Something I need a lot of after living inside my head so long. Sometimes very simple concepts can be very illuminating, and sometimes it takes others to point it out to you before you realize it yourself. Funny how that works isn’t it? That’s probably why God created us so uniquely, yet made us such social creatures who need each other to survive.
But yeah, just had 2 conversations today that have really hit home in terms of how i never really put my own happiness first, and really how deeply trapped i feel. i cried twice today inadvertently actually haha – once when talking to kenny, and once when talking to nathan. kenny said something today that surprised me into laughing about it… he said that if this is what i can accomplish when i don’t even really want to do it, then think about how much i could accomplish if i was actually passionate and eager/happy to do something! @___@. that was such a good way to think about it. and that i shouldn’t think of it as not having integrity if i start and don’t end up finishing residency, or if i decide not to do it at all – that i should think of it as the world is losing the potential for whatever else i could be meant to do by me going down a path that isn’t right for me. nathan echo’d that later today, saying that it’s ok to be selfish sometimes, and just look out for yourself. he said to answer one question: is your life good right now? i of course kept overthinking it, because i have so much more than so many other people (including him!) that it’s hard for me to say it’s not, because how can i be complaining if i have so much? but he pressed me by saying no, it’s a simple yes/no question. and so if i had to think about it and be straight, the answer is no. kenny also asked a good question: where do i want to be in 5 years? 10 years? and only after that, work backwards from there to figure out how to get there. i tend to get lost in the weeds – “paralysis by analysis” as kenny said (and i had no idea his sisters were in med school too!), and both of them picked up on that. “that’s the problem.. you can’t be thinking ahead 10 steps in 10 different directions, because you never move forward. you need to take those 10 steps and move forward.” “i always tell people 60-80%. If you can get something to 80%, then you just gotta go for it. you can’t wait until you’re at 100%, because otherwise it’ll never get done.” so true.
i have too many dreams and too many contingency plans, so the dreams never get put forward. i need to choose. and step forward. i’d been sort of having a nebulous idea that i kind of need to figure out what the fall-back plan is, if i ever want to go back to medicine, if i decide not to do an intern year first. he straight up said i need to figure that information out to make the next step. so i’ve e-mailed the relevant faculty member, and we’ll see if we can set up a meeting. and he said i should spend like 30 min a day trying to figure out what i want my life to look like every day. i guess i’ll try to blog at least a bit every day (though maybe after this week as i’m catching up with SO MANY PAPERS/THINGS THAT NEED TO BE WRITTEN) to figure it out.
praise God for good friends though. or people who can see my weak spots and are willing to point it out to me straight. it really is helpful to make real, true friends.
and I guess a bonus conversation – today one of my patients (and i guess really, she’s technically the first patient that i can call “mine” in the sense that I’m acting like an intern and taking care of her stuff “independently” and only reporting to the upper level instead of an intern) called specifically for me (and not my upper level) to ask a medical question. i answered it, but she also called me over so she could share what she learned of Chinese after she and her husband went to China recently, and he gave me his photography website and showed me pictures he took in China too. Of course, that could have simply been because I happened to be Chinese (though how they knew I’m not completely sure) but anyways, she addressed me by “Dr. [my last name]” and previously, she’d also revealed certain life secrets, like why she married her current husband, the circumstances of her son’s death which is obviously still hard on her, and things like that. that does make me happy. but she has a pretty big mass and i don’t know how likely she would be of doing well or lasting long, as i don’t think we have great treatment for her… so the question is…is that good enough? to just make someone feel heard and cared for even without being able to do much for them? or maybe, in the end, doctors aren’t really able to do as much as people think they can after all…
hm.. i wonder how many doctors actually want to be doctors for the pure sake of being doctors?
speaking of perspective, which made me think about eyes, i hit 20cm for the first time today! in my right eye. and about 18cm in the left. whoo hoo!