October 31, 2009

went out for dinner last night
fajitas and rice, in a
noisy, crowded restaurant
my lab had a dinner, and i decided
that i was sick of letting my school work
ALWAYS dictate my social life;
i wanted to spend time talking to
Gretchen and Frida and Sonny
about things other than
examining the outliers for each subject
and building a Filemaker database for
questionnaires.
it was the right choice, i think –
i didn’t get any work done last night,
but that’s okay.
i’m realizing –
i need to spend time with people.
when suddenly you notice that it has
literally been weeks since you’ve seen
your best friends, not because they
live far away or anything,
just because you are too busy,
and they are too busy
and life is too busy
when you suddenly notice that
there are 7 weeks left in the semester
and you can’t think of more than a
handful of times when you did something
just for fun
it’s time to break out, a little
and remember that grades aren’t the end-all
be-all of life.
so i went out last night,
and ended up having a wonderful talk with Sonny
who’s in the process of med school interviews
after graduating from Berklee and taking 2 years off
to do research instead of going
straight to med school.
he’s got interviews at Cornell, Columbia,
U Chicago – all AMAZING schools.
i asked him, “why did you take time off?
was it the right choice?”
and he said, “yes, yes, yes, and again, yes.
everyone i know who went to medical school
right after undergrad is tired – worn out,
feeling old, feeling bored.
taking time off lets you be a grown up,
lets you get out of the school environment
lets you relax just a little.”
so here’s the point of my conversation with Sonny:
i don’t know if i want to go to med school
or rather, i DO want to go –
but the fact that i am having doubts at all
is, in itself, enough of a concern for me
i don’t want to struggle through the application
process right now, when i don’t have professors
that i know well enough to ask for recommendations
when i don’t have time to study for the MCATs
and when i’ll be overseas during most of the process…
med school is going to put me several hundred
thousand dollars MORE in debt
(remember, if you will, i’m already at about $60K)
but i don’t even know if it’s what i want to do
because i want to do research –
medical research, yes, but do i need an MD to do that?
am i ready to spend the next 12 years of my life
working my ass off for yet another goal
yet another distant future –
i’m always working towards that;
i’m always looking ahead and i’m missing out
on the things right in front of me
my friends, my school, my city.
after undergrad, Micah and i will
finally have the chance to be together –
i want to be WITH him, not around him
spend time talking to him, have time to
relax and get used to each other.
i guess what i’m saying is –
i don’t want to sacrifice the things
i KNOW i want – Micah, a family, a garden
for the things i MIGHT want – an MD.

don’t panic; i’m not just throwing things away
Micah and i want to end up in Madison after this,
so here’s what i’m thinking:
find a Master’s program in Madison or Milwaukee
in something i’m interested in –
neuroscience, biomedical science, etc.
take a year or two to get a Master’s degree
and then in that time, decide if i really want my MD
or if research is what i really want to do,
and just go ahead and get a PhD.
or, what the hell, both.
anyway, i apologize for my
unpoetic musings;
these are just the thoughts in my head.
in other news, i have an awful week
ahead of me (test, paper, presentation)
but in just 6 days, i get to go home,
finally, and have a magical evening
with my family and with Micah
pretending i’m a princess at a ball.
i can’t wait.

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One Response to “”

  1. dagny21 Says:

    Being pulled in a gazillion different directions is not fair. Especially when one direction filling a need with grades, and another filling a need with your social life, and another filling a need for intimate connections with your family and boyfriend, and then there’s the need for occasional alone time, without homework, but then one need trumps all the other needs and the other needs suffer and you feel imbalanced and crappy. NOT FAIR.

    I’m glad you took a bit of time to nurture a need that was feeling un-nurtured. That takes guts. Especially when your other need includes the pressure of grades, papers, and getting shit done before flying home.

    I’m having issued with that balancing act too. I’m glad to hear someone else has the moxy to recognize other needs in her life : )


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