My Thoughts on Intern Year

March 19, 2014 in Residency

Its hard to believe that my first year of residency is almost over. So much has happened. I’m not usually the reflecting type, but I’ll give it a go for the sake of this post. I’ll start at the beginning, I suppose.

I moved to Minneapolis last June, just early enough to get my apartment organized before starting orientation mid-month. That orientation was just the same as any other. Lots of new people, lots of overwhelming information, and lots of paperwork. After a few days of that stuff I remember thinking, lets just start working already…

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And then came my first rotation. In the MICU. You know that feeling that you get when you start a new job and don’t know anything? I mean anything… like how to log on to computers, or what the code to the bathroom is, or how to find a darn stairwell so you don’t have to take the elevator down one floor? Well, there was a lot of that feeling. But on top of that I was supposed to be taking care of sick and dying patients. It was rough, but what made it even harder was not having family or friends around for support. I tried to stay optimistic, but there were definitely a few days there where I just felt like I couldn’t handle things.

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But life got better quickly in the following months. The work got easier to handle, like it always does. I became familiar with the city and picked up much needed new hobbies, like yoga. And most importantly, I rebuilt a social support system. As an overworked resident, I knew I wouldn’t have much time to go out and meet new people, which initially worried me (especially since I was newly single at the time). But then I started getting to know my co-residents. Wow. Not only are these people smart, but they’re supportive, funny, helpful… they’re just wonderful to be around. I even started dating one of them. :p I couldn’t have asked for a better group of friends.

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Even though everything was going even better than I could have hoped, I started feeling burnt out by mid-winter. Its unavoidable, I think. Not only is it cold and dark, but its also holiday time. Its hard to hear about everyone making holiday plans and visiting friends and family when you’re stuck at work on Thanksgiving. And Christmas. And New Years… Its just depressing. But life goes on. I took a much needed vacation in February, which was great for a re-boost. I’m still feeling worn down, but I try to make sure I have things to look forward to. Even simple things, like some hot yoga, or grabbing brunch after a night shift, or searching on eBay for my next gorgeous HG handbag, or going on a walk with the boyfriend and his dog. You do what you can to keep you going.

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So, this year has definitely been a challenge. Although I feel worn down and overworked most of the time, I try to focus on being thankful for everything I do have. And I try to be very present, which is something I’ve been working on for a while now. Its one of those yoga concepts. There are so many teachings on it, but one of my favorite quotes is this one by Thich Nhat Hanh: “Mindfulness helps you go home to the present. And every time you go there and recognize a condition of happiness that you have, happiness comes.”

Rainforest Yoga

March 10, 2014 in Costa Rica, Yoga

I’ve been doing hot yoga for awhile now, and I can’t say enough good things about what it does for my body and mind. So when I realized that the hotel we were staying at near La Fortuna had an outdoor yoga platform, needless to say I was just a weeeeee bit excited. I practiced at least once per day there. The weather was perfect. And absolutely nothing beats the smell of clean, fresh air.

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Luckily, most of what I packed for the trip was yoga clothes. :) The Lululemon shorts I’m wearing in these pictures are my absolute favorite shorts ever. They’re one of the few items that I didn’t mind shelling out $$$ for. Of course, they’ve since sold out. And I can’t find anything remotely similar. Too bad everyone’s busy making copies of Lulu’s teeny tiny Boogie shorts (Victorias Secret, Under Armour, Zella, Athleta…) instead of these. I tried the Boogie shorts once. My slightly more muscular thighs cause those things to ride up. A lot. Kinda ruins my concentration when I’m flashing the other 50 people in class.

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So it might be true that I browsed yoga clothes rather frequently while on vacation. To be fair, I was stuck in a few airports due to cancelled flights. I had to do something to take my mind off of those crappy schedule changes that caused me to get only a few hours of sleep on the last two days of my week long vacation. Too bad I didn’t just buy the worse tickets right away and save myself $200 (who’s crabby??). Anyway, as I was browsing, I noticed how similar retailers are becoming. Its like they’re all copying each other or something (or copying Lululemon’s most popular styles). Take for example LLL and Athleta. Run swiftly tee vs. Fast track tee (similar cut, details and “silver anti-stink” technology). Speed shorts vs. Home run shorts (the back is nearly identical). Nice asana jacket vs. Booyah Jacket (again, similar cut, details, pockets, thumb holes, material…). The list goes on and on.

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So I need to find at least a few pieces of workout clothes to put on my birthday wishlist (birthday coming up at the end of the month!). So far I have only one wishlist item for sure, Lucy’s uplifting wrap. If this looks anything like it does on the model, it’d be perfect for the studio or work. I wish it came in more colors, but I’d be ok with the dark gray. Past that I really don’t know. Hopefully something unique and flattering comes out soon (let me know if you’ve seen anything!). Hope your week is off to a good start (its finally getting warm here)!!!

Costa Rica Summary

March 2, 2014 in Costa Rica

My brother and I decided that we should split our week of vacation up with one part beach, one part rainforest. Beach first! I basically sat or walked on the beach the entire time while he was doing more “exciting” things like snorkeling and such. I did get off my lazy bum and do some stand up paddle boarding our last day. Which turned out to be kneeling/sitting paddle boarding because I was faster and much less likely to fall into what my brain perceived as shark-infested water. Hey, there could have been sharks. Or jellyfish or something. You never know.

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Note to self: put more thought into packing.

I definitely didn’t have some essential stuff for this vacation, the beach part in particular. For example, I was lacking a well-fitting swim suit. Not cool. My suits don’t get a lot of use, so they basically “last” forever. I wouldn’t be surprised if the ones I have are from college. I think they’re warped or something, because they just didn’t fit right (and I found out halfway through the trip that one bra cup had padding in it and the other didn’t… yeah, they fit that bad that I didn’t even notice). Probably time for an upgrade. I think I’ll get a simple black one with a fun detail or two. I’m in love with this one by Vix (extremely subtle ruffles and tiny gold accents). Eberjey has a similar ruffly one with more subtle beading. Not sure which I prefer. Or if I wanted something a little more “sporty,” this Marc by Marc Jacobs one would be perfect. I love the deep scoop neck instead of the triangle top (works much better for water sports). On a side note, this model below is missing her upper thighs in the pics from the back. Gah.

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What else did I forget? A plastic water bottle. Seriously, who brings a glass water jug on vacation. Me. Heavy and breakable? Perfect! I should have grabbed this Contigo one that’s been sitting in my Amazon cart for months. The contigo travel mugs are amazing (believe me, if you don’t have one you need one), hopefully the water bottle share some of that awesomeness.

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I was much better prepared for the rainforest-y part of the vacation. Ourdoorsy clothes? Check! Yoga clothes? Check! At least I got something right. I meant to do some cool sporty stuff like zip-lining and night hikes and whatnot, but again, I was lazy. One hike and I was done. My brother took enough pictures for the both of us, though. I could always photoshop myself in…

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All in all, a nice getaway. Other than the actual traveling parts. Way too many hours of driving (probably spent close to 20 hours driving total). And flights stuck. Right now I’m stuck in the airport because my AM flight was cancelled. Well, as long as I make it back for work tomorrow everything should be ok. Hope you had a good weekend!