A message for you, on ‘that day’ of dental school

Oof. What are you doing? Why can’t you get past this? Why isn’t it enough?

I see you. I hear you.

This moment of feeling completely depleted, of tasting failure, of nagging fear that you made the wrong choice.

I feel you.

Dental school is tough. It’s [expletive] [expletive] really tough. And yeah, you may have gotten through the first few semesters with a couple extra shots of espresso, followed by shots of an adult beverage 12 hours later. But there comes a point where you have weeks in a row without any cause for celebration, without any sense of relief, without any chance to take a breath. Your cup is empty. You have nothing left to give.

But you can.

You can reach down deep in your soul and find that 1% battery life that miraculously lasts a few more hours.

You can close your eyes and remember walking into your interview and that flicker of adrenaline as you sized up your competition.

You can picture that moment at graduation when you know your parents are going to cry, because you. did. this. ​This​ is above and beyond. This isn’t like high school or undergrad. A couple of all-nighters when you were 19 is nothing. Four years later, you’re actually struggling. For the first time, you question if you’re good enough for this.

You are.

You were put in this spot for a reason. You have struggled for a reason. You have learned so much in such a short time for a reason.

Take five minutes. Close your laptop. Look out the window. Breathe. Go get a snack.

You can continue the fight. You can create that contact. You can do this.

But it’s OK to struggle. It’s OK to doubt.

You can do this. And after, on the other side, you can do anything else, too.

~Grace Eichler, South Carolina ’20, District 4 Trustee

Grace Eichler

Grace Eichler is a member of the Medical University of South Carolina's James B. Edwards College Of Dental Medicine class of 2020 in Charleston, South Carolina. Her love for all things advocacy and organized, plus her track record in leadership, prompted her discovery of the opportunities ASDA gives dental students and spiked her case of #ASDAfever.

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1 Comment

  1. Great post, Grace! I love your writing style. This is a great message that we all need to hear, even those of us that are no longer in dental school, like myself. Good luck and keep up the good work!

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