth away from things I love? If that is what I wanted, why can’t I enjoy it?”

Salvation

To escape this rut, I came back to my good old hobby – writing. Aww, man! That was it! My brain was craving for creative work. I felt as happy as a clam typing tiny text for a YouTube channel project – ValkyVibes (Check it out, especially valky’s songs!). Then I started taking text orders. My clients loved things I provided them with. The next step was taking up a part-time job as a copywriter. I did all of these things along with studying medicine. As I was getting more and more into the copywriting industry, I got to know that you can actually make for a living by creating texts. I discovered that I don’t want writing to be just my free-time activity. That was the time when I seriously thought about switching careers. I learned an important thing about myself: I must work in a creative field.

One wise lady

I made a decent how-to-put-my-life-together-after-quitting masterplan (now I’m acting according to it, good job, Magda!). Does it mean that I left med school right after this discovery? Nope. I’m ashamed to say that I lacked the courage to quit. That’s why I ended up in a hospital. Serving an internship. That’s actually a topic for another story.
Anyway, I met a wonderful doctor there. During one day we had some spare time to talk. There was something special about her that I ended up opening up about my concerns. She looked pretty surprised. Without a word, she took me outside. I thought I’ll get a blast. Fortunately, I received an unforgettable pep talk.
Mrs Doctor has a colleague. He’s an excellent specialist, always treats patients with care and respect. However, he doesn’t like his job. He can’t wait for the retirement. He regrets his life choice of becoming a doctor. She doesn’t want me to end up like that. If only there is a thing I want to do in my life that can bring me a profit, I should go for it.
Doing something against myself is nothing but a self-abuse.
Then she told me to go home and do my thing the best I can. Mrs Doctor, I did so!

Current status: yeah, baby!

How does my life look like now? Well, I still work as a copywriter. Meanwhile, I got to know graphic design. Guess I’m into polygamy, I love them equally. My job allows me for working from any place in the world with a decent Internet connection. I can work and travel! At the same time! That’s insane! In October, I begin anew my Economics studies. How do I feel about that?
I feel excited. There is no fear in me anymore. Guess that’s how a person with a purpose feels like. The inner calm I have found after quitting tells me that I’m going to deal with every obstacle. I also feel kind of proud of myself. I woke up the brave Magda that made a firm decision to fight for the life I always wanted.

16 Thoughts to “How Does It Feel to Quit a Med School?”

  1. honestly this is so inspiring! I considered quitting grad school (not near as crazy hard as med school), so I can imagine how challenging that decision was for you, but it sounds like it was the right one!

  2. It can seem like a risky move to outsiders, but when you know something isn’t for you, it’s always in your best interests to follow your gut and bow out. No need to do something your heart isn’t in, especially if that something is medicine. It would be a disservice to you AND your patients if you weren’t 100% invested. Good for you for recognizing this so early on!

  3. I quit law school and it was sort of for the same reasons — I have always wanted to be a writer and the more I thought about my career as an attorney, the more I realized I wouldn’t be happy in that path. Honestly, I’m not much happier in my current career, but I see it as a stepping stone.

    Great post! x

    Michelle
    dressingwithstyle-s.com

  4. I think it is great and courageous that you followed your gut and got out before you had spent years on it. My daughter wanted to study medicine and I asked an almost qualified doctor friend what kind of advice he would give her. He told her to run! She actually did.
    My niece was just like you smart and was pushed into a ‘smart’ study. She did 5 years of law and is now writing her Master thesis. You know what, she realised she is a doer and is totally attracted to personal training and nutrition. Fits her much better as well. So good on you to admit to yourself that you needed to get out. All the best with your next choice!

  5. You made such a brave choice!! Our society almost insists that you stay on a path once chosen, especially if that path has a profitable job at the end. I’ve spent much of my life trying to be happy in roles that just don’t suit me – and guess what? I’m a neurotic mess! It’s so great that you’ve shared your story – hopefully, it will inspire others to make a change, if they aren’t fulfilled in their work.

  6. Skądś to znam, sama byłam na farmacji i tego samego dnia jak zaczęłam to zrezygnowałam, nie tyle bałam się natłoku nauki co po prostu ludzie na przywitanie potraktowali mnie bardzo nie miło, potem jeszcze zobaczyłam plan i stwierdziłam, że praca w pierwszej kolejności, nie wiem czy wyszło mi to na dobre czy na złe, pewnie za 20 lat się dowiem.

  7. Oh wow! To be honest it was my dream to get accepted to Med School, and I know how much time and energy it took me (3 years in high school, + one year additional repeating exams) and I didn’t get accepted. And that was only thing that kept me going through 4 years..I was really sad and upset, but though it’s time for changes and to see bigger picture..is that really what I want to do? Just like you I knew that it means almost no social life, and learning new procedures and techniques all life so you really have to love what you do! Otherwise there is no point. So I get you girl! I am really happy for you that you found out what you want to do with your life and you are pursuing your dreams…Good luck ! xx

  8. Good for you! You need to enjoy what you do, and if medical school wasn’t giving you that warm, fuzzy feeling, it’s better to change directions now. It takes a lot of courage to say “This isn’t for me,” especially when parental expectations are involved.

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