Spare time?

I went out to get a hair cut earlier this week.  My bangs were down to my eyeballs and my hair was growing out instead of down… It was time.  Plus, by Monday I already knew it was going to be a looooonnnnggg week (something about there being me and another junior resident only on the service and thus us having to basically run the show and do all of the ORs… Not my cup of tea).

So, I go in and it was wonderful.  My hair was fabulous.  And sadly all we did afterwards was pick up some morning rounds at Sobeys (they are basically like bagels/English muffins but better because they are only one serving thick… They have kept me alive during busy rotations and early mornings).  Then, my beautiful hair and I went home, called my parents and went to bed only to be thrown up in a ponytail for the OR the next morning.Image

Besides that fantastic hair, I have a fantastic new stylist (that is what it says on her business card… I like to say stylist, it makes me sound rich and classy).  She is nice and interesting to talk to.

But, she asked me a question I kind of dread following the routine explaination of residency and hours and such, “what do you do outside of medicine?”

Blank stare (it actually was blank, without my glasses I can’t see a thing).

Image from

It isn’t like I don’t do anything exciting.  When I was in med school I was involved in a number of things.  Since starting residency though, I feel like I have little time for other stuff.  At least other stuff people find interesting.  There are some things I want to do… Once things slow down and I can get my act together.  But right now, it is pretty much work, home, sleep, repeat.  Sometimes I mix things up with a haircut or dinner out.

Let’s review my honest list of outside of work/studying and normal people household stuff… I go to church and a discipleship group through church.  I am doing a book study with a couple girls locally.  I write a blog.  I read a lot of books.  I try to see my friends and make trips home from time to time.  I intend to re-start going to the gym this week.  Sometimes we go for walks or drives or to movies.  I watch a lot of hockey and knit.

Wow, that is some thrilling stuff I have there.

And then when I filter it to generalize church and not specifics and to leave out the blog because I get all weird about people reading it, it seems more sparse.  I opt to just say I go to the gym when I have time instead of, I used to go to the gym, but haven’t since October at the latest.  Now it sounds much more sparse. 

I used to play in band and sing in choir and volunteer with this and that and the other thing.  Still not super cool, but they were my things.  And I loved them.  I can’t seem to find an in here.  The med school has a choir but they don’t respond to my emails.  I haven’t had time to start finding a band to play in.  Volunteer groups often like commitment, but I hardly know what is available let alone time to get really involved.

I know these things will come.  I know it isn’t expected that I do everything all the time.  I spend most days exhausted.

I also know I do well to do those things.   Medicine eats your life and some people are far more eaten than I am and it is not a thing for comparison.  But I still want to do more.  And I miss being able to say more than sleep, read and watch hockey.


2 thoughts on “Spare time?

  1. My “hairstylist” refused to give me bangs, so I went home and cut them myself. I wrote a post on it coming out later, how my now thin post chemo hair looks like Gollum….Residency sucks the life from everyone. Just don’t let it do that permanently. Keeping a blog is helpful to keeping your humanity, and I applaud you for making the time to write it.

    • When I first got my bangs, they cut them so thin they were more like wisps… So I cut them thicker on my own.
      Chemo hair messes old hairstyles up for sure, though some people really pull off some nice curls!
      Thanks for the encouragement. Resident does indeed suck the life out of you, but it is all in what you make it.

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