The top 10 things Vera is freaking out about before she starts vet school

While she’s hardly a basket case, Vera’s over-active imagination is making her jittery. After all the blood, sweat and tears to get in to veterinary science,  it is now time to fret about something new and fresh.

img_0884Friends, family and acquaintances may roll their eyes, but Vera is sure other veterinary students (especially first years) would understand the mild feelings of panic before starting something as big, hairy and audacious (that one’s straight from Michelle Bridges!) as a degree in veterinary science.

Of course, she’s super excited as well and still can’t quite believe she managed to pull it off. The elation she felt at ordering her overalls and gumboots this week, for instance, would seem irrational to most. Still, even as a student, she thinks it will be a while before she gets over feeling like an impostor. And so Vera reserves the right to freak out.

Here are the top 10 things Vera is is chewing her fingernails about (today).

  1. Despite meeting the rigorous requirements for entry, what if I’m actually not smart enough or can’t keep up with my peers?
  2. What if I can’t deal with the blood and gore of surgery and dissections? What if I can’t stomach the smell of dead stuff?
  3. Will I still have the brain space and hours in the week to work part-time so I can feed myself? Or should I get my priorities straight and realise that food is now a luxury item?
  4. What if I’ve been really naive all this time in thinking the veterinary profession is the bee’s knees and it turns out it’s not all it’s cracked up to be? How would I then be able to stop myself from endlessly calculating the opportunity cost for the rest of my life?
  5. How likely is it that I’m going to get my arm broken the first time I perform a reproductive examination on a cow?
  6. I don’t particularly like birds/reptiles/goats/dragonflies {insert species of choice}. Does that mean I’m going to be a crap vet?
  7. Surely it can’t be true that the average salary for practising vets is so {insert choice adjective} low! While I’m not in it for the money – what have I done?? Maybe I should have chosen medicine (nah, people are gross).
  8. I wanted to be a vet because I love animals. Now I hear it’s all about death! How am I going to euthanize puppies and kittens? What have I done??
  9. How am I ever going to know enough to be useful to even one species of animal, let alone all of them?
  10. The reported suicide rate among vets is alarming. I don’t particularly feel like winding up a statistic. What am I going to do differently?

And one BONUS freak-out that just occurred to Vera (arguably the most important):

11. I don’t live on campus. How am I going to go out for drinks with my new vet student friends and still get home to Ipswich in one piece?? (Early warning Bevan…!)

NB: The above list is not exhaustive and is in no particular order.


Vera in ‘What Have I Done?’ mode

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