Monthly Archives: November 2007

How much peanut butter?

Like any good mother, I managed to rifle through Z’s weekend take home folder late Sunday night. Hey, at least it’s not tomorrow morning on the way to school! Well, I forgot to get the apple juices for the party. I will bring them by when I pick him up. The note says by Monday, and last time I checked, it’s Monday all day tomorrow.

I also found a notice sent home by the county health department with guidelines on how to make a lunch for my son. First of all, it sounds like some sort of weird decree:

“Meals provided by parents shall consist of the following:”

Shall? How about should? Or even better, “We suggest lunches consist of the following:”

But, even better, the amounts are ridiculously high or strange.

For example:

One of my options in the “A” category is “Peanut butter – 1/2 cup”. I instantly thought of my friend badbadivy, who wouldn’t serve that much peanut butter to her kids in a whole week. Who would feed a three year old 1/2 cup of peanut butter? Seriously, that is a lot!

Category “C” has only one choice: “Bread – 1 slice”. 1/2 cup of peanut butter on ONE slice of bread? Uh, that sandwich would totally choke my son. And, the “shall” decree doesn’t seem to allow any flexibility. Could I put it on two pieces of bread? A pita? Pasta salad?

Category “D” also has only one option: “Butter – 1 teaspoon”.

Huh? It doesn’t say any of the categories are optional.

I am seriously depriving my kid. I figured I knew a lot about nutrition. I don’t think I have ever included a teaspoon of butter in Z’s lunch. Hmmm. Next time he will get a butter pat with his apple sauce. With the 2 ounces of cheese as an option for category “A”, a pat of butter required in “D” and another serving of dairy in category “E” with “Milk – 1 cup (8 oz)” I am beginning to wonder if this chart was written by a dairy farmer.

I am really tempted to write a note back to the school, but I know they didn’t come up with the chart. I don’t think I should write to the health department – I may be doing rotations there one day. But, come on!

*OK, correction, it was the “County Board of Commissioners.” I should have expected such nonsense to come from them. They are the same group who won’t allow home baked snacks at school events, but will allow pizza and soda.

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I can’t believe it

I just applied for the dual degree.

DO/MPH

What am I thinking?

*banging head on desk*

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Should / want / will

I saw this on a message board, and I am stealing it for my blog today.

I should be studying for my biochem final. Instead, I have been organizing my Thanksgiving menu. Much more fun.

I want to apply for the dual DO/ MPH (Masters of Public Health) program at my school, but my head is spinning. There are so many reasons I want to do it and don’t want to. Tuition for it is free for DO students. I am ALL about Public Health. And, it is fun to say “DOMPH!” It sounds like the sound an underinflated basketball makes, or Homer Simpson being punched in the mouth. I am thinking of combining it with a research fellowship, which would get two years of my tuition paid, but it would take an extra year. But, a dual degree? At 34 with two kids? Am I crazy?

I will drink my tea and try to decide whether to take the dog and kids for a walk or finally begin studying.

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Been thinking about how I do it

I was in an administrator’s office on Friday. She is funny and sweet and a well known…how shall I say…conversationalist. When I go to her office, I go with plenty of time to hang out and chat. She is a mom, and we had bonded previously sharing anecdotes about breastfeeding and pediatrician appointments.

I looked to her for some commiseration when I was there, joking to her about how many of my childless peers would look at me in wonder and tell me in various ways about how amazed they are that I can pull it off, what with the two kids and all. I get various levels of praise, not all of which I am sure I deserve, and some people make me out to be some sort of superhero.

She looked at me with a suddenly serious expression and said, “No, seriously, how do you do it?”

She never went to medical school, but she works incredibly hard, organizing all of the clinic and doctor shadowing tracts for the entire first and second year classes. I thought she would get it.

I couldn’t have done it without my kids. Before I had kids, I went through about 2 driver’s licenses a year. If I was lucky, I would just lose the license and not the whole wallet. I cruised through life without a watch and was basically a disorganized mess. Having kids really grounded me.

Some mornings, when Z is melting down for the third time, S is sneaking Halloween candy, and I have to get all of my stuff ready for school, along with all of their stuff, including lunches, I think to myself “There is no other student in the program dealing with this crap right now!!”

But, then I see my classmates stumble into class later than me. Their lives are stressful. Many of them are uprooted from their hometowns and families. Some are trying to maintain long distance relationships and some are in the middle of breaking up. Some have no one to take care of them if they are sick, or no one there to talk to when they are taking a study break who isn’t another student. Many live alone.

I was reading a blog entry today by a friend who is have a stressful week as a mom. It reminded me SO much of what my life was like before medical school, when I worked at home. It was awful. I spent way too much time in front of the computer (granted, some of the hours were paid) and didn’t maximize my time with my kids. I felt unappreciated and unfulfilled. My relationship with my husband was suffering for many reasons, and I didn’t feel productive or feel like I had the time to do things I needed to get done, and it was hard to get out of my pajamas and get out of the house any day I needed to get anything done.

I find it SO much easier to be in medical school. I know that sounds crazy, but I do. Yeah, I have to study. A lot. I have to go to school every day. But I have done so much worse. I have commuted 3 hours a day to work a full time job, with a kid at home. I trained as a midwife and was gone one, maybe two full nights a week on top of my classes, not to mention a full day in the clinic and a full time job. Many of those nights were all nighters, which may involve a birth or two, not to mention cleaning the toilets and a few loads of laundry.

And, I have sat at home in my pajamas, been underployed with a nursing toddler and been depressed.

So, for me, I couldn’t have done this without being a mother. In fact, I think it is making me a better mother. I rush home and try to make dinner every night. I don’t go to the gym. I don’t go out much if at all. I haven’t seen a movie in the movie theater for more than a year, I would say. I have a wonderful husband who keeps up with the laundry and helps out with the kids. And, to be cheesy a bit, I am finally living out my dream.

So, I can’t imagine not doing it. The alternative is too stressful and depressing.

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New shirt for class

sacrumWe are studying the sacrum and its associated dysfunctions and treatments for three whole Osteopathic Principles and Practices labs. I got a new shirt from one of our class clubs that says Rock, Paper, Sacrum. (with pictures) I find it infinitely amusing, and I wore it for lab today. I also got to feel and manipulate a very nice classmate’s pubic symphysis and sacral sulcus, and he got to feel mine. I figure I should dress for the occasion.

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Another overly aggressive fellow student

So, the student who wrote that offensive insulting email previously bitched about on here by me has apologized. I am sure there was some persuading by SGA and other students before that apology came out. Amusingly, I found out he was kicked out of another med school for behavioral issues, apparently.

Then, on Friday, I had a student who sits near me in the main auditorium freak out on me when I spilled my tea near her, obviously by accident. She screamed out “FUCK!” in the auditorium (mid lecture!), stormed off, came back with paper towels (I had already cleaned it up by the time she got back – with facial tissue – it was not a big spill) and then proceeded to try to tell me off while the lecturer was still mid lecture. I shushed her, which apparently infuriated her more.

She proceeded to tell me in the break a bunch of interesting and barely coherent nonsense, including telling me that I think I own the place. (She is an MBS student, which is a master’s track for people who can’t make it into med school via the normal routes. They have to get a B or higher in all the hard science classes we take, and then they can be M1s the next year. She took my accidental spill as a metaphor for all med students crapping on all MBS students, apparently, since my spies tell me she was yelling about all of us in the bathroom when she was getting the paper towels).

So, I was upset for most of the day that someone in a medical school setting would behave like that. Her behavior included sucking her teeth at me, saying ridiculous things like “Don’t tell me what I think!” after she told me that I think I own the place and all I said is that it was hard to apologize to someone when they immediately curse and storm out of the room, especially when I thought none of it even touched her. She claimed my lukewarm tea burned her, which is a laugh, because I only drink lukewarm tea, it was about two hours old, I had put three ice cubes in it, and if any of it touched her, it had to be tiny drops that splashed off the table. None of it poured on her.

For those of you who don’t know me in person, I am EXTREMELY clumsy, especially when it comes to spilling things. I spilled tea on my laptop twice. Half of the med school class calls me “Spillery”, seriously. So, now that I am over the anger and frustration at her outrageous reaction, I am thankful that I have a new joke in my repertoire. Every time I spill something now, I will say (or think) “Yeah, that’s right, I DO own the place.” Like a dog pissing to mark its territory, I will fling my tea around. Watch out!

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