Friday, July 31, 2009

Sometimes it pays to be a bad visiting teacher...Then again, doing it earlier in the month would have been better.

I was supposed to visit my friend yesterday. Turns out, her daughter may have swine flu.

I hope they get better soon!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

keep on keeping on

I keep wanting to blog but I don't have anything interesting to really say. That is my disclaimer:

So, what have I been up to this week? It seems like a total blur.

I didn't have class after 5:00pm like the weeks before so it has been nice to have an extra few hours in the evenings. What do I do with the extra few hours you ask? All of this precious free time? ...sleep and study.

Tonight I am on call for the third time this week. So far it has been an extremely quiet week without much of anything! Everyone keeps saying what a strange summer it has been. A few hypotheses about the lack of trauma: 1-cold weather (yes, I have been wearing a jacket quite frequently--in JULY--in IOWA!). 2-ecomomy (less people can afford to get drunk = 90% less facial fractures).

Abe has been gone ALL WEEK doing RAGBRAI, an annual bike ride across the state of Iowa from the Missouri to the Mississippi. I hoped to have our house all cleaned up while he was gone (maybe show myself he was the messy one, not me) but remember what I said before about free time? Yeah. The house is almost identical to when he left. Last night I went to meet him an hour away to camp overnight with him. It was really fun to use our new tent and to see him again, even though I had to leave at 6:15 am to make it in for work. Normally I would have thought it not worth the drive to have to leave so early but I realized it was like sleeping in, actually.

Emotionally: I have been a bit lonely. I have also had ups and downs with feeling like an idiot and feeling ok. There is so much to know but hopefully I am learning little by little.

Another week behind me.

Sunday, July 19, 2009


The other day my friend Caroline had a comment on her blog about how it is better to be told that you have hairy arms than asked if you are pregnant when you aren't. I thought to myself while reading it, "Hmmm...luckily no one has ever asked me that."

Sure enough, karma or irony or something came to haunt me the very next morning.

I was at a Saturday morning oral pathology/surgery conference. One of the professors introduced me to another woman by saying, "Erin, have you met ____? Two expectant mothers, how wonderful!"

I said, "Uh, excuse me, me? Do you think/did you hear I'm pregnant? I didn't know that myself!"

I really don't know where that came from. I am preferring to think that someone told him mistakenly or he misunderstood or something.

I have always had a poochy tummy, but I hope it isn't THAT poochy!

Monday, July 13, 2009

For my birthday, my mom got one of the coolest things I have seen in a long time, a Miche bag.

Have you seen these before? Essentially, you choose a bag, the straps, and magnetic shells that go over the outside of the bag and you are set. I love this idea because I hate the idea of dumping your contents from one purse to another every time you change your outfit or your shoes! I always forget something important and I don't always have a bag for each outfit.

This makes it so easy! The bag is cute enough on its own or I can add the cream or orange shells my mom gave me to the outside and go! I am excited to add to my collection.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Week One

Today marks the end of my first week of my oral surgery internship. Here is what my days/nights have been like:

Arrive about 6:30 am for morning rounds. As a team, we check on the patients we have who are staying at the hospital. The on-call resident details how they did during the night, including any changes or problems. The chief residents then "pimps" the first (and sometimes second years) on medical trivia. So far... I realize I don't know much--or really, anything. My co-residents seem to have more a handle on what to know. I am starting to put the pieces together, but usually not in time to answer my questions correctly. Bummer.

8:00 am-5:00 pm Otolaryngology Basic Science Course. Right now we spend all day in lectures and then in the gross anatomy lab doing dissections. If we get done early (we always do), we return to the clinic to help out or try to learn the new and very confusing computer system.

5:00-8:00 pm (3 times per week) we meet for a history and physical exam class taught by the internal medicine chiefs. Being a dentist in a hospital is a bit intimidating. They are trying to get us caught up on basical medical knowledge and skills we need to navigate through our patient care.

If I am lucky, I get to go home at this point. I then have some major studying to do for the basic science course (test on Friday--we have been informed that the OS residents always do the best on the test. I feel pressure to do well since I am still trying to prove myself, but also have so little time!) as well as hundreds of pages of readings for the H&P class, not to mention trying to study random subjects to prepare for rounds. This has been the hard part to get done.

If I am not-so-lucky, I am on call from 8am-8am. I was on call last Friday night and slept less than 45 minutes (with interruption). Monday night I was also on-call. While I did not get any calls, I was up until past 1:30 am in a surgery (don't worry, no fainting spells this time). The surgery was very cool, a guy who smashed his face. I wont gross you out with the gory details, but he now has 115 screws in his face and who knows how many plates! Wow! I was back on my feet at 5:30 am to get ready for rounds.

Since we are dentists, we are not under the medical association's accreditation. This means that while most residents are required to go home after a 30 hour shift and can log no more than 80 hours per week, we are not subject to such rules.

So...I spent about 38 hours in the hospital on Monday and Tuesday and will log a grand total of about 93 hours this week. Everyday is like an interview for me if I decide to reapply to the residency, so I hope I can keep it up. I am doing surprisingly well physically/emotionally/mentally considering how tired and busy I am and trying not to feel discouraged about how little I know. I am excited to start seeing patients next month and really start learning.

Phew! Only 355 days to go.