Thursday, November 25, 2010


It's all really just a bunch of "steps", one after the other, to become a physician. Like a steeplechase race, jumping through or over each hurdle without fumbling or falling. I understand the game even if playing the game seems skewed from it's purpose. So onward, and upward to the next Step.


Truly a happy Thanksgiving this year. Much to be thankful. It's a great time to notice. And I do.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Over the peak

"We must find a way to demystify medical education..."


I remember hearing a champion road bike racer in Europe describe the feeling at the end of a massive cycle climb upon reaching the top. He described the hard, slow, intense, rhythm that builds from the bottom of the climb and the feeling of peaking, and going over the top to the other side. I could almost feel that instant moment of "ahhh" when I read the results last week, but with the full knowing that on the other side of the downhill was yet another peak. Such is the "time trial" of medical school it seems.

And as I feel the "ahhh" of reaching this peak and having Step 1 behind me, I realize that there are other peeks ahead to build toward. And just knowing that, and understanding better what's necessary to make the peak somehow less tall, lessens the challenge. My training is getting more focused, more intense, and more efficient I think. But finding the joy is sometimes evasive.

Dr. John R. Minarcik said that "Learning medicine should be a JOY, not an ordeal." I've recently felt both the joy and the ordeal on this climb. Reaching this "ahhh" moment, I'm beginning to better understand how the process of medical education beats the joy out of a person who likely started the climb in full joy of the ride.

Ride on! I think I'd prefer a Harley though.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Sweetest word: "Passed"


Whew! I can't imagine a better Thanksgiving gift. I truly give thanks. Step 1 is now in my rearview mirror, and I'm onward to MS III and rotations. The work isn't done, but I know that I've gone over a huge hump when I didn't always feel like I would, or could. I probably won't land an orthopaedic residency with the score, but it's good enough for me.

The last year has been grueling, emotional, and filled with highs and lows. I have been supremely humbled by the experience, and so, so thankful to many family and friends who encouraged, screamed, cajoled, and supported me thru this phase. Thanks everyone who mattered. You know who you are.

Onward to clinical rotations and Step 2!