What Care I for Colds?

Week 11

September 15th – 21st, 2014

It’s the middle of the block now, and honestly, there is so much for me to study I do not know where to begin. The biggest difference between college and medical school for me right now is the volume of information that is expected to be taken in. Despite this difference, I am really glad to be here, and although, I miss UChicago, I’m looking forward, and liking the now.

Monday: The Awesomeness of M4s

As mentioned in previous blog posts, I have physical diagnosis on Mondays. One of the things I like the most about PD is meeting the M4s. Right now they have just submitted their residency applications, and interacting with them just reminds me that there is a next step after all of this! It is really exciting to see where they end up and what residencies they have applied for. M4 preceptors also impress me with their knowledge base (usually), and this pumps me up! Unlike college, I do not have a really clear picture of what I will look like in 4 years. So many things can change!

 Tuesday: “More Ups than Downs”

This week in Foundations of Clinical Medicine (FCM) we had the opportunity to hear from families impacted by Down Syndrome. The first woman who came into speak with us had a young teenage boy with Downs. She was very chipper about everything, and also a Christian. She told us how difficult it was for her at first—especially because many physicians were very negative about her child’s prognosis from the start. Nonetheless, she feels that her child is not a mistake. He is meant to be here and she feels hopeful. In addition, she found that having him changed her family. It brought them closer and now she is a Christian counselor. In fact, she published a book about her experiences recently. As a Christian, myself, people have misinterpreted my hope in an often messed up world  to be naive. I do not think so. Hope gives me tenacity and strength. I think that is all I have, and when you believe in a God that is in control even when things do not seem they are working, you have faith.  You know what, it does not have to always “make sense.” I believe I am here now for a reason. Bad things happen to good people everyday but people still have faith and hope, and that is something I truly admire.

The other family we spoke to was a bit different. They were “spiritual” at most and seemed very “intellectual.” Hipster glasses, she breast fed her daughter in front of us like a boss, and was very much a “power woman.” Her husband was much quieter than her. They had 5 kids and their youngest, a two year old had Downs. She brought the toddler with her. Her frustration was with many individuals who talked about things her daughter “couldn’t do” which simply “weren’t true.” Despite their differences, like the woman before her, she was extremely hopeful for her child. She was very candid about how she is pro-choice, and did not know that their daughter would have Downs. I’m not exactly sure what she meant by telling us that information, but maybe that she will not judge other people’s decisions on the termination of pregnancy. She talked with a woman once who had IVF (in vitro fertilization), found out the fetus had Downs, and terminated the pregnancy. The woman went on, saying, “I’m not very spiritual, but I believe I was supposed to talk to that woman…[to encourage her]” but sadly they never spoke afterwards.

Upon reflection, many people in my FCM group, a preceptor included, stated that their experiences seemed a bit too rosy. In general, we were all happy for them, but they thought their perspectives were extremely hopeful. Can someone be too hopeful?

My opinion? Hope is a powerful thing, and if that is what gets them through life, all the power to them. These families know all too well the painfulness of their situation, and they don’t need us to “remind them.” They know, but they rejoice because they love their children. They believe their children and their families have a right to be happy so let’s let them be.

Wednesday: Inter-professional Workshop

That was really the highlight of my Wednesday. I met with students in the dental school, nursing school, school of social work, dietary master student etc for about two hours to talk about our differences and similarities and to go through a healthcare case in which all of us discussed the medical roles we will have in the context of the case.

I was not sure how it would turn out. We never see the students from other schools, and I was not sure how they would feel about me or other medical students. Do we have a reputation to behave a certain way? Pre-meds and I suppose now (Meds) can be kind arrogant and annoying.

In the end, I was really surprised by how well we worked together. We seemed very respectful. I did notice the the medical students (myself included) tended to dominate the conversation, followed by a really chatty dental student. I hope we gave everyone a place to speak.

Some of my peers considered IPW to be a waste of time. I can understand their opinion, but I think the experience was valuable because it would be quite shameful if we never got to meet with our peers studying around us. We are all in this together, and the sooner we get over ourselves, and the sooner we learn about other’s perspectives, perhaps the easier it will be to work with them in the future. Corny I know, but yeah that is how I feel about it.

Thursday: Cardiopulmonary Exam

I got everything and the standardized patient could not believe I was a first year med student but I made a big mistake: I forgot to retie her gown!!! #Neveragain #Rookiemistake #Ugh As for the clinical stuff, that was fine. I was a bit nervous about this one but it went very well.

Friday: High-Thai-ed and Sense & Sensibility

The week goes so fast in medical school. In college, I was waiting for the week to end. No I am like, “It’s done already? Ahhh closer to the exam! Slow down, time, slow down!”

But this is when it gets fun.

I went to High Thai-ed, a VERY good Thai restaurant on Coventry. After living in Hyde Park in Chicago, I know my Thai food pretty well. I preferred High Thai-ed to the Snail in Hyde Park! I was so impressed and it was so delicious. Heba and Aaida came with and were also very happy with their food!

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Pad See Ew with chicken AND shrimp

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The Fabulous Ladies as Usual! 

After dinner, I worked on my SEQ assignment while watching Sense & Sensibility. I hadn’t seen the 1995 famous version with Emma Thompson in a long while and it was fricken good!! I didn’t like it that much when I was younger, but now have such a better appreciation for it now. It was always overshadowed by Pride & Prejudice and Emma but wow this was well done. Emma Thompson is everything and she got an Oscar for best adapted screenplay. One of my favorite scenes is when Marianne is rescued by Willoughby and she exclaims, “What care I for colds when there is such a man?!” Hilarious clip! Please watch! After the movie, I still had a few SEQ questions left to do but kept on falling asleep. I’d do a question, nod off for an hour, wake up in a panic and do another question. REPEAT UNTIL 8 AM. Then, I finally went to bed! #thestruggle

 Saturday: Attempted to do work…but I…

Saw No Good Deed starring Idris Elba (yeshhh) and Taraji P. Henson with the fabulous ladies: Avia, Ify, Yorleny, Christa, and Louisa. Honestly, it wasn’t a good movie so I want bother you with the details. Every woman’s worst nightmare when she is at home with her newborn-baby-and-4-year-old-when-her-husband-is-away-on-a-trip-happens essentially. Oh, and her husband was obviously cheating. Idris Elba was still kind of charming despite playing a malignant narcissist, Taraji’s character made a lot of dumb mistakes and I could think of a few thrillers in this genre that did it better like…Enough with J.Lo, The Red Eye with Rachel McAdams and Cape Fear with Robert De Niro. This movie was a mix of all of them. The moral of these movies is that men are evil and scary so we should all run away from them… … … errrr

Not great to watch when you happen to be on your own for a weekend! I woke up in the middle of the night just because the walls were creaking!

After the movie, I went to Pacific East, a Japanese and Malaysian restaurant also in Coventry. I was pretty pleased. The sushi wasn’t the prettiest I’ve seen, but it was decent. I really enjoyed hanging with these folks.

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The Guys: Isaac, Nathan, and John

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The Girls: Me, Yi Wen, and April

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Not Bad. Pretty tasty, actually. Alaska roll and Sweet Potato Roll. 

Sunday: Meekness and Cooking

Still in the Sermon on the Mount at Gateway Heights Church. This week’s verse: “Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth.”

Meekness definitely isn’t a virtue I admire. I think it is actually frowned upon amongst Americans. Meekness reminds me of the wimpy Clark Kent version of Superman…the one Lois doesn’t care about because all want Superman. 

To be meek is to give up control; to forsake the self, and to realize we are not always self-sufficient. And upon reflection, if we all sought to be more meek perhaps our world would be much better.

Lastly, I cooked in the evening! I made African Cashewnut Soup and it was so good! Proud of myself!

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Here is the recipe. It can definitely be vegan too. I obviously added chicken but it can be modified.

And that’s another week! Until the next!!

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