Exhausted, weary and worn are a few of the words I would use to describe how I feel following the last 10 days at the IFMSA General Assembly (GA) in Mumbai. With an intense schedule, lots of work to be done, lots of meetings to attend and a virtually obligatory social programme, prioritising sleep has been difficult, if not impossible. Leaving behind such an intense and diverse experience has left me feeling blue, but with so much to reflect on.
The GA has also left me feeling excited, hopeful and enthused. The overwhelming number of people and experiences to learn from allowed me to form a brilliant patchwork of ideas and challenges from all over the world. As well as learning from others, all members of Medsin-UK's delegation were involved in running and facilitating training sessions and were able to share our experiences and ideas with others. Some of the feedback we received on our sessions was fantastic. It's really exciting to know that you've been involved in creating an environment that has inspired somebody to change something when they return home. I've also been inspired to take on new projects for Medsin and the IFMSA.
Some of the bonds we've been able to form with other people are difficult to leave behind, but from the experience of previous GA attendees, these bonds are not forgotten. The IFMSA doesn't just work during conference times and these bonds built via face-to-face interaction help reinforce the collaborative work that goes on via email/Skype throughout the year. Plus, it never hurts to have couch-surfing visitors to share a cup of tea and the sights of the city with or native friends to visit when you're abroad.
I think it'll take me at least a few days to recover from my post-GA blues, but definitely a lot longer for my post-GA high.