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Trainee Intern Year


On Friday, I attended the 2010 TI year induction session. It was a little weird, this time last year I attended the 2009 TI induction session, thinking that 2009 was going to be the last year of medical school. Its interesting how quickly things change your entire life. It was only 1 week after that session that I started to get a stomach ache, and only another week after that that I had surgery, and then another week again where histology results confirmed that it was cancer, with only a 40% survival at 5 years.

In the past, I have often reflected, usually around birthdays or the new year, where I was the year before, and where I might be 1 year in the future. Never, with any of my reflections, did I even come close to predicting what happened in 1 weeks time this time last year. To go from a fully functioning person, with a future ahead, plans of travel, dreams of medicine, kids, grand-kids, to fighting for my life with cancer. And then, 1 year on, to be told that cure is no longer the goal of any further treatment.

It makes you realise just how fragile life is, how just in a blink of an eye, everything changes. Most of us, of course, don’t think these things will ever happen to us. That is exactly how I thought 1 year ago, yet for reasons beyond my control, I am now contributing to keeping the average life expectancy from getting too high.

Of course all of this talk about how none of us know the future, and how we should seize the day, make the most of life, live life to the full, etc. etc. seems a little unhelpful, and a little too cliche for my liking. But these are the phrases often repeated when such circumstances as these are reflected on. I’m not convinced that I have wasted away my life, I don’t feel as though I have regrets, I don’t believe that my life could have been lived differently. I am actually quite content with what I have achieved and how my life has turned out.

Rather than regretting or lamenting the past, what I lament, is the loss of my future. I’m a person who needs something to achieve, something to look forward to, some direction or plan for where I am going to.


Cancer has stolen that from me…


And that guts me to the core…..


And so, I have decided, that if cancer is going to have the last word to say in my life, I’m not gonna wait around doing nothing while it slowly kills me. I’m going to hit my TI year next year, chemo in hand. I’m going to make my best effort to finish my TI year, graduate with the hardest earnt degree of my life…. or die trying.

The medschool has been incredibly gracious and will accommodate me and my likely adhoc attendance to the best they can.

Five years ago, God made it clear to me that medschool was where my future lay and it was He that set this path in motion. It’s hard to know what God is planning now, but I see no reason to let cancer be the reason I don’t fulfill this calling.

I will follow God’s calling to best of my ability…….. even if it kills me.

And clearly for me, these are not idle words.

Thanks for listening.

Categories: Blog, Faith Tags: , , , ,
  1. Tarryn
    November 1, 2009 at 3:53 am

    Hey, good on ya! Enjoy racking up that student loan without feeling that you will spend forever paying it off! You could ask to be put in the oncology department and have the chemo while you are at work! xoxo Tarryn

  2. rhys
    November 1, 2009 at 7:59 am

    bro, i can envisage your graduation day at the end of next year, it’s gonna be AWESOME! show that TI year who’s boss 😉

  3. Suzanne
    November 1, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    Hey Jared, I’ve been mulling over what it must be like to be you a lot, and it just hit me how awesome it is that you’re doing the TIC.
    I can just imagine the number of people/patients/families you’re going to meet, and all the interesting stuff you can share with them. You’re going to be a real inspiration.
    Keep on keeping-on…

  4. JD
    November 1, 2009 at 7:37 pm

    Your courage is to be admired. Good on ya for following through with God’s plan. I can only pray for the richest blessing God has in store for you for the time you have left here.

  5. Frances
    November 1, 2009 at 9:38 pm

    Go Jared!

  6. November 2, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    Hey great post Jared. I admire your desire to your life with such intend and concious of every moment. Its a shame many of us never will experience the pay-off that such an approach to live gives (even if only lived out for a brief moment in time).

    Good luck with your pursuit

  7. November 3, 2009 at 3:25 pm

    Good on ya mate. None of this taking cancer lying down stuff!

  8. Kim
    November 4, 2009 at 7:53 pm

    Great spirit Jared! keep it up! who knows miracle will happen along the way but anyway, your very life is a miracle indeed!

  9. Lynley
    November 11, 2009 at 7:27 pm

    You go Jared! You achieve that dream of finishing Med School. It’ll be something special and God will do amazing things through it.

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