Saturday, February 18, 2017

Moments When Google Analytics = Ostrich Chased By Cheetah

Well, hello there, Mayo!

And with that, my heart dropped.

Quickly scanning all my posts while simultaneously remembering, I don't do controversy, and while the blog is very personal, it was started to give other non-trads a place where they could read, pick up some tips/tricks, and see that if the medical school path is for them, nothing is insurmountable.  Not everyone gets onto, or through, this path unscathed and without some deep soul searching.

Still, it was Mayo.  My #1 choice school. Family. Friends. Home.

As a little girl growing up in Rochester (and Duluth), Mayo was my 2nd home.  My great aunt worked there for ... the namesake of the facility.  I still have her leather kit with the name emblazoned on it.  Her name, my family's name, is in the museum.

And there was on the Google Analytics dashboard.

Because of that, it prompted me to remind all other premeds to be very careful with what you write, how you frame things, and where you post.

That fun trip to Cabo with 6 co-eds was a blast but I'm not sure the medical schools need to see you drinking out of a beer bong or playing beer pong.

This past election was full of ways to blow up Twitter, FB, Insta, etc. with your personal views on everything but of that, I'm positive no one needs to see that, or know.

I'm okay with whatever pages Mayo read here.  The stories are real, deeply personal and continue to provide the insight into what drives me on this path at the age of 52.  If that causes a med school to reject me, I'm okay with that.  Another school will accept me (I hope).

However, I'd be lying if I didn't post what went through my head when I saw Mayo:

Monday, February 13, 2017

Mentors, Cheerleaders, And Path Finders

This is it.


I've said that before, I've said that I would, I could, I should.  I tried, and quit. I tried again, and voided.  I tried and ...

On April 28th, I will take the MCAT for real, for good and be done.  Whatever my score is, I will accept.

Going to give it all I have, let the pieces fall where they may.

But I am going to give it all I have.  I tell that to my hockey team all the time.  Just give me 100% and I'll be happy with whatever happens. (It's a professional hockey team that likely cares about my non-trad, premed life or the stupid signs I hold at games - but I still tell them in tweets and posts, give me your best!)

Funny how saying that feels when hoisted upon my shoulders, in my life, with MY career at stake.

June 6, AMCAS opens for applications.  This year, I will have my score.  This year only LORs will be required.  This year, it will be fire and forget.  This year, I will complete an entire cycle and if rejected by every school, will accept the outcome.

Mentors guide a premed on the do's/don'ts and OMG - PLEASE delete that :) (Hi Itsa!)

Cheerleaders help you remember to smile and have fun, relax and that you can do this! (Hi Cousin! Hi Steph!)

Path Finders - these are the folks who blazed the trail before me.  The 57 year old PGY-3, the 56 year old MS-2, the 53 year old MS-1... my path finders, my trail blazers; the women I aspire to be like.

But until 4/28, (love Heath Ledger!)

Thursday, February 2, 2017

You Know

Who I am.

Night after night, I stand at the ice, holding some sign.  Some funny, some just simply state:

"I Believe" ...

I do. Really, I do, guys.

Almost 30 years ago - yes some of you weren't born yet - 30 years ago, I buried my first son.  He was 6 months old, a SIDS baby... I buried him with a University of Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs hockey stick signed by Hully, Watson, Kurvers, Sprenger, Mason x 2, and a few others.  My son was the son of the 'Dogs... my roommates married those guys (or some of them) and helped me get the stick signed. I've always been a "hockey mom" :)

Ya'll are like sons to me though we may never meet in person.  I feel like the Bolts Mom, cheering you on as if... he'd lived.

So, I continue to believe in you.  I continue to stand in the stands and cheer, and wave my thunder clapper, and hold dumb signs.

I continue to believe in you because...

1. you're really, really good men ON the ice and more so, OFF the ice... you're men I'd believe were good people no matter what; you're men who, I'd have hoped my son would be like had he lived... strong, fierce, honest

2.  you're really beaten up; no one in their right mind thinks it is okay to come back from adversity time after time after time after time at the highest levels of a very competitive sport with refs (let's face it, O'Hell should be fired and fined)... but you guys do.  It's one thing to come back once or even twice.  But 3x or 4x or 5x?  My blog is filled with the adversity I've struggled with to become a doc, in the hidden alcoves of my home. Can't imagine having to do so in the press and the (bandwagon) fan pages of Tampa.

3.  you're really great fathers, husbands, boyfriends, teammates, and friends - no doubt those who really know you see that as well.  I do.. from the 5th row in 117, each and every home game.

And hopefully, on Feb 10th, I'll see you in MY hometown, St. Paul to cheer the guys I believe in, at my home arena, in front of my friends who own the team, in my white / blue Bolt emboldened jersey (with Boyle on the back of course) sitting behind MY Bolt's bench...

Because I really do believe in you guys.  And as a mom, I'm so stinking proud of you for enduring this horrific, injury laden season.

You go be the Bolts, I'll hopefully get to be your Thunder in Minnesota...

I'll drive 1600 miles cuz

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Martin St. Louis - Retired Jersey Night

On a non-trad premed site, makes you wonder how the heck that's even relevant.  Right?

The organization retired MSL's jersey number on Friday night in a ceremony full of gloried videos showing the Lightning winning the coveted Stanley Cup in 2004, MSL hitting the backside of the net in double overtime against Calgary in Game 6 (in Calgary) to force a Game 7 back at home in Tampa.

When Tampa won the Cup, I was living in Minnesota, with an "individual" that's devoid of the term human.  He was from Calgary and in that vein, he was particularly angry with me when I cheered for the Bolts (always been a fan of underdogs - aren't we all?) and was forced to cheer for Calgary lest I feel his wrath.  Literally.

Fast forward 12 years, now a full season ticket holder for that club that beat the Flames, sitting close the ice, the memories for the fans were displayed.

The honors and accolades for this Martin St. Louis (Mar-Tawn Saint Louie) flooded everywhere.

People spoke, some joked, Stammer got a standing ovation (he's on long term injured reserve due to a torn meniscus and dear God of all things, please get him ready on time!).

Marty took the podium.  Chants from the rafters came loud, proud, and consistently:



He thanked the crowd and then thanked a plethora of individuals who'd impacted his career.

Then he got into his life.

How he made it to the NHL.  How he THRIVED and greatly succeeded in a league where smallish men are the water boys, not the Captains.

In talking about his late mother, this grown man openly wept.  19,092 people wept with him.  The raw emotion of what his mother meant to him not lost on anyone in the arena.

He laughed a little more, told a funny story and somewhat ended with this:

If you have a dream, don't let anyone tell you, you can't.  Because I'm telling you, you can with hard work, perseverance, determination and heart.

My eyes watered up again and my son put his arm around me, whispered, "See?  Even the great ones tell you the same thing. Don't stop, Mom, just don't stop."

At a hockey game, in my new home town, retiring the jersey number for a man whom I really never saw play, the message was clear.

Do. Not. Give. Up.

Thank you, Marty.

Not for the cup but for the wisdom, for your life's story about ignoring the haters and naysayers and showing them.

You showed them, Marty, you showed them!

To MY Bolts:

I have no idea what it's like to play in front of 19,000 people with the expectation that that silver trophy will come back to Tampa.

I have no idea what it's like to have people rant about you, your teammates, your coach online in forums, tweets, and newspaper pages. I do know they are wrong about all of that.

I have no idea what it's like to not know who will be playing next to you in the next game, or next shift and clearly, no idea how that lack of consistent chemistry relays into the game.

What I do know is this:

Life will ALWAYS give you a poopy hand at some point.  You guys have been decimated by injuries, penalties (deserved or often not).

Life will ALWAYS make you question yourselves and your path.

Marty didn't give up on his 2004 team, don't give up on yourselves.

WE, YOUR THUNDER, we believe. We believe even when things are shaky, uncertain, inconsistent.

Just like I believe in my path and my future, I believe in you.

Go out there and start the path to bringing that silver cup back into Amalie.

It looked pretty amazing on that platform, didn't it?

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Those Professors of Mine

I'm blessed.  2016 is in the rear view mirror and like some bridges that need to be torched, 2016 as the 2nd worst year of my life, is in ashes.

Starting the new year off appropriately, I logged onto my local university's email system to find lots of spam from the bookstore AND...

an email from one of my professors.  Dr. E.

For those wandering and pondering the course through premed as a non-trad, I can only say, let the little things keep you afloat, the little emails that let you know people who've taught you, and walked with you, believe in you.  It's never the big things in life, it's always the little things.

Like an email.  :)

2017 is going to be great!