lifestyle

Yea, We’re Doctors. But None of Us Are Immune to Drug Abuse

A few years ago, one of my classmates passed away, and suddenly, my news feed was flooded with mourning. People spoke of what a great person they were and their lovable personality. They reflected on their times playing sports together and the great memories they made at college parties. They spoke of how – at a young age – this person had a bright future that they unfortunately do not get to see. What people didn’t speak of is that this person, though having recently gone to rehab, died of a heroin overdose. Upon hearing this, I was flooded with questions. What if someone had done more to help them? What if they had made a more conscious decision to fight their addiction? Why did their abuse of drugs start? Why did their rehab not work? Why did their life have to end at such a young age? What if there was something I could have done when we were classmates to prevent their life from ending up this way? Alas, these questions have no easy answers and in retrospect have no use for my classmate. Recently, many of them came racing back to my mind upon hearing of the death of Oscar-winning actor Philip Seymour Hoffman. After more than two decades sobriety with a relapse and rehab last spring, he was found dead with a hypodermic needle in...

Truth from a Tragedy: Finding Myself in the Wake of the Purdue Shooting

A few minutes past the hour. Class ends at 12:30. A free afternoon. Hopes of catching up on the two weeks of school work that had already piled up around me. Only two weeks into a new semester. Already feeling overwhelmed. Remind me why I’m here again. Try to focus. Just a little while longer. The door opens. Heads turn. A school administrator. “Everyone. Please listen for a second. There has been a shooting on campus. We are being told to shelter in place.” Silence. What do they mean “a shooting?” The who, what, when, where, and why of it all races through my head in an instant. Where is my girlfriend? My sister? My cousins? Not more than a second passes. A classmate breaks the silence. “What?” “In the Electrical Engineering building. That’s all we know right now.” The room is quiet, save for the sound of cell phones being pulled from pockets and bags. Loved ones contacted. Twitter, Facebook, the university website all pulled up, all poured over. What is going on? What do we know? The next few minutes are a blur, passing by as if they hardly happened. Details emerge one by one, tensions eases little by little. Anger and disbelief fill the void, as do more questions. How many were hurt? How many are dead? Who was hurt? Who did it? How badly are...

Top 5 Eats under $25 for Superbowl Week- New York, NY

It’s Superbowl week here in New York City and for those visiting the Big Apple, David gives an insider’s tips for food, theater, and shopping for a truly “New York” experience. Food 1. Little Poland 2. Han Dynasty 3. Breads Bakery 4. Cafe Edison 5. Sapporo Restaurant Theater 1. The Night Alive 2. After Midnight Shopping 1. Shinola 2. Cadet 3. Fishs...

5 Reasons To Start Listening To Podcasts

1. You don’t want to listen to slayer on your morning commute. There was this guy who lived on my floor freshman year of college who casually admitted that he didn’t “really like listening to music.” Everyone thought this was equal parts hilarious and bizarre, as well as a potential warning sign that we lived amongst a future serial killer, but I still think of him whenever I’m not in the mood for tunes. Although modern technology allows us to put music in our ear holes pretty much 24/7, there are plenty of times (that dreaded morning commute comes to mind) when I’m too busy idly contemplating suicide to deal with the emotional demands of a song. In fact, the pleasant distractions of an engaging conversation are just about the only thing I can tolerate until about noon. This was presumably the thought process behind morning talk radio shows, but thankfully most podcasts aren’t hosted by the kind of wacky, prank-calling “shock jocks” that make you want to careen your car into oncoming traffic. 2. There’s a podcast for everything. The internet has obliterated any semblance of subculture, exposing the underground (all vulnerable and exposed like an unready, shriveled penis) to the light of the mainstream. Gone are the days of tape-trading, obscure message boards, the fear that you might be the only one – now every possible niche,...

14 Signs You Work in a Hospital

1. You don’t have to look at your badge when a code gets called anymore because you’ve already memorized what they all mean… But if you got dropped in a new hospital, you’d probably be lost because there isn’t a standardized system for code labeling in the U.S.   2. You’re either BFF’s with the kitchen staff, maintenance staff, switchboard operators or all of the above, because you know they are the reason the hospital keeps running.   3. At any given moment, any location in the hospital, you know where the nearest coffee pot is.   4. You know which shoes in your closet are 1) too clicky 2) too scuffy or 3) too squeaky to be worn throughout the hospital corridors.   5. You also know what items of clothing you can clip your badge too, and what pieces will require you to wear a lanyard.   6. You have a minimum of three lanyards, at least one of which is silly and/or sparkly.   7. You have hidden in the hospital Chapel at least once; and if you haven’t yet, trust me, you will.   8. You know which bathrooms are the least used and you try to make a beeline for them on your break.   9. You weren’t sure what I meant by the word “break” just then.   10. You know which departments...

Just Call Me Doctor

Every once in a while, a nurse or patient mistakenly calls me doctor and I giggle. Me? A doctor?  Did I really look authoritative or seem to know what I was doing? You mean those poised people in long white coats, who have the ability to reassure with a few sentences, and have seemingly boundless, wiki-level knowledge in their brains? Surely it’s obvious that I’m just a bottom of the totem pole, work 60 hours a week for free med student. Recently, though, it’s beginning to sink in that in less than a year, I really will be a doctor I remember the first few weeks of MS1, mainly just shadowing my preceptor in the continuity clinic. Then, I was figuring out how to address patients or how to drape them properly, and thinking to myself, man I’ll never know as much as Dr. R.  She had only been out of residency for about half a decade, but I couldn’t imagine a time when she was any less composed or knowledgeable than the physician I knew. She was able to relate to patients so well, immediately knew the answers to questions they asked her, and even when she didn’t, was able to reply confidently and in such a manner that they were satisfied with anything she said. I understood that I was still a little baby stem cell in the infancy...

How I’ve Handled Life as an MD/PhD Candidate

As Voltaire said, “Uncertainty is an uncomfortable position,” and the transition to medical school or grad school (or both!) often comes with much uncertainty. For many of us, we move away from home, leaving loved ones and everything that we’ve known. If you’re like me, you went to college close to home so the transition wasn’t too bad. So this is really the first time on your own and this is the first time you’ve felt such a massive shift in your life. At the same time that we move away and start our new adventure, our undergrad friends get real jobs and start to figure out their lives in our absence. While we struggled to get into school before they started their job search, now they are the ones trying to figure things out while we are set for the next 4+ years or 8+ years for MD/PhD students – I like to call it “putting off getting a real job.” As we go in different directions with our lives, it can be hard to handle. But this is not our first rodeo. The same thing happened when we began college as we left our high school friends behind. We made new awesome friends who perhaps shared a major, career interest, extracurricular interest (for me, most of my friends were made through the marching band), or love of alcohol and...