Being married to a medical student isn't all that bad (or hard). Not really. Especially right now. Right now he is on his family practice rotation which is Monday - Friday 9-5 (with a few "late" days thrown in there for fun). Besides study time, we have Daddy home ALL weekend. We go to church together as a family. We eat most dinners together as a family. Heck, we even bang our heads against the walls together as a family - out of sheer boredom and cabin fever! Ok not really on the last one! But you know what I mean:)
And yet, lately I have been complaining a lot lately about "Joe's schedule" and doing everything on my own. Mostly this is an internal self dialogue. My own little "woe is me" pity party. I have been wishing Joe had never left his stable (albeit incredibly boring and unfulfilling) job as a banker. I have been day dreaming about him being home every night for dinner and bedtime. I dream about having more help with the child rearing and disciplining. And when I get real greedy in my day dreams, he's even home in the morning to help me get the kids up and ready. (Who am I kidding?! I need him here to get ME up. The kids have no problem hopping to bright & early!)
And then I was asked by an eager, go-getter, chomping at the bit girlfriend of a first year medical student, "which year is the hardest?" I immediately responded, "For my husband it was his first year (as he had to re-learn how to be a student) and for me it is this year (third year)." A much wiser wife of a medical student responded, "The worst year is whichever one you both think of yourself the most and don't communicate well."
Her words hit me like a ton of bricks! Lately I have been thinking of myself. A LOT. Too much in fact. Because you want to know what is hard?
Being a medical student.
It's a rigorous schooling process with extremely high standards. And it's a competitive environment. One in which everyone is bright and an over-achiever. It's the best of the best trying find a way to excell and shine brighter than everyone else while trying to learn and internalize an astounding amount of complex information.
See? That's hard.
Being the wife? And being the mom? That's the easy part. Sure I make the meals and wash the dishes. I do the laundry. I tend to the children and their (never-ending & always changing) needs. I vacuum and I scrub the toilet. But I also get to do all the fun parts as well. I get to go to play dates and story time. I take the kids to the park and the beach (weather-permitting:). And I get to play and read stories with them. Heck I have time to sew with my friends and watch a TV program (on the rare occasion I want to). I can even take a bubble bath or a nap when the kids are napping/resting. I get to go visit family and friends (albeit mostly alone with three kids).
I even have time to blog:)
Joe doesn't have the luxury of free time and hobbies these days. He is either "med student" or "dad". That's it. Not much else. No time with his friends. No watching a game on lazy Sunday afternoons. The poor guy didn't even realize that Super Bowl Sunday is only four days away!
And yet I complain. And day dream of a different life. A life I will never know. And probably don't want to. Because my husband would have been miserable and bored. He's happy as a medical student. He has found his calling in life. And by golly I need to learn to embrace this life. My life. Our life.
Unmet expectations are the root of discontent.
I need to adjust my expectations. Because this is our reality. And being the wife isn't all that bad:) I'd rather be the wife than the medical student any day!
But may I for one teeny tiny little second complain about one thing?
Ok. Thanks again. Changing rotations every 4-8 weeks and NEVER knowing my husband's schedule in advance? That's annoying! He starts pediatrics in a week and a half. And we have NO IDEA what his schedule will be like. Will he be in the clinic or in the hospital? Days? Nights? Weekends? Will he have call? And if so is it "in house"?!? I always have such an "impending sense of doom" at the beginning of each new rotation. But if I expect the worst than I can be nothing but pleasantly surprised by the reality, right?
Back to my regular schedule of poop, pee and sleep schedules ranting tomorrow. Thanks for listening.