One person will say it's the most terrible experience of their life. Another describes endless nights of not sleeping in order to memorize materials. Professors will warn you that it will shake you to the very core of your being.
I'll let you in on a little secret... it's not as bad as they say it is.
Don't get me wrong, the amount of material is daunting, the wealth of examinations can be overwhelming.
At the end of the day though, it's not any worse than first year. Actually, I have found second year to be easier than our first year.
Part of the reason is that you cover topics in multiple courses. Med chem will talk about SSRIs, SNRIs, and TCAs, and then pharmacology will discuss those and then we'll have a lecture on the same classes in therapy. You are, in effect, exposed to the material in three, or more, separate courses, often with a slightly different perspective.
In a way, you are being tested on the material three different times and, eventually, you realize that you have actually learned said material.
Yes, there are shitty lectures that will leave you confused. Yes, kinetics is the STD of pharmacy school which seemingly does not go away. When you part the clouds and look at the year as a whole, it's truly not that bad.
Granted I have had to learn how to budget my time due to working and having a child. I'm not "missing out" on getting wasted every weekend like I have heard so many classmates claim so far. But with a little organization and a little budgeting of time, it is completely doable.
So for you first years looking forward to next year with a sense of dread, heed my advice... it's really not that bad.
Just be sure you stock up on a little Red Bull. Just in case.