The Seven Ages of Life in Medical School

I know this sounds extremely corny but today marks the end of a 7 year long association with my medical school. I got done with my housejob yesterday and did not apply for an extension because I wanted to take a year off and try to steer my career in a different direction. At this stage, it is a huge decision for me because, frankly, I am notsure what the future holds for me, and I am treading new ground here. I have never been in this position before. How I handle myself now will therefore be as much a testimony of my character as anything else.

So anyways. I decided to write a short ditty outlining my sojourn in medical school, a la Shakespeare’s Seven Ages of a Man. Consider this to be the “…woeful ballad/ Made to his mistress’ eyebrow”. I may not have been appreciative of the people running the place, but Medical College and Hospital, Kolkata has always had a special place in my heart. And now its time to say goodbye!

Medical College and Hospital, Kolkata

The first age, of untouched innocence,
As we softly trod into the hallowed halls,
The awe, the wonder, the effervescence
Of pride as I crossed the carmine walls.

The second, knowing the body, dissecting the dead,
The sense of terror, the excitement,
An unsaid freedom, the growing up,
Discovering life, the sweet hours spent.

The third, finding love, a reckless rebellion,
Drunk on life, oh, the ecstasy,
To walk the path, less often trod,
And forgetting the world ‘round me!

The fourth, when illusions smashed to bits,
When love was lost, bruised, broken hearts.
The world seemed to fade into nothingness,
As life and love were torn apart…

With the resurrection, the fifth age came,
Like a phoenix, to rise from the dead,
Burying the past, forgetting the pain,
Renewed resolve, moving on, ahead.

With the sixth came an adrenaline rush.
Learning the tricks of the trade,
Taking tentative, baby steps
Following the trail, from the bench to the bed.

And then the seventh, age of tearful adieu,
Leaving home and hearth, the world to face,
With memories, moments, etched on my heart,
To cherish in life’s cruel race.

Skeptic Oslerphile. PhD Student in the Department of International Health at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. Past: 1) Public Health Scientist and Program Manager, Translational Global Health Policy Research Cell, Department of Health Research, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. 2) Scientist, Indian Council of Medical Research, National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases; 3) Senior Research Associate, Public Health Foundation of India. Interests include: Emerging Infections, Public Health, Antimicrobial Resistance, One Health and Zoonoses, Diarrheal Diseases, Medical Education, Medical History, Open Access, Healthcare Social Media and Health2.0. Opinions are my own!

19 comments on “The Seven Ages of Life in Medical School

  1. all the best for the next phase bro’! we know u can do it!! 🙂 😀


  2. Kanishka

    Best of luck mate..for your future.


  3. Best of luck and kudos for having the courage to delve into the unknown.


  4. debosmita

    Hey, congrats on completing 7 years! So what’s the next plan???


  5. Pingback: The Seven Ages of Life in Medical School | Scepticemia | World Medical School


    all the best .. ❤ ur posts


  7. Best of luck to you on the next step in life!


  8. Anasua Deb

    so, in the first year dissecting the dead was the most exciting part for you!


    • It was fun, learning anatomy was not. Besides it was something entirely new and captured all of our fancies, even if we hated Anatomy…


  9. I’ve changed my mind about your questions. Write from your heart.


  10. wow….nice posts..u r really an inspiration !!!!


  11. MysticMonk

    Beautiful composition!Its inspiring to see the intensity in your pursuit of knowledge!


  12. Mayank

    so true and so nicely drafted 🙂 I am officially your fan pranab da ,right from class 5 when i used to listen to your debates n speeches in awe and even today i find myself being bowled out by your versatile skills…..anywaz.. all the best for your career as a medical professional….am sure, though, that u would become a sure handed doc 🙂 🙂

    Last,but not least.i didn’t get this “7 years stuff in medical school “….i guess mbbs is a 5 year course, rite!!! ?


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