Never the easy route.
February 28, 2011 § 4 Comments
Every now and then, I like to read my past journal entries and blog posts. Most recently, I took a peek at my mind as it was in February 2010. I love to do this, and I’d encourage anyone to keep a journal. It’s an amazing thing to look back at a version of yourself — your emotions, opinions, ideas from one moment in time, captured for all time.
Today, I almost forgot what it was to feel like I did last February. I was in a fog. I couldn’t see forward or backward. I felt I lacked direction, purpose, meaning. By then, I’d already applied to Columbia’s Postbacc Premed Program, and was anxiously awaiting their response. I worked robotically through the days. Writing what I was told to write. Speaking in the voice of someone else.
Then, the response came in March. It said, “Get set, go,” and I’ve been moving at the speed of light ever since — almost without a moment to think about what life is now, and what life was then. I won’t lie. The premed lifestyle has been crippling. It has taken over my entire life. It dictates whom I see and when I see them, what I do and when I do them. And despite the long hours, the insane pressure to be perfect, the never-ending workload, I’ve never felt so energized. I’ve never felt so motivated. I’ve never felt more alive and capable.
I miss parts of my old life. Going home at 7 PM and turning my mind off. Meeting my best friends for yoga or dinner or a random weeknight bender. I miss money. I miss office parties and weeknight dodge ball. I miss art shows, concerts, Sunday brunches, and reading literature. I miss Saturday mornings in Takafumi’s arms, and Sunday nights with my mom. I miss having the option of taking on knitting as a hobby, and I miss having no reason to not do the things I like to do. In short, I miss freedom. I do. Just not enough.
Not enough to give up what I know I can become, what I can give, what I can do with my hands and my mind. And I know it’s going to be hard. I accept the challenge, and I will continue to accept every future challenge. It’s not the easy route, and it will take a lot of sacrifice, diligence, persistence, and a shitload of post-exam beers.
I signed up for this. As a dear friend said, “This is the life.”
So, get set, go. Every day, move.