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Lives of Doctor Wives: Keepin' On Top of the Process

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Keepin' On Top of the Process

Can anyone offer any advice as to HOW TO SURVIVE the last year of med school?! My husband is away right now (and will be for the next three months) doing an audition rotation. While I get to talk to him every night, I'm finding it frustrating that we only chat for about ten minutes because he is so tired. I miss him so much, and I know he misses me. Also, I'm quite nervous about the whole match thing - it worries me to no end. He hasn't scheduled any interviews just yet, and is working on his online application, but I'm such an 'on top of everything' gal that it is hard for me to not constantly ask him if he has everything done. How can I survive?! Any words of wisdom would be ever-so appreciated! :)
Frantic in VA,

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Blogger Married to a med student - Marissa Nicole said...

sHp - I am exactly in your shoes right now. It is a crazy stressful year for us wives who like to be in control!. My husband is doing three separate away rotations in hopes of increasing his chances of matching.

My best quick advice is to just encourage him now and tell him how proud you are of him. Text him and mail him cards if you can! When he is done with rotations you should have more time with him and this year is going to fly!
He can start submitting his application September 1, (he needs his C.V. letters of recommendation and his school should take care of his transcripts). I encourage you to be involved in the application process because many wives don't realize that it is a reality to not match in your top 5. Therefore you want to be prepared to go somewhere new and be part of the process. (See my blog entries June 8th describing the Match process- it will give you resources, and July 14 - lots of other dr.wives posted good advice in the comments).
If you need to vent or talk to someone who is going through the exact same thing feel free to email me at: marriedtoamedicalstudent at gmail dot com!

p.s. welcome to the blog!

August 20, 2009 at 10:22 AM  
Blogger Allison said...

My only real advice is to just keep busy! Just keep getting through each day!

I think you are going to have to learn this now, because it doesn't just stop there! (and I hope I'm not sounding rude when I say this.) There are days right now when my husband just comes home exhausted and then we go to bed and we've barely spoken.

Try not to worry so much. Even if he doesn't get his first choice, things usually work out in the end. Also, he's probably even more worried about it so try not to stress him out too much. :)

August 20, 2009 at 10:23 AM  
Blogger Ginny said...

We are in the same boat. My husband is currently out of state until November. I have actually started to go through the ERAS and fill in all the basic info for him. I have a copy of his CV so I have all that information as well. Since he is busy on rotations at programs he is interested all his free time during the week is devoted to that. He plans on going in this weekend to finish up the application and review everything I did. I joke that I am his "personal assistant". I send emails for him when he can't, look up numbers for programs so he can call and get information. I try to do anything I can to help him get something accomplished. Since I am near a computer most of the day at work it makes it easy and I am happy I get to be involved in the process. Plus, it takes a lot of stress off him so he can concentrate on his rotations right now. I tell him all the time I know more about what is about to happen than he does. :) Just get informed. The more you know about the process the better you will feel.

As far as being apart, just make sure you do some things for you. I have started cooking things I know my husband would never eat, I am reading more, my house is CLEAN, I take my dog to the dog park, and I am renting all the ER seasons from netflix. Even though you miss each other, make sure you enjoy the time you have to yourself. We will all have a lot more of that when residency rolls around so think of it as good practice! Good luck!

August 20, 2009 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger Melisa said...

We were apart for 7 months, so I feel your pain. We made efforts to chat online and talk on the phone every day. Text messaging also helped, but I waited until he texted me because I didn't want to interrupt anything when he is trying to make a good impression, ya know? He also sent me sweet letters in the mail, which I loved.

As for the stress of applications and stuff, help where you can, but try to not freak him out. He is probably pretty stressed. I'm not nearly as helpful as Ginny, but I do what I can and try to be at peace that the outcome will be what it is supposed to be. :o)

August 20, 2009 at 11:32 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I didn't meet Mike until the end of 3rd year med school. We lived in different states for an entire year. It was tough, but we talked every night at the same time and would visit each other every couple of months. He was able to do an away rotation and had a two month break during the holidays of his last year so that was very nice.
I don't think he completed his applications until September. OU was his last interview and it wasn't until February, and that's where he ended up matching.

August 20, 2009 at 2:00 PM  
Blogger Trisha said...

Fourth year is tough. My husband was going to be everywhere but home. I wasn't wanting to take care of a toddler and twin infants by myself for a year so I moved back to our hometown. :)

We would do the web cam in the evenings... it was good to talk with the tired boy AND see his face.

We would also try to go see him or he would come home on the weekends. One month he was in St. Louis, so my oldest son and I drove there and we made a mini vacation out of it.

What about renting the same movie and watching it together at night so you have something in common to talk about? The hardest part would probably be your husband trying to stay awake!

It's a tough time but if you keep yourself busy like Ginny said, it will go by fast!

August 20, 2009 at 2:04 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

When my husband and I were dating long-distance, we would email each other every day. That was such a great way for us to discuss all the daily in-and-outs of our days, talk about relationship issues, and anything else on our minds. Somehow typing out the words drew us closer together. When we got married, he printed out every single email and had them spiral bound into 3 very large volumes! It's a great record of that season of our lives together.

August 20, 2009 at 2:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I always thought 4th year was harder than 3rd year in med school because of away rotations.

As a PGY-4 wife, I have had to live through more away rotations. He will do another one this year.

All I can say is stay busy. I have 2 boys and an at home online math tutoring business to keep me busy. Many times I don't feel like I have enough time in the day. WHen he's away, that is a good thing.

August 21, 2009 at 1:13 AM  
Anonymous Beth said...

Hi! I am glad to see others feeling the same way! I am in the same boat. My bf (of 8 yrs) is away on his away rotations too! It can be really stressful( I have to agree with the other posts) especially for those of us( who I think are the majority) who are very hands on and go getters to wait through this process. I have found it really hard to wait for him to do the applications etc on his own time rather than my own time frame :). As for the match process, I know that we won't have a ton of choice even though he is competitive. I am looking at it as an adventure and something that will be unique to us and a bonding experience. I am really thankful that we are here and facing these challenges. He could be in a coal mine or anything that isn't living his dream. I find that it helpful to think of on those lonely Friday nights. I agree with the post that gave you the advice on mini vacations. We have been doing that for his away rotations and it has been fun to visit towns that I may never of chosen for a vacation. I look forward to that for interview season in nov, dec and jan. I am not sure where you work but if you live in a medical community like we do more chances than not there is a co-worker that has gone through this and gone out the other side. I have found that advice and perspective so helpful on the days that I want to scream! I am not sure what kind of work you do but it if it the kind that you can prepare ahead of time, this is the perfect time to get it done for the spring when the hubby is back and you will want to spend valuable time with him :).

August 21, 2009 at 1:01 PM  

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