Everyday, I get biblical scriptures by email which allow me to start my days off in the best way possible. And lately, these scriptures have been ALL about being patient and equally important to being a middle age premed, being resilient. Now the resiliency part of that is typically no problem for me though I've had my fare share of thoughts that I'll get my PhD and be done with school, permanently. But being patient is something I've struggled with all my adult life and in doing so, have made a few decisions that I wouldn't mind a "do over" for. That said, I recognize that for most of us, the "challenges" we have in life are part of our life's stories and that what happens, both good and not so good, are ultimately things which shape our character, define who we are, and define who we are yet to be.
So my semester ends up great, I did very well overall in the courses I'm taking for the certification exam as a Certified Health Data Analyst, and I'll be VERY busy over the winter break finishing 2 courses I'm taking as "refreshers" for my spring/summer PhD classes. Unfortunately, I did have a small "brouhaha" with one of my profs when I became so ill that I had to make a trip to the local ER. But that wasn't a good enough excuse for this new Prof not threaten to flunk me in the class for missing so many days (despite an almost perfect "A" average at the time). So it would be an understatement to say that I didn't take it too well, a position "aggravated" by my own position as an Adjunct Chemistry Prof at this same institution. Blessedly, I'm on the mend and have been for a while now and I'm so thankful to God for it! But I realize that whatever I did before in terms of taking care of myself, needs to be stepped up significantly. I talked before about how my eating/exercise habits have improved, in addition to carefully monitoring my asthma in a relatively new environment. But I must also stay on top of my flu season "preparation" (ie get the darn flu shot before flu season!!) like I never have before especially since I almost died of pneumonia in the late 90's. Aren't health professionals the MOST hard headed sometimes, LOL???
Movin' on, I've become quite active in my local "Data Science" community regularly meeting with others in this new and emerging field. So at a recent meeting, I connected with the 3 other women there which was not only dominated by foreigners, but men too. The fact that the 4 of us are all racially/culturally different was really kinda cool too!! More than ever I realize that bonding with women with similar goals will not only be key to my success it will certainly be key to my "survival" in this field as well.
On the med school front, I was able to get a pretty thorough review of general chemistry through tutoring a local predoctoral student last semester but I know in the area of chemistry, I have MUCH more work to do as far as MCAT practice testing is concerned. So next spring, I plan to cover that in addition to biochemistry and biology review. I'm still on target for a Summer MCAT exam and I'll be assured in my prep time due to being purposely part-time in my PhD program in the Spring. And it also helps me tremendously that my studies in Health Data Science reinforces my "med school in my 50's goal", todos las dias or everyday!!
**For a reminder if what my PhD program in Informatics/Health Data Science has to do with the practice of medicine, click on the link.**