I'm sure that the day a pre-medical student takes their MCAT is a day that changes their life, but if you were in my shoes you’d know that my life changed too. My best friend scheduled to take her Medical College Admissions Test on January 19th, 2017. I decided and she agreed that I should accompany on her for this task that seemed to be a long time coming. I felt that being able to be by her side (before and after) this milestone exam would make up for the many nights she spent alone studying for hours on end.
I geared up the day before the exam, ready to travel to some unheard-of outskirt town where the test was being administered. Before we left the city, I made it a point to make sure Jasmin wasn’t stressed. After gathering groceries, getting a fresh manicure and a massage for her first time, she was ready to hit the road and I was right in the passenger seat.
After traveling a few hours down the road, we arrived in Dahlonega, GA. As time passed, I realized I hadn’t yet secured dinner for myself but, as usual, Jasmin found the nearest Moe’s Southwest Grille. After arriving, we found a place to set up, and the exam being hours away, Jasmin insisted that I use her flashcards to quiz her as we ate. She’s always been the type to multitask and I couldn’t deny her desire to prepare lightly, and seeing her master those topics helped to calm the few nervous vibes I was starting to feel myself.
The night ended after our working dinner, checking into the hotel and preparing for what the morning would bring. After all was said and done, around 10:30PM prayers went up, lavender essential oils were beginning to diffuse around the room, and rest was upon us.
I checked my phone to see 5:30AM across the screen. I think those nerves from the night before were a little more frequent now that the day arrived, so I woke as quickly as I could to be any support that I could. I began to pack away her snacks and supplies, while also exchanging small talk about how she was feeling. She knows I am heavy writer (hence this detailed encounter) so she took time over breakfast to read a set of “Open When” cards I made for her, counting down the days until the test. Each card displayed an encouraging word that I thought described her, and why it fit. Soon came the time to depart from the hotel, after more prayers both together and individual, she was off to claim what was hers.
While Jasmin spent hours proving her medical intelligence, I had other plans up my sleeve. I wanted her to feel encouraged and uplifted after it was over so I planned to go out and purchase celebratory items to decorate the room. The nearest Walmart was a 30-minute walk away, meaning it wasn’t really near. Determined to have helium filled balloons, streamers, confetti and any other things that scream “You Did It!”, I set out with my GPS and a nice playlist. The journey was long and soon after I returned and decorated, Jasmin returned from the exam. I could see that she had zero ounces of physical or mental energy left, but she took a few minutes to bask in her success and the celebratory items the filled the room, while also opening a celebratory basket that I created with a few of her favorite things, because trust me she deserved it. Soon thereafter, she was sound asleep for several hours which was well deserved. After awaking, we headed out for a celebratory dinner and continued to fellowship for the evening. It was over.
After all was said and done, I was ever so blessed to be by the side of my best friend as she embarked on an extremely difficult task, necessary to complete a goal she had set. Often, I sit back and watch how she plows through the fears she faces, and still manages to inspire those around her, me specifically. From the packing lists, to flashcard quizzes, to gold confetti wine glasses, I would never change a thing about this journey I am blessed to continue walking by her side.