ei·do·lon (-dln)
     n. pl.   Image of an ideal.

Plato believed that we lived in a world of images, three-dimensional shadows of the true one.  What we see with  our eyes is nothing more than a cheap imitation of its true state.  For  example, the chair we see before our eyes is nothing more than a shabby image of the true chair that exists.  We carry on everyday with flawed perceptions of the true ideal form. 


Life After College: Year 3 -  In Transit    

[Monday, July 09, 2007]


I haven't had a pager since the 1990's. Remember, back when they were used for other purposes besides buying weed? When it was cool and hip to have one slinging from your belt? And pager language was a thing all of its own, with 41 (hi), 143 (i love you), and 177337 1773 47 743 177411 (meet me at the hall) now replaced by LOL, BBL, and ROFL. So when I received a big envelope today in Surgery orientation, I was a little startled to see that the big hard lump at the bottom was a pager. And it wasn't just any pager, it was a ghetto pager. If I'd been sporting this back in 1995, I would've been laughed out of high school. Black, stodgy, and with the Motorola insignia emblazoned on it, the pager screen was on the short edges, so I could only see a word at a time. Not on the longer flatter edges. I suppose I'd really only need to see phone numbers. There'll be no teenage romance over number language on this beast. Only heart-stopping moments when it goes off and I realize that someone somewhere expects me to do something. Some nurse will page me and expect me to know something. It's exciting and terrifying at the same time. Exciting mostly because to me - the pager is the badge of being a doctor. I've made it! Terrifying because I'm not really qualified to be hauling this thing around. And because it's the equivalent of an electronic leash. I'll never be able to turn my cell phone off again.

Tomorrow is my first night of being on call. I'm the first one to go. I'm on call the night before my first day of surgery on Wednesday. I'm not sure how this is supposed to work or why they organized it this way, but I'm hoping the resident I page will realize that holding my hand through everything will be more trouble than it's worth and send me home.

Posted by ink |  11:57 PM

[Friday, July 06, 2007]

Dry. Sort of.

I start my first rotation next week. Surgery (insert dramatic booming drums here). Not only is it Surgery, but it's surgery at the mothership - our own university hospital. People not interested in Surgery usually end up requesting one of the affiliate hospitals. After all, why torment yourself if you don't want go into it? But I'm at the mothership. Why? I know I love seeing people's insides. There's something about it that appeals to the engineer in me. Like opening up a robot or a machine or a computer. All the parts are in there, they all have a function, they all connect to each other and fit together and do something. And this might be the only time I'll get to see Surgery in my life. Because as much as I think I'll love it, what I know I won't love are the hours. I'm too much in love with life and free time and leisure to go into Surgery. This is my only chance to really make it worthwhile. So I entered the lottery with Surgery at the mothership as my top choice. To temper it, I also asked for it as my first rotation. I figured expectations are lower on the first rotation. You're not supposed to know anything since it's your first time in a hospital. And voila! The Gods of Rotations granted my wish.

Of course, this means 12 weeks of getting up at God-awful hours of the morning (4:30 AM) and trying to be peppy and a "team player" when all I want to do is pass out face down on a desk - but hopefully it won't be too bad. There was a Surgery open house last week for all the people who were doing it at our hospital. My friend Lee gave me a sobering look as I left the library to attend. "Have fun in the lions' den," he said. He has Surgery in the suburbs.

As I looked around at the Open House, I realized that I shouldn't be worried about early mornings or late night calls or being yelled at by surgeons. What I should be worried about is being thrown under the bus by one of my classmates while we're on rounds. The most intense people in my class were all clustered in one room. The hungriest people. The ones who never complain about missing family events, or cry about cancelling a trip to Ecuador, or gripe about spending all day in a library. And when the Chief of Surgery asked who wants to be a surgeon in here and all the arms shot up, I raised mine hesitantly too. Just to avoid attracting attention.

Luckily, there are 4 girls on my rotation with me, and 3 of us are Asian. If I just linger around the other 2 Asian girls, they probably won't be able to tell us apart and I'll be able to avoid any problems.

In the meantime, I've gone to the local Whole Foods to check out their selection of Clif Bars. I figured I should try each flavor and slowly transition into the Clif Bar diet that I'm sure I'll be on for the length of the Surgery rotation. I feel like I should know whether a bar constitutes a complete meal, nutrition-wise, but I took my boards on Monday, and my brain is currently in the process of forgetting everything I've learned.

Posted by ink |  11:48 AM



 about a 25  year old girl, ex-consultant, ex New York City inhabitant, newly minted med student, (still) largely single.

  about big change, the choices we make in life, gut instincts, on-the-whim hairpin turns, the search for truth, the desire to be happy, the journey to finding out what makes us happy.  

  about being young and clueless, hoping that we're not blindly leading ourselves to our own demise with every tentative step we take, the pitfalls of dating, the trials and travails of being a young woman in the post-feminist era.

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