Sunday, December 24, 2006

happiness is....

corn on the cob...



playing the piano...

little brothers and pj's with feet...

a walk in the wagon with a stufffed dog (his nose is the dark brown spot)...

the above-mentioned stuffed dog, pair of overalls and a calmed cowlick.

Today I am officially twenty seven years old. This year is a big one, as it's the year that I'll match into a residency program, graduate from medical school, start residency, move (back) into an apartment/house, and I'll have to officially start answering to the people who call me "doctor" (as opposed to simply laughing at them).

The potential is huge, and I predict it'll be a good year.

Merry Christmas to those who celebrate...

Thursday, December 21, 2006

my first (three) attempts at meeting the infamous man in the red suit....

the first meeting....I don't think it was considered a success.

try number two...

notice that I'm wearing matching colors, but still not excited with the situation.

....third time's the charm.

Monday, December 11, 2006

happiness is...

- 25 weeks until graduation
- a hot cup of black coffee and leftover canolli
- reading stories with two 4 1/2 year olds (who helped me turn pages and find animals in the pictures and pick out the next book to read...all of which helped me remember that there is more to life than medical school and research and residency interviews)
- a purring cat nearby, or on my lap
- spending time with a dog that, by this afternoon, would instantly flip over to her back and look at me with the "you know what to do" eyes implying that her belly needed rubbing, right now, please.
- hearing "it's good to have you back" from doctors and residents last week, my first week (back) in this hospital system.

My original goal of creating a "happiness is..." list on Sunday was to help me remember the things that are/were going well at the start of the week - even though I couldn't keep up with the rest of the week, I'd try and find something to write about on Sunday. I'm going to try and get back into the swing of it simply because it helps me to keep things in perspective - life is busy. I am ready to be done with medical school.

And, after thinking about it, my wanting to be done boils down to how sickI am of living out of my car.

Friday evening I took off for Cate's house, and it was difficult to round up my things to head out today. Their addition is perfect (it looks, and feels, like it's always been there) and I can't quite come up with the right words for how great it is to spend time with H&E, as well as Cate and R. This was a trial run, of sorts, and I'm looking forward to seeing them again, for a longer stint, in the future.

All day today things felt "off" and I couldn't put my finger on what was bothering me; or, rather, nagging me just out of reach. It wasn't until I'd crossed state lines this evening before I realized that it's the feeling that comes with not having my own home to return to. Every four weeks, for the past 6 months, I've been in a different geographical location. I've also travelled on the weekends, flown to and from places, and packed and repacked my car more times than I can count.

It's wearing me down and I'm ready to be paying rent again. I want to know what my address is and be able to send things there instead of having packages delivered to my friends all over New England. I want to be able to leave things in a place and know that they will still be there when I return (from work, a trip out, a weekend away, etc). I want to be able to have animals of my own, and wash dishes and have my own bathtub. I want to be able to pick up my Robin wheel and sit her in the front seat without having to rearrange the backpacks and important paper files and laundry simply to make room. Robin is still with Gil, and it kills me to know that my spinning time for this month is slowly ticking away...

Generally (and historically) I don't handle transition well, so on the one hand I'm glad I made it six months before loosing it. On the other hand, I'm going to be at this for another four months (at least) and that sounds like a long, long time.

I am ready to be done.

Very, very, very ready to be done.


I have a residency interview on Wednesday at my current rotation site and once that is over I'll have a better idea of what my future might hold. I am currently doing a geriatric rotation and love the program I'm at, the people I am working with, the patients that I've met, and how nice it can be to not fear going into the hospital on a daily basis. I think, aside from the above living situation wrinkles (wrinkles that I appear to have very little control over), this is the best I've felt in years.


I'm 25 weeks from being done with school, and after graduation this blog will be wrapped up. I am not sure what I'll do (if anything) blog-wise afterwards, but my time as the "med student who knits" will be over. I've always seen this as ending when I graduated, but (I don't think?) I've yet to put it out there. Reading though the past two years of posts, there has been a major switch over the past year - I've been writing more about medicine and my rotation experiences than my knitting. I regret that I haven't written more about what I'm working on, and wish I'd taken more pictures of my current projects. I do hope to try and work that out in the next six months...

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Saturday sky continued...eventually my plane landed and I was safe back in the northeast. I'm tired (and my days/nights are a little mixed up) but it's good to be home. (yes, I spent the night in the airport; "local" hotels were asking $200+ for the night (shuttle not always included) and though I'm sure I'd have slept well, it wasn't in my budget for this trip.)

Saturday, December 02, 2006

the sun rises over JFK airport..

hopefully this is part one in a three part series...

(a big tin can defying gravity as it takes off...though I understand the physics (thanks Bernoulli) it still amazes me.)

Friday, December 01, 2006

an airport adventure, of sorts.

thank you (!) for all of the good thoughts and words of encouragement - overall I think the exam went fine, but I'm going to reserve judgement until the results come in (10-12 weeks from now, at the earliest).

I should preface the following story with this disclaimer: I love to fly. I love airports. I've been through 20 different airports* in the past 10 years (some more than once), and all but one of those trips has been by myself. I think it's amazing that we can get a big tin can up into the air and I love being able to sit and watch international flights come and go. (I may not judge a book by it's cover but I will admit to judging international plane tail artwork as a mark of the carrier's character.)

The flights to Philly were almost as uneventful as they come - the flights were on time, the airports were organized, and aside from the awful "new" 3-1-1 rule (carry on liquids/gels must be less than 3oz, all fit in a 1 gallon ziploc bag and no more than 1 bag per person) security was a breeze. (I feel as though stickers are appropriate rewards for getting through sercurity the first time...perhaps I should write a letter to the tsa...) I'm stuck flying on puddle-jumpers this time around and didn't check my bag for fear that it'd get lost and I'd be whitecoat'less or without my stethoscope - neither one was an option.

the plane I took from Manchester to JFK/NYC - it's hard to tell what the scale is so I took another one today with people in it...

the plane I took this morning - from Philly to JFK.

My trip home is still a work in progress - the flight from Philly to JFK was delayed getting into Philly because of weather in New York; I didn't worry about catching a connection because the plane I was going to get on (again, a puddle-jumper) was only making a pit-stop at JFK, and would continue on to Manchester, NH. (I double checked with the gate-people before boarding and they told me that I was all set. (insert ominous music here))

Once the first leg of my journey ended I asked the steward what time the plane was leaving for NH - he looked at me (puzzled) and asked me to repeat my question. Another gentleman in the back of the plane spoke up and said he needed to know too because he really needed a cup of real coffee and wondered if he had time to go into the terminal.

Long story short, in the time we were in the air (45 minutes, tops?) they changed our flight plans and plane assignments. The plane that I was sitting on was headed to Providence, RI and our flight to NH had taken off 25 minutes earlier. I made my way into the (relatively) short line at the re-booking counter and learned that my options were limited, but I could get a flight into Boston at 4pm and ground transportation back into NH. I was given a new ticket and sent on my way.

Things were okay until that flight was cancelled.

I know it's blurry but the time in the upper corner says "3:17pm" and the flights that are listed in red are the ones that are cancelled...

Time in a much longer line led to a new reservation and I was due to head back into Manchester around 8pm. When that flight came up as cancelled I didn't panic (much) because a 9pm turned 10pm flight (delay due to weather and a part needing to be replaced) was still on the board.

My level of frustration increased significantly when the 10pm flight was cancelled and nothing is available until 9am tomorrow. Not only does it mean that I am stuck here f0r the next 12 hours (and have been here for the past 10), but it means that I won't be able to visit with friends who are in town in Manchester tonight.

compare that to one taken around 7pm tonight - there's more red than white and more red would appear as time passed.

the line to change flights/rebook flights. It snaked it's way down the hall several times this evening. I knit almost half a meat-head while waiting in the line...

I brought some of my knitting with me, but didn't plan on having this much time and so left most of my projects at home! That being said, a meathead was knit up (using needles that were too small, but they were all I had) and with any luck I'll finish the embellishment tonight. I don't have any darning needles with me, otherwise I'd put it all together!

I started a sock using Amy Boogie yarn during the breaks that I had during the boards. They are fairly strict about what is allowed in and I checked and double checked before keeping it with me. I've never used US size zero needles for socks before and wasn't sure about how many stitches to cast on. This might be ripped because it's too big...

I've been doing lots of other knitting, but a few things were given away before I took pictures, and some of them can't be shared because they are holiday/birthday presents. A pathologist that I had a chance to work with once or twice during my last rotation is pregnant and looks like she is simply going to pop - during my last week I knit up a small hat (using HelloYarn's pattern) and when I gave it to her we (the surgeon I was working with is also a knitter) told her how some little ones wait until a knitted project is done before they enter the world.

I haven't heard if the hat worked it's magic but it was wonderful to get a project done and gifted before the little one was too big for it. (I've been reknitting things because the original size is now either too small or the wrong size for the season...)

the (boogie) board sock

as for tonight, I'll work on a few random knitting projects and then read some of the book I just picked up at one of the "newstand" stores. The notion of staying in a hotel ran through my head, but I don't have the energy to call around and see what is available, find the shuttle, make plans to get back here tomorrow morning and such. That and the fact that I'd have to pay out of pocket for it mean that the floor and I are going to get to know each other tonight. (I found one of the only outlets in this terminal and I'm not moving from such valuable real estate.)

I think I'm going to call this an adventure. It sounds much better than simply being stranded in an urban airport with no clue as to when I'll be able to head home.....

g'night from JFK!

(* the airports, in no particular order: Manchester NH, Logan/Boston International, Philly, Pittsuburgh, Albany NY, Cincinnati/Lexington, Charlotte NC, Miami FL, Ft. Myers FL, Reno NV, Las Vegas NV, Denver CO, Nassau Bahamas, San Salvador Bahamas (I went for an aquatic biology course), Salt Lake City UT, JFK/NYC, Portland ME, Newark NJ, Atlanta GA, Memphis TN; I still need to go through Chicago, LA and Seattle...)