First time in a hospital since being pulled from rotations.

I’m anxious and can feel every heartbeat. My mask covers half of my face, but it’s not enough.
Why am I anxious? It’s not the virus. And it’s not the usual feelings of #medstudent inadequacy. This is why #icantbreathe:
I’m protecting myself and others from this virus. But my skin color is visible and I remain exposed. And although it shouldn’t, today it makes me afraid to enter the hospital.
My brain tries, and fails, to dampen my sympathetic response to this superficially irrational emotion.
Just a few days ago I was excited to come back. To learn from patients and advocate on their behalf. To lend a hand where I can, to comfort who I can and to grow into the physician I convinced myself I can be. #MedStudentTwitter
But today I’m scared. Scared of people on the bus. Scared of hospital security. Scared of fellow healthcare workers. And though I hate to admit it: scared of patients. How can I examine a patient like this? How can I show them that they are safe with me? And safe from me...
I do my best to act “normal”. Follow instructions. Look down. Don’t speak unless necessary. Enunciate. No sudden movements. Try to look like the student the attendings expect. Try to look like the doctor patients expect. Fail at both because only half my face is covered.
I hope my fear leaves me soon. I hope I can get a detailed H&P without my hands sweating. I hope I can present to an attending without my voice cracking.

I hope I can learn from this experience and make a difference in the world.

I hope my son never has to feel this way.
@NMFonline thank you for listening to our voices
You can follow @yasieneltigani.
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