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Lives of Doctor Wives: A Fork in the Road

Monday, February 3, 2014

A Fork in the Road

Have you ever felt the magic that happens in certain restaurants? Something about the combination of the food, the company, the conversation...every now and then, the stars align over a corner booth and you leave feeling full, physically and emotionally.

The hubby and I had one such dinner last weekend. In a busy restaurant, a plate of sushi between us, I found myself able to step back from our lives and observe us from afar, as if we were characters in a book. We discussed the setting, plot and theme of the story- the basic elements that led the two main characters to this particular juncture. But of course, no story is complete without a defining moment, some sort of event or decision that directs the characters down a different path. Over dinner that night, I realized that we are on the cusp. Cliche though it may be, if we were characters in a book, this would qualify as our 'fork in the road' moment.

A couple of years laden with science courses, all things MCAT, med school applications and interviews have brought us to this metaphorical fork in the road, so arriving here didn't take me by surprise. We have been intentional about preparing for what is to come. What has taken me by surprise, however, is the gravity of it. The weight of knowing that the news we will receive in the next weeks/months will change the course of our lives. And we can only pray that it's the news we want to hear. We have done everything we can. Now, we wait.

Waiting is hard. SO hard.

It's so much easier to focus on the climax of the story, right? Human nature almost demands it. We yearn for a defining moment. We find satisfaction in a rapidly moving plot line that seamlessly moves a character from point A to point B. We enjoy rooting for people. We get attached to our beloved characters and hope that they achieve what we see waiting for them just around the bend. Underdogs, unsung heroes, aha moments...we live for this stuff. Agreed? The problem is, life isn't always lived at the top. Most of the time, life consists of the day-to-day struggle. It's mundane, it's difficult, it's full of ordinary people striving towards extraordinary things.

From now on, I will place more value on the space between point A and point B. The time leading up to the fork in the road. The work we must do before we get to choose right or left. I have become so acutely aware of what that place feels like and I will never underestimate the power of it again. I believe that's where true character development occurs. In the in-between. In the hard stuff. The waiting. In that place of striving and working and hoping it will pay off. The place where the characters are stretched and molded into something better, stronger. The in-between full of extreme anxiety and a little bit of crazy. The in-between spent obsessively hashing out every possible scenario. The in-between with all its ups and downs, exhilaration and defeat- sometimes within the same day.

I guess you could say that I have found our own personal fork in the road moment to be both terrifying and thrilling all rolled into one. And I still remain incredibly happy about every choice we made that landed us here. That said, I cannot wait to move on. To finally turn right or left- knowing full well that we are prepared for either road ahead.

I refuse to let our defining moment define us. The journey to get here was too hard-fought to dismiss. It has changed us. And after the fork in the road...that's where we get to decide what to do with this new path. We get to write our own story. I have a feeling it will be brimming with defining moments.  

visit my personal blog at thehappyredhead.com



Blogger -c said...

I am really struggling with the Match Day wait, and have devised various ways of distracting myself to just make it through... I really love your book metaphor; the idea of character-building leading up to "the climax" is so clever, productive and positive. It's a good reminder that you can't just put your head in the sand and wait it out, succumbing to the stress and anxiety of the situation. A story's resolution is the most gratifying when it reflects a character's development along the way. Development > Distraction.

February 5, 2014 at 1:58 PM  
Blogger thehappyredhead said...

Thank you! Yes, the waiting has not been easy but it's nice to look back on the process and know that we have grown. Thanks for reading and commenting!

February 5, 2014 at 11:39 PM  
Blogger Bethany Ranney said...

I know the feeling all too well! Remember it like yesterday! You will make the best of whichever situation you end up in and in the end, if it's not exactly what you wanted, it ends up not being all that bad!

February 22, 2014 at 4:23 AM  

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