Tuesday, July 11, 2006

moving forward

i think i have finally extracted myself out of the post-truth-abyss. yes, i still care. yes, i am still worried. yes, i am still preaching and proselytizing like . . . well, someone other than me. but i am living again, and that is probably a good thing, even if i do feel slightly guilty about not focusing 90% of my mental energy on OUR IMPENDING DOOM (with few actually productive thoughts on how to prevent it).

this means i can resume writing about the little pieces of life that make it interesting.

the outpatients
clinic work has been going well. my favorites are probably HIV clinic (who knew that place was so happy most of the time?? thank you, science!) and endocrine, although it would be even more exciting if it wasn't 98% diabetes patients. oncology is deeply depressing and not very much fun. i have been working with a physician whose expertise is in relatively rare GI tumors, a sub-sub-specialty that brings patients from far and wide who are looking for their last resort, some elusive ray of brilliant duke blue-tinted genius that will melt their pancreatic tumors away to nothing. our advertisements must be fantastic, but unfortunately there is no Magic Chemo for sale. and they hear what we have to offer, and it's never enough -- maybe a few extra months here or there, but not without pain. to watch this last pillar crumble in the exam room is devastating. i don't know how the oncologist can do what he does all the time, but he is a bit hardened. i guess he would have to be.

the progress
i guess i'm getting better, more efficient, less forgetful in the exam room. my first week, i forgot to do things like The Entire Physical Exam (oops), and now i am down to just leaving out, like, checking for ankle edema or something. i am still nowhere NEAR the finely honed scut machine that i was by the end of my core clinical year, though. and i still feel like i know nothing compared to what i used to, but i'm working on it.

the training
my schedule is pretty fabulous. in at 8:30, usually out by 5, if not earlier, with weekends off. because studying, writing blogs, and cooking for/looking after my overworked intern husband is not proving to be enough of a challenge, i have decided that 4th year can and should be the year that i (attempt to) qualify for the boston marathon. i'm finally working on increasing my speed (rather than endurance/mileage) and so far it is a fun novelty. i did an actual track workout yesterday, like, actually ON the track. it was hot.

the eBay
for the first time, i am attempting to sell things to random people on eBay. it was a pain to enter everything in, but now it's quite entertaining watching people bidding/tracking your stuff. instinctively, every time i see someone interested in an item i just have to think, 'they actually WANT that?? suckers!!!' but then i realize that they are paying a small fraction of what i did for that same item not that long ago, so yeah.