Saturday, October 20, 2007

The Mating Ritual

I sat there nervously, twirling my hair on my fingers surreptitiously. I was nervous, meeting someone new. I just knew he was going to ask me tough questions. How should I respond?

I'd dressed carefully, styling my hair, applying makeup, pulling on pantyhose and heels. Naturally, though, my hair had frizzed out, and I felt sweaty after walking in from my car. Our meal had been delicious Tex-Mex, but I could feel the beginnings of heartburn above my tight-waisted skirt. Was I shaking? Did I have a run in my hose? Were there any stray pet hairs on my outfit? Any lip gloss on my teeth?

He didn't really look nervous. He'd dressed up, too, but somehow it felt as though I were the one on the spot here, not him, even though I was here to interview him as much as he was me. I could see my photo on the table--ugh, what a terrible picture, why didn't I submit a better one? I wished he'd put it away.

We talked, asking each other careful questions, eyeing each other closely. What was he thinking? Could he tell I was so nervous? Was that the answer he was looking for? Am I asking intelligent questions?

Finally, it ended--only I knew I had 5 more people to see before I could leave. It was rather like speed-dating, residency interview style. Somehow I made it through all 6 interviews yesterday. Over all, the day went well. I believe I was able to convince all of them that I belong in psychiatry, even after we discussed the whole crazy "urology" thing. By the final interview, I felt like my brain had melted and run out my ears. Had I answered that question? What did she ask me? Could I possibly think of one more question to ask when pressed to do so? After the ending tour, I staggered to my car, found a fast food restaurant, changed clothes, ate dinner, and began the 5 hour drive home.

As of now, I have 5 interviews scheduled, one more to schedule and one I turned down. I have two programs yet to respond with an interview offer (or rejection); unfortunately, one of them is my top choice program. I still only have one letter in ERAS. I've mailed Thank You's, emailed, and called the two letter writers who are procrastinating, and I don't really know what else to do on that end. Pray, I guess.

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