Monday, January 17, 2011

Revelations 3:8

I learned many, many things in Jamaica. For the first time in my life, I spent every hour of every day surrounded by medical professionals and watched as they practiced in rural villages. I memorized the names of various medicines and the ailments they were prescribed for. I listened to a sick baby’s heart and heard the blood gushing through a tiny hole in the ventricle. I cried for the children with cigarette burns and machete scars. I held infants burning with fever and rejoiced with their mothers when the doctor said their child would be okay.

I learned how to pray in Jamaica. I learned how to pray in a deep, rich, powerful act of worship you feel completely humbled by. I learned how to be in constant communication with God, all the time, with every breath. Thanking Him for the day, praying for the sick, praying plans would go smoothly, praying with patients, being prayed for, marveling at His work in prayer.

I swore to myself that next time I went to Jamaica, I would be the doctor. I would be the one with the stethoscope discovering life-threatening problems and working to fix them. I wanted to be the one to make a difference. And though I had been obsessed with medicine for years, my two weeks in Jamaica solidified my passion and made me hunger for doctor-hood as never before.

It’s been almost a year since Jamaica and I’m struggling. I’m struggling with how to make this a reality and how it’s even possible. I’m a pre-med student who’s a poli-sci major and hasn’t taken any science and who isn’t good at it. I’m a pre-med student who should have started the pre-med track two years ago, but didn’t know how, and therefore, is two years behind. I’m a pre-med student who now has too many units at the JC and *has* to transfer to a 4-year college. I’m a pre-med student who has too many units to double major or minor in science. I’m a pre-med student with too many units to complete the necessary science requirements to take the MCAT. I’m a pre-med student who the deans at UCD, UCSD, and UCSF tell should have a “plan B”.

I feel like if this is where God wanted me, if He wanted this to work for me, He would make it work. “I know all the things you do, and I have opened a door for you that no one can close.” -Revelations 3:8 But He hasn’t. Everywhere I turn, doors are closing and I can’t get through. There are rules I can’t escape and those rules slam doors shut right before my eyes.

I found a tiny note I wrote in the back of my Jamaican journal. I cried when I rediscovered it; a quiet whisper of doubt from a time when I was surrounded by what I thought I loved.
I’m trying to force myself not to begin to reconsider medicine. It’s so competitive, so hard, so demanding. Am I pursuing this out of pride? Trying to prove I can? Proving people wrong who say I can’t? I’m more excited and hesitant about medicine and surgery than ever. Oh dear...God? Help?”

I don’t know what to think. I don’t know how to proceed. Everything I’ve wanted and hoped to work for and planned for my life seems to be trying to grasp fog.
I need to spend a lot of time in deep Jamaican prayer.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


How do you move forward in an efficient and productive way when you don’t know what you’re doing? How do you save money and push forward in the best possible way when your heart and mind are swimming with questions and doubt? How do you pursue the unknown?

How? How do you know? How do you what to do?

I am so confused and so frustrated and so....unsure. I am at a point in my life when I have to make important decisions, transfer to bigger schools, choose majors and degrees and career paths, and I just wish I could pause time, have a coffee date with God and just ask Him, “what the heck!?”.

I’m torn. I’m stuck. I’m so very confused and so very full of doubt.

I have to believe that God’s mercy and grace are new every morning. I have to trust that He has a plan and though I don’t know what to do or how to plan, if I’m living according to His plan, it doesn’t matter if I don’t see clearly. But I really want to know. I can’t afford to make a mistake. I really want a plan.

It’s letting go. Trusting. Stepping out in blind faith.

Oh Lord, don’t let me fall.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


I’m in the process of applying to the prestigious Jack Kent Cooke scholarship and I’m puzzling over the application. This scholarship application seems to be a weeding-out mechanism itself. It’s been truly a pain getting tax forms, W2s, official transcripts, SARs all scanned and faxed appropriately as well as collecting letters of recommendation. So far it’s been a test of endurance, determination and perfection. Am I jumping through every single hoop? Have I crossed every single “t” and dotted each and every “i”?

And now they want three thoughtful, deep, eloquent essays, each only 300 words!! Psh. That’s crazy.

The first prompt: “One’s real life is often the life that one does not lead.” -Oscar Wilde.

And so, I’m sitting by our crackling fire and thinking. Thinking. Thinking.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Going Home

Ruben went home yesterday.

I hate goodbyes. Goodbyes are the worst.

We went to San Francisco early and went to our special, secret park. We climbed ropes, slid down slides and laughed. Complete denial.

My cousin Bryce came with us to the city. The six of us enjoyed every second.

The park has a beautiful, sweeping view of the bay and airport. We romped while airplanes soared away. Metallic birds.

We looked at the airport wishing 3:50 would never come. Of course, Ruben will be glad to see his family and friends...I would be too, and always am when I return home. Yet, we just stood in silence; watching the planes. Watching them fly far away.

We’ve had so much fun. Card games, skiing, movies galore, scare-tactics, pranking, lazer-tagging, paint-balling, exploring, driving, shopping, laughing. We’re so weird.

I guess that’s how it goes with really good friends who live far away.

They’re the best.

Monday, January 3, 2011


She’s got a smile that it seems to me
Reminds me of childhood memories
Where everything was as fresh as the bright blue sky

Whoa, oh, oh, sweet child of mine.