Cancun Senior Week

Between our last rotation and graduation, some friends decided to go to Cancun to celebrate for one last hooray! We stayed at an all inclusive resort and relaxed for five days. It was exactly what we needed to unwind after all the stress and work over the last year and a half. The views were breathtaking!

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It was the most wonderful week filled with friends, fun, laughter, and so much food! We spent almost all day at the beach relaxing and swimming. There were two beaches and six pools, one was on the roof! The resort felt super big, giving you space to move around and explore! One of my favorite places was the light house on the point!

Being as pale as I am, aka a ghost, I struggled so much with trying to keep from burning. I brought a carry on suitcase, so all my sunscreen needed to be less than 3 oz- no spray sun screen for me! I religiously put on sunscreen every 2 hours at first, and slowly began to spread it out. I wanted to get a little tanner, so I wasn’t the color of sand, but I really didn’t want to burn or over do it! I may, if you squint, slightly have a tan line, but that is so much better than harming my skin!

Being at an all inclusive resort, we had unlimited access to food and drinks, really testing our self control! There was a coffee shop (the bet coffee ever), Mexican, Italian, Asian (sushi and hibachi), American, and French restaurants, a buffet that changed, and a pastry shop! Way too many options, and we had to try them all! There were bars everywhere for you to grab a drink, even a swim-up bar in one of the pools!

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I love these guys and I am so happy to call them my colleagues!

Officially Dr. Thumel

Yesterday, I graduated from veterinary school, making me Dr. Thumel. It is crazy to believe that my childhood dream (since the age of three) has finally come true. Hours of studying and stressing has finally paid off. It’s unreal and has definitely not sunk in yet!

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Penn has an awesome tradition where veterinarians within a family or Penn faculty are able to present a student’s diploma. Both my parents came up on stage to present me with mine. It meant so much more this way! My mom was beginning to tear up and I couldn’t look at her because I knew it would make me cry.

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School’s Out For Ever!

This weekend was my last weekend of clinics, finishing with a bang being on call for surgery all day Sunday. Our last day of clinics on Friday was such a weird feeling. Some classmates brought in a waffle maker and griddle to make us funfetti pancakes and waffles. There was so much food and we basically ate all day.

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We have all been going to school for so long, it doesn’t feel right to not be. I am definitely excited to be an adult, but I am going to miss all my friends. My class has become such a family. I love wandering through the hospital to find friends and chat or ask for help on a case. We are definitely going to need a big group chat to bounce ideas off each other and share our crazy cases together.

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Today, some of my friends and I are headed to Cancun to soak up some run and celebrate the occasion! We are carrying on our luggage, and I struggled so hard getting everything to fit. I know I overpacked and can’t seem to remember what I forgot, there is always something. I burn so easily because I never get to spend time outside. I purchased sunscreen before I left, which had to be smaller than 3 oz, so I bought three bottles (I really don’t want to get burnt!) I plan on always wearing a hat to protect my face. Can’t wait to lay on the beach for three days and just relax!

What I Am Listening To

I have been driving a lot more recently. Normally, I never drive anywhere because my brother takes the car home on the weekends, and if we are driving to or from home, he is the one that is driving. My rotation is currently out at our large animal hospital, which is about an hour from school, even though the school says it is 40 min which would only happen if every light is green and there were no other cars on the road. I have been driving from Philly most days to get there and back instead of staying in the dorms out there. It is not the most practical choice (seeing as I have to be at school by 5:45am), but I love coming home, laying on the sofa with my brother’s dog, and sleeping in my own bed.


I usually love to listen to music while I drive, and I am fortunate to have Sirius Radio in my car. The Morning Mashup on Hits 1 usually keeps me entertained, but I have recently started to get bored of music, something I never thought I would ever say. When I listen to Spotify, I find myself just hitting next after the first minute of a song and before I know it I am through my playlist.

This led me to start listening to Podcasts while I drive, and I found my answer, The TED Hour Radio. These are conversations and parts of TED talks about a certain subject matter. The show’s are about one hour, which is my commute time. When I listen to them on my way to school, I feel myself more inspired for the day ahead of me. I can’t wait to get back in the car, something that I never say, and make the drive because the talks help you to think in other ways or about things you try to avoid. I have even found myself listening to the whole TED talk when I get home.

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If you have never listened to a TED talk, I highly recommend it. You can find a topic on just about anything. The speakers are so moving, it’s incredible. The people who give them have done incredible life changing things. The TED Hour Radio I listened to today talked about a town in England called Todmorden that has planted vegetables around that are for everyone to eat and take as they need! This has spread to many other towns around the area as well. Or about Crisis and Response about a storm on Mt Everest (related to the book Into Thin Air). Or about Hidden things we find like a mythical 180 degree river that flows in South America that actually exists.

There is also an NPR podcast called Embedded that goes into depth about current news articles that I am excited to try in the upcoming weeks. I am excited to keep this going and to continue to learn about what is going on in the world around me!

Snow Much Fun this Weekend

Well, I think winter has finally begun. The weather decided to drop just as I moved out to the large animal hospital where I spend almost all day outside. There is no amount of jackets, boots, gloves, and hats that can keep be warm enough outside. It is also really hard to do treatments and handle horses when you feel like a giant marshmallow. I spend so much time taking my jacket and gloves on and off, and I also have a hard time hearing what’s going on with ear warmers. The other morning it was 11 degrees outside!

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When it snowed this weekend, I was happy to be in Philly and not trapped out in Kennet. One of my favorite things is playing with the dogs in the snow because they love it so much. Unfortunately, Dizzy has been at home with my parents because I didn’t know how much time I would spend in Philly, and I didn’t want to add to my brother’s workload. So, I took Oakley to a nearby field and played with him outside. He loved it! He plays fetch non-stop and carries that frozen ball in his mouth. Oakley never seems to get tired while you are playing with him. He brings that ball back and tosses it at your feet!

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All this snow really makes we want to go skiing. I haven’t been since I started graduate school which was the week I found out I was accepted. I cannot wait to go for a long weekend once I graduate. I may need to take a lesson or two because it has been so long!! I hope we get some more snow, maybe on a week day so we get a snow day or when Dizzy is around.

One Year Later

Last January when I started clinics, I was terrified. I was terrified of not knowing what I was doing, making a mistake, and being extremely exhausted. When you talked to older classes, they told us that you would be there for hours longer than you imagined, that clinicians would yell at you, and that you spend hours writing discharges. I had this terrible picture painted in my head. I was totally regretting my decision.


My first rotation was internal medicine, a service that is known for exhausting its students. It was a big one to check off the list of requirements. My first day I had no idea what I was doing or where anything was in the hospital. Luckily, I started when the class above me was still there because they were fantastic at showing us the ropes. I managed to stay afloat my first week, but I was exhausted at the end. I had no idea how I was going to do this for a year and a half more.

Now, as I have continued on my rotations,  I have become so much more confident in the hospital. I felt so much more comfortable seeing clients and performing procedures and discussing treatments and outcomes. My graduation date no longer scares me because I know I can be a veterinarian when I graduate. I came to some realizations that made things easier for me. You cannot learn and commit to memory everything you need to know in four years. Some things are rare and you will have to look them up. Clinicians will also continue to ask you questions until you get it wrong because they want to push you.

It’s amazing to look back and remember struggling through each day at where I was one year ago. I have learned so much and I have cherished this experience and the amazing clinicians that go above and beyond to help us students learn. Don’t get me wrong, I have had many nights with just a handful of hours of sleep and some days where I was awake for more than 24 hours, but these created some amazing moments that I will never forget.

My brother starts his clinical rotations this year, and I am excited to have him in the hospital. I can’t wait to see him in his element and making a difference. I know he is excited to get out of the classroom too!

 

New Year, New Me!

I hope everyone had a wonder and happy New Year! I was lucky to spend in with a group of wonderful friends who are family. I love the start of a new year! You get an excuse to celebrate with friends and family with a new beginning. It gives you an excuse to become anyone you want. I have my list set for this year, and I am really excited to make these changes stick. I try so hard every year to keep my resolutions and often fail quickly. I tend to make these goals outrageous and not attainable for myself, so this year I was much more realistic.
Be Healthier // I want to become a healthier version of myself by making smarter choices in the grocery store, in the kitchen, and out with my friends. I do well in spurts, but I need to make this consistent and a lifestyle change! I drink soda occasionally when I need something other than water, and I really want to kick this habit. There are so many healthier options that are equally delicious.

Stop Adding to My Clutter // I love to shop for clothes, for household items, and for my friends and family. My room at school and at home are stuffed to the brim with just stuff! I want to clean out my room and apartment and stop adding to the mess. I keep things and clothes for “just in case,” but I have things I haven’t worn or looked at in years. My new (cliche) mottos are “one in, out out” and “if you don’t use it, lose”

Be Conscious About Food Waste // I am notorious for getting way too much produce at the grocery store or making way too much food and not eating all the leftovers, and I don’t really enjoy eating leftovers. I am lucky to live with my brother because he will eat anything, but I want to do better because I won’t live with him forever and he is not always around. There are so many people in this world who don’t get to eat, and I am wasting food. I need to make this change starting with how I purchase food and spread it out for the week.

Devote More Time to Dizzy // Dizzy is an amazing girl, the best dog ever. She would do absolutely anything I asked and only asks for a few things in return. I do my best to give her attention and exercise while I am in school, but sometimes when I do have the time, I spend it relaxing on the sofa. My goal is to spend more time with her exploring Philly and less time sitting around. Her Whistle helps to keep me accountable, and I am increasing her goal to 80 minutes a day!

Whine Less (and maybe wine a little more) // It is so easy to complain about my long hours at school or the next rotation I have or what someone said, but it is such a waste of my time and energy. It drags you down with such negative energy. I want to spread more positivity into my life and surround myself with friends and family who lift me up and don’t drag me down!

Read More Books // I absolutely love getting caught up in a good book. I get so absorbed and involved that I get really upset when books end and making me a huge fan of series. My list of books to read is pages long, and I really need to get cracking. I have a pile of books I have gotten from my sister once she has read them. I plan on picking one when I get back to school and putting aside a few minutes every night to read.

What are your New Year’s resolutions?