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On the Beat - Junior Edition - April 2018

Passion for Medicine

Passion for Medicine Celebration was the order of the day when I found out I was accepted to the school of Medicine – not knowing the hardships ahead. The signs of potential failure were there but just like every struggling student, I ignored them. I had three exams for that year but I pushed myself too hard which didn't help much because of the limited preparation time. I passed all subjects, except one. I checked my academic record and I was three percent short of advancing to the next year. I remember feeling this deep pain, tears pouring, stressed. I didn't know how I was going to tell my family that I failed, especially given our financial position. The passion for medicine and the vision I have for my future kept me going, which is why I chose not to go back to work or give up. My life experiences have taught me that I can do everything through God who strengthens me. Those who are ahead of me are not guaranteed to be greater than me. Our paths as people will never be the same, I am an individual and one day I will look back and laugh about all this hardship. Yes, I lost a lot of money with regards to salaries and fees but I am still pursuing my dreams. The time for repeating the block came, oh my goodness, the wounds that I thought were healed were reopened. The pain was unbearable, accompanied by shame. Suddenly I had a striking headache. I always entered the gates of Prinshof campus with such pride but that day I wanted to be invisible, fearing former classmates’ eyes. I tried to avoid familiar faces just to cope with the situation. Eventually, with time it got better. Accepting my situation was part of my healing process. I have learned that it is better to work extremely hard in order to promote. Failing is not the end of the world, but it is painful and prevention is better than cure. Regardless of your life’s challenges, you will make it. We all have problems, it is about how you manage yours, seek help early when you are struggling. -Anonymous

Food For Thought… Let’s talk about MENTAL illness Why is this subject taboo? If it wasn’t, why is the mention of a mental health doctor something to joke about? If not stigmatised, why are the people suffering from it terrified to even mention their struggles to others? Mental disorders are real, with more than 200 types listed. Still, these people try everything in their power to hide it and act normal to AVOID drawing attention to the problem – they may already feel embarrassed or confused about it themselves. I feel this is a very relevant issue: most of the personality or mood disorders show face during late teenage years or early twenties. There may be dozens walking amongst you and your friends. Even someone you encounter throughout everyday life, you would not be aware of their mental disorder. The symptoms of a mental disorder are a bit like the features of Down syndrome. We may showcase one or two signs, but it takes a set number of symptoms to occur before the person is considered to have the condition. It may take months or years for the diagnosis, because the symptoms overlap with the criteria of another possible diagnosis. My message for now is: just because you have mood swings that leave your friends scratching their heads, doesn’t mean you are bipolar. Anorexia is about much more than food. When having an off day, you are not “depressed”. Mental disorders have one thing in common: they affect the person’s life to such a degree that they find it hard to focus on anything else. The illness becomes the larger part of their day and permeates their every thought. On the outside it may seem fine – but on the inside, it’s living hell. If you liked this article, you might find these videos interesting: Depression: The Misunderstood Epidemic Dr. Harry Barry: Understanding Generalised Anxiety Disorder What Is a Bipolar Manic Episode Like? | Mood Disorders -Anonymous