Because Happy Is What Happens When…

Yesterday, I was offered a Core Medical Training post in the West of Scotland.

There was much hollering and cheering and waking up of pre-night shift friends who seriously ought to have been asleep, and then the moment when I dropped my phone and went skidding around the corner of the haematology day unit to shriek at the charge nurse who was the only member of staff besides myself left in the building.

It is difficult to explain exactly how thrilled I am about this.

My friends and consultants claim that I have not been grumpy and anxious over the last three weeks while I’ve waited for the outcome of my job interview. They are clearly all liars, and for that I kind of love them.

This is absolutely the job that I’ve wanted and absolutely where I want it to be.

To answer a few questions that I’ve started to get from my non-medical and non-British friends, let me explain:

The job I have just accepted is a two year training post in general medicine.

It is somewhere in the west of Scotland. I will begin to get a more precise idea of where exactly in the west of Scotland over the next couple of months, after I’ve learned where I ranked nationally and after I’ve had the opportunity to express my own preferences as to where I might go. I will be able to continue living in Glasgow and for at least some of the time I’m likely to be in Glasgow — for the purposes of higher medical training and in my view for the purposes of sensibleness, anything north of Stirling is considered to be North rather than West.

This is the point where I begin to specialise. I understand that this part is baffling to people, because it seems like I’ve been doing medicine for eight years. It is at this stage that people who want to train as paediatricians go off and spend all their time with small people, and people who want to be surgeons start to learn how to cut things up, and people who want to end up as GPs enter a training programme that is specially designed for that. My people are the people who want to work in adult hospital medicine, which is a specialty just like all the others. I have been doing medicine for the last eight years, but this is when I start learning how to be a physician and then at the end of those two years I get to decide what kind of physician I want to be.

Actually I’m almost sure that I already know what I want to be when I grow up, but that’s maybe a conversation for another time and a decision that I definitely don’t have to make for real quite yet.

I start work in August.




  1. I know I’m one of the “baffled non-medical ‘Muricans” in the crowd, but so, so pleased for you, regardless of my completely vague sense entirely of what the medical field is for you all over yonder. ;) Seriously, though, what a relief to be able to stay where you want to be – I wish you the very best of experiences, Beth.

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