Archive for tag: midterms

Time to Breathe

This week has been absolutely tiring! Not only did midterms start to kick in, but a horrible viral respiratory infection took hold of me as well. It started on Sunday and I actually had laryngitis (no voice!) up until Wednesday accompanied by an extremely sore and painful throat, spasmodic dry coughs, night sweats, and high fevers.

I took a couple hours off my clinic shift to be treated in the ND clinic by a couple of awesome colleagues of mine. They put together a very impressive and pretty aggressive treatment plan since the infection sounded like it was going deeper into my lungs every day. There were some doubts floating around from other colleagues about whether or not I would actually improve because with each passing day I was getting worse. A huge component of the progression was the fact that I was sleeping about 2-3 hours/day because I coughed throughout the whole night.

However, this weekend I had the chance to finally SLEEP in as long as I wanted. After some new additions to the treatment plan they put together, I slept about 12 hours and then another 10 hours the next day and woke up feeling brand new! I still had the coughing and sore throat but to a minimum! So after a week of torture on so many different levels, my body halted the viral infection on it's own without the accompaniment of antibiotics or anti-virals, which is amazing!

I am so passionate about this medicine that I delve into every day. I KNOW it works and I believe in it wholeheartedly--well, I think I do--then I encounter moments of doubt when applying the medicine to myself. In this case, I was very positive that the treatment plan implemented was going to work, but I know there was also a line of doubt that I continuously had running through my head. However, I was very against giving up before at least giving it about 5 days. Well, the treatment plan started Wednesday and the effects were seen about late Friday/early Saturday, so it kicked in a lot sooner that I expected!

I am still recuperating and taking it easy for at least a couple more days, but all in all, I feel like I can finally function and have returned back to the world! :) Not only am I excited to get back into functioning normally but also I miss my daily workouts! Crazy, huh? :)

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Well, I hope you all had an amazingly sunny weekend like I did minus the sickness! Oh, and I included a picture of my beautiful nephew because looking at his picture just makes my heart smile so I thought it could possibly do the same for you!

Blissor: My husband bought me a 60" kiddie pool that I fit perfectly in and laid out for a couple hours to soak up some vitamin D! 

Happy Birthday, America!

2011-07-06_FriendThis week has been quite bittersweet. Clinic was busier, which is a huge plus since the more patients we have, the more exposure we get to different conditions as well as treatment modalities. It continues to be mentally and physically challenging, which also makes it the best experience thus far.

Midterms have also commenced which always makes life very interesting. After already going through one program and having the midterms and finals, I have reached a point where I definitely feel like consistently giving up due purely to fatigue. In one of our classes, we had a chance to complete a complementary salivary cortisol panel and I realized that not only was I feeling tired because I was overwhelmed, but my adrenals are LITERALLY overwhelmed! And now I am currently battling laryngitis, so yes, no voice! Why am I telling you all this?

Well, even doctors get sick! I am 100% sure that you all know this, but when you are in this position, it is very different. As doctors (or future physicians) we are so concerned with all of our patients' health, family's health, etc., that we forget we also need treatments once in a while, too! So I took the initiative to become a patient and the results are amazing thus far. Definitely takes more effort and more time, but I am slowly becoming the healthier version of me! So as doctors, remember to take care of yourselves. Life comes and hits you in the face when you least expect it, and if you just keep ignoring your own needs, you will definitely burn out. Like me!

Among all the midterms and busy work, we took time to spend with family, which is so priceless. Recently some close friends have lost their parents at different times but to sudden circumstances, and it truly took my breath away finding out all the hurt that they were experiencing. As soon as I found out the unfortunate news, I called my mother right away to tell her how much I loved her and I turned to my husband to tell him how much I loved him. It shouldn't take death for us to all appreciate the people we have in our lives, so spending time with family over the holiday weekend meant more to me than ever.

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Blissor: All the times God has blessed me with time to spend with family and friends! Don't take those moments for granted! 

Trying New Things

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Hellloooo worrrllddd!! My last week of midterms! To be completely honest, and it actually sounds crazy, but I really enjoyed midterms! This trimester has been amazing and refreshing so far. Although my credits are lower than when I was dually enrolled, I believe that this tri has been challenging in its own way.

One of the most challenging aspects of this trimester is that I have to switch my thinking modes. Although I try to eat, breathe and live naturopathic medicine, being exposed to a high percentage of physical medicine in clinic has helped me strengthen that aspect but also (possibly) overlook all the principles of naturopathic medicine (subconsciously).

It is awesome (and challenging) to be re-submersed into the medicine that I will practice mainly in the future, and be reminded of how amazing naturopathic medicine can be. Studying for these classes has been more enjoyable since I am in a clinical state of mind, and it's fun (yes, fun!) to re-learn and master everything and find the niche that I would like to incorporate in my future practice. I have encountered some discouraging moments, which has caused me to question everything I am doing, but having a supportive husband to get me back on track has made this trimester much more memorable.

This week, along with midterms, my husband and I started the famous and brutal P90X! We've had it stored for almost six months now and finally decided that our daily workouts have gotten boring and we wanted a challenge. And boy did we underestimate the intensity that we were getting ourselves into. So far, muscles I didn't know I could work out are sore, and laughing/sneezing/coughing makes me crouch in pain because of my abs. It is an insanely good feeling that I cannot explain to be challenged in this way, come out feeling this sore, but so good all at the same time! We are doing the full 90-day challenge, so 90 days from now I'll post (maybe) before and after pictures that will help inspire you to go above and beyond health wise!

Miravone -Two -sm
 We finished the week with a fun night in Chicago with friends visiting all the way from Alaska! (If you remember from last year, I went to Alaska at the end of May to be part of their wedding!) We used "Yelp" and found an amazing family-owned authentic Italian restaurant (Buona Terra on California Avenue) that was AWESOME! All of you should go and try it. Support a small business and have some delicious homemade creative Italian food! Then we went to this place called Outdoor Café that looks like a huge garden but is decked out inside with patio furniture and comfy couches. I love trying new things and can't wait to venture out into this big city more to find all the hidden jewels! You should, too!!

Blissor: My husband. He is my rock and ultimate support and I could not get through everything without him!

Miravone -Husband -sm

Mission Partially Accomplished

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This week has been a huge blessing--lots of good and even some bad, but over all, a blessed week! Starting off the week with Valentine's Day probably had a lot to do with it. My husband and I went to a very nice and quiet dinner at a place called Redstone in Oakbrook Terrace. Their food is exceptional and we don't go too often, but the splurge was worth it! My husband is an amazing man and his love and support as I venture through my SECOND doctorate is absolutely essential! I can't emphasize enough how important it is to have support outside of the school to get you THROUGH school.

So you want to know the exciting news right? Well, in the tenth trimester of my DC program, I started to work on a case study abstract, which discusses a unique case that I encountered that was treated successfully. After discussing the case with Dr. Solecki (and getting permission from the patient), we submitted it to the American Board of Chiropractic Sports Physicians to see if it would be accepted for their annual Sports Symposium. After a couple reviews and editing, I was informed that it was accepted for poster presentation! Hard work does pay off!

Now, I am currently working on expanding the case study abstract into a format that is suitable for the medical journal, Journal of Chiropractic Medicine (JCM). It is a lot more work than the abstract, and has included (so far) over 30 references including textbooks and fellow research articles/case studies. Working on that plus studying for midterms and writing papers for class has been very difficult, but I am crossing my fingers that this will also get accepted for publication. So wish me luck! This will make my mission complete! (hence the title of the blog!)

On a less AMAZING note, over the weekend, I experienced a horrible neck strain. I am actually writing this with (still) a sore and terrible pain that does not allow me to turn my head to the left. It was a pain that I have never experienced before! I received treatments (chiropractic) over the weekend and followed up with hot packs and anti-inflammatory supplements, and I feel exceptionally better than the first day that it happened. I am telling you this not to make you feel bad for me, but to attest to the fact that I could not get through this weekend without our "medicine."

Advanced Clinical Theory

In Advanced Clinical Theory class, we've been working on numerous cases and not only do we discuss all the possible "pathology" occurring, but we also are encouraged to recognize the "blissors." "Blissors" is a term that we've learned from Dr. Lou to describe the things that make someone happy and content beyond all the "pathology" surrounding him/her. This has inspired me to examine my blissors and I will be including them at the end of each blog not only to be a small reminder to myself but to all of you! Have a great week everyone!

Miravone -nephew -sm
Blissor #1: Other than my husband, this little man is my favorite. He is a miniature reminder of how good life is!

Overwhelmed

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While all my colleagues are freaking out about studying for Part IV boards Nov 12th and 13th, I am freaking out that I am studying for MIDTERMS while fitting in Part IV boards all at once. So I guess the word OVERWHELMED does not really fully explain the mental state that I'm in currently.

So what do I do now to get through this huge hill that I'm struggling to get over? Pray and study. I'm not sure if senoritis is taking over and I am overwhelmed or if I am REALLY overwhelmed with the amount of work that I have put in my lap. I am reminded everyday of the struggle I am going through to maintain my sanity by doing two programs.

If you want me to be honest and tell you if I ever question my decision or if I ever think of not continuing with the naturopathic program, the answer would be YES. OF COURSE. I've heard here and there from colleagues that have already graduated and ones yet to reach clinic say things like "Well it's only __ longer to get your second doctorate, it can't be that bad!" I beg to differ.

For all of you out there that want to jump head first into a dual program endeavor, think long and hard about the benefits of it for you and your patient. Do not think about the prestige or respect level you choose or expect to gain from others. I may question my decisions here and there in the heat of stress and midst of midterms and boards, however I am so grateful for the knowledge that I will have to be the BEST physician for my patients that I can.

It's so disappointing to see people fall into the trap of "simple" without seeing a patient as a global being with more than spinal abnormalities. It is not that hard to adjust every person that walks in your door, but it IS hard to sit down, diagnose, and offer the best care to the patient that may or may not include a chiropractic manipulation. Don't be a part of the first group!

Among all of this, I look at that picture I posted of Dr. Winterstein and I about seven days after I stepped foot into the Chiropractic program (about 3.5 years ago), and it gives me hope that I will make it through a couple more years to finish all my degrees.