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Updated: May 26, 2020

I know how you are feeling right now, I know itโ€™s tough times, itโ€™s stressful, you donโ€™t know what will happen or how it will all end up.

๐„๐—๐€๐‚๐“๐‹๐˜ ๐Ÿ ๐˜๐„๐€๐‘ ๐€๐†๐Ž

I was putting my white coat on, sitting in a room in Los Angeles with other 11 students, all Americans with perfect English that attended to top schools.

That was the day that I was taking my Step 2 CS exam. I was thinking to myself โ€œall these people seem so well prepared, probably ready to apply and match in their top placesโ€, and I only had 4 weeks to prepare for it and show up. I later waited 85 days and I got my result: ๐ˆ ๐๐€๐’๐’๐„๐ƒ.

๐„๐—๐€๐‚๐“๐‹๐˜ ๐Ÿ— ๐Œ๐Ž๐๐“๐‡๐’ ๐€๐†๐Ž

I was in the Prometric center, with everyone around me taking their tests, they all seemed so professional and ready for their exam.

I only had 4 months to prepare for it, and only 2 months that I could really focus 100% on it. I knew that if I didnโ€™t take it that day, I would't be able apply that cycle for residency and I would have to wait an extra year.

When I was about to take the exam, I was thinking to myself: โ€œWhat will happen if I donโ€™t pass? โ€œHow am I going to survive one more year?โ€

โ€œHow am I going to pay my bills? โ€œWhere am I going to live?โ€ โ€œWill a program accept me if my YOG keeps getting older?โ€.

I decided to go for my STEP 2 CK, even though I didnโ€™t study as much as I would had wanted due to time issues. But I knew that I had a good Step 1 background, I did study A LOT for that one, I was hoping that with all the clinical experience that I gained while working as a doctor would help me in my CK.

I didnโ€™t even take a NBME for CK, only UWSS one week before my exam. I waited 20 days and got my result: ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ’๐Ÿ’.

๐„๐—๐€๐‚๐“๐‹๐˜ ๐Ÿ– ๐Œ๐Ž๐๐“๐‡๐’ ๐€๐†๐Ž

I was applying for residency, not sure if I was doing the right thing applying for OB/GYN or just wasting my money since everyone told me that it was impossible for an International Medical Graduate to match in a surgical specialty, specially with no contacts in that field, no background in that field, and specialty that takes 80% women.

I decided to follow my passion, and go for it. It was a Saturday night when I submitted my application, as soon as I got my last Letter of Recommendation uploaded by a doctor, it was Saturday 21, 2019, to be precise.

Exactly 3 days after I applied, I got my first interview e-mail by Aultman Hospital, a Hospital in Ohio. Seven days later I got my second interview e-mail by Michigan State University.

That was the moment that I was sure that I did the right thing by ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—น๐—น๐—ผ๐˜„๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐—บ๐˜† ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป and ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ปโ€™๐˜ ๐—น๐—ถ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด to ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐˜€. Interviews kept coming and coming, ๐š ๐ญ๐จ๐ญ๐š๐ฅ ๐จ๐Ÿ ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ! ๐Ÿ˜ƒ

๐„๐—๐€๐‚๐“๐‹๐˜ ๐Ÿ• ๐Œ๐Ž๐๐“๐‡๐’ ๐€๐†๐Ž

I was traveling to NYC to attend to my first interview. When I arrived there, they all seemed so professional, I felt like I would never get chosen over all those American students with great backgrounds.

That same day, the program director of that program offered me a pre-match contract! I told him that first I wanted to go to my other interviews since it was my first one. Some weeks went by and I decided to decline it, taking the risk of going into the ๐Œ๐€๐“๐‚๐‡.

All the questions came back to my head:

โ€œAm I doing the right thing by declining a pre-match contract?โ€ โ€œHow will I get the money to apply next year again if I donโ€™t match, and I just declined my offerโ€

โ€œHow am I going to survive one more yearโ€ How am I going to pay my bills? โ€œWhere am I going to liveโ€ โ€œWill a program accept me if my YOG keeps getting older?โ€.

I just tried to suppress those ideas, stay positive, focused, and taking the risk of going to the MATCH.

Risks could end up as a bad thing, or as something way better, itโ€™s the opportunity to GO BIG or GO HOME. ๐—œ ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฐ๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—š๐—ข ๐—•๐—œ๐—š.

Risks werenโ€™t a new thing for me, I already had to take tons of risks in my life, and I knew that every time I took them, ๐ˆ ๐๐ข๐ ๐ฆ๐ฒ ๐›๐ž๐ฌ๐ญ ๐Ÿ๐จ๐ซ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ฆ ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฐ๐จ๐ซ๐ค ๐จ๐ฎ๐ญ the best way they could possible do. Staying positive, working hard for it, and always seeing the good and positive aspect, no matter the outcome. So, I was ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐˜† ๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ธ๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐˜€๐—ธ in my life.

๐„๐—๐€๐‚๐“๐‹๐˜ ๐Ÿ’ ๐Œ๐Ž๐๐“๐‡๐’ ๐€๐†๐Ž

I was finishing my last interview and getting ready for my first Eurotrip, I knew that trip meant spending my lasts savings.

That money was either going to be spend in a new journey, new adventures, visiting countries, cultures, and meeting new people for one month.

Or it could be saved, in case that I didnโ€™t match, I would have some money to survive a couple of months, and maybe to apply for some programs the next cycle.

I stayed ๐—ฝ๐—ผ๐˜€๐—ถ๐˜๐—ถ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ, I knew I had done my best during my interviews, I received great feedback from the Program Directors.

I followed my instincts and decided to roam the world ๐ŸŒ and head for this new journey traveling to โœˆ๏ธ London, Rome, Spain, Paris, Turkey and Norway.

I was ready to travel and make deeper connections, try new foods, learn new languages, connect with new people and cultures.

I hope you also get to travel and I hope you will find in the end that in leaving, you donโ€™t just find love, adventure or freedom. More than anything, ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐Ÿ๐ข๐ง๐ ๐˜๐Ž๐”.

๐„๐—๐€๐‚๐“๐‹๐˜ ๐Ÿ ๐Œ๐Ž๐๐“๐‡๐’ ๐€๐†๐Ž

I received the e-mail that I matched into my top program in NYC.๐Ÿ—ฝ

Words canโ€™t express how amazing news those were!!!

Everything that I had always working in life, since I started medical school with only 18 years old, all the struggled that I have been through, to taking the step exams, applying for residency, and ๐Œ๐€๐“๐‚๐‡๐ˆ๐๐†, it was a ๐——๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—บ ๐—–๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐—ง๐—ฟ๐˜‚๐—ฒ.

When I started medical school in Argentina๐Ÿ‡ฆ๐Ÿ‡ท, I moved to my grandmotherโ€™s house in order to be close to the University and be close to her, helping each other.

Eight months after I moved in with her, my grandfather decided to sell the apartment, leaving her and me in the street, with no house and almost no money.

With the left-over money that she got from the selling the apartment (almost nothing) I was able to find a good deal in this small place, but it that was all broken down, really destroyed, it needed so much work to move in.

I had to fix that, find a place to live with my grandmother, and study medicine while I was in 2 year of med school! 

I moved with my grandmother for a couple of months to this room inside a pension, with shared bathroom outside, and shared kitchen, it was shared with all the people that lived in that floor.

I worked, put all the money in the house, fixed it with the help of my friends, and then when it was ok, my grandmother moved in, and I rented my own place with some friends close to her.

You can read more about my life on the post about MY STORY on my page.

๐“๐จ๐๐š๐ฒ ๐Œ๐ž๐ฆ๐จ๐ซ๐ข๐š๐ฅ ๐ƒ๐š๐ฒ, ๐Œ๐š๐ฒ ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ“, ๐Ÿ๐ŸŽ๐Ÿ๐ŸŽ

Iโ€™m taking all the courses to start my residency, I moved to NYC, I found my new home, and very looking forward to start my OB/GYN residency July 1.

I know what you are feeling right now, I have been in your shoes. 

Please keep going, stay positive

โ€ขYou have a clear goal in mind ๐Ÿ˜Ž โ€ข๐˜๐จ๐ฎ ๐ค๐ง๐จ๐ฐ ๐ฐ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ ๐ฐ๐š๐ง๐ญ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐ฅ๐ข๐Ÿ๐ž ๐Ÿ™Œ โ€ขYou have been ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฝ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด yourself so hard for this ๐Ÿ‘Š โ€ขYou are ready for the ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐˜…๐˜ ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฝ ๐Ÿคธ๐Ÿฝโ€โ™€๏ธ โ€ขYou are ready to ๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—พ๐˜‚๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐˜„๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—น๐—ฑ ๐ŸŒ Keep hanging there, keep studying hard, stay positive, continue motivated, remember your purpose in life, continue fighting for it!

๐˜๐จ๐ฎ ๐๐ข๐๐งโ€™๐ญ ๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ฌ ๐Ÿ๐š๐ซ ๐ญ๐จ ๐จ๐ง๐ฅ๐ฒ ๐œ๐จ๐ฆ๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ฌ ๐Ÿ๐š๐ซ!!


Sebastian Arruarana, MD

Iinstagram: @doctor.sebas

Make sure to check out my page for all my USMLE posts, tips, study material, courses and more. Everything on my page is for free!

Follow me on Instagram @doctor.sebas to see my life as a resident in NYC.

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Kirthana T
Kirthana T
Aug 21, 2021

Dr. Sebas, your words are always overwhelming and has a strong impact in each and everyoneโ€™s journey. Itโ€™s always so positive and I look up to you. Thank you for existing. ๐Ÿ’“


Ayesha Javed
Ayesha Javed
May 26, 2020

Congratulations and Thank you Dr Sebas! You are an inspiration for me, Im 10+ years out of med school, but Im going down the same path as you. See you on the other side!!! :)


May 26, 2020

By reading this blog no one can ever be left with astonishing motivation.i think by this blog he is trying to convey that everything is possible you just need to work upon it.and by this blog he is successfully able to express it.

thank you so much doctor sebas for your words of wisdom and motivation


So intriguing! Honestly you are doing great job Dr Sebas. Please continue to do even in your busy schedules!๐Ÿ˜› Peace โœŒ๐Ÿป


To be honest, the amount of details and description of words used, show the extent of sensitivity and devotion you have for others. This passion of yours will drive you very long way. Thank you so much for being so kind and humble :) This story of yours show your dedication and may God bless you even more success :)

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