Saturday, March 01, 2008

A Few More Quotes...

It's been awhile since I've posted some ridiculous quotes from our class, but a few have happened this week that I want to web-log before I forget....

Spoken during Sex Week in a class entitled Transgendered Patients:
"So you're saying that any man who walks into my clinic with a pink shirt on should be assumed to be a transgender?"
-my roommate
(why did everyone look at me?)

89 year old professor:
"When you suspect this high aldosterone in your patient, go ahead, take the measurement, call up 1-800-Aldosterone, go on with your life for six months, your uncle gets divorced, you forget about your patient, then suddenly one day you get your lab results back."

Said by a homosexual scientist during a video (made in the 70s) shown in our class:
"Do not dare... don't you DARE assume that mankind was made in such a way that biologically or biochemically, we are intended to be mated as a man with a woman. This is ludicrous."
-Hmmm. Interesting. Yes, point well made. Seeing as how in fact we are biologically made with anatomy that would suggest so and biochemically are structured with different biochemicals that would also suggest so.

A professor was trying to make the point that breasts are nothing more than glorified sweat glands. He unsuspectingly singled out one of the two gay men in the classroom and shouted,
"YOU! What do you think about breasts!?!"
He was met with one red face and 149 hysterially laughing ones. I'm fairly certain he was the only one who didn't get the joke. So sad to see the funny ones sink their own ships.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Said I'm Free, I'm Free At Last...

Free to surf, Free to run, Forget about my past!!!

If you're having difficulty getting a hold of me, look for me on the waves. Or running on River Road. Or perhaps on a cruise in the Bahamas. Or maybe in a small 7 passenger plane in Mexico. Or exploring the coves of the oldest city in the United States. But don't look for me in the library. And don't try to find me cutting up dead bodies. And don't search for me wielding sprays and newspapers on a roach killing spree. And don't even BEGIN to look for me pulling an all-nighter. Go ahead and call me at 3AM. Cause I won't pick up. Why? I'll be sleeping, that's why. Like a normal human being.

God's gift to the world = 6 weeks = no Miami = perfect happiness

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Dreams Let Go

2 Corinthians 4:17 says that our light and momentary afflictions are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs our trouble. After I read this I began to pray that God would prepare my heart for the depth of pain that I will be exposed to, body and soul, with this lifework ahead of me. I then began to wonder and realize that probably my biggest struggle and frustration as a doctor will be the pain that I will not be able to heal, the kind that comes deep down from the soul, the kind that has no tangible answers. I then decided that it will be very hard to look into the eyes of thousands of people from other countries, from other cultures, who had the same dreams that I did but who most certainly did not have the same opportunities. Broken dreams are a nasty thing for a person to process. I’ve had a few of my own, but precious few; will they be enough to empathize with those I'm dying to touch? I doubt it. I’ve been wondering why broken dreams are so hard to recover from; why do we allow something that never happened to make us bitter, to ruin our present realities and the joys and experiences that are ours for the taking? It is one thing for the past to ruin the present. Sad but understandable. But how could a non-existent future ruin the present? That’s simply tragic. I’ve come to the conclusion that when we dream, we hope, and in hoping, we set up false realities in our minds of what the future could look like; we imagine ourselves in that place, or with that person, or in that moment, and down the road, when we finally have to face the impossibility of that reality, we have to let go of something that never even existed. How do you mourn the loss of something that never was yours to have? What do you do with pain that you have no right to feel? Denying it has been proven to be useless. So the only other option is acknowledging it. But by acknowledging it, you give it a place, and how do you give place to something that never was and never will be? It makes me think of a woman who begins to wonder if she is pregnant. For two or three days she holds the possibility of an exciting secret in her heart, wondering and picturing and preparing. Then when she discovers that all is normal, she can’t get rid of the feeling that she has lost her baby. Maybe it doesn’t last for long, or maybe it does, but the point is, she feels the loss of something that never existed, the loss of something that only was present in her mind. What is to be done with this type of pain? Should we to continually try to search our hearts for those things that we are in need of letting go, so that we don’t wake up one day when we are forty-five or fifty and have a breakdown that our lives are interminably set in one direction and cut off from so much of what we dreamed? Some dreams die naturally and without pain, some dreams change, and some dreams are broken as time and circumstances push steadily on without deference to the destruction of a soul in the process. God save us from wasted years given over to deceit and trickery of our own hearts and minds. And give me eyes of understanding and a heart full of compassion and a voice free of judgment for those in the process of letting go.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Mission Trip to Mexico

Hey kids. Just wanted to throw out a prayer request for anyone frequenting this website. My very dear friend Vicky just moved to Mexico to be a midwife/schoolteacher/lots of other things missionary in the state of Chuauaauauauauau (like the dog). Her boyfriend is a pilot of a small aircraft that allows him to land of the sides of mountains and bring sick people high up in the hills down to the area hospital. They are always in need of prayer for safety especially, but mostly for the hearts of the Taramaura Indians to awaken towards God's Spirit. The people are beautiful and have kind spirits but are in despair and need the Lord so very much. Specific requests are for a Bible study Vicky is starting with women at her compound and safety and efficiency for Mark and his plane and the building of a new and safer hanger. I might get a chance to get down there for a few days this summer. Most likely I'll save a few lives and deliver a few babies. Anyhow, thanks ahead of time for prayer for them, and I'll try to put up occasional updates on their work. Maybe even some pictures if I can ever find a link that lets you do that on this dang blog thing. But don't hold your breath :)

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

A Right? A Privilege? Our Duty?

Been struggling with a statement made on a regular basis in my classes, a statement that is made in a way that always assumes that everyone agrees with it, along with the implication that anyone who doesn't is stone-age and should not be allowed to practice medicine. Here it is:

Health care is a human right.

This statement is made in deference to the idea that those to whom health care is NOT being provided to are being denied their rights. This statement is very powerful and political and holds a lot of sway in the arenas my life will consist of from here on out. Before I take this any further concerning my own thoughts, can anyone offer an opinion on the matter? Scriptural back-up would be encouraged.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Who Said Med School Wasn't a Blast?

Just wanted to share some of my favorite professor/student quotes so far this medical school year, all for the low price of $30,000+ in tuition a year:

"The release of corticosteroids from the adrenal cortex is continuous, but it is not constant."

Student: "Can you explain why cefatoxi...cefalatozi....cefa...why the second drug on that list is anaerobic?"

Professor: "Can anyone venture a guess as to whether this channel is a sodium channel or a potassium channel? Any brave souls? Yes, Catherine?"
Me: "It's sodium."
Professor, with a disappointed smile: "Hmm. Interesting thought. Does everyone in here agree with Catherine's guess?"
(He turns his back to the class to write on the board.)
Me (loudly and drawn out): "Noooooooooo....."
Professor turns around: "Great. Who said that?"

"No. No, in fact, that's completely wrong." -in response to a student's suggested answer.

"Uh, that's not my expertise, so I hesitate to say." -counted approximately 12 times in one lecture.

"This drug is particularly useful for those who are responsive to it. To those unresponsive, it generally is not as useful." -shocking but true.

"From this lecture, you need to memorize the mechanism for the eye as well as the mechanism for the heart...(pause) need to memorize the mechanisms for the rest of the body as well." -always useful when they cut down the information for us

VERY old and funnily dressed professor stands at the chalkboard and stares at his notes for a long time in the middle of his lecture.
He finally barks out..."SIEMENS!...." and abruptly stops.
A 10 second pause ensues.
The professor seems embarrassed and stumped as he stares at his notes.
Muffled laughter begins to break out across the room as everyone asks their neighbor if they just heard what they heard.
The professor finally turns with a sheepish smile, "There must be a typo in my notes. MOVING ON."
(-it is discovered later that "siemens" is the SI-derived unit for conductance, but apparently his notes left out that particular explanation and left him speechless as to its relevance.)

"How you as a doctor break bad news to your patients is of absolute importance; clumsily spoken words of bad news can have catastrophic effects on the family." -no pressure.

"I don't like cell phones."

"There are several diseases which will demonstrate complete resistance to any antibiotics for at least 10 years right as you as a class begin your medical profession in several years from now. There is nothing in the pipeline to defend the world against them. Prepare yourselves."

"You need to stop answering questions and give someone else a chance." -said to the class gunner and to the joy of every other student in the class

Me: "For test purposes, how will we know when to take oral bioavailability into account and when not to?"
Professor: "Well, sometimes you need to account for it and sometimes you don't need to account for it."
Me: Long Pause. "Thank you."

"Not to be political or anything, but obviously, if there was a Higher Power, then the need to keep sperm cooler and in a location outside the body core should have been thought about. I believe anyone arguing for Intelligent Design would have difficulty disagreeing with me there."

"I can tell by your lack of response that you must have never had this material before." -spoken about a subject we had just finished being tested on and obviously mastered

"I can say 'Oriental' if I want. I may look American, but I lived in China for longer than any of you have been alive." -spoken by a very old professor in rebuttal to a student's protests against his derogatory racial slurs.

"Yes, we know that you already have forgotten 90% everything we made you memorize in anatomy a month ago. We tested our own surgical residents two years ago and the failing rate for the test we give you was 100%. So does that prove that our methods of teaching and learning are ineffective? Yes. Absolutely. For better or for worse. That's how it is."

Monday, December 11, 2006

Thank You, Angel

Been in the library studying for a few hours (across from a cute Yale med student).
An older gentleman walks up to me out of nowhere, leans over the short raised part of my "cubicle" where I'm typing, and says, "Excuse me." I look up. He says, "During this time of year, when the wind blows and the air gets chilled, squirrels and sparrows alike begin to chase around some round objects on the ground. Do you know why?" I slowly shake my head, with an appropriate look of wonder and curiousity. "Because they are NUTS."
I giggle hesitatantly. HE is nuts.
He then says, "When a baby ghost got lost in the fog, its family and friends were very upset. Can you think of a 4 OR 6 letter word that describes how they felt?" I slowly shake my head, feeling very disappointed in myself. I can't think of it. I'm reaching far back in the mind. Nope. Nothin'. He encourages me. "Think hard. Two different words that sound the same. Here's a means the same thing as FOG." I try very hard. Cloud? Smoke? No, Catherine, no. You're an idiot. I can't believe they let you into med school. You should have worked harder on those crossword puzzles in Europe instead of constantly flipping to the back to "check" your answers. Cloud? No, you already thought that! I sadly and VERY disappointedly shake my head. "I'm afraid I'm not very good at these," I sadly admit to the crazy scary white-bearded man with wide-spaced teeth and frighteningly large and engaging eyes. He smiles. "They mist/missed him."
I sigh. I don't deserve to live.
He encourages me. "That's okay. Here, I'll give you one you will DEFINITELY get." My heart starts racing. That's the worst thing he could possibly say. Now I MUST get the answer right or it will prove beyond any doubt that I am a fool. Right there in front of Mr. Yale, who was probably answering each one in his mind so quickly and wondering to himself at the low acceptance standards Miami has for their medical students these days. The man says, "A young and handsome magnet took a lady magnet out to dinner on a date. He said to her across the dinner table...'My dear, I find you very ______.'" I think hard and fast. I'm a little sweaty, even. The word ATTRACTIVE pops in my mind instantly but for some reason I don't believe it could be that easy. I think harder. Magnetic? Is that stupid? That's stupid. I finally go out on the limb with my first instinct. "Attractive...?" He smiles victoriously. "YES! You've GOT it!"
He walks away triumphantly without looking back and I wonder if I've just been visited by a very fat, white-haired, socially inept angel who decided to make my day. Even if he ruined my chances with Mr. Yale, who apparently would have been our one hope at the genius children I've been dreaming of.