Survivor Saturdays – Raising Mini MDs

Despite my earlier post touting how smart I am, I blame credit Michael for giving us such crazy-smart kids and all their accompanying issues.

When Michael and I were dating, my mother met a lady from his hometown, and this lady’s comment was, “…he is so smart! But you would never know it.”

We assume this was a compliment and a comment on his social skills.

I’m over at Lives of Doctor’s Wives talking about raising gifted kids…


Survivor Saturdays – Letter to a Premed Student

This fall will mark 18 years since Michael and I met, 17 since we started dating. I knew from the first time I met him that he was going to be a doctor (remember the college days? “What’s your name? Where are you from? What’s your major?”). I remember one of our first conversations (while still in the “friend” stage) when he stated that his friends would be getting babysitters in order to attend his wedding – alluding to the fact that he thought he had a long road of education ahead of him before he could get married. Heh, heh, heh. That’s what he thought!

Even when we were engaged and he was applying to med schools, I had absolutely no clue what was in store for us. I knew the logistical road that we would take – four years of med school, internship, residency – but I never even considered how hard it was going to be. Blissfully ignorant, I suppose. My grandmother, who was an orthopedic nurse, reminded me years later that she warned me never to marry a doctor. I have no recollection of her saying this – but my flair for the dramatic is most definitely genetic.

So when I received an email a few weeks ago from a premed college student asking for insight into the work/family balance of a doctor-in-training, I was really impressed with his forethought. His serious girlfriend has expressed doubts about her ability to be a doctor’s wife, and he is taking her hesitation into consideration before pursuing this career.

It took me two days to compose my reply, and I’ve posted part of it here. I hope, as always, that even if you aren’t married to a doctor, you can be encouraged to hang in there and stick it out through the tough seasons of your life together. It’s more than worth the excruciating effort.

Survivor Saturdays – House Dreams

I thought long and hard before writing this post for two reasons: 1) I didn’t want to come across as one of those doctor’s wives. You know the kind: big hair, lots of jewelry, whining about how hard her life is; and 2) I don’t want the wives whose husbands are still in training to be discontent with their lives.

My hair will never be big (though I could show you some pictures of me in high school that would beg to differ), and my taste in jewelry is the inexpensive costume variety. The training years are undoubtedly extremely difficult, but Michael and I look back on those years with a sense of sentimental fondness. They were really tough, but they were pivotal in our marriage and in our family. We grew a lot during those years…and, as I mention in my post, we had many years to dream, and those dreams made the long years of training a little more bearable.

Survivor Saturdays – Moving

Yes, I know it’s only Friday. I had tried to “schedule” the post, and it kept wanting to post N-O-W, so I gave up. Impatient little thang. And besides, no one else but me is checking blogs on a Friday night. Though it’s awfully quiet at my house. Boys are at a baseball game. Meg is sleeping over with The Giggle Gang. Just me. By myself. Kinda like it. And there is a pan of brownies in the kitchen with my name on it. I’m thinking this could be a glorious evening.

What? Oh, yes. The post. Here it is : Lives of Doctor Wives – Moving

We were a little bit lucky and only had to move three times, but as I say in the post, each time was really hard. I wouldn’t do a thing differently, though. Everything always turned out better than I could have ever imagined.

So even if you are not married to one of those crazy doctor people, there are lots of nuggets o’wisdom in this post for anyone who has to relocate. It’s an excruciating process, but I’ve learned that God always goes before us to “prepare a table.” Did you know that in Psalm 23 (“the Lord is my Shepherd…”) the original language alludes to a loving shepherd going into the pasture before the sheep enter to make sure that there are no poisonous plants or dangerous predators? The Shepherd literally prepares the land for His sheep – just like God goes before us and prepares the land where we will live.

(Check out this book and this link for more insight. It really is amazing.)

That’s all. My brownies are calling. Good night.

Survivor Saturdays – Truly Awful Doctor’s Wife

If you don’t already have an Awful Story, you probably will by the time you finish training. Or maybe not. Maybe I’m the only Truly Awful Doctor’s Wife. But in case you don’t have an Awful Story, I thought I’d share mine in hopes of saving you the shame and disgrace of being a Truly Awful Doctor’s Wife.

So Michael was in his fellowship year in Pediatric Ophthalmology. We had been married since MS 1, and now he was PGY 5. That’s a long time. On this particular day, I was a little weary…

Read the rest of my Truly Awful Story at The Lives of Doctor’s Wives!

Survivor Saturdays – Finances during training

I’m over at Lives of Doctors Wives for our weekly column on medical training survival – this week we’re talking about finances during residency.

I had great fun recalling all the crazy things Gretchen and I did together to make our tight finances a little more bearable. You know you have a great friend when she is willing to clean your toilet! Love you, Gretch. I wouldn’t clean anyone else’s toilet but yours.

Survivor Saturdays – residency interviews

I’m over at Lives of Doctor’s Wives talking about residency interviews…

Holy cow, that feels like a lifetime ago! I was two months away from delivering Meghan when Michael went on his interview trail. What a road it’s been. I still remember Michael hanging up the phone when the school secretary called him one Sunday night to tell him where he’d matched. He said, “You know, you just don’t grow up thinking ‘someday I’m going to move to Iowa’!” But it was a beautiful, beautiful unexpected season of our lives together. I wouldn’t change a thing.

Hmmm. I should probably remember that more often.