Friday, July 24, 2015

I Couldn't Not Blog This

Long time, no blog.  Life is nutso, and blogging is overwhelming, but something happened yesterday that gave me that final push I’ve been waiting for.  Granted, so many other “typical” blog-worthy things have happened in the last year.  We bought a new house.  Many birthdays, anniversaries, and holidays happened.  Just got home from an epic summer vacation with the kids, but none of it was enough to inspire this beautiful mind, until we met Q.

Yesterday, Josh and I were having a date night at Burger King –one thing that hasn’t changed is that we are still poor, and still spend date nights at fast food places, where we were gifted the best business card in the history of business cards.  Q, is the owner (I use that term loosely) of said business, but after reading his card, and his very friendly delivery of it, I knew I liked him.


Available via special delivery are as follows, and in this order:

men/women’s footwear, men/women’s apparel, TAZERS, PEPPER SPRAY, Bucket cap (can’t wait to find out what that even is!), fitted caps, TOBACCO ACCESSORIES-like he read my mind when I thought, “this tobacco needs some bling!”, men/women fragrance, entertainment etc. (wink, wink), school time apparel, sun dresses, sandals/flip flops.

One Stop Shopping.  Back to school…done!

Life is still full, sometimes hard, usually stressful, but Q made my night.  The other day I was leaving the dollar store and walked out behind a little, hunched over, old lady walking carefully with a cane to her Buick.  Turns out I was parked right next to her.  She maneuvered her cane into the passenger seat, while I got into my van.  As I went to put on my seatbelt I glanced over at her and saw her drinking a massive can of Monster energy drink.  Gave me the giggles all the way home.  The best. 

I’m forcing myself to just sit down and write, because we learned that even after two consecutive years of not blogging, Grandpa Brian still checks the thing religiously, just in case.  After our summer vacation—I owe him.  Stay tuned.

Doors and Windows- Part 3

(This is about a year old, but why not post it, yeah?)

If Josh struggles to close doors and windows, then I guess you could say that I struggle to keep them open.  It drives me bananas when any door in my house is left slightly ajar.  You know I follow everybody shutting doors behind them, because Jameson can't pass a door that is slightly opened without running back to it and pushing it shut.  Learned behavior from his mama.
Like Josh, this is also a great indicator of how my brain works.  When I know, I know.  Not much time spent analyzing.  I just make a choice and deal.  Now, does this mean it's always the right choice.  No.  But, I'm pretty good at not looking back.  Whatever happens as a result, I just deal with it.
Knowing this about me, this next bit of Brown family info shouldn't come as a surprise.  For the last couple of weeks I've been going out with a realtor looking at houses.  None of them "felt" right.  On Friday I took Josh out to look at a model home that I was interested in.  While there, we were shown a different home already under construction of a floor plan I had never even heard of before.   I liked it.  I got Josh back home, sent him off to bed (He is working nights right now) with the thought in his head that I liked that house, its something to think about, and then fast forward a few hours to him waking up to me saying, "Hey, on your drive home from work in the morning...yeah, um, just meet me at that model home we went to today.  We are going to buy that house we saw.  I set it all up already.  K?"
So he did.  He met me there yesterday.  We signed, and now we wait til our new home is done.  Door slammed.  Done.  (Pictures to come)

Monday, July 14, 2014

Doors and Windows- Part 2

The Interview Trail, applying for residency programs

Do you see this map of the United States?  Can you make out each and every state?  Yeah, Josh interviewed in all of them (or so it seemed)  Doors and Windows.
Would you believe me if I said that he had a hard time eliminating programs to apply to?  Not surprised, right?  Looking back, he may have over-applied, but you can never be sure, so best to cover your bases.
The most amazing part is that because he still wasn't sure which specialty to choose, he applied to combined neuro/psych programs, psych alone programs, and neuro alone programs, in addition to some transitional year programs just in case.  September and October of last year were a whirlwind, receiving responses from schools (which is super exciting) and then scheduling time for your visits.  The tricky part was Josh didn't have any vacation months to go do all of this interviewing and deal with this stuff like normal 4th year med students would (that damn PhD ate up all of that time...research is an all-consuming, selfish monster), so he relied heavily on me to set up his travel plans and even respond to schools for him, as if that didn't have the potential of going south quickly, "Umm, hi, Duke? it's Megan.  Thanks so much for asking us to interview there!  You guys are so nice.  You see, I've been living in the frozen tundra of Wisconsin for 8 years, and it would just be so great if we could get OUT. OF. HERE. so you have no idea what it means to me to have you ask us to visit you.  If it helps sweeten the deal I'll send Josh with cookies.  Please pick us.  Don't make me stay here!  PLEASE!"  Things were getting a little desperate for me last winter.  That idea is not far reaching, trust me.
Anyway, we made it through all of it without me embarrassing us too much.  Josh interviewed at a total of 700 programs.  That might be an exaggeration, but when I spent the large part of November-January completely on my own, it might as well have been.  He interviewed well pretty much everywhere he went. This should have come as a relief to me, but I knew with each school that he made a positive impression with, it would only intensify the nightmare in waiting when we had to submit our rank list.  Picture it, a chronic non-decider having to send in a very permanent list that would seal his fate not only for the next 4-6 years, but also the remainder of his career...piece of cake!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Doors and Windows-Part 1

This is my cute husband.  
He and I have been married nearly 11 years now, and I've learned a lot about him in that time.  One thing that didn't take me too long to catch on to (as in the very first night in our first apartment) is that he likes the blinds up on all the windows, and he consistently leaves open any cabinet door he has been in.  He would make a terrible criminal.  He doesn't know the first thing about covering his tracks.  I can walk in a room and give you a detailed list of all his doings by the trail of crumbs he leaves in his wake.  But I thing that I couldn't have caught onto on that first night was how symbolic these behaviors were for the workings of his brain.
When Josh and I got married, he had already graduated with his bachelors, and had decided to change career paths at that time and begin premed courses.  We went on a lot of walks (that's what you do when you're poor) and talked about his interest in medicine.  He knew he wanted to go to medical school, but didn't think he wanted to be a doctor.  I quickly assured him that if he went to medical school he would in fact become a doctor.  Period.
I remember it mentioned on one walk that he had an interest in research.  He mentioned something about a program called "MD/PhD".  He thought it might be cool, I thought it might be LONG, and that was the end of it.  Well fast forward to when we were applying to medical school, and imagine my surprise when we were contacted by two different schools wanting to interview him for their MD/PhD programs.  I had to have him remind me again what it was!  The thing is, with my Josh, is that he hates to close doors or windows.  He was interested in medicine AND research, so instead of choosing one or the other...he did both.
Now, if you know anybody like this, you can relate to what an excruciating process it is to make decisions (of all kinds--thank goodness he has me sometimes).  All factors need to be considered, pros and cons need to be written down, analyzed, and put into a spread sheet, and then converted into graph form (He really is a true researcher at heart), and even then he comes back and says, "Meg, I just can't decide.  You pick."  AGHH!
So, with all of this in mind, picking a field to specialize in was super fun!  I don't think I'm exaggerating when I say that we spent millions of hours discussing this.  At first I tried to help him work through it on his own.  That took us nowhere.  Then, I got greedy and started trying to convince him that some of the more lucrative specialties would be super great!  Not only did he not ever really jump on board with those, it felt completely wrong.  After millions of hours of discussing this, I read thoroughly through the websites of the handful of schools that offered a dual residency in Neurology AND Psychiatry.  Because lets face it, when you've already spent the first 11 years of your marriage poor, and in training, what's another 6?  As soon as I read through these websites it became very clear that this was indeed the place Josh belonged.  Doors wide open.
Now we are here, and its becoming more and more apparent that by his willingness to keep doors open (which I assure is not the path of least resistance) that he has indeed set himself up for a future career where it seems that every door will be wide open to him.  My sweet husband, will likely get to do whatever he wants to do...fingers crossed he'll be able to decide :)

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Where Was I...

I’m just going to jump right in and pretend that it hasn’t been nearly a year since I posted anything.  Humor me and pretend that the only things of note in the last 10 months or so were that Jameson turned 2 (He’ll be 3 in 15 days) and that we moved. 

If that were really the case, then I wouldn’t be so overwhelmed by even starting down this road.  Truth is, I feel like we have lived through enough stuff in the last 10 months to spread out over a decade and still feel like life was full.  So, I’ll start fresh, and work my way back.  I can’t say that I , personally, would hate to forget any of it (some of it, I definitely would) but its important for my kids to realize what absolute rock stars there parents are Winking smile so bit by bit I’ll get to it.


It was 8 years ago that Josh and our friend Sean drove from Utah to Wisconsin (I flew with a nearly 2 year old Will and a 2 month old Isaac) to begin our time at MCW.  Sean drove Josh’s Maxima (which we don’t have anymore) and Josh drove our 4-Runner (which we also don’t have anymore) with a little U-Haul trailer attached to it.  Fast forward 8 years, and we managed to acquire a lot more junk, and even a couple more kids.  So after 8 long years in Wisconsin we loaded up this moving truck with Josh’s new car being towed on the back on a trailer, and I drove the kids in the minivan as we set out on our two day drive to our new home in beautiful Charleston, South Carolina!


(our rental house)

I think I’ll do better to not forget anything important if I actually catch up the blog by going back to just after Jameson’s birthday and filling in the details from there.  I’d like to say that life has settled and calmed down now that the move is behind us and Josh has started in the hospital, but that just so not true.  If you’re dying to know how we got from Jameson turning to, Charleston, stay tuned!