A first real patient. A first procedure. A first exam. There’s nothing like a first time, right? Whatever your level of preparation, you never quite know what to expect. This can be both exhilarating and terrifying. It can also be harnessed and shared. These true stories are designed to be an extra jolt of confidence when you’re feeling overwhelmed and isolated. They say, “It wasn’t pretty, but I survived and you will, too.” Sometimes, that—and maybe a cup of coffee —are all you really need to push through the worst days, so you can have some of your best ones, and maybe create some great stories of your own.