Happy holidays! We just finished two modules: Dermatology and Endocrinology. Right now, it’s hematology. I’m happy about the switch, Dermatology was overloaded with diseased gonads. And since I study 90% of the time in coffee shops, I can assure you that the public is very pleased about my course transition too.
“The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain”
Unfortunately, at the same time, lots of bad news was stirring during this block. An aunt past away on Thanksgiving Day, I was sent a text message a picture of us together at my college graduation. My partner’s father (Kazumi) suddenly passed away from an unknown stage IV lung cancer the night before my Dermatology exam — it was a surprise, especially for him as he literally walked his positive X-ray into the hospital just 3-weeks before his passing — with the hastiness, his finances weren’t in order, so this will be a problem later for his now widowed wife. And to top it all off received news during Endocrinology that my brother is, again, in jail.
Kazumi, although in my life for only a few years, was like another father to me. When I hard still slaving away post graduate, working for nearly nothing all while putting in 10-12 hour days, accumulating debt while I volunteered instead of throwing in the towel on building my medical school application experience, he always had one response “You’re doing great!” In fact, he backed those words up, he was essential to be being able to afford to apply to medical school. He came from a less than glamorous background, wasn’t able to go to college, but neither the less worked hard to eventually get ahead and do something for his family in Japan. He saw a little of himself in me, or at least that’s what I like to think, and he wanted to give me chances he didn’t have. So, the night before the exam when I got the Skype call that he passed, all I could do that day was knock the test out of the park in his honor: I did, beat a personal high set on the last exam.
I suppose, at a time like this, it may sound callous to focus on an exam score. But really, life never stops. This year it’s this, last year it was a death of a cousin, several years ago it was the loss of my nearly adopted sisters in a drawn-out custody battle, after that it was a suicide and another death. Yes, with age, life adds up and with it so do the statistics across the population I know. So, life won’t wait for me to get my life together before it tosses me a few million curve balls. For now, I’m staying positive and appreciating the negatives: I walk tall because my grandmother was handicapped, I’ll continue to appreciate my education because of the opportunities those before me never had. As it’s said, “The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain”, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Goodbye Kazumi, and I’m sad you’ll no longer be reading these posts, interacting with my tweets, no more Skype conversations, or being my #1 fan on Facebook — as it’s a constant source of laughs, I’ll never let your daughter live down that you “unfriended” her, while keeping “friending” me. As someone who was usually treated like trash in their past, thanks for treating me like gold.