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Lives of Doctor Wives: Catching Up to Ahead of Ourselves

Monday, November 11, 2013

Catching Up to Ahead of Ourselves

Almost two years ago, I was engaged to my now husband, who was working on his science pre-reqs at local community colleges (he got his bachelor’s in Business several years prior), and I was talking to a mutual friend of ours that we had both known before we had met. We were talking about the future and what me and my now husband were planning for in the future. I had mentioned that where we ended up for med school, and then residency and when he became a doctor would all influence a lot for us. Our friend then said something that I have never and will never forget.

“Aren’t you getting kind of ahead of yourself? I mean, he hasn’t even applied to medical school yet, you don’t know if he’ll even keep this up.”

I tend to be a bit of a spitfire, and I was a lot ticked off. I also tend to be very protective of those I care about. When I was 10, I rode with my mom when she was driving a school bus full of high school volleyball players to a game, and one of them mouthed off to her and looked at me and said “You’re mom can be a real b^%$. I shoved the girl into the next seat and punched her. The coach told her she got what she deserved and to go sit down.

So when someone said something so flippant and discouraging about my future husband and our future plans, I had to remember I was no longer 10 and I had to be a grown up. Dang it. I simply said, “You don’t know either” and “He is getting straight A’s in all his classes and is passionate about this. I believe in him.”

Turns out, I was right to believe in him. He finished all his pre-reqs at the top of each class. He took the MCAT, and received a 98th percentile score. He applied to med school, and got seven interview requests early on.

A few weeks ago, we woke up and my husband leaned over and looked at his phone and said, “There is an email from UCSD.” My heart skipped a beat.  The email came from just across the street, and it was funny that there, in between Groupon and Fantasy Football emails, laid our future.

Congratulations.”

A lot of people asked if we cried, if we did this, if we did that. To be honest, we laid there and busted up laughing for a few minutes. We then texted and called friends and family, and posted it on Facebook of course. We had done it. He is going to medical school. He had even been accepted to one of the top schools, a school that is in our hometown, less than five minutes away.

Here is something else we did as it sank in. We thought of everyone and everything that discouraged us along the way. The people who told him that no schools would take his community college pre-reqs seriously. The people who told us that he may need to give up his dream and just get a job. The people who asked why it was taking so long, because they don’t understand the process. The loss of more than half of our income the week that applications opened in June, and the last five and a half months of being totally broke while I haven’t been able to find a job, straight through the expensive interview season.

I thought of that friend, that friend who said we were getting too ahead of ourselves, and doubted us getting here. In life, there are times that we can get too ahead of ourselves. Don’t tell a guy you love him on the first date. Don’t go picking out cribs the day you decide to start trying. Don’t go spending that first paycheck until you get that first paycheck. But this is not one of those times.

Sometimes, you get to catch up with getting ahead of yourself, and give yourself a high-five.

If you are going to go down this path, pack up and go. Don’t talk about “if”, talk about “when”. This is a hard, seemingly impossible path, and if you give yourself an inch of room for it not happening, it won’t. It still might not, but your determination and resolve can make all the difference in the world, the world filled with cynics and critics, and Monday morning quarterbacks. That does not mean you aren't going to have fears and exhaustion and nightmares about the worst, but keep going as if it is GOING TO HAPPEN. 

That friend is still our friend, and I know that they only voiced to me what I am sure many other people were saying and thinking. I wish to be gracious in my handling of this situation and these people and not say “I told you so”.


But maybe in this case I am getting ahead of myself... I told you so. 

1 Comments:

Blogger A Hopeful Doc said...

Congrats on his getting in and kudos for your support. Talking with lots of women docs this summer, I found that many of them got where they are because their supportive spouses. A lot of sacrifices must be made on the med journey but so many memories and wonderful things to be gained in their place. It's all about perspective as this holds true for whatever path you pursue as a woman. You close doors and others open! You post reminds me of why I posted what I did to the Medical Monday group about women in medicine. Thanks for the encouragement and great post.

November 13, 2013 at 3:35 PM  

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