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Lives of Doctor Wives: June 2014

Monday, June 23, 2014

PreMed Perspective: Lessons Learned

This is my final post as a premed wife. I can’t believe it. What a wild ride it has been!

My husband started taking his science pre-reqs the week we started dating. Just a few weeks after 3 years, we have been married almost 2 years, here we are, on the verge of starting at the school that seemed like such a long shot that first week. Heck, all of this was a long shot.

But here we are.

In my last post, I would like to share some of the things we have learned:

1.     Nothing is impossible.  7500 people applied to UCSD last year, for 120 spots. My husband is a smart guy, but the odds were ever NOT in our favor. We had resigned ourselves to the fact that we would probably have to move away from our hometown of San Diego. We were wrong. Nothing is impossible.
2.     Not everything happens the way you hope. We hoped for scholarship money. Didn’t happen. We hoped that we would be able to put lots of money this past year in preparation for the loss of 3 incomes this fall with him quitting his 2 part time jobs and me quitting my 1 part time job, but instead I lost my full time job and we weren’t sure how we would get through it, particularly since it happened the week school applications went out. It took me 8 months to find another full time job.
3.     You can’t control everything, so just go for the ride. Easier said than done, for sure! I still get very scared by the future at times. How will we survive, am I capable of being the sole-supporter of us and still be a good wife, friend,  family member, and potentially a mother and not lose my mind? I don’t know, I don’t know what is ahead, but I know what I can control, and that is my response to it all. It has been a hard lesson at times to learn, and I continue to do so.
4.     Enjoy the moments you have. We have each worked 2 jobs during this time. There are days we don’t see each other. I don’t like those days. We don’t know what our days will really be like in the next few years. We, shockingly, may actually end up with more time together in some ways. We will have days ahead still that will make it hard to be together. So we enjoy what we can now, like our Monday night dates to watch “The Bachelorette”!
5.     Commit 100%, or not at all. This is kind of like being pregnant. You either are, or you aren’t. Don’t go into this holding anything back, or believe it is just your spouse’s responsibility. You are in this 100% too. Act like it. Take ownership. It will actually make you feel better about this and not feel so pushed around and helpless. Your 100% will be different than theirs (thank goodness, cause me and math don’t see eye to eye), but you are in it none the less.

My parting words to you following us are this: Don’t expect anything from this and don’t expect anything less than THIER best effort from your spouse… and we wish you the very best in your journey!


2014 Annual Medical New Year Giveaway!!!

Who can resist a giveaway?  In the medical community, the one good thing about July is that it is our Medical New Year.  For those of us in practice and attending-hood, we have long hours and absent husbands with the silver lining bonus of vacations, sometimes...but many of you in training know that until you are completely done, no hospital is gonna let you have a vacation in July!!  July is full of strong emotions.  So many of us move all over the country to support our spouses' climb to be the best doctors that they can be.  Sometimes we leave family, sometimes we forego family, sometimes we budget every last penny to feed our families, but we are all in this together and although July is tough, it is full of new experiences and we hope that you remember to take a moment and breathe...
enter the rafflecopter
...and win a prize. ;-) 

First the rules
(Thanks Sarah...took this from your blog post last year)

-You Must be a member of Lives of Doctor's Wives Facebook Group.  
-You Must reside in the United States.
-I will be verifying all entries, so please be honest about which requirements you choose to do on the Rafflecopter widget.  You can log into it through your FB account, and then just read the directions, follow them if you so choose, and click on them to confirm that you entered.  It is a bit of work, but you are not required to do any of them for entry other than leaving a blog comments Going through the other options will earn you extra entries and give our amazing donors a little love.  :-) 
-The contest will be open for one week, at which point I will use the Rafflecopter widget to randomly draw winners.  Because the computer will be doing all of the drawing, EVERYONE in LDW is eligible to enter--including our donors, moderators, administrators (myself included).  I don't choose the winners, I just email them to tell them they won.  I will email winners once I have verified the entries.  If winners do not respond to my emails within 48 hours, they forfeit their prizes and another winner will be chosen.
-Due to the sheer volume of entries and prizes, you do not get to pick and choose your prizes.  I will simply go down the list of available prizes.  The first winner drawn gets the first prize on the list and so forth.  If you do not want your prize, that is fine, but you will not get another one.  You will simply be choosing not to win anything.  I apologize for any disappointment that this may cause, but I simply cannot keep up with the requests and switching around prizes this year. :-) 

And now....
Let's get on to the good stuff :-)

1. $20 Gift Certificate to Origami Owl from Trisha Stibbe

2.  $25 Gift card to a restaurant donated by moderator, Melissa Larson.

3.  One set of 4 insect shaped lotion bars; as seen in the picture, donated by Kristy Scott.  The lotion bars are handmade using coconut oil, beeswax, and lavender essential oil.  

4.  $25 Groupon Gift Card donated by Dhurga Ganesh.

5.  $20 in credit to Kristin Murphy's Etsy Shop, The Simple Perks!https://www.etsy.com/shop/theSimplePerks
6.  $30 E-giftcard to Powells.com, an independent book store out of Portland, OR by Tiffany Sweeney.  Check out Tiffany's blog and facebook page, Tif Talks Books!

Moderator Clara Tsai is donating the following:

7.  A New Haiku Hobo!
8.  A beautiful ruffle scarf that she made!

9.  Wen Conditioner (summer mango coconut)

10.  Wen Conditioner (spring gardenia green tea)

Mary Ann Clements has offered us two beautiful bracelets!

11.  Frozen Silver Charm Bracelet

12.  Elsa Inspired Frozen European Style Bracelet

13.  Marianne Mills has offered to purchase a giveaway winner a copy of the book, The Five Love Languages!http://www.amazon.com/The-Love-Languages-Secret-Lasts/dp/0802473156/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1401137030&sr=8-1&keywords=the+five+love+languages

Crisanne Barker has two donations!
14.  A beautiful Kendra Scott Necklace!
Kendra Scott Rayne Necklace in Cobalt
14K Gold Plated Over Brass
Size: 5.5"L x 1.125W pendant, 30" chain with extender
Retail $80.00

15.  1 Smashbox Full Exposure Palette with 14 shadows and trial size mascara
        2 Urban Decay Eye Pencils in Smoke and Whiskey

16.  Our Founding Admin, Melisa Mons is offering a Potty Time DVD/CD and watch!

17.  Sarah McKenna, one of our beloved ex-Admins, is offering a $25 shop credit to her Etsy page, Bombshell Bling Jewelry!!

18.  Nicole Caywood is donating a makeup bag with some Younique 3D fiber lash mascara, two eyeshadows, and a lip gloss.https://www.youniqueproducts.com/NicoleCaywood/

19.  Amy Redfield is offering up a bracelet that she will customize the initials on for whoever wins the item!

20.  Beka Dougherty will donate a Scentsy Burner and two scent bars!

21. $20 Gift Card to Jamberry nails by Felicia Rodriguez!

22.  $50 Barnes and Nobles Gift Card from Leah Guinn, Courtesy of her blog, wellreadsherlockian.com

23.  Eva WB is donating some crocheted baby booties!!!

24.  Customize your very own headband!!! Crystal Hinkle is offering a headband from her home business, https://www.facebook.com/duragzheadbands!!

25.  Moderator Sandra Ziegler is offering her beautiful "Shooting Star" Earrings!!

26. Jenni Kneuertz is offering a set of Custom Family Name blocks from her facebook group, Crafting Through Residency!!

Li Khan is offering up two giveaway items!
27.  A Keurig K45 Elite Single Serve Brewing System in the color of your choice!

29.  Stacey Hostetter is offering:  
One small black locket
One black ball station chain
One of my in stock charms of your choice 

30-40.  Larson Financial is donating 10 of their books, Doctor's Eyes Only!

Larson Financial is donating TEN copies of their new book. DOCTOR'S EYES ONLY: Exclusive Strategies for Today's Doctors and Dentists is the missing financial guide that physicians need as a supplement to their ongoing professional training. These pages include basic financial wisdom that could end up saving you millions of dollars throughout your medical career.
The strategies and advice contained are unique to the needs of high-income physicians and dentists. Asset protection, investment fundamentals, tax planning, and practice management are well covered by the leaders of America's largest financial firm that exclusively serves the needs of high income medical professionals.

41.  From Courtney Roshamanesh!!! 

42.  Lavanya Rayapudi has donated a pair of Stella and Dot Earrings!

Lara Buchheit is donating the following:

43-44.  A set of toddler socks! (2 winners)

45.  1 set of 3 hand knitted dishcloths
46.  1 set of 3 hand knitted baby washcloths

47.  Jaye Kliewer is donating a custom framed map that says "Home is wherever you are"

Dora Alaniz is donating:
48.  1 do terra intro kit 
49.  1 slim and sassy essential oil 
50.  1 lemon essential oil

51. Katie Schauf,  is offering a 8X10 frame in the winner's choice of color and style from The Organic Bloom!  Katie also has her own photography business!  

52.  AlliRN is offering a Pedicure package!  

53.  Jennifer Ozuna, admin and delightful giveaway organizer ;-) Is offering a $30 credit for her business Top It Off Cupcake and Cake Toppers!

Veena Jetti, Admin and #HashtagQueen, has donated the following:
54.  $25 Amazon GC from scribesforyou.com

Scribes for You is a blog service coming soon! Our service allows the medical community and other small businesses to keep their websites fresh, informative, and fun with blogs at minimal cost to you! If you are a writer, you can earn $$$$ by writing and submitting quality blogs for our requesters!


55.  $25 Amazon GC from Dr. Vamseen Jetti MD, PA: a partner of Texas Star Anesthesia Management
TSAM is an anesthesia group in the DFW area focused on compassion, commitment, and quality care as your anesthesia provider. As a patient, you can choose your anesthesiologist-- ask for Texas Star Anesthesia Management.

For physicians- We provide anesthesia coverage for all of our surgeons and proceduralists and take call simultaneously. We always accommodate you and your patient and help grow your practice. When you succeed, we succeed!


And Finally....

How do I enter???

Use the Rafflecopter widget!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Friday, June 20, 2014

Looking back

As we began preparing for our final move for Drh real job I began to think about our journey.  I have been with Drh the entire process, from studying for MCAT to applying to medical school, on down to interviewing for real jobs. When we moved from medical school to residency 14 hours away from family we were both excited and nervous.  We bought our first home in a neighborhood full of other residence families.  Drh program starts the week before July 1st. I was/am a school teacher and was off during the summer.  Now imagine being 14 hours away from home with Drh working 90+ hours a week and knowing no one other than through passing.  I had met some girls that husbands were in the same residency program as my husband but were PGY2.  They had mentioned on Fridays they had play groups at someones house.  Well after two weeks of vacuuming my house daily and eating dinner by myself I was ready to call it quits and move back home; I showed up at play group with out a child (thought about bringing my cat!!). At first it was strange and very intimating.  Here I am at this girl's house that I barley know and she hosting play group with all of these other moms.   The two hours passed very quickly and I was so thankful to have adult conversation.  I started going to play groups on a regular bases and got to be pretty close to some of the other wives.  You never know you might find your self in a similar situation. I encourage you as we approach a new medical year to get out and meet new people!! You never know where you might find your life long BFF!


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Survivor Stories: I Need Help Accepting Help

It is quiet, and I am alone.  This is rare!  My kids are asleep, my husband is out catching up with a buddy from residency, and my parents left on a short road trip this morning.  As a 37-year old woman, I am once again under my parents' roof, for the longest time since I left for college.

The circumstances are fine:  we are having a home built a few miles away, our rental wasn't available anymore, and my parents were literally down the street from the house we were renting.  They have graciously let our family of four fill up their home until our new one is complete.  My parents and I have always enjoyed a healthy and loving relationship, and they adore my husband and the kids--their only two grandchildren since I'm an only child.

All of you know this medical journey has many twists and turns that yank families this way and that.  Many of you have either considered or decided to live with parents or other family members temporarily or even permanently.  Since we have been here with my parents for about four months,  I've been learning a lot about my family.  One of the more surprising things I've become aware of has to do with me, and with something we talk about often as doctors' wives.

"We can do hard things"--this is a phrase I see a lot of in our discussions on the LDW page.  Having been married to my husband since just before he started medical school in 2001, I've taken pride in the variety of things I've done in his absence, out of necessity.  I might not have a perfectly tidy home, my kids don't always get along, and I don't always handle things with the grace and strength I'd like to, but I feel satisfied and content when I think about being the wife and mom that I am.  I suppose I get a certain amount of dignity from fulfilling my role to the best of my ability.

It probably shouldn't have surprised me, then, that having so much help at my fingertips might seem a little strange at first.  All of a sudden, our cat's litter box and food had been freshened before I even had breakfast; dirty dishes by the sink were washed, dried, and put away before I could make a second trip back from the table; my kids' sheets were being laundered before I could get to them; items I'd forgotten on the grocery list were in the fridge within hours.  My parents are pretty darn amazing, and they obviously show lots of love through acts of kindness.  It is wonderful, and I am grateful.  To be completely honest, though, it has really been hard sometimes to just say "thank you" and keep going.

Prideful me feels guilty, inadequate, even lazy, for not doing it all.  I have been doing all of these things for years, so why should I stop now?  Do my parents think I'm struggling, and that's why they do so much?  Am I not clean/diligent/organized/patient/able enough to accomplish all of these things?  Pride is pretty ugly, isn't it?  It hurts our own hearts and those around us, too.  My eyes have really been opened to my difficulty in accepting help!

I'm working on it, though.  I am practicing gratitude.  When someone does something nice, I simply say thank you.  I am remembering that as my parents do so many things to help me, I am freed up to be more available to my kids and husband.  Or, when the kids play intently with their grandparents, I am freed up to make dinner or take care of a phone call or e-mail.  It's a situation that truly has the potential to bless all of us.  It's great for our kids to see us do hard things, but I think it's just as important for them to see us accept help graciously.

I am wife of nearly 13 years to an ENT physician, who is in his fourth year out of training.  We have a son, age 9, and a daughter, age 4.5.  We are looking forward to moving into our new home and settling down for as long as we can, and we are also enjoying where we are right now!

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Friday, June 6, 2014

Physician Family Debuts

Physician Family Debuts Friday, June 6 
By Donna Baver Rovito Editor, Physician Family

 There were about 30 people who live with a doctor sitting around the table in beautiful Charleston, SC on that steamy afternoon late last summer. We were all there for the same reason – to come up with better ways to help the family of medicine to connect with each other and to cope with our….UNIQUE lifestyles.

 I don’t think there’s a single one of us who hasn’t recognized that people who DO NOT live with a doctor just don’t “get it.”

 Face it, our lives aren’t the same as other people’s lives. The significant other in our lives is absent a LOT. We’re forced to handle pretty much everything on our own, our schedules are irregular at best, and we need to be able to turn on a dime.

Granted, we’re strong enough to do that (well, most of the time), but sometimes it’s difficult, and sometimes we just need to know that the person on the other end of the phone or the keyboard GETS IT in a way that so many of our friends and family members don’t. 

The AMA Alliance is the largest organization connecting the family of medicine in the country – and yet, we knew we weren’t serving every medical family, so that afternoon meeting of the Alliance board was a brainstorming session to help us think outside of our own box.                                                                                                                                                                                                            We kicked around a lot of ideas. We talked about how medical student and resident spouses and partners communicate differently than those of us who are a little more “mature.”                                                                                                                                                                                                 We talked about Facebook and Twitter and LDW and other doctors’ wives communities, and how we need to find ways to connect with the younger physician family members so we can help them with their medical “journey.” And then, someone said, “What if we had a third publication that wasn’t just for our members? An online publication for ALL the families of physicians?” 

Ding, ding, ding!!! 

Fast forward through months of planning and getting approvals, reaching out to writers with article ideas, designing and researching, emailing and personal messaging, organizing and editing.                                                                                                                                                                                     Now, a little more than nine months later, that third publication has become a reality, in no small part due to the Facebook communities like LDW, created by physician family members seeking each other for support and advice. 

 Physician Family, a quarterly digital publication for the families of MDs and DOs, goes live Friday, June 6, 2014 at www.physicianfamilymedia.org. The magazine is filled with information about this unique lifestyle we all “enjoy.” There are Top Ten lists for all four of the stages of life with a physician – medical school, residency and fellowship, active practice and retirement. There are articles about legal and financial issues, advocacy, relationships and burnout, networking with other physicians’ families, food solutions, a little bit of humor and lots more. 

And MANY of those articles have been written by physicians’ spouses whose names will be familiar to LDW members – Sara Peterson, Tiffany Sweeney, Vina Lybbert, Julie Newman, Tarryn Penn, Jillian Robertson, Angela Hummel and yours truly. We appreciate their valuable contributions to our inaugural edition!

 If you have access to the Internet, you can read Physician Family on your computer, tablet or phone. It’s free and it was created just for you. Or, as the cover announces: “At last…a magazine for us.” But the quarterly magazine is only part of it. Each week, members of physicians’ families and experts in various fields which interest us will blog about a variety of topics. Our website (www.physicianfamilymedia.org) will eventually feature resources for all stages of medical life. 

We’re on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/PhysicianFamilyMedia) and Twitter (@PhysFamilyMedia) too, and hope to connect with you to hear your thoughts, ideas, concerns or whatever is on your mind. Or if you’re a writer or blogger, or a professional in a field of interest to medical families, Physician Family can provide a showcase for your talent and expertise! 

 You can contact me, too. “Friend” or PM me on Facebook (Donna Rovito) or email me at editor@physicianfamilymedia.org. Being part of a medical family is a unique journey, and Physician Family would be thrilled to be a part of yours!


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