Thursday, 12 December 2019

Student Midwife Life | Term One

I can't believe I am sat here discussing my first term of University; it has literally gone in a blink of an eye and I can't believe that I will soon be starting my second term and placement. It has been amazing, overwhelming, draining, and so much more all rolled into a space of just a few months, but I wouldn't change it for anything.
Some people know that this time last year, I applied to just one University, which was, and still is, the top university in Wales for studying Midwifery. I honestly felt that there was no chance of getting a place, even more so after my interview as I truly felt that I had botched it. I do still feel as though I have Imposter Syndrome and that I shouldn't be in the position that I am in; I'm still waiting for someone to email me to say they got the wrong person.
I'm not going to lie when discussing my experiences; I want to be as honest as possible. However, there is a lot of things that I cannot discuss - I hope that people can understand this. I will however, be honest in saying that there have been plenty of times during the last few months where I have wanted to walk off this degree and leave. It certainly isn't for the faint hearted and not an easy degree by any means. Despite already having a degree, I am not an academic person at all, especially when it comes to anatomy and physiology. The first three weeks of university were full weeks of A&P which made me feel so out of my depth. So many times I thought, "what have I done?" and panic would set in when I realised that this was just the start of the next three years of my life. 
The university works on an integrated placement system, where student midwives work out on placement around uni hours, rather than in block placements. We were sent out onto our first placements after three weeks in university; I was dreading it. The fear had definitely kicked in by this point, and I really didn't think that I was cut out for this. Especially when you hear of the horror stories of awful mentors etc!
I remember the night before my first day on placement and all I did was panic; I barely slept that night. I knew that if I had a mentor that I didn't click with then that would be it, I would be walking. Thankfully, I had absolutely nothing to worry about. I couldn't have asked for a nicer, more reassuring mentor than the one I was given. She also pushed me out of my comfort zone, something of which I definitely needed - on my second day she supervised me leading a booking appointment which isn't something I would have thought I could have done so early on. I genuinely believe that mentors can make or break it for students; I've heard of students who did actually leave due to having bad experiences with mentors and I am so glad that, so far, I've only had positive experiences.
I'm nervous, but also really looking forward to my next placement after Christmas.
From the workload side of things, it is intense. I was expecting it but it has also hit me like a ton of bricks. I do not do well in exams; I tend to crumble under pressure and my memory is awful at the best of times. During my access course I mainly had written assignments and reports which I much preferred. So far, I am one exam down and have a few more to go over the next few months. However I am glad to see that there are numerous written assignments which I know I will enjoy over exams. I do my best to stay organised when it comes to keeping up with uni work, but it tends to go out the window and results in me spending a full weekend in the library playing catch up.
I'm hoping now that I have a few weeks off I can get everything done and dusted ready to start my next term with no work hanging over my head, to begin with at least!
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