Leo Robertson's Reviews > This Is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor

This Is Going to Hurt by Adam Kay
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it was amazing


Breezed through this one. The sense of humour worked well, balanced with the horrors of Kay's job.

An Xmas present from my sis. She said, "You won't regret quitting medicine after reading this."

She knows I don't, really, though reading this I wondered if I would.

I think people assume I regret quitting medicine more than I do, which is, not at all. It had "not for me" all over it, and I've never experienced such an immense relief since leaving. My body was like, "Yeees, shut this shit down! Let's do anything else with the next... everything of our life!"
I made it a year and a half at St Andrews then switched to Chemical Engineering at Strathclyde, spending the intervening months folding schoolwear in a shop so I knew that anything at uni would be worth it eventually.
If this is even the first time you're reading that I ever studied medicine, it's because while I value your literary opinion immensely, I don't wake up giving a fuck how clever you think I am! (Okay it does come up in Saxual Healing, but it was relevant. A bit ;) )
A friend asked me about it when I met him in Greece this summer. I said, "It was never something I was supposed to be, so I don't think about it at all."
Maybe an equivalent is, "Was it difficult coming out?" Maybe, but it was less tough than staying in.
Anyway, I met some other people on that holiday, and it clicked.
"So you live in Norway," a man said. "What was Norway before they had oil? They were farmers! Fishermen! You know, we here in Greece are hoping to discover new oil reserves. And as a banker I work with many of the same companies as you anyway."
"Sure, sure," I said.
Why say, "Despite your weird attempted 'historical own', the guys I work with sure don't catch their own fish anymore!" or, "That stable oil price will help you guys secure energy independence after your exploration efforts definitely lead to reserves. Oil is the, uh, future..." I didn't engage, though. I was on holiday and didn't know the guy. (And I also wasn't drunk.)

No one SHOULD have to justify themselves to others, but that's not how most people let the world work. Kay isn't bothering to justify himself and openly pokes fun at the idea that anyone could pick a suitable career at a young age, or that the criteria for acceptance for careers even make sense. But this is mainly a clarion call to action against the current conditions for junior doctors and perhaps a deeply reassuring text to those people who feel inadequate because they're not doctors.

Wow what a sacrifice it is. I sure wasn't able to make it.
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Reading Progress

2017 – Started Reading
2017 – Finished Reading
January 1, 2018 – Shelved

Comments Showing 1-4 of 4 (4 new)

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Alison I also thoroughly enjoyed and breezed through it. And I have an essay to do ....

message 2: by Leo (new) - rated it 5 stars

Leo Robertson Alison wrote: "I also thoroughly enjoyed and breezed through it. And I have an essay to do ...."

Nice! I'm glad :)

message 3: by S. (new) - added it

S. Barker Been there, also have 0 regrets, although it took me a little bit more to gather the strength to let it go...

message 4: by Cecily (new)

Cecily What a revelation, but one I can relate to a little.

I qualified as a teacher, but abandoned the job without even completing my probationary year. Everyone said I should do the last term so I had the option of going back to it, perhaps when I had a family and didn't want to work school holidays. I have never regretted my choice for a moment, even when juggling part time work and childcare.

"It was never something I was supposed to be" - though unlike you, I do sometimes think about it and mention it, as it is slightly more relevant to what I do now (explaining how to use software), and because it can't be misinterpreted as boastful.

"No one SHOULD have to justify themselves to others"
I broadly agree, but I rarely subscribe to absolutes. Sometimes people have to justify themselves in a courtroom (a few public figures definitely should, imo), and I think we occasionally owe explanations to partners, and just possibly children. Not necessarily that they have the right to demand change, but just to know and understand.

Anyway, thanks for a provocative - in a good way - review.

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