Match Madness

Monday, March 30, 2015

So somehow, over a week has gone by and I still haven't written out how Match Day went- whoops! I'm guessing since most people don't go through this process, there might be some scratching of heads going on- isn't this just that thing they do when they sign athletes to professional or college teams (no really, isn't that a thing?) While that's probably also true, for thousands of medical students Match Day is actually the day we learn where we will train for the next three years. During the fourth year of medical school you apply and interview at hospitals with programs for your specialty of choice (mine was pediatrics.) But instead of receiving job offers during this time, you rank your programs from favorite to least favorite, they rank you, and an insanely complicated computer algorithm spits out your "match-" which is revealed with due pomp and publicity on Match Day. 

Every school does Match Day a bit differently, but generally you are allowed to open your envelope in private (Thank God!) before taking your turn reading it in front of your classmates. Everyone's rank list is different, too- mine was not only based on my wants and needs for a program (a strong mid-sized program in a stand-alone hospital for kids, ideally with some Global Health opportunities and some nice perks) and Peter's job opportunities (a larger city is more ideal for him.) For this reason, my top 5 were ALL over the place- Salt Lake City, New York City, Norfolk, Richmond and Charleston were all up there, as were Gainesville and Burlington. Most people in pediatrics get their top 3, but since I had some weaknesses I'd been told there was a good chance I'd drop farther on my rank order list. I was incredibly nervous so I was really thankful that Peter, my whole family and even my sweet Goddaughter showed up to provide moral (and comedic) support :)

We got to the auditorium mid-morning. Our deans had decked it out with superhero masks and other cute themed decor to ease the anxiety of the day. Our dean even dressed up as Thor, which was both dorky and endearing. Once we found our seats I put off even picking up my envelope (which can't be opened until the dean gives the signal) by chatting nervously with some of my closest friends, C and N. It worked well until my faculty adviser danced up to us mischieviously and informed us in a sing-song, teasing voice that she knew where we were going. My heart fluttered into my throat and I think we all kind of realized there was no more putting it off, so we grabbed our envelopes and rushed to our seats. 

From that point everything was sort of a blur. Our school produced these presumably hilarious films about our deans and faculty producing a superhero film with disastrous results. I'm sure it was funny but seeing as I was having a massive surge of cortisol I didn't really pick up on that. Our dean then showed up on the stage in all his nerdy glory, said a few words that I again, can't remember. The funny thing is he whispered "open your envelopes" so softly/I was such a wreck that I had a two second delay before realizing the suddenly hushed rustling going on around me was my classmates finding out where they were going (!) 

With trembling hands I opened the envelope. It's funny; first off, although I had been telling myself I wouldn't get my top choice, I was still praying hopelessly that I would get it. Secondly, I had simultaneously been preparing to get my last choice, rather than something in the middle. So when I read my envelope I sort of lost it and shed some really happy tears. I had gotten my second choice. 

The rest of the ceremony was again, a blur. I awkwardly read my envelope on stage with Peter (in true Georgia fashion I almost ran into him, and he then proceeded to walk in between my and my regional dean as he tried to give me a hug on stage,) then spent the rest of the afternoon hugging friends, congratulating classmates and eventually wandering back to my sister's apartment to regroup. Thank God, all of my closest friends matched in great programs, and we had an incredible evening celebrating together. 

My Mom's smile here- precious.

So that's the story of Match Day. Peter and I will be able to live together next year. I will become a pediatrician. And we are both beyond grateful that we'll be able to spend the first years of our marriage together, not apart. 

Thanks for following along! Hope you are all having a wonderful week (:


Happy Monday, People!

Since Match, we've been very busy over here- between planning the move to New York, the wedding, and working on my last set of assignments (ever!!), blogging has obviously taken the back burner. My bad! Since Pascha is right around the corner we'll be listening to a lot more Orthodox music and chanting while dreaming of the day we can eat breakfasts like this one again (looks divine, doesn't it??) In the meantime, here's what we've been into lately...

  • Why Our Generation Seems to be So Unhappy
  • Peter and I went to an Eric Church concert in Tallahassee last week, mostly to see these guys. But I was pretty impressed with how heavy his music really is. There's more to Eric Church than Springsteen, apparently, :)
  • I don't know why, but every time I see this I can't stop laughing. Weird much? Ok. Moving on.
  • Saw this matching set a year ago and was too slow/tight-budgeted to nab it. I've been looking for something similar to wear on Crete this summer ever since without much luck. Any tips?
  • New life goal: get a Masters from this incredible school. Somewhere in between finishing residency, practicing clinically and having kids. Over-reaching? Probably. But you never know till you try, right?


Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Just realized I went through an ENTIRE Monday without posting a song! Well, (a), my bad, and (b): here you go:

We're Moving...

Sunday, March 22, 2015

From sunny Florida to NEW YORK!

We are currently off Thanking God and planning our next move, but I promise to post about the day of when I get the chance (: 

Much Love,

The End and the Beginning

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

somewhere in New Mexico, 2011 

It's hard to explain how I feel right now. There's so many changes happening at once that I can't really process them all, which is sort of a good thing. If I really had all my faculties intact, I'd be panicking about where we're going to be moving after the Match on Friday. But Peter moves to Florida tomorrow, and after a 4 year cross-continent/cross country relationship, all I can feel is happiness, anticipation and contentment about this change in our life. Change for the better. Our favorite song used to be The Waiting, by Tom Petty. It always felt like we were waiting around for our life together to really get started. Well now it's happening and I find myself part thrilled, part in shock and part too distracted by the match and our upcoming wedding to notice!

Peter and I have traveled through two continents, four countries and seventeen U.S. states. I wouldn't trade any of our adventures together for the world. But I am beyond thrilled that this long time apart is coming to an end. Love you, babe. Can't wait for this new adventure with you. 

Pop went Soul

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

And I'm not mad about it

Golden Pipes from crusadermattyice on 8tracks Radio.

Music Monday

Sunday, March 15, 2015

In keeping with the lenten season, I thought I'd share a Christian song from a culture different from mine. The Kingston Trio are a band I grew up listening to on family road trips, so I'll always have a soft spot for their distinctly 60s sound. A lot of their songs could fall into a gospel-y category, which is a plus in my book :)


Friday, March 13, 2015

As you can see, I am quite enjoying my day off from dermatology by committing the ultimate dermatologic sin- getting sun! (Don't worry, I applied and reapplied SPF 30 all day!) I just finished this incredible book and can't wait to write some thoughts on it. I also heard the new single from Mumford and Sons and I'm not sure how I feel about it. I mean, their sound was dependent on the banjo, so I am not sure yet that I can get behind them ditching the instrument entirely- but we'll see! I've also been enjoying Damien Rice's new album.

Not much else exciting is going on here, though pretty soon things will start happening again, and it will feel like a whirlwind when it does. Monday I find out if I matched to any residency program, and if not I participate in the SOAP, a terrifying Hail-Mary of sorts where I fling my application at dozens of unfilled residency programs and hope something sticks. It probably won't happen that way, but still makes me nervous. Thursday we head up to the main campus, and Friday we match! As of right now, I have no clue where I'll be this time next year, so finding how the next 3 years of our lives will turn out will be very exciting.

Hope everyone's doing well! Any fun weekend plans?


Thursday, March 12, 2015

Because I'm in need of some cheap sunglasses

The Magic's in the Makeup

Monday, March 9, 2015

This was never a big No Doubt song- it didn't get a music video, or even single status- but it always appealed to me.Hope everyone has a great week.

Blue Ridge Parkway

Sunday, March 8, 2015

With just a few hours left till both Peter and I had to leave, we decided to take a drive through the Blue Ridge Parkway. Only a small part of it was open, which suited us just fine as we didn't have much time.


Friday, March 6, 2015

So yes- I went allll the way back to Florida and then alllll the way back to the Carolinas again- this time to Asheville. I was pretty tired, so I broke up the drive by stopping at Tallulah Gorge State Park in Georgia. 

This first photo is, therefore, quite deceiving, since it's in Georgia and nowhere near Asheville. It was well worth the visit nonetheless- I only wish I had gotten there earlier so I could have hiked down to the falls. Unfortunately, even the shorter rim hikes are on tough terrain, so you need a permit to go anywhere past the first quarter mile, and you have to get there before 4 pm. There's always next time...

Asheville itself was perfect. Peter and his roommate met me there and we had such a nice time. Any city with a giant climbing wall right downtown is O.K. in my book. Add a bookstore-bar-cafe trifecta and I was in heaven. And the crafts, artwork and independent shops that dotted every corner were so fun to explore. Peter and I scored two beautiful lamps at super super discount- our very first purchase for our brand new home together, wherever that may be. Is it weird how exciting I find that? After 4 years of long distance, just the idea that these lamps would be for us- not just for me or for him- was super emotional.

Did anyone have one of these as a child? it's basically a tube filled with glitter and colored fluid that you view through a kaleidoscope. It's one of those weird blasts from the past that I completely forgot existed. I wanted to grab one, but we're cinching the belt tight these days with the upcoming move and our wedding (! )

Maybe my favorite shot of Peter (:

As for food, we did really, really well here too. Eating and traveling is definitely harder during lent. Not only is your diet somewhat restricted, but you have to be mindful of the fact that we shouldn't be indulging too much either. We definitely missed the craft beer scene, but the vegan opportunities in Asheville are both abundant and diverse. Our favorite place was by far Plant, a totally vegan spot, but we also did well at the Laughing Seed Cafe. Tupelo Honey Cafe was also good, but had a dearth of lenten options, and the Early Girl Eatery was a really nice breakfast spot.

We stopped at R.E.I. too, to get fitted for back-country camping packs and see if there was anything else we wanted (we're registering for our wedding here!)

Asheville was seriously so fun, and a nice quick visit if you live in the mid-Atlantic or Southeast part of the country. Staying in the center is a lot more expensive, so we found some cute cabins for a reasonable price just a short drive from the city. Parking wasn't terrible and I really don't think we missed too much being a little ways out- it was actually quite peaceful! If you like food, craft beer, handmade Americana, or mountains, you have to pay a visit :)


Thursday, March 5, 2015

I visited North Carolina twice last month- both weekends were very different, but totally worth it. These photos are from the first one, when I visited one of my best friends from medical school in Charlotte. We stayed up till 2 the first night (partly because we were both so thrilled to see each other and partly because she just came off a week of night shifts,) but the photos stop abruptly after our short-lived hike, as K got a nasty gastro bug. The rest of the weekend thus took a more laid back tone revolving around saltine crackers, flat ginger-ale and The Fault in Our Stars (yea, sobfest!)

In spite of this, Charlotte was a lovely city and I can't wait to visit again. Apart from poor K's stomach bug we ate SO well, and for the beer-lovers, the microbrewery scene is supposed to be unreal. Noteable places include:

1) Cabo Fish Tacos - sooooo good!!
2) Amelie's Bakery - great chai tea, even better French sandwiches
3) Lang Van Vietnamese - amazing, traditional food that's worth the wait
4) Toast Cafe - tasty brunch, but small plate sizes
5) 7th Street Public Market - pictured above, we had a great ginger chai tea here as well as a tasty breakfast!

Truth is, I needed a relaxed weekend more than I needed the high energy one K had originally planned. Thanks so much for having me, girl! Can't wait to visit again soon!

Music Monday

Monday, March 2, 2015

New week, new rotation, and new song stuck in my head:

Let's make it a great week (: