Bowing out gracefully

Hi folks!
I know some of you have wondered where I’ve been. I hope so anyway.
It’s been a helluva year. I started my pre-med studies and I suppose I got too excited because my heart got cranked up and now it won’t slow down without meds.
If you read the diaries, you’ll see what I mean. I’m Dorene, by the way, for you newbies.
Then my computer crashed and I wasn’t able to get one for awhile. In and out of the hospital and trying to play catch-up on my studies while keeping up with 4 very loving, needy children kept me away from the library’s computers. Plus, I just didn’t know what to say to y’all.
I did post some questions about the wisdom of becoming a doc with this diagnosis: uncontrollable a-fib, and I received some wonderful sage advice.
I’ve been playing a wait-and-see game. Let’s wait and see how this diagnosis truly affects my life.
Well, one of the good ways is that I don’t take anything for granted. My children get a bedtime story every night (at least the 2yr old and 5 yr old do - the 13 yr old would like to but is afraid it wouldn’t seem cool) and a kiss before we part every day. I’ve been busy putting my house together just in case my husband ends up raising the children alone - then I’m reminded that my husband is a very capable man and would rather enjoy time with me than hear for the 5th time where the life insurance policies are located. We still haven’t gotten around to notarizing those damn wills yet - I think my husband sort of feels like it seals the deal if I sign on the dotted line.
I hear that thousands of people live with this everyday and live long lives. I also personally know of two 38-year-old women who died of this. I’m 38. I feel like I’m on a see-saw ride.
I’m working my way back to walking more than 20 feet without struggling for a breath. Out of the 7 days in a week, I average 2 days when I’m feeling like I’ve never had a heart problem. It’s those other 5 days that really hamper me.
So, I’ve made a decision. Everything in my life has to be de-stressed some way and some how, so med school can no longer be in the cards for me. I made this decision awhile back but wasn’t ready to admit it to you fine folks.
For 2 weeks after I made this decision, I’d cry everytime I saw a sign announcing a dr’s office. My wonderful but insensitive mother sent me a newspaper clipping announcing an old classmate’s acceptance to med school. My dad was furious with her but I took it in stride and kept my mouth shut.
But as Natalie (Dr. Belle) pointed out, I have to think of what this could mean for my patients. I have a hard time lifting my 2 yr old much less rushing to help a patient (or should I say, much more?). I mourn my dream even now as I’m telling you this. I feel like I failed somehow. And then I think, “I may not have been able to get through the science courses anyway” or “Would I even had made a good doctor?” and feel relieved a little that this decision was made for me. See-Saw…
I suppose God has other plans for me. I’ve decided to finish school and get my teacher’s certification. Being a teacher was one of the areas I wanted to pursue as an MD. To be one of FSU’s OB/GYN professors! But now, I’ll settle for primary school.
I’d like to tell you that this decision has lightened my load but my heart is heavy and I had a hard time switching gears. I teach a little at the community college level (computers) and have always loved it - but I can’t help but think that I’m settling. But being a teacher is not really settling. I’ll still be educating the doctors of tomorrow. I’ll just get them a bit earlier than I planned. rolleyes.gif
I have started to get a bit more excited as I get into my teaching studies. I practice on my 5 yr old kindergartener and he’s always fun.
So talk to me next year at this time. I’ll be in my 1st internship, God willing and I’ll probably be much more excited about it.
I’ll probably hang around as a lurker because I’m emotionally linked to you folks: celebrating when you celebrate, crying when you cry, waiting with you - holding my breath too while you wait for that envelope to show up in the mail.
Let me live vicariously through you.
God speed everyone!

Hey Dorene,
I’m glad you are doing well for the 2 days and am sorry that you are feeling not so good for the 5. The important thing is that you take care of yourself right now (actually always but you know what I mean smile.gif ).
Becoming or not becoming a physician obviously does not determine what kind of person you are. It seems obvious to me that you are a great one! In the scheme of things, there are a lot of more important things. On the other hand, there is no absolute barrier to prevent you from pursuing medicine in the future is things improve significantly. So, see where life takes you and enjoy it as much as you can. I hope that you do hang out on OPM. You have experiences that may be of help to others who haven’t made it so far in the process. See you around.

Dorene you are one strong woman! I am so thankful to be even in your presence here on the internet. I am sure that this was a very difficult choice for you, but you know what? your health, your family, and your sanity are much much more important than going to medical school. You are doing a great thing by becoming a teacher at least IMHO. You will be shaping the minds of children that could become the next Einstein, Ben Carson, Maya Angelou, or someone not famous that does something extraordinary one day. I tell you I am so proud of you smile.gif please keep posting and let us know how teaching goes along for you.

You need to do what is best for you, your health, and your family. What may not work now, may work in the future. It was a touch decision that you made and the fact that you were able to make it proves that you are a strong woman who is ready to make changes whenever she needs to. This is an important quality for medicine. As mentioned by an earlier poster, maybe in the future you can become a doctor, if an when you feel the time is right again. Maybe you will feel that teaching is where your heart is.
No one knows the future and no one should pretend that they do. Only you know your true path and when you get to your destination, you will see how much wiser you are.
Good luck with whatever your dreams take you. Please take care of yourself there are some very special people that need you as well as dreams to fulfill and adventures to take.

(Briefly, only because it's in between lecture…)
I've watched on work, struggle with all the ups and downs. Your decision is well considered and I hope that you find great peace in it and go on to other possiblities with hope and as much as health as possible. Please keep us posted from time to time about your internship…much good luck to you!

I was wondering how you were doing (I always enjoyed reading your diary entries). I'm so sorry to hear about your heart problem. I can only imagine how frustrating and worrying it must be. But it sounds like you are facing this realistically, yet positively, and I think that's great. It seems as though you have made the right choice for this point in your life. You aren't giving up your dreams, just changing the path a little. And from what I know of you from your posts, I think you will make a wonderful teacher. Primary education is something that has always interested me, as well, and I've thought that if I couldn't be a doctor, being a teacher would be a wonderful. Your family is lucky to have such a wonderful, positive, caring wife and mom and my thoughts and prayers are with you. Please keep us updated on how things go for you. And as someone else mentioned, just because you're not going the pre-med route now doesn't mean the door is closed, you never know what might happen down the road.

Dorene, many {{hugs}} and good thoughts are headed your way.

Sometimes life takes us in directions we never expected…good for you for finding a new goal to pursue! I think that shows a lot of strength of character. I hope this new path will turn out to be wonderful for you, & I wish you much joy and success in it.

Dear Dorene,
I echo the sentiments of the above posters. Only you know what is best for you. Your health and safety and family should come before all else. Do not feel as though you have “failed.” You made a difficult decision, which took a lot of courage, and I think it was probably the right decision. I do wish you great success in teaching. We need all the good teachers we can get! Keep us posted on your activities. I’m sure many people would love to hear from you.

I just wanted to add that as a teacher, your job is more important than than of a doctor. While a doctor can fix a young mind, a teacher molds the young mind and has one of the most profound effects on the young mind.
The future of our country will stare at you every day wanting to absorb all of the lessons that you will be providing for them.
Just another thought to share with you.
Once again,
Good Luck and God Speed.

{{Good luck, Dorene.}} We are all sending you well wishes and hopes that things turn out the way you want them to.
I used to teach primary school and found it to be a very wonderful and rewarding experience. You will have such a tremendous affect on all the young lives you touch. <3

Dorene, your kids are much more important than we are or an idea about going to medical school. Its hard I am sure, but in the end…its about your family…not an MD.
Gob Bless and keep you…

Hi Dorene,
Just when you think a door has closed, a window opens! You have made a decision and wherever it takes you, be aware of those “open windows”. Former Surgeon General Antonia Novello said, " God deals you the cards but it is up to you how you play them." Play them well and see what the future holds. Stay around and please contribute to our little family here. We have missed you and I am glad to see that you are back on line. Let us know how you are doing. None of us knows what the future may hold but whatever you decide to do, I know that you will do it well and make a great contribution to humanity.
Natalie smile.gif

Sounds like you are an incredible woman. You should give yourself lots of credit. It is probably because you are so strong and capable that makes it so hard to “give up” a goal. The strong and capable types don’t take kindly to giving up on anything. In your case, it is clearly your body, not your mind that did any giving up. And, good for you that you are not letting it defeat you. I expect you will find many joys in teaching the young ones. I hope my daughter finds people like you educating her (she is 4).
Thanks for sharing your story with us.

Hi, Dorene.
I’m not so good at words of comfort, so will endorse those given by prior posters.
It sounds like you were embarking on the same path as I have chosen - I’ll finish USF-COM next spring then to Ob-Gyn and hopefully teaching from there. So I will mourn for your dream, wish you the best on this new path, and put in some extra work and study in your name.sleep.gif
Good luck to you,

Bless your dear heart, both physically and spiritually. There are times when we do not see our true paths and we find that it is chosen for us. I think this is one of those times. You are a gift. You have many gifts and the abilities to share them. Regardless of what you do, know that the impact that you will have will be (and has been) monumental.
Peace, Health, and Love be with you.

Besides, medical school is a living hell.
PS: OK, seriously, Doreen, my condolences for a dream deferred; it must be a very difficult time for you. My best wishes to you as you adjust and find the joys of your new circumstances. Good luck.

Many hugs and thoughts for you. I am sure your children are happy to have you with them. I say this, because my mom is pushing to get back to work 3 months after almost dying from a heart problem, and we keep telling her that we would rather have HER. I understand because she says she doesn't want to be useless. You won't be useless, I am sure. You have incredible drive, intelligence (and yes, you could have passed those science courses!), and the blessing of a loving family. Your decision has been difficult but you will make the best of it. Take care.