Monday, June 13, 2011

10 days to go

So in 10 days, I will have orientation for residency. During these next few days I will have the time to fix things around the house, probably hit a Matinee with my wife (date day) and just enjoy and relax.

A recent issue had come up that I wanted to share with you all. I miscalculated how much we would need between medical school ending and getting a paycheck. So I applied to get a residency loan and I was turned down because of an issue with my credit report. It turns out that said issue was an error by the creditor which needed to be taken care of right away. Had I looked at my credit report before I applied for the loan, I would have seen the error, fixed it, and then applied. Since I fixed the problem, I am debating whether or not to apply for the loan again. The question is, should we grin and bear it or should we give ourselves some breathing room.

Last week, I had the utmost pleasure to go and speak at the Old Pre Meds conference in Las Vegas ( For those of you have not gone to a conference of this kind yet, I urge you, nay, I STRONGLY urge you to go next year. Word on the street is that it will return to the east coast but nothing formal has been announced.  The conference is 100% non traditional. There is nothing in the conference that does not aim at the non trads. Not to mention there was a good showing of schools and programs to speak to.

I had the pleasure of speaking to several people who are just starting out and they have families. Specific questions included how to assuage your spouse from fearing that once you are done with medical school that you will  not leave them. This is one of the most feared situations a support person has. The best advice that I can give is to constantly remind them how much you appreciate them, how much you love them, and how much you cannot do this without their support. Recognize them whenever you can. Whenever I am asked how I was able to accomplish medical school with a family, the first words out of my mouth are that "I could not have done it without my wife. She deserves the praise". In addition, during graduation, I had the family gather around and I presented her with my own gift to her. Which is seen below. The wording took me about 3 weeks to figure out.

"Three weeks!!!! Why did it take you so long to figure out what to say. Why not say 'I Love You' and be done with it?" And the answer is, because she KNOWS I love her. She does not need a plaque for it. What she wants to know is how much I appreciated her SACRIFICE  she sacrificed everything for me. And I needed to not only let her know how much I appreciated it, but that I publicly acknowledged it. The wording, I felt, needed to reflect not only how much I appreciated her love, but how much I appreciated her doing a lot more of her fair share so that I can study, go to conferences, build my resume, and participate in school functions.  But the sacrifice was not isolated to medical school but also to the preparation for it. For the time I took to go to graduate school and prepare for it. Write and defend my thesis, study and take the MCAT (not once; but twice).  But most importantly, for keeping the family together during this stressful time. And while a gift or a plaque will not fully assuage the fear that I would leave her after I am done, telling her that I will not and showing her that I will not (by being open and honest) will do that.  But the most important thing you can do, is to acknowledge the fear and keep telling them that all will be ok. 

And so with that, fellow non trads I leave you for now. Stay tuned for more as I enter Residency.