Liebster Award

You may have noticed that over the past few months, my blog has been…barren. In that period of time, I began and finished anatomy and embryology. Last Friday, we took the NBME Anatomy Shelf exam — a national anatomy exam — and tomorrow we begin the integrated curriculum (full steam ahead for Biochemistry, Genetics, Physiology, and Histology). In a few days, I’ll share a reflection on my experience with anatomy (and embryology?), some information about how to prepare for the NBME Anatomy Shelf (what I did and what I wish that I did), and more updates about my life at TUSOM!

Over the past few months, I’ve received a few nominations for the Liebster Award and I want to take the time to thank the individuals who nominated my blog and to answer some of the questions the nominators sent my way.

The Liebster Award Rules

(1) Thank the nominator and post a link to his/her blog.

(2) Display the award on your blog.

(3) Answer the eleven questions provided by the nominator.

(4) Nominate 5-11 blogs which have less than 1,000 followers and let them know that they’ve been nominated.

(5) Make up and post eleven questions for your nominates to answers.

(6) Post these rules on your blog.


First: thank you to K of Thoughts of My Mad Life for my nomination. K is a non-transitional premedical student with an amazing story to share. I definitely recommend that you guys check our her blog. On to the questions!

(1) Why did you start a blog?

I wanted my blog to be a creative outlet as I launched into my senior year of my undergraduate career. This transformed into a way to chronicle my hopes and fears during medical school application season.

(2) Favorite recipe?

So I’m not culinary expert but one of my favorite things to make is chicken glazed with mango chutney. I’ve been exploring the balance between sweet and savory. More recently, I make blueberry chipotle ribs. It may sound crazy but believe me, it’s delicious!

(3) A random fact (about anything)!

“Friends” and “How I Met Your Mother” are essentially the same show.

(4) What book/series would you read over and over again?

I could read The Great Gatsby over and over again. I’ve read it nine times as of late. Definitely one of my favorite books.

(5) Can you solve a rubiks cube?

Not at all!

(6) Best motivational quote?

“The struggle you’re in today is developing the strength you need for tomorrow.”

(7) Morning person or night owl?

I don’t think that I entirely identify as a morning person (as in, I’m not particularly jazzed about crawling out of bed) but I do prefer to do work in the morning instead of getting work done at night.

(8) Sweet or savoury snacks?


(9) Favorite flower/plant?

Tiger lillies

(10) How do you procrastinate?

I either make to-do lists whenever or listen to / read Mindy Kaling interviews. Oh…and the Kim Kardashian game.

(11) Where do you sit on the scale from “Hoarders” to “EEEK there’s a speck of dust and SOMEONE might come visit and see it”?

If “hoarder” is a 10 and “eek” is a 1…I’d go with a 6.


Second: B.han at The B.han Project also nominated me for a Liebster Award. B.han is a MS1 at the University of Michigan and she is super description about her adventures and struggles (I’m with you girl!) in medical school.


(1) What is your current five year plan?

The plan is to: (1) finish medical school and (2) do the residency thing.

(2) Where is your favorite place in the whole wide world?

Anywhere with my family. I know that sounds clique, but it’s true.

(3) What is the happiest moment of your life?

The day that I got my first medical school acceptance was the happiest and fulfilling moment of my life.

(4) What is your morning ritual? Your bedtime ritual?

On good days, I wake up around 5:30-6:30 and manage to do some sort of pre-reading / prep work for lecture. I eat breakfast (granola and yogurt, everyday) and then I grab my lunch to take to school. On terrible days, I wake up about fifteen minutes before I generally leave the house to beat traffic…those days are struggles.

Before bed,  I pack my lunch for the next day, edit my to-do list for the week, and shower.

(5) If you had one day left to live, how would you spend that last day?

Questions like this make me extremely nervous! I have no good answer for this.

(6) Who is your favorite teacher? Why?

One of my favorite undergraduate courses was advanced creative writing with Joyce Carol Oates. She is one of my favorite all time writers and she was a phenomenal and honest critique in our workshops.

(7) Favorite book of all time?

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy is my absolute favorite novel.

(8) What is your spirit animal?


(9) Go to comfort food?

Macaroni and cheese

(10) What is one of the best decisions you have ever made?

I would say that applying to medical school was one of the best decisions that I have ever made. For a period of time, I was nervous / scared that I would not be able to get in / should I take a gap year? / what would I do instead. Following my parents’ advice (aren’t they always right) and not letting myself be scared away from my dreams was definitely one of the best decisions I have made.

(11) What are your thoughts on space exploration?

Sure…it’s interesting (and important), but not particularly interesting to me.


Third: Thank you to Derin at Curve Balls and Med School for the  Liebster Award nomination. Derin is a fellow Nigerian and a current premedical student — definitely check out her blog!

(1) What’s your favorite childhood memory?

Oh goodness, I don’t have very many ‘childhood’ memories but one of my earliest memories is of walking in the snow near a playground. I have absolutely no more context than that.

(2)  What are three things on your bucket list?

I want to: (1) travel to Brazil, (2) travel to India, and (3) attend a World Cup game.

(3)  What is your proudest accomplishment?

As mentioned (sorta) in another series of questions, getting into medical school.

(4) What’s your favorite thing to do on a Friday night?


(5)  What are your top three favorite movies?

I adore: (1) The Other Boleyn Girl, (2) When Harry Met Sally, and (3) The Breakfast Club.

(6) If you could live anywhere in the world, where would that be?

My gut response: New York City. Other cities that I am particularly fond of include Denver and Nashville.

(7) What’s your favorite dessert?

Tres leches cake — muy delicioso!

(8)  Would you say you’re an introvert or extrovert?

Extrovert, I suppose. Although I definitely do require quite a bit of alone time.

(9)  Name one interesting fact about yourself.

I used to be a gymnast back when I was shorter and more flexible.

(10) What do you enjoying about blogging?

I really enjoy the camaraderie among the #almostdoctor community. A few other MS1 who I interact with / follow their blogs have shared with me some study advice and resources which definitely made medical school more manageable.

(11) Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Happy? I can’t say anymore more than that.


Fourth: Alex is one of my favorite humans in the #almostdoctor community. He blogs at This Medical Life and is a student at Quillen School of Medicine. I am so honored to have been nominated by Alex for the Liebster Award.

(1) Why do you blog? Is their a specific audience you seek, and what type of message do you want to instill into your readers?

I mentioned earlier what lead to the creation to the blog but I think that my ideal audience is: (1) my family (hai!) and (2) premedical students and others interested in healthcare. I have a lot of opinions about public health and the role of medicine / efforts to make medicine and public health more cohesive. These are things that I share, not irregularly in the blog, and while it’s great to have individuals agree with me, that’s not necessarily what I want. I’d like for my blog to be informative and thought-provoking. I think that is the most that I can ask for.

(2) Think back to a day where you had a big choice to make. Did you make the right choice or would you go back and change something?

I can’t share the details of this scenario but I would say that I made the right choice.

(3) What is your favorite book or genre of book? Which types of stories inspire you the most?

I mentioned a bit earlier that Anna Karenina is my all time favorite. I love classical literature. The writing is so elegant. The stories feature such finesse.

(4) What type of music do you like? List some of your favorite bands.

I love Semi Precious Weapons — the band follows me on Tumblr (best. moment. ever). I adore Lady Gaga! I am a mega fan of Pharrell and Panic! At the Disco. I really enjoy most country music.

(5) Because all of you are either in medical school or hope to one day attend, I’ll ask the famous interview question, why medicine? (Think of this as good practice!)

(6) Do you possess any other artistic talents other than writing?

I play piano!

(7) If you could pick any place in the world to live, where would it be?

Answered above!

(8) You have the next 24 hours to yourself. How do you spend it?

Sleep! Have you guys noticed that I love to sleep?

(9) What is the most interesting or delicious thing you’ve ever eaten?

I had a really delicious oxtail dish at a local Filipino restaurant. I adored it. Granted, oxtail is one of my favorite things to eat so…I went in already knowing that I would be a fan.

(10) Have you ever been in a situation where you felt entirely hopeless? If so, how did you handle it, and if not, how would you respond to such a situation?

Definitely — haven’t we all? Whenever I feel helpless and hopeless, I try to break down the problem / situation into smaller, more manageable subdivisions.

(11) If you had only one week left on earth, how would you spend it and who would you spend it with?

Questions like this are terrifying to me! I don’t know why, but I always shy away from such questions / can’t even formulate an answer.


Fifth: Danielle is a first year at the Philadelpia College of Osteopathic Medicine (Georgia Campus). She’s extremely cool, has a great story to share, and there’s a chance we’re going to meet in person! Woohoo! Danielle has a great blog, Aspiring Minority Blog, and I very much appreciate the Libester Award nomination.

(1) What’s one major lesson that you have learned from blogging?

I blog without a pseudonym which forces me to be careful about what I write and to committed to research topics that I talk about. Blogging has reminded me that it’s imported to be informed and has shown me the value of social media networking.

(2) What’s your guilty pleasure?

Reality television. I know, I know!

(3) What is one thing that most people find surprising about you?

Upon first meeting, many individuals are shocked (legitimately shocked) that I’m from Louisiana. I don’t exactly have a Southern accent.

(4) What is your favorite quote?

So this is a pretty recent quote shared by Uzo Aduba who plays Crazy Eyes on “Orange is the New Block.” To give you some context, Uzo asked her parents if she could be called Zoe because nobody could pronounce her name. Her mother said to her: “If they can learn to say Tchaikovsky and Michelangelo and Dostoyevsky, they can learn to say Uzoamaka.” That boils down why I don’t really care for nicknames / abbreviations of my name.

(5) Are you a morning person or a night-owl?

Answered above!

(6) What is one thing that you miss the most from your childhood?

Ah…when I was a kid, it was so much easier to trick my sister.

(7) What’s the best advice that you could give to your younger self?

Keep on being weird — people will come to love it.

(8) What’s one of your pet peeves?

Oh goodness. I really don’t like when I feel as though I’m not being ‘heard.’ For example, if I have an awkward scenario with another individual (let’s just say the person was incredibly rude to me) and I tell one of my friends in order to vent / process the situation, it’s extremely extremely annoying to have a response such as this one: “Wow. They’re always nice to me…are you sure that’s how it happened?” People are extremely multifaceted. Nobody is equally nice to everyone. Also, it’s rude to automatically discredit the feelings of individuals who confide in you. #justsaying
(9) Do you prefer dogs or cats?


(10) What’s your favorite season?


(11) What motivates you to keep blogging?

I’m excited to look back at this at the end of major milestones. That’s what motivates me!


Okay, so those were all the questions sent my way by the lovely individuals who nominated my blog for the Liebster Award. I know that I am meant to nominated 5+ other blogs but every blog that I follow has already been nominated (I’m late to the game). And so I’m going to leave it at that and reiterate my appreciation!

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