Nothing I put together in words here will even come close to describing the feeling of sitting back down on my assigned seat after having crossed the lit stage, opening the large orange envelope, and seeing–for the first time in my life–the words “Doctor of Medicine” written under my name. NOTHING. Do I feel like a doctor? No. Do I feel different and adult and genius? NO! Do I feel humbled? I am not sure. Jeffrey frequently criticizes people’s mistaken overuse of the word, so I dare not answer that. What I DO feel is a half-subconscious anticipation for the dean of my school to pop up from behind a bush and scream: “SIKE!”
Yet, here I am in Massachusetts exactly 1 week later, accepting auto-correct’s suggested spelling of the this state’s name, blogging from a little couch at Starbucks (currently my ONLY access to wi-fi internet). I am wearing a sweater and vest because it is a full 30 degrees colder here than the balmy 90 degree Houston weather I am so used to. So I guess it’s true. I really DID just earn a medical degree and make the drive to Boston, MA in pursuit of my medical residency in pediatrics, and Jeffrey’s medical residency in radiology. We did it for real, guys!
Graduation was, as expected, a foggy blur… but I was surrounded by a lot of my favorite people in the world! When my name was called to make the treacherous walk across the stage in my new 4-inch heals (stupid, but stylish!), I proceeded cautiously towards the dean, going through in my head the directions I had just been previously given: ascend the stage ➔ shake hands with the dean ➔ accept diploma ➔ smile at photographer ➔ descend stage ➔ proceed to be hooded by faculty ➔ smile at photographer #2 ➔ walk back to seat…
Well, I focused so intently on repeating these instructions in my head that OF COURSE I screwed up, almost grabbed two diplomas, and then almost forgot to get hooded before walking back to my seat through the WRONG place. But I didn’t fall!
My parents were sitting quite a ways away, so kudos to my awesome zoom lens for capturing the moment, and kudos to my brother for snapping the shot! My fam and Jeffrey’s fam made quite a ruckus when our names were called, and then I distinctly heard my mom’s signature “Esa es mija!” shout of victory from somewhere among the crowd. I blame this expected, warm-fuzzy-feeling distraction on my subsequent series of screw-ups all the way back to my seat.
Jeffrey’s and BFF Cullen’s walk across the stage went without a hitch, and two hours later we found ourselves among a crazed crowd of graduates and proud family members, snapping away photographs with our diplomas and in our Harry Potter garb like there was no tomorrow!
My brother even kinda hugged me and I kinda hugged him back (a rare happening!), and my dad caught it!
With two of our best med school friends… We will miss living 2 minutes away from them, their dog, their 5 cats, and their now-late hamster!
We concluded the evening with fajitas and margaritas at Jeffrey’s parents’ house, celebrating with our families and friends, and opening some unexpected presents!
So again, I guess it’s true. WE DID IT!!!! (But please don’t get sick and expect us to actually know what to do, ok?) And what I really feel is proud… really really darn proud.
For the sake of convenience, my blog address has changed to simply: http://doctorontheside.com! Thank you for reading, and if you like what I write, let me know in the comments section… I really do love hearing from you! And stay tuned for a post about our crazy roadtrip!
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