Too often, we find ourselves trapped in the mindset of “have to.” I have to go to work. I have to study. I have to go see the new patient in room 6. I have to make time to workout. I have to meet up with my friend for dinner.
I know I am not alone in this.
We, professional students, get caught in the whirlwind of our responsibilities and our interests. To-do lists that stretch far too long down the page serve as our lifesource. We are unfailingly hardworking. We schedule naps. We schedule social time. We fail to be spontaneous.
Happy New Year’s Eve everyone! The quote that serves as the title of this post is an excerpt from a poem I discovered earlier today. Simple in its construction, the poem has great depth. I want to share the poem, “Honest Toasts for the New Year” in its entirety before I dive into the rest of this post.
New Year’s Eve and we are all
holding flutes of cheap champagne,
with people we don’t know
or don’t care for, or we wish we could
just leave behind with this year
and we are all toasting,
glasses raised above crooked halos.
Here’s to the friends we lost,
the friends that left us behind,
the friends we haven’t met yet
and the friends that are bound
to be more than.
Here’s to the knives wedged
between shoulder blades
and blood slick ribs,
grazing our hearts as we breathe.
Here’s to the pain
that made us stronger.
Here’s to the resolutions we didn’t keep,
the ones we will make again
and again and again,
but habits are hard to break.
Here’s to consistency.
Here’s to the lips we kissed,
bruised, bit, lavished
and all the lips we will come
in contact with in the future.
Here’s to love.
Here’s to the scars
and the pieces of ourselves
we had to cut off to make it,
the fractures of glass that we are leaving
in this hellhole of a year.
Here’s to the unknown,
the smiles and the tears and the laughs
we haven’t had yet.
Here’s to next year, the New Year,
hopefully it will be better
and we will learn just as much.
Feel free to read the rest of O.L.’s poetry at this link.
Today marks the halfway point through my pediatrics rotation. I’ve spent the month in the outpatient clinics: two weeks on subspecialty (pulmonary, allergy/immunology/rheumatology, and endocrine) and two weeks in the general clinics. This weekend, I’m heading up to Lafayette to start my inpatient services (PICU, wards, nursery). I can honestly say that I’ve enjoyed every single day of this rotation thus far.
Sometimes I get messages from medical students who haven’t started clinical work yet about what I wear to clinic. You probably guessed but most of these students are female. What is considered appropriate? Where can you find affordable albeit professional attire? I’ll try (I’m not making any promises here!) to do a better job of sharing what I wear to work on the blog. Let’s start with a throwback.
The first time I was asked this question (by a classmate), I sheepishly expressed my intent to sleep. This classmate further pressed: “but seriously?” I elaborated on my previous answer and I described my plans to travel, read, write, and (most importantly) sleep. That answer was deemed acceptable.
The summer after the first year of medical school holds the infamous moniker of “the last summer.” There is tremendous pressure to make the most of the extensive period of free time. Some initiate research projects; some shadow physicians and regain motivation to pursue medicine; some travel the globe; some take classes for a second degree (MBA, MPH, etc.); some engage in impressive volunteer efforts.
You guys may remember the phenomenal guest post from my friend Z, an incoming medical student at the University of Michigan. She runs a great blog where she (1) describes her experience to get into medical school, (2) provides advice for medical students, and (3) intends to detail the highs-and-lows of medical school. I am happy to announce that today, one of my guest posts is live on Z’s blog. Check it out — and let me know what you think!
Edit: in light of Z’s moving on from her blog, the original post will be posted below.
I’m really excited to feature a guest post on my blog by Ajibike Lapite who blogs at Stilettos + Sthethoscopes. Ajibike keeps a very vibrant blog that details her transition into life in New Orleans as an MD/MPH candidate at Tulane. I highly recommend you stop by her blog once you read her guest post. As someone who wants to detail parts of her medical school experience, I thoroughly enjoy reading Ajibike’s detailed posts about her life.