Friday, February 21, 2014

Whats "falling in love" got to do with it?

On falling in love: “You don’t know who you will fall in love with. You just don’t. You don’t control it. Some people have certain things, like, ‘That’s what I’m going for,’ and I have a subjective version of that. I don’t pressure myself…If you fall in love with someone, you want to own them – but really, why would you want that? You want them to be what you love. I’m much too young to even have an answer for that question.”
Kristen Stewart, Marie Claire, March  2014
Kristen Stewart is on the cover of the next issue of Marie Claire and that was her answer when she was asked about falling in love. To begin with the question itself is faulty and is based on an false  concept of "falling in love."
I once was na├»ve, foolish and misguided. I once believed in the statement above and in some ways still believe in it. Every day I find myself constantly trying to correct or even replace the  erroneous concepts that have been ingrained in my brain . One of those many concepts is the thought that love is a feeling that cannot be controlled, that you cant help who you fall in love with,  or that you fall in love. Granted, Kristen Stewart is a twenty something year old growing up in a spotlight  she obviously finds uncomfortable. She is not the most articulate person consequently is not the best person to answer a question about love.  I am not picking on Kristen Stewart but I am using the article to illustrate that we are constantly being inundated with the same concepts or what I call seeds by the media. These seeds are not  as harmless  and every one of these seeds grow. Do not underestimate the power of these "seeds" in the media to shape a mind especially a mind of a young person who has no Godly example around to aspire to.

Young people especially young women are fighting a losing battle. If every book, movie TV show and song  tells you that love is about  falling and it is a  flowery emotion that you have no control over because you cant help it,  of course you begin to believe it.
I did! My rationale was that these people are obviously more experienced in life so it must be true.
Now  I wince, shake my head, shudder with embarrassment and laugh. Thank God for Jesus. I believe that becoming a Christian allowed me to base my thought process  and world view from a more realistic foundation. It has changed my thinking process from being extremely faulty to being barely faulty. Imagine a young girl going into a relationship with this thinking process, it’s a train wreck waiting to happen.  The media and we as a society have placed unrealistic fantastical expectations on love. In fact it wasn’t until recently I realized that the concept of falling in love is total rubbish.  Working in the medical sciences , I know “falling” has negative connotations. In my head, I see broken bones, splinters,  hip replacement and crushed skulls when I think of falling. Okay fine  I may have gone overboard with that description but why would you want to fall into something especially love. 
Falling hurts. Falling is not safe.

Who came up with this concept anyway and why have we (especially me) allowed it to penetrate my outlook?
I read on someone's blog that they would rather grow in love with someone. Yes it sounds less romantic but is more realistic. Growing in love makes me think about growing old with someone and persevering with them.  
I will not begin to act like I can adequately characterize the true meaning of any type of love even in the context of the bible. I am still finding that out, still growing and still making mistakes. However I do know love is a choice, it’s a calculated decision that may be clouded by strong attraction and chemistry.
To end in a positive note, 1 Corinthians 13 vs 4-7
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Nothing with the above mentions that love is easy nor does it mention falling,   in fact its implies some sort of resilience and adaptation is required for love.
It makes me think that love aint for kids, its not for the faint of heart and its definitely not about falling.

Friday, February 7, 2014

Things I have learned on the interview trail

I haven't been here in ages. They is so much going on career wise and book publishing wise yet things are relatively calm in my life. I know. Its quite the dichotomy. I call it the calm before the storm or change. I am pushing for a publication date of May 1st-May 16th (fingers crossed) and starting residency hopefully in June!!! Hoot! Yah! I am really excited regardless of the outcome.  Its been an interesting journey and give the glory of my testimony to Jesus my roll dog!

Anyway I really thought I would have more interesting stories on the interview trail, maybe people have gotten less crazy or I am getting a little older but my interview season was relatively calm.
However, I did learn a few things from my extensive experience on the interview trail

1. Memorize a patient that stands out to you.
Every place I interviewed with asked the question "tell me about a patient that affected you, stands out to you, changed your perception?.
I knew a sickle cell patient that developed TTP -HUS down part because I wrote a case report on it.Trust me. This saved me from many a blank stare.

2. Its a match process, not only are you trying to impress them they are trying to impress you. Its about finding the right fit for you based on your priorities. Would you rather be in a big name place that is really competitive with little support  or a smaller program that's more supportive. I want to be in a program with support so I was very cognizant of that when I entered  rankeed the programs.

3. Location. Location Location  : There is a reason the programs in bigger cities are more competive. When you visit a place you have to ask yourself if you are prepared to live there for three to six years. It may not seem that long in the grand scheme of things but residency is stressful enough, you dont want to hate your location and count days until vacations so you will be away.

4. Support. I realized that when we were in medical school this wasn't stressed enough to us. The competitiveness of the program, its congruence with your future goals and the possibility of ranking there was focused on more. Now that I have seen both sides of the coin with some of my friends being in residencies where they feel  isolated  I have realized that support is extremely important. It plays into the other factors too. I am not talking about support from the residency but your support system. That's why some people choose residencies close to immediate family or church family etc. Its more important that you would imagine.

5. Have fun. Doing interviews can be very stressful. You are traveling to 10-20 locations around the country and this can get make quite the dent in your financial aid or salary. Its definitely not a situation that screams fun however focus on the experience. You are never going to get this chance again nor meet the people you do on the interview trail. There is a type of camaraderie between people you meet in the interview trail. I met the same set of people on several interviews in different locations. It became some sort of Breakfast Club.

6. Commit it to God: I know how stressful the match  can be, especially the nerve wracking moments before your find out where you match. But after you have done your best,  trust that God will place you in the right residency for you. I am speaking to myself too.

Until next time folks, I am counting down to April before I shift from mildly irritating author to extremely  irritating author relentlessly promoting book.
I will try my best to be good.