Crossing a Bridge

I’ve shared some, but not much, of our journey through medical school and residency. This little old blog actually started the same month The Hubby started medical school, back when Big J was a toddler and Little J was a newborn!

In some aspects, the past six years have FLOWN by, but I know that there were months, weeks, and even days that felt incredibly long and hard along the way. All in all, it has been challenging for all of us, but nearly as hard as I imagined it could be. For that, I am so very thankful.

And I’m here to share another reason for us to be thankful: last month, The Hubby signed a contract for an outpatient internal medicine clinic position to start when he finishes residency next summer! We took about three months to pray and really weigh all of our options and God led us clearly to this one. We are so very excited and grateful and all the emotions!

I feel like we are now on a bridge. Yes, we are physically still on one side of the bridge, living in the same house, same city, same everything, but in our hearts, we’ve stepped out on to this bridge that will take us to the next place He has for us. This one decision means so many things will change for us next summer – new town, new home, new job, new friends – and we are crossing a bridge over these next nine months to prepare ourselves and our boys for the other side.


On the Bridge

The town we will be moving to has this fabulous old pedestrian bridge. The Hubby and I stood on that bridge discussing the future the last time we visited before making our decision. The bridge felt significant to me, so I snapped a bunch of pictures, and when we got home, I discovered this quote…

Bridge Builder Long

“I will not tell you how long or short the way will be; only that it lies across a river. But do not fear that, for I am the great Bridge Builder.” ~spoken by Aslan in The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis

I can’t tell you right now if the next nine months will feel long or short. But change is going to happen and God is asking me to not be afraid of it – the house selling and house buying and saying goodbye to everything familiar. Change is the river we must cross, but He will build our bridge and will lead us across it.

Through this process, God has used so many water and river images to guide and calm me, so I’m not surprised this bridge is firmly imprinted on my mind. It’s actually a comfort now as I know we’ve taken the first step and the only way to go is forward!

Yes, change is unsettling, but we are so thrilled with the direction He is moving us. We’re crossing the bridge and looking forward to many new and wonderful things for our family!

 

What bridge are you crossing right now?

 

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The Reality of Residency

The Hubby is in his second year of residency now and I get asked a lot…

“How is residency going?”

Seems like a simple enough question, but it’s actually quite complicated because, for us, residency is ALWAYS changing. Let me explain…

Reality of Residency

The Hubby is an internal medicine resident. Internal medicine encompasses a LOT of areas, so to cover as many of them as possible during the three year program, the residents change rotations every month.

When someone asks how residency is going, my answer will vary greatly from month to month. Rotations include hospitalist shifts, cardiology, intensive care, oncology, nephrology, ER, and many more. Some months involve night shifts, some are mostly 8-5. Some are predictable, some are very much not. Some smooth sailing, some rough waters.

For example, the last three months were not the best, to put it gently. Working back to back ICU and oncology rotations is rough. The hours are crazy and the cases are quite complicated, and obviously, sad. If you asked either The Hubby or I about residency in the last two months, our answer would have been, “Is August over yet?!”

But now. Oh, lovely, wonderful now. A rheumatology rotation, with it’s almost-all clinic hours + very few on-call hours + fascinating, complex cases for The Hubby, has been a slice of heaven for all of us. We ate dinner together all week. We had a weekend without a pager going off ONE. SINGLE. TIME.

Overall, residency is going very well and very fast. I kind of can’t believe the first year is in the books. The Hubby loves most of what he does and I love that. I really, really love that.

On a related note, one of the highlights of this past week was overhearing a “conversation” between the younger two boys:

Double J: Daddy?

Little J: He’s at the hospital helping patients!

I thought it was so cute and mature that he answered more specifically than just, “He’s at work.” We’re proud to have a husband and father who has followed God’s calling on his life to help people in this way!

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On a Medical Mission with Pure Charity

If you’re new here, WELCOME! And if you’ve been here before, WELCOME BACK!

A little introduction for the newbies…

I’m Erin, wife of a first-year internal medicine resident and mom to three boys, 7, 4.5, and 1! I’m a lover of Jesus, reading, writing, running, and teaching our kiddos! In addition to writing here, I am also the co-founder and creator of Raising Boys Media, featuring three sites for parents of boys – The MOB Society, Boy Dads, and Raising Hearty Boys!

I am so thrilled to to be co-hosting Medical Monday this month! I love that there is a way for those connected to the medical field to meet and support one another through blogging!

Any profession has its unique perks and challenges, but community with others in that same field can make it all seem a little more “normal.” One of the biggest blessings on our medical journey so far has been the friends we’ve ade who are in the same boat. The Hubby found some of these friends in his study group during medical school, and I’ve been blessed with that community in my Bible study of residents’ wives!

As we’ve gotten farther down our medical path, the healthcare situation in impoverished countries has come more into field of interest. I have no expertise in the healthcare or medical fields, but I do know that it saddens me to know this simple fact:

NEARLY A THIRD OF THE WORLD’S POPULATION LACKS REGULAR ACCESS TO ESSENTIAL MEDICATIONS.

And that’s not the only medical crisis facing our world. All the needs can be overwhelming when we try to figure out a way to help, but I have a simple way for us as a medical community to make a difference with the shopping we already do on a regular basis.

It’s called Pure Charity, and with them, we’re going On a Medical Mission.

Medical Mission group-cover-image_edited-1

Pure Charity is like you telling your favorite stores where you want your portion their charitable giving funds to go! You are already shopping Target online or booking a trip online, but when you do it through Pure Charity, a portion of your money spent is directed back into a giving fund in which you are in charge!

And to rally this community around the cause of better healthcare around the world, we’ve put together a Pure Charity group, called On a Medical Mission, to make a difference together!

Before we get to the group, here’s the nitty gritty of how to get set up with Pure Charity:

1. Sign up for a FREE Pure Charity account. If you’re on Facebook, you can sign in through that (which is great for sharing in the future), or you can sign up the old-fashioned way.

2. Install the browser plugin. This will make a little icon pop up when you’re shopping online at participating vendors, and with a simple *click*, a percentage of your purchase will be sent into your personal giving account with Pure Charity. Make sure you click the icon and the reward to get credit to your giving fund. Need a little guidance about how the Rewards works? Check out this video:

3. Now, browse the projects. Every project on Pure Charity falls into one of six categories: food, freedom, health, opportunity, water, or relief. You can sort through them by category, region, or just search for a non-profit to support.

4. Support your favorite project. You choose how much you donate. It starts with $5 increment awhich you can change by clicking the dollar amount. Projects are time-sensitive with a set amount of money. If that project doesn’t fully fund by the finish date, Pure Charity refunds the money back into your giving account.

5. Share it with friends! This is way more fun and powerful when done with others! You can share buttons and widgets with your friends and followers to generate interest in a cause about which you are passionate.

Once you’re all signed up, you can join our On a Medical Mission group where we will post healthcare-related projects that need backing and, hopefully, get them fully funded!

We’re starting with a project from e3 Partners Medical, working to supply medical bags to communities in the Sudan. You can read more about the project and start backing it here.

 

Ok, everybody got that?! If this seems a little confusing, it’s really not once you get going, but please ask any questions you may have and I will find out the answers for you!

Whether you are a doctor, nurse, dentist, physical therapist, pharmacist, hospital or clinic worker, any profession in the health field or the spouse or significant other of someone who is, let’s take our place in this medical community and make a difference in the health of the world!

*****

As part of Medical Monday this month, we have a special surprise for you! Kristen Math has just published the second edition of her book, “Surviving Residency” and she’s offered to give one away to one of our lucky readers! You can read the introduction here and check out what others are saying about it here!

This giveaway is open to anyone in the USA or Canada. You do not have to participate in Medical Monday to participate in the giveaway, however, we hope you will… the more the merrier!

The winner will be announced Monday, May 13th, so be sure to check back on the “Surviving Residency” Facebook page, YDW or FDW blogs to see if you have won! Winner will have 48 hours to claim prize. After 48 hours, another winner will be drawn.

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Now, are you ready for a week’s worth of great reads? If you’re new to our monthly link up, WELCOME and continue reading for the deets. If you are one of our regulars, HAPPY MAY and feel free to scroll down to the little blue link up button. New or a regular, we are thrilled to have you with us! Medical Monday is a once a month opportunity for any and all medical/med life blogs to link up and meet others. So join us!

Are you confused if you qualify for the party? If you have a pager interrupting your life… you DEFINITELY qualify! Do you work in healthcare?
  • Doctor? Nurse? EMT? Chiropractor? Vet? Dentist? Therapist?
  • MA? NA? PA? DA?
  • Are you the spouse or SO of a healthcare worker/student?
  • Are you a nursing student? Medical student?
  • Intern? Resident? Fellow?
You get the picture, right? Come on, now… don’t be shy! Let’s keep growing and meeting new bloggers, so we can build a community of support and friendship, learn from one another, and share our stories.

 

LINK UP YOUR POST!
Here are the rules:
  • Follow your co-hosts via Bloglovin (since GFC will soon be defunct), FB, email or Twitter.
  • Link up you medical/med life blog. If your blog name does not clearly state how you fit in to the med/med life world, please write a little intro or link up a specific post which clearly demonstrates your connection.
  • Visit at least 3 other link ups, comment, introduce yourself, and tell the your stopping by or following from MM!
  • Help spread the word by using our button on your post or sidebar, tweet about Medical Monday, or spread the word on Facebook! The more the merrier for all of us.
Complete step one by following your co-hosts:

Want to be awesome? Post our button on you post or sidebar and help spread the word:

Want to co-host next month? Shoot Emma an email at yourdoctorswife@gmail.com and be sure to write “Medical Monday Co-host Request” in the subject field. Now, link up and have fun! The link up is open through Friday, so be sure to come back during the week to check some great reads!



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Our First “Doctor’s Family” Christmas

The last four years, we’ve had it really good during the holidays. With The Hubby being in medical school, Christmas break was two weeks long for all of us. We could travel to both families in no particular rush with plenty of time leftover to enjoy some time off at home as well.

Now, we have entered the residency world.

Forget The Hubby’s two week vacation – he’s working on Christmas Eve AND Christmas Day! And when I tell people that, the most common responses involve that being a bummer for our family.

Sure, it IS somewhat of a bummer, but let me tell you why it’s not bothering me as much as I thought it might.

This is our life now, and one that God called us to, which makes it just right for us. It’s hard to be bummed when you know you are right where God wants you!

The real bummer would be having to be IN the hospital on Christmas. Instead of moping about The Hubby’s work schedule, I’ve been praying for the patients he will be seeing this week. And I’ve been praying for him to be a blessing to them, both on medical terms and otherwise!

Actually, I’m quite excited about some new family traditions we are starting since we will be home on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day…

  • Homemade pizza for Christmas Eve dinner after church, followed by a Charlie Brown Christmas and reading Luke 2!
  • Chocolate chip scones for Christmas morning breakfast – the boys LOVE these and it will be surprise for them!
  • Brinner on Christmas night!

We’ve always read Luke 2 on Christmas Eve, but this year we will be doing it home! And we’ve always made a birthday cake for Jesus, but usually it is at Grandpa and Grandma’s house! We baked the cake today and will eat it tomorrow! The boys will open their stockings when they get up in the morning, then we will open presents after The Hubby gets home from work!

Even though it doesn’t look the same as in years past, we are getting to celebrate with extended family as well. The Hubby’s parents were here over the weekend and we’ll be travelling to see my family after Christmas!

Here’s a little look at our home in the days leading up to Christmas this year…

While we’re celebrating here at home, we wish you a blessed Christmas, wherever you may be!

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They Get Me

It’s Friday morning. I’m headed to a new Bible study I just started last week. Childcare is provided at the same location. {Hallelujah!} And the Bible study is with several other wives of residents.

We’re actually doing a Bible study about being a doctor’s wife. I could not have thought of a better way to start off our three years of residency than studying the Word of God and discussing our unique situations together.

Although I don’t know them well yet, this group of women is an answer to prayer.

I’ve never been one that has a hard time connecting with other women, but moving away from our home and church family of 12+ years, my prayer was to meet other women who really GET me.

God has always provided this in the past, so I shouldn’t be surprised that He is doing so again…

I have a best friend who knows my dislike of small talk and feels the exact same way. Let’s not waste time with any of that – life is too short to talk about “nothing.” With us, there is no fluff. There is no beating-around-the-bush. Real is all you get when we are together.

She totally gets me.

As a mama of two boys who grew up with no brothers, I found myself wondering what in the world I was doing raising these crazy, wonderful little men. Enter The MOB Society. Boom – 8,000+ boy moms sharing in the chaos and joy of bringing up boys. Boy moms wanting to raise strong, godly men who will take a stand for Jesus. I feel surrounded by wisdom and camraderie there.

Those boy mamas really get me, even if they have no idea who I am.

Then there was the time we decided to start homeschooling. God put just the right women in my life who would be starting the same journey. We get the fact that the life of a homeschool mom is hard and awesome and tiring and blessed and very hard to describe.

We get each other.

Now, I have these doctors’ wives. From just one Bible study meeting, the consensus was clear. We need this time together because we GET what each other is going through. There were lots of heads nodding in understanding as life stories were told – the journeys that led us to all be in a common place.

Nothing sounded unfamiliar as we discussed our current lives and schedules. And on top of it all, we all love Jesus and want to walk more fully in His calling for us as medical spouses.

One meeting and I can tell we GET one another.

Near or far, in person or online, new or old, each one of these is a blessing straight from heaven because we are on a similar path. I feel community and normalcy when I interact with these beautiful women.

It’s a good thing to be “got” and get through this life together.

*****

Which connections are you most thankful for in your life? Is there an area in which you really need someone to “get” you? I would love to pray for you today!



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