Sunday, April 29, 2007

another day...

So, another week begins tomorrow and there's no sign of temp work on the horizon. I have got a one time gig tomorrow as a member of a focus group on vodka which will pay 100 dollars. Not bad. If only I could get one of these groups for every day of the week I'd be employed. Hopefully if I keep calling the temp agency like they tell me to (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) I'll get a job soon. I just need to work a couple of days a week to keep my lifestyle afloat. I've pretty much come to terms with the fact that I'm not going to be able to afford to go to Scotland with Ben at the end of the summer, which sucks. Hopefully he'll get his visa sorted out for next year and he'll be able to come back to Canada and work for 2 more years. If he doesn't, it's back to the international love exchange program. Stay tuned for the next couple of months to hear what happens.

Today we went mountain biking at Hilton Falls conservation area just outside Toronto. It was an ok day of very hard trails. Their intermediate trails are harder than some of the advanced trails I've been on. Lots of rocks, lots of boulders, lots of rocky climbs, lots of west coast style bridges and platforms. I walked a LOT today compared to normal and the same goes for Ben who is way better than me. I have lots of bumps and bruises, which are par for the course. Overall I thought the trails were really low on flow and had poor transitions which to me are the essential elements for a fun trail. There was no real intermediate track - it went from very technical to wide double track with hikers. As a testament to the difficulty, we didn't see a single other biker on the single trail in comparison to Kelso (which is just down the road) last weekend where the trails were packed. Same kind of day. Next time I'll probably go back to Kelso - today left both Ben and I a bit frustrated and low on good vibes.

*the above picture is actually Scotland because we didn't take any pictures today.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007


Well, I had my interview at the temp agency yesterday for temporary work as a medical secretary. It went really well. I discovered a few things about myself: I can type at 88 words per minute, I can make a really nice looking business letter in a test situation if I put my mind to it, and having learned microsoft access that one summer in high school may pay off.

Today I'm back to my lazy life so I'm helping Ben with some work. My autocad skills are coming in handy as I finish a drawing for him and then get on his nerves when I tell him he didn't dimension it properly. Sometimes I think being a perfectionist is a bad thing, but then people do really appreciate a job done right, don't they? In my undergraduate engineering degree we had some professors who were really picky about how drawings are done and scaled and stuff and now I have carried that pickiness with me. I still do want to smack myself when I say things like "Well, it's just not worth doing if you're not going to do it right!". I'm sure Ben wants to smack me too. It's just that I'm a fiddler. I can fiddle with something for hours to make it look right. Ben is not that kind of person. He gets inspired and then wants to do something fast and get it done. Together we make a good team.

Hopefully the temp agency calls me soon to go do a job. I think it's going to be a challenge but exciting at the same time. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

Midwife with a Knife
has tagged me with 5 reasons I blog so here goes:

1) My parents, boyfriend, siblings and friends are tired of hearing me moan about how I failed my exams, don't get enough time to do yoga (although time is busting out of my ears right now) am sick and tired of classrooms, have crappy teachers, etc. So I dump it all here for you wonderful people to read. And then you probably get tired of it and stop reading, which is OK. Basically, it's a place to vent.

2) There are friends I have who I don't speak to very often because we're busy people but some of them read my blog to catch up on my life and post encouragement or what they're doing with theirs. I like that. I'm not always the greatest friend, but I hope they know that I appreciate that they're reading and I hope we can get together soon (I'm home for the summer, email me!)

3) Sometimes I need to rant about societal or political issues or things that are important to me like riding my bike. I think other people should hear my opinion on these things (don't ask me why) so I post them here. I'm a participating member of the global community.

4) Meeting all these gosh darn nice people from around the world. Blog buddies are awsome. I read up on them and support them and they read up on me and support me. Maybe we don't know each other in person and never will have the chance to meet, but that doesn't matter to me. It's nice to know there are other people out there having the same experiences that I have and that they're surviving. In the spirit of fairness I feel like I should share my experiences to help other people feel less lonely.

5) I like to flex my writing muscles sometimes. I don't keep a diary so maybe this is my way of keeping track of the things that have happened in my life. Maybe one day I'll look back and think about how silly I was back then or remember how hard it is to be a medical student and remember to be nicer to any med students I might encounter. Who knows.

I tag: tea at ten, cal over at short white coats Liana over at Med Valley High, and Nathan.

And finally, go check out Grand Rounds at Med Valley High, Liana has done a great job!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

I'm SO BORED. There are only so many days of sitting on my ass watching TV I can take. I wish I wasn't stuck in the burbs at Ben's house while he's at work all day. Ugh. Thank god for the gym. I'm certainly going to be fit after these weeks of going to the gym for 2 hours a day.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

I'm not dead... just sleeping 15 hours a day. After not being able to sleep past 6am all through exams my body has finally taken a stand and won't let me get out of bed until after 10. Today I had to drag my ass out of bed at 9 and it was really hard! I've started my vacation slow with a day of sending in my resume to a temp agency and going to the gym. Today I'm going to go visit a friend who is recovering from meningitis (non-contagious) and I'm going to my parents house to receive a delivery. Tomorrow is the baseball game - Jays vs. Red Sox, should be a good one. Ben and I are going to make a giant sign out of a bed sheet just to embarrass my dad. We're taking my poppy (grandfather) out for his promised Christmas present... my dad is cheap though and we're sitting in the 500 level - poppy probably won't be able to see the field! My brother's coming too - should be a paaartay, but only if the Jays win. If the sox win they'll all blame me because I used to be a red sox fan before they won the series (I like to cheer for the underdog, now I'm a jays fan).

There have been some developments on getting observerships with docs in the niagara area (a little far from my chosen area, but can I be picky anymore?) although now if I have a job I'm not sure I'll be able to do them. It all kind of rests on this temping stuff which I won't hear about an interview for until Thursday. Yeesh. Life is looking complicated.

Friday, April 13, 2007

I'm done and it feels Soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo good. Time to get loaded.... I mean, get my hair cut.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

I guess today went moderately not as badly as yesterday. Which isn't saying much. But, I think I got a 60 so that's good. I know I screwed up a couple of questions and some of the marking scheme seemed really odd like two marks for a one word answer, but, it's over. Now on to the picture exam. The picture exam (otherwise known as the practical) is one of my worst exams. It's not that I don't know what's in the picture (although sometimes, that is the case) but it's more that I get flustered by the time limit for each question and the fact that they're going to change the slide. Sometimes I'm just not that quick or I need to go back to something once I've had a chance to think about it. The practical doesn't allow for that.

And in other news, I'm getting my hair cut tomorrow. I'm not sure what to get done to it so I'm pretty much going to leave it up to the stylist. I hope she knows what she's doing.

And! Why do they make birth control pills so small? I know, they're easy to swallow. But, on days like today when i'm not sure if it actually got into my mouth and down my throat I would have like to have felt it instead of its magical inconspicuousness. I always wonder if I should take another pill in these situations just to make sure. But I looked around and I couldn't find the pill on the floor or down my shirt so I'm betting it got in there. Sigh.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


That exam was a shit show and a half. 37/120 questions I put a question mark beside because I wasn't sure of the answer. And, I'm sure there were ones I thought I knew that I didn't know. If I get all of those wrong, that's a 70. And I'm sure I am overestimating my abilities. This exam was worth 50% of our final mark. Tomorrows is 30% and Friday is 15%. Since Friday is a write off because I'm bad at practicals, tomorrow has to be really good and Friday has to be a miracle. I'm frustrated!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

what does this mean?

I think I was stressing too much about cardio in my dreams last night. I dreamed that my cardiology prof. who used to be my clinical skills prof was taking care of me for the day (I think I was a little kid) and he was taking me to my figure skating practice (I used to be a big figure skater when I was a teenager) and he was going to watch me there. But we got there are the parking lot was gated up and I didn't have a membership card to get into the skating club. I finally get in and someone stops me and asks me for a card, thankfully my grandmother is there and signs me in because she's a member and has her card. But then my cardiology prof shows up and my grandma can't sign him in because it's only one guest per member... so he turns and asks a stranger to sign him in.

I'm not sure what it means but I *think* it might mean that I am going to fail tomorrow because I still don't know anything about hearts.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Renal Renal Renal

There are just too many things that can go wrong with kidneys and associated parts. Plus, all that histology, yeesh. If I were a proximal tubule, what would I be made out of? This is what I've been asking myself all day to remember what is going on. (simple cuboidal epithelium that stains with eosin stain of course). I'm tired of the kidney but I have atleast 50 more pages of notes to read about it... well, I'm actually starting urology now, yay prostates, so maybe it will be better.

I'm sorry to be so boring. I put my bike into the shop today for a spring clean and tune-up. Maybe they'll get my front mech moving again which is clogged with old grease and sand and salt from the winter. I'm SO ready to get back on the bike again and zoom around in my new puce helmet. It was on sale.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Burn out

The problem with cramming is that you get to day 7 or day 8 or day whatever (I'm not sure how long this has been going on) of studying 13 hours a day and then you just lose your drive. I'm sitting here with lots to do and just meh. I think I probably need a break - which comes in the form of me driving home to my parents house tomorrow night to spend Easter morning/lunch with my family and dear darling boyfriend. I'm a bit freaked out about that because it means that I'll lose a lot of valuable study time. But, as I said, it's probably good for me. It means, however, that I should be studying right now to get in a good position to meet my study goals for tomorrow... So that means I should stop blogging and get back to work!


Wednesday, April 04, 2007


I got to scrub today for a c-section, it was so fun. It was my first scrubbing experience (usually us junior med students stand in the back and try to get a good view) and I'm not sure the senior resident was super happy that I scrubbed, but my preceptor was very encouraging and the junior resident didn't seem to mind. I retracted the bladder, retracted the skin while the sutures were being put in the fascia, and helped clean her up afterwards and transfer her. The baby was beatiful and wailing and the couple was amazing. I was also amazed at how good the spinal was - the last section I saw was more emergent and the anesthetic wasn't as fantastic. The whole thing was a great experience. I've always thought about doing obs/gyn but have decided against it for lifestyle reasons and based on geography of where I want to live. It IS fun though! I also got to see a beautiful coneheaded girl/boy (couldn't see very well) being born by vacuum. The mom had been having a hard time at it and was in a lot of pain but boy did she ever push that baby out fast especially since it was occipito-posterior (of course she did have the aid of the vacuum suction). All in all it was a pretty fun day. Now back to the books!

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Today was a bad day for procrastination. I don't really remember what i did today, but a lot of it wasn't studying. Thankfully I just have one lecture of embryology to cover and then I'm done the week I was supposed to finish today. Too bad I was also supposed to do half of the next week tonight because tomorrow I am going to labour and delivery!

I'm excited about going to L and D for an observership. Last time I went there was only one baby born and it was 5 minutes after I walked in and ran into the theater for the section. I hope to see a vaginal birth this time. Maybe this will inspire me to study harder for exams. Maybe not. It will be a good and productive break at least. I've never observed with the doc I'm shadowing nor have I met him before, so that should be interesting.

I guess studying is moving along but i seriously don't remember a thing I've learned. First pass is always hard but because I'm not going to have a lot of time for the second pass, I wish I'd learned more this time around. I'm looking back and regretting all that time I spent not studying now. Oh well, there's always next semester... MY LAST SEMESTER IN THE CLASSROOM!!!!!! I am SO excited to go into clerkship next year. Our lottery still hasn't been done for rotation schedules yet though so I have no idea what order my rotations will be in. I really hope I get obs/gyn first so I don't look like an idiot on my electives.

I'm trying to decide where to do my electives right now. I've pretty much decided that I'm going to do a 3 week obs/gyn elective at U of T, and a 2 week elective at Mac in ER or Obs/gyn and then I have a 3 week rural elective set up so I have another 5 weeks of electives to decide on (a 2 week and a 3 week) I want to do ER somewhere but I'm not sure where, maybe Western. My last 3 weeks I'd like to do something in either family or something that I don't necessarily want to do but will help me in the future like a subspecialty of internal or radiology. Later on after CaRMS we also have another block of electives so maybe I'll do my radiology then. I'm not sure. I want to look well rounded but I also want good reference letters. I also want to try out how I like different schools for residency, although if I'm going to go rural, this matters less.

Anyway, enough of this procrastinating, to embryology!

Monday, April 02, 2007


Sunday, April 01, 2007

Weekend Holiday

Every weekend is like a miny holiday for me - even when I don't deserve one. When Ben comes we do things that tourists and families do, and I love it.

This weekend we went to a sugar bush and Ben saw his first maple-syrup making operation. They had a mixture of old fashion tree taps with metal buckets and newer plastic piped collection systems. They had the original wood-fire with cauldron syrup making technique along side with the flat-bottomed steamer version. The syrup was the highlight - they had amazing pancakes absolutely swimming in their home made elixir. Nothing better.

The birds were coming out this weekend too, we saw chickidees, robin red breasts and blue jays all singing away and taking baths in the garden. I'm loving spring.

To top it all off, we went to see the musical theater society at my university's version of Cabaret. It was SO GOOD. My friend from med school choreographed it and wow, she did an amazing job - I don't know how she finds the time! There was nothing amateurish about it and the singing blew me away. I've been to many bad amateur theater presentations in my life and this wasn't one of them.

I did do a bit of studying from 12 - 2am on Friday night while Ben was in bed but I'm far behind what I should have done this weekend. Thus, I'm hitting the books now.

Good news, I managed to rip apart and patch my power cord temporarily. Although, I guess this is bad news too because I find the internerd very distracting.