…Ivan’s been burrowing deeper and deeper into his study nest and, simultaneously, needing more and more a break. He never quite bounced back from midterms. I don’t mean to say that his grades have or will suffer due to a lack of enthusiasm; so, concerned family members, don’t fret. The fact is medical school is just more demanding than undergrad. When you’re a medical student, there are some crucial changes you must make to your lifestyle. Try to keep in mind that your understanding of weekends is shot; vacation and time off are myths. Your concern will never again be when the week begins and ends, but when the term begins and ends, because everything between those two points is the same defeating and overwhelming work, regardless of the day of the week. Gone are the fall and spring breaks of college; after midterms, you keep trudging through one dense lecture after the next.
Ivan, apparently, really needed that spring break that never came. Though he dove right in when the new lectures ensued after midterms, his enthusiasm is petering out now, in the last leg of this first-term journey. He’s so burnt out, he’s unintentionally looking for distractions while studying. He’ll actually get up two or three times an hour to scout the apartment for mosquitoes to kill. He’s taken to asking me “whatcha doin’?” even when it’s pretty obvious what I’m doing; for instance, when I’m folding clothes he’ll ask me what I’m doing and I actually have to stop and make sure that he’s not being rhetorical before responding, “Um… folding clothes?”