This is a rough guide to getting through internship. This list is far from comprehensive and will probably be revised many times before I’ve completed my two years of training. However in the eight months I’ve been doing this there are certain things I’ve learned. Maybe it would have helped to know this right at the beginning. Maybe not. Nevertheless, here’s my guide to sort of surviving internship.
1. Buy comfortable shoes for the nights you’re on call.
Trust me on this one. You would not believe how painful your feet can be after 24 hours of standing/walking/running on a call. I bought a pair of Sketchers running shoes and they’re amazing. O, and try get a dark colour. Blood stains on your pretty white shoes = sad face.
2. Avoid getting a needle stick injury AT ALL COSTS.
ARVs are not fun. A guaranteed way to lose weight (take that Prof Noakes) but they make you feel really, really awful. Seriously. Just don’t do it.
3. Always make sure you have a charger and plug with you when you’re on call.
This one’s non-negotiable.
4. Don’t go any near a Woolies when you’re post call.
You’re tired, grumpy and now you have to walk down that long, long aisle of delicious treats on your way to pay. I promise you, you’ll walk out of there with a slab of Lindt. And a seed bar. And a packet of chips that you don’t even like. Not ideal.
5. Pack easy to eat, healthy snacks.
There isn’t always time to eat a proper meal at work. And there’s always the dilemma of taking a lunch break, but then staying longer so you can finish your work. So be prepared-pack things like nuts, biltong, dried fruit and smoothies. Energy dense, healthy and easy to guzzle down while running (literally) to the blood bank.
6. Make time for things you enjoy.
Internship can be draining, physically and emotionally. You have to do things that make you happy. Go sweat in the gym, read a book, get your nails painted. Whatever. Just make sure medicine doesn’t rule your life.
7. Don’t complain.
It doesn’t help. It makes you miserable. And at the end of the day there’s not a whole lot you can do to change the fact that you have to work long hours in crappy conditions. Just grin and bear it. You’ve got a job, you’re gaining experience and you’re earning a salary. Get over it.
So that’s it. I hope it helps, I’m sorry if it doesn’t! But thanks for stopping by ❤