This blog is about one ordinary guy, blessed with extraordinary experiences, and how I got Crazy Enough for Medical School. Now it's time to share those experiences with others. The name's Tim and I'm training to be a doctor. A trauma surgeon to be exact. From down right heart-wrenching to positively hysterical; come ride the ups, the downs, the twists and turns of my life. See the hardships, blessings, and lessons that have prepared me for my quest to become a doctor. Lets have some fun =)

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Love the Unlovable

I admit, I do feel like a failure from time to time. Plans shot down in flames, desires of your heart extinguished, opportunities stolen away. I went to bed last night, the last thought in my mind before I fell asleep was "you are a failure."

I wake up having to motivate myself to study and go buy new scrubs and work shoes with my good friend. At the shoe store I look over and notice a severely handicapped gentleman with his parents. Wait a second, I know him! He went to my high school! But, I can't remember his name. Oh, come on Tim remember! JAMES! That's his name!

Here comes the doubts and excuses "But, he won't remember who I am. He can't talk, how do I communicate? Can he understand me? I don't want to disturb them."We have all had this situation. See a person you know you should talk to, but because we find some way to justify our NOT talking to them, we don't. This same justification permeates the healthcare field also. They see someone like James, wheelchair bound, drooling, not talking, and they leave them in their room. No contact. I've even heard people say, "I'd rather be dead" ... "thats not living"... "he is a vegetable". This infuriates me to no end. Any given person in this "instant" generation has hundreds of friends on Facebook, can't be without their phone for the fear of missing a text, constantly updates everyone about their lives. How can this generation of "connection" be so adverse to taking just a little more time to connect to others? Take the time, take the extra effort. As Patch Adams once said "You treat a disease, you win, you lose. You treat a person, I guarantee you'll win. No matter the outcome."

People have always known me to be one of the most outgoing people. They think I don't have the same fears or doubts as others. WRONG. I have the same doubts and fears. I just learned how to deal with those pesky fears and doubts. 

In that shoe store, I took those doubts and told them to go shove it. I walked up saying loudly and smiling the entire time "JAMES! James right? How's it going buddy! I remember you from high school!" And RIGHT then. Not even 2 seconds after casting down those doubts and fears it was all worth it. He smiled the biggest smile I've ever seen. His entire persona changed, brightened up, and came alive. We then had a conversation how he is going to college, his new computer, how he flirts with his cute aides at school, high-fived, and on and on. Instead of being the blessing to another, I was now the one that being blessed. Ignore these opportunities, whether in a store, or working in the hospital it is BOTH you and the other person losing out. This so-called "severely handicapped" person just experienced joy, love, life. Sometimes life isn't worth living for these people you are right, but it is NOT because of their state of health or debilitations, and inabilities. It is because of the ignorance of those that will not take the time to connect with these beautiful and most sincere people.

We said our goodbyes and good lucks, and my friend and I left the mall. On our way out, I notice a homeless women holding up a sign for food. I get this urge, this little voice in my head "you need to connect with this person." Here again come the doubts, "but I already passed her"... "I might scare her" ... "Its not safe".  I said out loud, more for my benefit than for my friend's, "We should get her food." I quickly U-turn and pull into a In-N-Out close to where she stood. My friend said "yeah we can get her a burger and hand it to her as we drive by". "No," I replied, "That's not good enough. There is no connection, no human interaction in that. No, we are going to sit down and have dinner with her."

I walk up to her and her two dogs, invite her to have dinner with us and she accepts with a "uhhh YEAH!" She just asks for a hamburger "animal style". I come out with hamburger, fries, drink, and two different milkshakes so she can pick favorite flavor. We then sit down for a good 2 hours just talking away. Listening to her stories as a voluntary hobo: riding the trains, hitchhiking, how many people have completely avoided her due to the way she looked, hobo communities, police encounters, losing friends to accidents or drugs, etc. She admitted before she started this she was atheist, but "on the road" she could not deny that there was something there. Something that saved her many times from situations she should not have gotten out of. I was able to share my story, pray with her, and with tears running down her face, give her a big hug before parting ways.

I do not tell you these stories as a "oh look at me" moment. I tell you this to show that compassion for those around you CAN happen. I encourage you to be brave. Break those societal barriers, personal doubt, and fear. Do not listen to the falsehood that you are a failure. I thought that if I didn't make it as a top doc, I couldn't help people the way I was meant to. Truth of the matter is, whether you work as this high-to-do surgeon, or as a grocery bagger, there are opportunities to reach out to your fellow man and touch their lives. In return, you will notice it is your life that has been touched.

Matthew 22:36-40
36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?” 37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’

Matthew 25:40
"The King will reply, 'Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'

Matthew 5:46-47
 46"For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47"If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same?


Friday, February 27, 2015

Midgets, Dr. Bozo, and the Meaning of Life

Forgive me for the hiatus! Due to popular demand (2...maybe 3 people) I'm back to grace the world with my... me-ness. A lot has been going on and now you all get to learn about it!

When it comes to stories and life events, people can get much more out of your experiences by living it with you minute by minute. Other times, its best to wait and gain perspective. This time, I waited and I'm glad I did.

"Life sucks and then you die". That was my thought, my motto for a couple of months. And to an extent, if you leave out a very important aspect (an aspect we will discuss later in this post), that statement can be true. I became ill, yet again. Not with the same illness as before, but I was sure getting worried. It was about 2 months and I felt increasingly worse each day. I got to the point where I was coughing so hard, so often they thought I misplaced a rib, had a fever that reached 106, kept puking VIOLENTLY, lossed 25 pounds, head to toe rash, etc. It ended up being the measles with some other complications including 2 partially collapsed lungs. Yes I was vaccinated, but apparently I was a part of the 1% that just didn't "take" to the vaccine. And before anyone asks, YES I still wholeheartedly support vaccinations. VACCINATE ALL THE THINGS!

If this was a one time sickness, I would not have been so downcast. But most of you know my story already and my history with illness. Now what? Sick again? and then AGAIN? Instead of one loooong illness, I now faced multiple ones in rapid succession. Can I catch a break here?!

So there I was in ER, but not just regular ER.  Shrink that ER down to a child size. Yes, they put me in the children's ER for a lack of room in the big boy center (My mom must have told them stories). This pediatric ER was completely fine and wonderful to stay in, that is if you were a 3 foot parka wearing Eskimo midget that was only staying there for a few hours. Unfortunately, I am not a midget. So here I am like:

AND laying on my happy meal size bed like:

A good foot or foot and a half of me was hanging off the edge. I half expected them to whip out a child size hospital gown too. I mean, I have the legs for it don't get me wrong, but you really don't want to see THAT much Tim. And lastly, the "negative pressure" room was so drafty and cold I swear my dangly bits were frozen to my leg. You heard me. I started laughing at the scene, always trying to find the humor in any situation. But staying in that condition for DAYS, tends to suck out any humor that may have been found before. Dr. Bozo kept wanting to check out my junk for some reason, and then here comes 3 interns, oh and then 2 more residents, oh look a homeless guy they picked up off the street to come help them assess my ... assets. Well GOOD LUCK, IT'S FROZEN TO MY THIGH DR. PERVY -________- .

As I was sitting there, lonely, cold, angry, hurt and brooding about how unfair life is, this blood curdling screaming and crying started up in the middle of the night and went on for a day or so. I wanted to go out there and see what it was, but I was under "quarantine" and not allowed outside. I finally found out, while I was sitting there in my ice box feeling sorry for myself and very justified in feeling so, the crying came from a woman who had lost her son. She laid there all night and all day weeping over her 3 year old boy. That put a quick end to my own self-pity. However, now the crying was even more unbearable to hear. To say it was depressing would be an understatement. My heart broke for this woman. And yes, my heart broke for myself. All I wanted to do was go to her and wrap my arms around her. Life sucks.... and then you die. Does this statement really hold true?

The answer is two fold. The first part, I answered in my previous post. This is a broken world. There will be heart ache and God gives you the tools to fight against these slings and arrows of the enemy.

The second was discovered by a pretty wise dude who once saw life as utterly vain. Meaningless... MEANINGLESS is everything in life he would say. From desires, to hard work, to wisdom.  Just as a fool dies and is forgotten so too is the wise, the great, wealthy, the unwealthy, the healthy and the ill, the cheaters and the upright. The deeds you do will melt away, the success you've created will disappear. No matter who you are, this thought seeps into everyone's mind from time to time. What this man, Solomon, finally understood after watching people try to GET the most out life but ultimately being as successful as grasping at the wind was this: Life is not the ultimate end. Our treasures, our hope, our future does not lie in this life. The grass withers and the flowers fall, the mountains will crumble and the seas dry up, Earth itself will fade away but the Lord endures forever. Yes, without God, everything IS meaningless and you BETTER get as much out of life as possible, because once it's over, you are done pal. There is no reasoning, there is no hope in a picture like that and life get depressing real quick when faced with life changing hardships. With God, there is a future, there is hope. This life is not all we have. We may endure heart ache, pain, and yes even death but 1) Contrary to popular belief death is not the worst thing that can happen to you. Losing your eternal soul is and 2) we have everlasting life where "He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away." (Revelations 21:4).

Oh no! I just preached! Sue me.

John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, He gave His only son that whoever believes in Him shall not die but have eternal life"

Ecclesiastes 7:1 "A good name is better than precious ointment, and the day of death better than the day of one's birth"

Phillippians 1:21 "For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain."

Thursday, August 7, 2014

More gladly will I boast of my weakness

I write this blog with a heavy heart.  I am hurt, broken, humbled, and yes a little ashamed. For those of you who don’t know, I was accepted into medical school. It’s so easy to say, “I was accepted into medical school” but within those mere six words lies quite the struggle to even be able to say that sentence. Quite literally blood, sweat, tears, and health have all been shed for that dream. And now, due to other health complications that decided to show their heads, I just had to call the admissions office to a medical school I was accepted into to let them know I was not coming. 

People say they have always thought me strong, confident, unwavering. But if I must boast, more gladly will I boast of my weakness, for God’s power is made perfect in weakness. It is when we are at our weakest that God’s hand in my life can be seen the best. 

Before I begin to take you on the journey of hardships, please know, as I write just a few of the trials of my life, I am not looking for pity. I am not saying, “oh look at me and how much I endure.” I simply want to paint an accurate picture of how impossible it really was to get to where I am today. This is done not to show you my own strength, but to show you that there is a personal God that cares for every one of our lives, and will carry you through with HIS strength. I realize there are many others with worse hardships than I, who are much more inspiring. But, this is the story I was given, and I’m going to tell it. I encourage you to do the same.


From every point of view, I should NOT have even been accepted into medical school:

- As I child I dealt with panic attacks and anxiety that robbed my childhood of happiness and experiences at times.

-As an adolescent I dealt with depression, like so many adolescents do. Me, with depression, the happiest guy in the room, the guy that set the mood at get-togethers, the one who makes the grumpiest of people laugh. 

-In college I dealt with a six year illness that should have stopped me right then and there from living, let alone getting any kind of degree. Tumors on my thyroid, liver failure, 12+ kidney stones, swollen brain stem, a resting heart rate of 100+, the inability to speak a sentence without having to stop and take a breath after every 3 words. Mental fog that it made it impossible to study. Fatigue that made it impossible to get to class. Joint and muscle aches they equate to fibromyalgia. Walking pneumonia. My heart’s inability to repolarize the ventricles. On and on.

- I was in a car accident that frankly should have killed me; hit by a drunk driver in an F-350 Super Duty dually (you know the ones with 6 wheels) while I was in a friend’s tiny Chevy Metro. The massive truck hit almost completely head on. It lifted the car, spun it, and slammed it back down.

- Four girlfriends I cared for dearly were raped. Two of them I was dating at the time it happened. One was by her “best friend”, another by her step-dad. I did not understand why people in the Bible tore their clothes out of sorrow. That is, until I got that horrible call, “Tim, please… please come over.” My worst nightmare, now a reality. If it wasn’t for the fact that I was trying to drive with tears running down my cheeks and moaning lamentations from my very soul, my shirt would have been in shreds. 

-As the years went by with my illness, I now prayed for a car to just run a red light and take me out. “God, just take me home” I would pray.

-And NOW, after all of that, other issues arise that threaten to stop my dream of becoming a doctor.

-There are many more to share but I'm not trying to write a novel here lol

All this terrible stuff happening, this proves God doesn’t exist right, Tim?! No. On the contrary, this proves God’s existence, His love, and His loyalty all the more. What I am about to write isn’t to be showing you my accomplishments; my triumphs, because frankly they aren’t mine, and I DO NOT want you thinking they are. Every single one of these, there is literally no way for them to be accredited to me anyways!

+Through my anxiety, I have been made humble as well as found a peace in Him that transcends all understanding. 

+Through my depression I have found a joy that cannot be taken away. The joy of belonging to my God. The joy of knowing that my God died on the cross for me and rose again. The Joy that comes with knowing God thought me worth it. 

+Through my illness I learned what it’s like to be a patient. The fears of waiting for oncology test results. What it’s like not to remember what healthy feels like. I experienced the horrible doctors, and the amazing ones. I learned, not just once but three times, that miraculous healing does happen. For when medicine failed me for six years, praying to God healed me in 3 days. God blessed me with the ability to then finish my first triathlon 4 months later.

+ Of my 12+ kidney stones I had one that was too big to pass, and growing. I went in so the doctors could blast it away. Before going in, my family and I said a tiny prayer for God to remove it. The doctors went in and couldn’t find it. I didn’t pass it. It was gone.

+ I fell on my elbow and had a huge bursitis. Compression, ice, elevation just wouldn’t cut it. In church, with my huge elbow wrapped up, the pastor prayed over the congregation as we left and signed off with “I have a feeling there will be some healings done today.” I took a nap after church, woke up and went about my day. It wasn’t until my mother asked about my elbow did I notice there was absolutely no swelling and hasn’t been ever since.

+ With the car accident, the medics looked at us, looked at the mangled piece of metal that used to be our car, and then back at us. “Son, you should not have been able to walk away from that accident.” A statement I still hadn’t fully grasped until years later when a family friend was in an almost identical accident and died. Big truck, little car, same angle, but slower speed than ours. I should not be here.

+Through being there for those beautiful, precious girls that each underwent a horrible tragedy, God used me to soothe their hearts. Somehow, I was able to stand firm for them while they fell apart. I was able to stand as an example that not all men are disgusting creatures. I was able to show them love when they felt they deserved none, showing them their worth in my eyes and in God’s. And in return, God healed their hearts, gave them hope, and their own story.

+I should not have graduated with the grades that I did, let alone have the ability to even compete for a spot in medical school. Forget the physical restraints of making it to class, the mental fog that made it impossible to study. An hour would go buy and I would only be 3 words away from where I started. Fast forward a few years, and this became even more unbelievable when I learned I have A.D.D. and have been fighting it unknowingly all my life. Not only did I pass these tests, I blew them out of the water. And that was not my doing.

+ And lastly, the ordeal I am facing now. Something I do not wish to make known. Why? Because 1) it doesn’t matter what it is and 2) I am hoping people may identify more by not narrowing it down. It has stopped me (for now) from starting a medical school I was already accepted into. However, I will not despair, I will not worry. God has a plan and I have learned this lesson so many times. Within hours of letting people know I will not be going this semester, I’ve had more and more unexpected confirmations that God needs me here just a little while longer and may just want me in another school. I am excited to see what is next.


To make this clear, God did not MAKE these things I listed happen. This is a fallen world and bad things will happen. He may have LET them happen, but He did not MAKE them happen. But what is so beautiful about God is that He can reach His hand into the darkest of situations, the worst kinds of evil and wrench out that which is good for us and glory for Himself. What is used to do harm, God can turn it around and use for good.Take heart knowing that God himself is no exception. He knows the pains we face all too well. As Joni Eareckson Tada (an young athletic woman who was tragically made paraplegic) said, “God wrote the book on suffering. And he called it Jesus. When it comes to suffering, God does not try to get himself off the hook. Never, no. Jesus Christ is God on the hook.”

Let me leave you with one last thought. People are so horribly afraid of looking weak in front of others. Why? That’s the lie of our society “We mustn’t look weak. We are strong people that never falter. I don’t need your help. I’m not in trouble, I don’t need God.”

Truth is, we are weak. Yeah, there are things we are good at, and attributes we are strong in, but there WILL be a time where we are frail, insecure, or can’t control what happens. Some of the most confident and boisterous people I’ve met turned out to be the most insecure, frightened people that have been caught up in the lie of having to be strong. We believe we must be strong, so when we aren’t we don’t run to the One that can help. God.

I do not know what is to come. But I’m excited to find out, and yes a little scared. But, God has called me to heal and that is what I will do.

Jeremiah 29:11
"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

2 Corinthians 12:9 “’My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.

Isaiah 41:10 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Nazi Patients

After their last day of a good job, normal people usually talk of the blessings they had during that job. BUMP THAT, THAT’S BORING. I’m Tim. Look up abnormal in the dictionary and you will be visually accosted with pictures of me doing:


Of course I was beyond blessed with my job, and I may write a blog about that as well… BUT FIRST let’s focus on what most people don’t. The funny people that DIDN’T like me. In every aspect of life you will always come across at least SOME people that just don’t like you. Doesn’t matter how nice you are, how sincere you are, they just hate your guts. But that’s okay. Why? Because instead of getting all depressed that someone doesn’t like me, I now have a funny story to tell all of you! 

When I sit and think… “who didn’t like me at my job?” there are three people that come to mind. We are going to go about naming this three in a very Seinfeld-ish fashion (Remember his soup nazi?). First there was the Laughter Nazi, then came the Noise Nazi, and it all ended with the Existence Nazi.

The Tale of the Laughter Nazi:

There is not a day… There is not 10 minutes that goes by where there is not at least someone laughing in the clinic I worked at. And that’s a good thing. Yes, there are sometimes patients that, due to pain, are more sensitive to noise and we understand and account for that. Then… there are some patients that just hate your laugh period. No sensitivity. The fact that this laugh they hear is coming specifically from your vocal apparatus is completely unacceptable. 

This kind, gentle spoken woman called out to me from one of the patient rooms.

 “Tim sit down I gotta tell you something.” 

I sit down thinking “yay! Another heart to heart with a patient. I love these.”

She starts out good, “Tim you are such a wonderful guy” 

You know… I am aren’t I? Yes please continue this adequate amount of ego boosting madam. I’m sitting here like

“But you should really to tone your laugh down”

So, as any civil gentleman would do, I told her she really needed to tone down HER VITALS and beat her with a stick... OK, no I didn’t. Actually, I started laughing (an awkward laugh as I had no idea what to say) which probably wasn’t the right response either right after she just said she didn’t like my laugh. “Yeah, I’ll try to work on that, sorry. Are you sensitive to sound?” Then dangit, do you know what that sweet, innocent, elderly woman answered?, “Oh heavens no, I just don’t like your laugh.”


And that’s the end of the story! That was it. I didn’t know what to think then, and im not quite sure what to think now haha. Oops… just laughed. Sorry! 

The Tale of the Noise Nazi:

Another eccentric character carried around ear plugs everywhere he went. Whenever anyone or anything would project a sound higher than .003 decibels he would yell GAHH ITS SO LOUD IN HERE and walk off plunging his ear plugs into his ears as far as he could. I swear, he was forcing those babies so far in his ears I was waiting for his arm to pop through the opposite ear! 

The irony is… you would figure this man, who is so sensitive to sound, to be a soft spoken person. Nay. Nay my child. He was one of our LOUDEST patients (even without the ear plugs in). “Inside voice” was not just unknown to him. I’m pretty sure he actively took that pesky nonsense known as “Inside voice” and loaded it onto his “I don’t Care-apult” and launched it into Bellow-donia AKA HollaTown, God save the Scream. Nonetheless, we put him in his own, quiet, room to make him happy.

Now this guy didn’t necessarily hate me… Actually for some reason this guy loved me. So I would work with him (QUIETLY!), but he always complained of someone outside the door that was just unbearably loud, and out came his ear plugs. And in went those fingers. I asked him if he was trying to scratch his brain. He busted out laughing with deafening volume. I looked at him to make sure he was okay with the amount of sound that he just made. He was perfectly fine. Chill as could be. I’m over here like

He would continue to complain about this supposed loud-noise maker. I finally figured out it was the radio we had going. This radio is so NOT loud, I’m pretty sure bats don’t even hear it.
 If quietness was loudness than that really quiet radio would be the loudest thing on the planet. Wait… that was a horrible analogy. 

ANYWAYS,  Did I tell him that it was the radio? No. No I did not. I told him it was my co-worker Ryan.  Ryan does not exist. I have no co-worker named Ryan. Did he know that? No. No he did not. He would never say anything, but every time he stepped out of that room you could see he was on the prowl, his eyes darting around looking for this horribly offense Ryan jerk.
On a related note, the radio now has an official name tag.

The Tale of the Existence Nazi:
This lady….  This one wins. Have you ever had someone, without cause, just absolutely hate your guts?  Yeah me too, and it was THIS person. The fact that I am living on this woman’s planet is just unacceptable. The sound of me drawing in life giving oxygen into my lungs was nails on a chalk board to this one. She didn’t say anything, but her face said it all. She had a death stare that could make the Kracken crap itself, keel over, die, and then crap itself again.

Keep in mind that I NEVER worked with this lady, save for one time. And that one time, I pampered her. Gave her extra time on the modalities, ran and got her water, brought her 10,000lb bag she called a purse from the other side of the room for her, told her I loved her outfit, etc. And the entire time, she was giving me the evil eye, the wretched wink, the terrible stare. 

Every other time she came in, I would be minding my own business working with someone else on the other side of the room. I would feel like someone was watching me. I would look over only to be greeted by death staring me in the face. Other days, when it was slow, I sat there quietly and folded laundry or cleaned.  Again I would get this IM BEING WATCHED feeling. I look up and BAM. Skeletor. Angry lady trying to activate her laser vision to melt my soul. 

Then I thought, you know, maybe that’s just her face. I wasn’t trying to be mean but literally every time I saw her face it was like that. So I crept around the corner out of sight, a co-worker comes up to her and starts talking. Boom. A smile, face completely changes. 

“Yeah dude… she totally hates you hahaha” the co-worker needlessly confirmed.

So there you have it. The people who hated me haha. 

With these lighter-hearted stories I laugh, but many can get bogged down by the disapproval of others. Especially when it is in an area you are passionate about. For some it can become almost crippling. To you, I leave you with these verses

Galatians 1:10

Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.

Colossians 3:23

Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,

1 Thessalonians 2:4

But just as we have been approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel, so we speak, not to please man, but to please God who tests our hearts.

Monday, July 7, 2014

My youtube video! (and then some boring figures)

I usually write some long witty, light hearted posts... But this time I'm just going to shut up and let the video ...of the talking for... well... me. I hope you enjoy, and hope you pass it along. Thank you!

Donate Here or press the donate button on this blog on the right hand side!

For those of you who want the breakdown of costs: (This is only tuition and fees. This all does not include food, phone, toiletries, health insurance, etc.):

St. George's University

**Basic Sciences* **Clinical Years
Term 1 $25,697 Term 1 $26,297
Term 2 $25,697 Term 2 $26,297
Term 3 only $9,455 Term 3 $26,297
Term 3/4 $35,152 Term 4 $26,297
Term 4 only $25,697 Term 5 $26,297
Term 5 $28,381 **Malpractice Insurance, Terms 1-5
    Per Term, Each Term $357†
† Rate may change in January 2015
**Additional Fees
    Oral Examination Fee $1,251
    Graduation Fee $634
    Books (Approximately) $920
(per term)
**Graduate Studies Program
Per Credit (MPH 42 Credit) $868
Per Credit (MPH 48 Credits/MSc/PhD)

Single Occupancy, Three Students to a Suite:  $4,588.00 per semester

To put this against other schools, here is Vanderbilt:

Tuition $42,768
Residence Hall $9,392
Meals $4,990
Books and Supplies $1,370
Student Activities and Recreation Fees $1,070
Personal Expenses $2,730
Transportation Varies



First Year Experience Fee $704
Transcript Fee (one-time payment) $30
Laboratory Fee & Laptop Allowance (Engineering Freshmen only) $2,150
Laboratory Fee (Engineering Upperclass only) $650

Here is Brown University:

Tuition & Fee Schedule 2014-2015

Term 1 Term 2 Year

Tuition 25,680 25,680 51,360
Activity Fee  30 30 60
Recreation Fee 32 32 64
Health Services Fee 356 356 712
Health Insurance Fee    3,225
Medical Fellow Fee 100

Here is University of Arizona

Estimated Cost of Attendance First-year Medical Student Entering 2013
AZ Resident Living with Parent AZ Resident Non-resident
Tuition/fees $29,340 $29,340 $48,514
Books, Supplies 990 990 990
Laptop Computer 1,300 1,300 1,300
Housing 0 11,412 11,412
Food 3900 3900 3900
Transportation 4800 4800 4800
Medical Insurance 1,914 1,914 1,914
Other Miscellaneous 4042 5376 5376
Estimated Loan Fees 334 444 444
Total (12 months) $46,620 $59,476 $78,650

So, the high price isn't because of where I chose. It is about average cost for any medical school.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Banana Hammock

Every now and then life will just go perfectly. The birds sing, squirrels from Sleeping Beauty come out to cook you bacon, and angels descend from freshly parted clouds followed by a warm trickle of sunlight to kiss your cheek and tell you, “Hey, you have a nice face. Here’s a bag of Skittles.”

Then there's times like when you find out about your living situation at a school you are paying $80,000 a year to go to. The birds silence their song to drop turd, the squirrels put down the bacon and go after your nuts, and that wonderful fruit-flavored confection bearing angel comes back like:

Remember that from the previous post? Well I actually DID match with few cool sounding (for the time being) people. I get my notice in the email that all the arrangements are made and check over the details... What? Who the heck are these people?! I didn't match with these fools! So naturally, I click on their "roommate profile" and scope them out. Who knows, maybe they are some cool dudes.



The first guy describes himself as an "incredible athlete" and active guy, giving an entire list of things he is "active" about. That list is one item long. That one item is... badminton. There are only a select group of people that can call badminton a sport, and that group is all above the age of 85, have multiple joint replacements, and are legally blind. When you are 20 something and calling it a sport you are an "incredible athlete" at, you better be playing with grenades. However, I have a feeling there is a severe lack of explosions in this man's sport. Now, I'm all for playing badminton. In fact, I think it's pretty darn fun. But calling it something that involves feathers a sport and judging my athletic prowess by seeing how well I can punish a geriatric "risk taker"? Nope. I mean it's bad enough there is curling in the Olympics. If we call badminton a sport, we will have to start calling chess a sport, and then Wheel of Fortune. It's just going down hill here people. He also describes himself as fastidious yet easy going. First off, who the crap uses that word? Second, you are either anal-retentive (I refuse to use that other word) or you are easy going, not both at the same time, unless you have some personality disorder. So, I have a narcissistic bi-polar geriatric hater that uses a thesaurus as one of my roommates. Great.

Next guy: He has no information written. So naturally, I creep him out on Facebook. WORST. MISTAKE. EVER. I will not sleep this night. It is this image that compelled me to even write this post. If I have to suffer SO DO YOU. I hope to GOD this isn't the guy I'm rooming with. But its the same name and under job it says "student" so there is a good possibility. Heck, 1% possibility is too much of a possibility when his profile picture is THIS:

***So I removed the picture cuz it was just straight up disturbing. The description just may be even more so, but at least that is all in your minds eye instead of your real ones. It was a rather large man in red bikini like underwear hugging a girl that decided to place her hand on said his red bikini clad junk. Boom. Now go stab your minds eye out.


NO PLEASE GOD NO! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! For the love of all that is holy... I promise I'll stop cheating at Uno. I'll help the elderly cross the street. I will take back everything I just said about the other roommate! Sweet Eight Pound, Six Ounce, Newborn Baby Jesus in your little manger, lookin' at your Baby Einstein developmental videos, learnin' 'bout shapes and colors... Please do not let this man be the actual guy I'm rooming with. LOOK HOW MANY TIMES I HAD TO CENSOR THAT PICTURE!

After griping about something as silly as badminton... this happens. Badminton is a sport! I take it back! Badminton can be art for all I care! I believe you oh Best Incredible Athlete of the much respected and highly regarded sport that is Badminton. You can use whatever words you want! Here, I bought you a thesaurus to go with your crazy words.

Saying I feel foolish whining about someone's word choice and athletic preferences would be an understatement. The moment my retinas were accosted by that unhallowed and irrevential image (I used a thesaurus for that one), BAM! LESSON LEARNED.

One good thing about starting this blog is that it helps me remove myself from situations and take on a 3rd person view. It gives me a more humorous and lighthearted approach to otherwise irritating, or sometimes optically unnerving, happenings. And after that image... I need all the help I can get. This doesn't mean I'm not going to hope Mr. Banana Hammock isn't actually my roommate. But if he is, get ready for some good blogging. We can play games like "Try to Keep Eye Contact" and "How Fast Can I Get to My Room and Lock the Door" and "Guess That Shape".

Okay maybe not that last one. Definitely not that last one.

Phillippians 2:14 "Do everything without grumbling or arguing"   (easier said than done in my case)

Luke 6:37  “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven;

John 7:25 "Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.”

Monday, June 23, 2014

Tom & Jerry

Working in a physical therapy clinic (for now), I see up to 60 patients a day between all the therapists. Some of these patients offer a little more entertainment than others. Two such characters decided to show up at the same time. It was a funny sight seeing two 90+ year old men sitting on opposite sides of a small inlet in the clinic. Both were doing their treatment and not able to see the other due to their PTs blocking their view. If you didn't know any better you would've thought it was one person facing a mirror. I was excited to see these two interact but little did I know, I was about to witness a little sample of pure geriatric jest and good old fashion, uphill in the snow, home grown, "I survived the depression and WWII" smack talk honed and hardened by years of dealing with almost 100 years of peoples' crap.

But before we step into the elderly arena, let's meet our contestants shall we? For legal reasons lets just call them Tom and Jerry. Both Tom and Jerry come in on a regular basis and boast of their age. Without fail, the question "How many 95 year old guys do you know that still have all their teeth and a full head of hair?" is asked by Tom at least twice at every appointment. Jerry on the other hand comes in asking "Am I the oldest one here? How many 93 year olds do you know that can do as much [working out] as I do?" After about the 908th time I've been asked these questions I started giving them different answers each time. "Well, I can name about 5, Jerry." Jerry's best reply was, "Yeah and I can name about 5 fingers that's about to shut your lying mouth." (Now since I know everyone is just super worried about my safety, I'll let you know all this is in jest. Though, I wouldn't want to cross the guy. I've seen him workout. His tripod cane looks like some serious business also). Tom wields a similar humor. I once answered "Well, does your mother count?" to his "How many guys do you know with hair and teeth" question and he laughed hysterically. Hold on to this. This comes into play again later in this blog. 

So now you understand my excitement. The two of them were smiling, looking around ,talking with their respective PTs just fine. Then inevitability hits. The two PT's move out of the way. Eye contact is established. I have now moved a sofa into the clinic and am sitting on the opposite side of the room with freshly popped popcorn and my 3D glasses watching on. Their smiles instantly drop. Their backs straighten up. They are now staring at each other like a couple of cats on opposite ends of an ally. Really old cats. Really old cats with guns. Really old cats with guns at high noon.

To compare between the sexes, we have older lady patients meet all the time for the first time. They talk about how pretty each others hair looks, or where they got that cute bag, and "Oh how I just LOVE your nails!" And then there are guys.

"How old is that guy... HEY HOW OLD ARE YOU?!" Tom asks.



"What'd that guy say?"

Seeing this going nowhere fast I stepped in to interpret, "He just said something about your mama, Jerry." Ok, no I didn't say that. Almost... "He asked how old you are."

Jerry: "Yeah? Well how old are you?"

Tom: "What's it to you?

Jerry: "Don't you worry about that"

Tom: "I'm 95 years old. Beat that grandma"  (Yes he did just call him grandMA. You read that right.)

With a defeated look Jerry answered under his breath, "Well sonofab****, Im only 93"

Tom: "What?"

Jerry: "What?"

Tom: "What'd he say?"

Jerry: "Is he still talking?"

This low key banter when on for awhile with the more than occasional "huh?" "what?" which made it that much funnier to watch. Then the exercises started. There were the occasional "You aren't doing that exercise right there chief" and the "Faster grandma lets go" and then magic happened.

Tom: "Get that leg up higher you old fool!"

Jerry: "At your age, that's the ONLY thing you can get up now, you old bag!"

Tom: "That's not what your mother told me."


I thought to myself, who taught this guy mama jokes?! Well... Remember that little comment I made earlier? The one I told you to remember? Yeah, it was me. I looked at the PTs, the PTs looked at the patients, Tom sat their smiling like a child who just finger-painted their first dinosaur picture.

Jerry, clearly impressed with the quick escalation of verbal abuse, looked over at me like:

And here I am like:

  And Tom is still sitting there like:

Seeing this reaction, I do believe with one fell swoop of matriarchal dishonoring, these two ornery aged guys straight out of "Grumpy Old Men" just became best friends.

As their session comes to a close, Tom and Jerry walk up to each other:

"My friends call me Tom"

"My friends call me 'Jacquomo Tortello Dominico Fedicco Baccegalupo." (He was purposely being a turd)

"Yeah? Well see you around Denise"

And out they walked both with smiles on their faces. The rhythmic "Huh?!" or "I can't hear you" was still heard as they shuffled out the door."

This last part is a little sweeter than you realize. Jerry will break down and cry every now and then. While taking out an old worn black and white picture of his late wife. He talks of his beautiful lady and how he misses her so like she died just yesterday. She has been dead for 8 years now. Not able to have children, he is now living alone by himself. He shows up to PT 2 or sometimes 3 hours early, I assume, just to converse with people. He is quick as a whip and brightens my day every time he comes in. Now, instead of asking where all the cute receptionists are, he asks for Tom.

Tom was in a similar situation for awhile. He then found a woman and married her 15 years ago. Tom told me when he married her at the age of 85 he promised her 20 years. And you know what? He may just make that promise. He is a strong guy, and not just for a 95 year old --oh and did he mention he has a full head of hair and all his teeth? Remember: full head of hair and all his teeth. He too asks for Jerry.

Tom and Jerry met a few more times and each time ended with a handshake, a pat on the back, and a smile. You can never be too old to touch or be touched by someone's life.

Tom is no longer a patient there but made sure to tell me with all sincerity "I always thoroughly enjoyed working with you. When you become a doctor, I would count myself blessed if I was under your care. No really, Tim, I mean it." I hope to some day be worthy of such a compliment.

So at the end of this blog, I raise my glass to feisty old people, smack talk, mama jokes, friendship, and confirmation that I may just be heading in the right direction.

Proverbs 27:17 

"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another."


Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 

"Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken."