Monday, November 18, 2013


As the year winds down and everything is getting more complicated for me. Do I do a residency? Do I stay in this relationship I've found myself in? Do I take that job?

I'm torn and at crossroads in both my personal and professional life.

I don't think I'll be happy taking that job, but conversely I don't know if I'll be happy doing a residency. I feel lost. I worked so hard these past three years to make myself a competitive candidate and now I'm not even sure that's what I want anymore. Is it fear of failure? As much as being challenged appeals to me, I don't know if I am cut out for it. I don't want to burn out, but I don't want to settle.

It doesn't help that I'm so conflicted about my relationship. She makes me happier, but at the same time she hurts me. A part of me feels like I'm just afraid to let go because saying goodbye to her breaks my heart. She puts a smile on my face whenever we get to talk. But... at the same time, when she pulls away from me it hurts. I know she's scared. I know this is just as hard for her as it is for me, but it's hard not to hurt when it happens. It's hard not to want to pull away, too so I can protect my own heart.

A part of me feels like she's ashamed of me. I feel like a secret she doesn't want anyone to know about. Maybe it's true and maybe it's not.

I deserve someone who will love me for who I am. I deserve someone that will let herself fall, even if it's terrifying.

But I want her.

Monday, October 7, 2013


I'm going to preface this with: these are only my opinions based on my own experience and what my friends and I discuss. This is more a comical recollection of "don't let this happen to you..."

So... APPEs (Advanced pharmacy practice experience) is the year where we pay the school money to work for free. Depending on your school and your experiences, it feels like slave labor (aka doing things you do as an intern in the community for pay) OR it can be an amazing learning experience.

I've only had a few rotations so far and I've experienced both ends of the spectrum. I've been bored to death at a community pharmacy because they ran out of things to show me and I've been driven into the ground with work in an overwhelming, yet amazing learning experience.

Tips for surviving your APPE...

1) DON'T be an asshole. Seriously, even if you think you know everything, you probably don't. You're here to learn, they're here to teach you. Pharmacy is a small, small world. Don't burn your bridges.
1b) Don't talk back to your preceptor. If s/he says, "look something up", just go do it. If you have to look up a lot of stuff, chances are you need to brush up on your stuff. Don't throw back attitude and say "why don't YOU look it up?

I know those two seem like common sense... but from collective experiences... common sense is severely lacking for some.

2) If you're going to do a journal club or case presentation... be prepared to know it inside and out. Especially if you have a challenging preceptor. Be thorough and concise. No one wants to sit through a 2 hour case presentation full of arbitrary information.

3) SPELL CHECK. For the love of god. Spell check everything.

4) Be personable. Ask questions when you don't know about something. Like didactics, this experience is partly what YOU make of it. If you're going to sulk in a corner, it's going to be a long shitty block. Try and interact with everyone there. Chances are you're bound to at least connect with someone in the pharmacy.

5) DO NOT ask for extensions (unless an unforeseen emergency like a family illness or the like occurs). Deadlines are given in advance for a reason... learn to manage your time. It makes you look really unreliable and irresponsible if you're constantly asking for extensions. I'd probably pull an all nighter (difficult at my old age) before requesting an extension.

6) If you have a special interest, try and see if you can pursue that, but do not act like a 5 year old on a temper tantrum if the preceptor would prefer another project. You're going to need to be well rounded for boards anyways and you never know what you could fall in love with.

And now I'm sleepy... (APPE narcolepsy) perhaps there'll be a part II some day.

Thursday, May 9, 2013


And just like that, the didactic portion of my pharmacy career is over. The only thing that stands between myself and my pharmD are my advanced rotations!

It's so surreal. The past three years have seemingly disappeared in the blink of an eye. A very long, painful, stressful, exhausting blink. It's bittersweet really, saying goodbye to the people that have become my family over the past 3 years. I've grown so much as a person over the past few years. I had my setbacks just like everyone else, but I'm at such a wonderful place in my life right now. I'm hangin' up the #2 pencil reserved for exams and kinetics problems and replacing it with my favorite pen.

In the words of Barney Stinson, it's time to suit up! I'm terrified really. I'll be asked opinions on real living, breathing patients. There will be many trials and tribulations I'm sure, but I'm almost mentally prepared for it all.

As for the special lady I mentioned in my last post... things are going well. She makes me smile every day and helped pull me through those last few weeks of hell. She fits into my life so seamlessly sometimes I wonder how I ever did without her. I can see myself falling for her and the thought scares me a little, but when she flashes me that smile of hers, I know I'm a goner. We've had our rough patches and I'm sure there will be more, but she's been such a positive addition to my life.

Friday, April 12, 2013


So it looks like I gave you an update very early in the fall and suddenly it's a month away from the end of my didactic career! My apologies to anyone who has been waiting for an update.

Third year has been an intense whirlwind. I feel like I catch up only to fall quickly behind again. A lot of people tell me second year is the hardest year, but at my school third year definitely takes the cake on difficulty. I've been challenged again and again to balance my studies with my organizations and with my jobs.  I've learned a lot about myself and other this year and I wish I had the time to share all the tiny little moments that changed my views on life this year.

I'm battling a hard case of senioritis right now and struggling to catch up. It's been a difficult home stretch for me personally. I've had to struggle with a lot of personal events that turned my life upside down while struggling to stay afloat in school. But I won't bore you with the negativity.

I wanted to share my excitement (and fear, lots and lots of fear) about finally going on rotations. I've got some amazing blocks at some great hospitals and I'm excited for my final year and all that I will hopefully be able to learn from it. Even with all the negativity that I've felt hold me down thus far I still have to realize all the good that has come of it.

I also met a girl. It's really too soon to say how it may go or way things are headed, but she makes me smile and really brightens up my day. I think she's the best part of this dreary home stretch I've been on. When I get a text from her I start smiling like a fool and I feel like in that moment my mood instantly improves.The only downside is that she is very distracting. I really adore that she kind of helps keep me on track and actually cancels plans we have so I can study so that I don't have to. My friends have also begun to hide my cell phone to keep the texting to a minimum during our study sessions.  I'm excited and (terrified) of how things may or may not progress... but as always I have to keep my chin up and take things as they go.

I guess all in all I'm still happy. I have my bad days like everyone else, but I am keeping my head above water and taking things one day at a time.