Intern Year in Review

Today is Switch Day. AKA The Day Wayfaring Is No Longer An Intern. 

It is a glorious day. 

So today I look back on my intern year for the big recap. 

By the numbers: 

5 million - hand sanitizer squirts

1000, give or take - mommy calls

~782 - questions about my hair or age deflected

452 - UpToDate articles “read”

~300 - noon conference lectures attended

~100 - unnecessary Peds admissions

~75 - middle of the night awakenings after dreaming about patient care

~50 - rectal exams performed

30 - babies delivered

15 - deaths pronounced

13 - positive end-of-rotation evaluations

12.5 - pounds gained

8 - cumulative days worth of sleep lost

7 - duty hours violations

6 - holidays worked (July 4, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, Easter)

4 - residency lab values records set (highest HIV viral load, most “full house” wet preps, total iron, iron sat)

3 - patients died (none while under my care)

1 - marriage proposal

1-  amoxicillin prescription taken for strep,

1- bout of acute gastroenteritis (thanks peds)

0 - patients successfully weaned off of Lortab


Medical school, and to a greater extent, residency, is an emotional rollercoaster. Encouragements and criticisms are thrown at you constantly, sometimes within minutes of each other, and you never totally know where you stand. After several months of working long hours, these things can really start to get to you

For example:

  • “I love having call days with you because you’re so even keeled. You go with the flow even when we’re busy and you’re easy to get along with” - an attending
  • “You’re mean when you’re on nights.” -fellow intern, no explanation given


  • “I think your knowledge base is solid and you’re ahead of most of your peers” - several attendings
  • “You tested below average for your class on your in-service exam. Here’s some extra BS work for you to do in your ‘free time’ so you can be smart like them” - email from a different attending, paraphrased.

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