It’s been almost a year, a year that has passed by like a gust of wind, but a year that has also past leaving its mark on me like patterns in the desert. A year that has passed like a single wave breaking on the shore, receding once more only to break again, but never the same. Some waves crash loudly and rise far up the shore, others simply lap peacefully at the sand.
This past year has left me with a number of reflections, fond moments, late nights, new friends. I have come to know what it feels like to spend an entire day without seeing the sun. I have come to know that an organ normally the size of a small fist can grow to the size of a football. I know the feeling of being responsibly for 3.5 foot tall stack of knowledge yet feeling like I know nothing. I know the feeling of exhilaration after finishing a year that has shaped me faster than any year I can remember. Who would have thought that this is where I’d be right now? Living in Chicago, biking around like an authentic Wicker Park hipster, with a summer one month away from ending, flying back from my perpetually green state, ready to press ‘resume’ on my summer jobs and the planning for the new (academic) year to come. Businesses are on a fiscal calendar, retailers are on a holiday calendar, and me: I’m on the academic calendar which I have known for too long to count (18 years?!) One of the biggest deterrents of going to medical school to a 14 year old was the thought of still being in school over 10 years in the future. 10 years!?! All I wanted to do was be outside, free, away from homework. Somehow living it is never as scary as it sounds in the abstract. Life goes on.
Being back in Washington and seeing my friends as they are growing older, as my family as they grow older, the landscape change, it’s quite an interesting life that I’ve chosen that every time I go back, the change is noticeable. My sister stands maybe an inch taller, my brother a little broader, my mother and father a little grayer, my dog fatter. I feel the same, but pictures tell me that’s a bold-face lie. My sister was kind enough to pull some black-mail pictures from my awkward ginger-child years. I’ve definitely come a long ways. Thanks goodness.