Monday, December 12, 2011

Thursday, December 8, 2011

This is Love

I miss her so much more than words can say.

Corneal arcus

I saw a patient who had this on my ENT rotation, and I wondered what it was. I asked my preceptor, but he didn't know. Now that I've figured it out, I thought I'd share. It's called corneal arcus and is associated with dyslipidemia and atherosclerosis.

Monday, December 5, 2011

God, I miss her :(

I Only Wanted You

They say memories are golden
well maybe that is true.
I never wanted memories,
I only wanted you.

A million times I needed you,
a million times I cried.
If love alone could have saved you
you never would have died.

In life I loved you dearly,
In death I love you still.
In my heart you hold a place
no one could ever fill.

If tears could build a stairway
and heartache make a lane,
I'd walk the path to heaven
and bring you back again.

Our family chain is broken,
and nothing seems the same.
But as God calls us one by one,
the chain will link again.

I'll meet you there. Love you Abby <3

Blue Jeans

New artist my cousin shared with me, Lana Del Rey... He knows me so well it's freaky. Cool style and really cool song. I want this album.

Note: I'm throwing this in there, so that my blog isn't entirely depressing.

My little girl, the love of my life

Well, it turns out GERD wasn't Abby's problem at all. Renal failure was. I've been so devastated. It's hard for me to write about it now because words can't even begin to describe how sad I am or how sad Elle is. So, for now I just want to share a few of my favorite things people said to me about her, about loss, about love... (Mind you, these are just a few. I received so many nice comments and memories.)

"Where we are going is so much better than here."- Grandpa Bogie

"Abby was an agility star! She loved the sport, but not as much as she loves you. She loved working for you and cared about you. I remember Liz Ulen telling you it was as if she was looking after you when you guys would run through a course. I absolutely believe that. She was a great dog with a big heart! I'll never forget how she always ran to greet me and Molly every Thursday night with her big smile and waggin tail. She was more than just a dog. Abby will always have a piece of my heart"- Margaret

"But rest assured, that curly tail is now cheerfully wagging all over doggy heaven!" -Gosha

"Abby was a great dog and companion. I remember when I had to dog sit one time when you were away. I thought it was going to be tough to take care of a dog not having any experience but Abby was a complete joy! It was like she was my best friend for the night just chillin and watching TV. She never begged, cried or made any mess at all. In fact she was better then a lot of my human friends :)" -JC

"When we create bonds of love like that, not even death can break them" -Bret

I'm so incredibly grateful for the 7.5yrs I had with my baby. I'll miss her every day. Her life was just too short. Thanks so much to my family and friends for the messages, food, flowers, phone calls, and photos. I'm blessed even in saddest time of my life.

Saturday, November 19, 2011


So apparently dogs can get gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) too! Though it seems like a no brainer now that I think about it, I never thought about it before today. :)

Here's the story... a week ago I had a friend visiting from out of town, and Abby got sick that night. She threw up four times, whole pieces of food, nearly six hours after I fed her. I was so worried about why her stomach wasn't emptying that I slept right next to her. Worse case scenario in my head was that I would be taking my dog to the animal hospital with a volvulus in the middle of the night. The next morning and the rest of the week, her energy level seemed normal and she was passing stool (thank God! No volvulus.) But her appetite was been way down, which is really out of character for her, because most days she acts like I starve her by eating her food so quickly. And she threw up three more times- whole pieces of food, hours after eating. Thinking this probably isn't a viral bug since it's still hanging around a week later, I sent my vet a message to see if he wanted me to do any blood work on her before her teeth cleaning this upcoming week. She'll be receiving anesthesia, so better safe than sorry! Anyway, he seems to think the stress of me having company combined with me working longer hours has caused my poor little girl stress and now she has GERD. I'm treating her with 2.5mg of Pepcid (famotidine, a H2 blocker).

What can I say? Like mother, like daughter. I have the same problem when I get stressed.

Love my Abby. <3

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Sweetest Race

I had such an awesome weekend! I ran my first race ever... and I didn't walk at all. Ally, my cousin/best friend, and I finished the 5K in 33.27minutes- not too bad! And now we are thinking of running a turkey trot on Thanksgiving morning. :)

We also volunteered at the Chili Cook-off for my favorite non-profit organization, The Arts of Life. I LOVE this event! The food is amazing, the people are fun, the Arts of Life band is really entertaining, and I actually feel like I make a difference! I'm so glad my friends Caroline and Steve were able to come too!

This is one of Ally and I's favorite songs by the Arts of Life Band- Shark Attack. Our other favorite is Puppies and Babies. :)

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

RVing fun!

The beach at the Indiana Dunes.

My dad and I went camping this past weekend, and we had an absolutely blast! My stepmom and sister, Laura, we able to join us for Saturday afternoon which was awesome too! We cooked, played football, hiked, took Abby to the beach, played board games, drank, watched movies, skipped rocks, rode bikes, and got to know each other better. I can't even begin to describe how grateful I am to have had this time with my Dad. I feel like we got to know each other more intimately, and I just have to say that he's probably the coolest guy on Earth!!! On this trip, he reminded me of the importance of GIVING in all relationships, and that's a lesson that is really going to stick with me, forever. I'm so blessed to have him and his support (though it's not always apparent) in my life. Gosh, I love my dad so so much!


Hiking with Laura- ah, I love her!!!

Abby on the beach

Dad with his walking stick

On a side note, Dad sold the RV. :( So this is the last camping trip we will take in it. We are all hoping he breaks down and buys another one soon. If not, well a RV is definitely on my list of things I must have after I get a job! :) It's just so fun and liberating to be able to pick up and go anywhere with your entire family including your pets and embark on this kind of adventure where everyone is forced to work together and play together as I team. It's a trip of pure fun without all the fluff, and most importantly it brings everyone closer together.

The infamously duck- taped RV that we have grown to love so much!

I guess there is one more sad thing, and it's just that weekends as fun as these remind me of how much I miss my family. My sisters are growing up so fast. My stepmom is one of the strongest women I have ever met. I admire her so much, and I wish I was around more to learn from her. And well I've already gone on about my Dad... I just don't know how else to say it.... I really really love my family. And I wish I got to see them more.

Abby's Best Friend

Abby's best friend, Maggie, has been really sick lately. In fact, on Saturday my family thought she had died. We were all so sad, and we were mourning her loss. Later that afternoon she surprised us all by walking around, though she was blind at the time. It turns out she has a congenital hepatic shunt that prevents her liver from clearing toxic waste products like ammonia. The ammonia levels built up really high in her brain, and that's why she was having these neurologic symptoms. I understand it to be similar to hepatic encephalopathy, but she is (obviously) not an alcoholic. Anyway, our amazing vet saved her life with lots of fluids, lactulose, and antibiotics. Maggie is by no means out of the woods, but she is doing much better- even her vision is back! God really does produce miracles on Earth!! Please keep Maggie in your prayers. She's such a sweet girl, my family loves her, and (as if that's not a good enough reason) she is Abby's best friend!

The Best Thing I Never Had

I've been singing these lyrics the last 24hrs straight! It's the best Beyonce song to date, in my opinion.

What goes around comes back around (hey my baby)
What goes around comes back around (hey my baby)

There was a time
I thought, that you did everything right
No lies, no wrong
Boy I, must've been outta my mind
So when I think of the time that I almost loved you
You showed your ass and I saw the real you

Thank God you blew it
Thank God I dodged the bullet
I'm so over you
So baby good lookin' out

I wanted you bad
I'm so through with it
Cuz honestly you turned out to be the best thing I never had
You turned out to be the best thing I never had
And I'm gon' always be the best thing you never had
I bet it sucks to be you right now

So sad, you're hurt
Boo hoo, oh, did you expect me to care?
You don't deserve my tears
I guess that's why they ain't there
When I think that there was a time that I almost loved you
You showed your ass and I saw the real you

Thank God you blew it
Thank God I dodged the bullet
I'm so over you
Baby good lookin' out

I wanted you bad
I'm so through with it
Cuz honestly you turned out to be the best thing I never had
I said, you turned out to be the best thing I never had
And I'll never be the best thing you never had
Oh baby I bet sucks to be you right now

I know you want me back
It's time to face the facts
That I'm the one that's got away
Lord knows that it would take another place, another time, another world, another life
Thank God I found the good in goodbye

I used to want you so bad
I'm so through it that
Cuz honestly you turned out to be the best thing I never had
You turned out to be the best thing I never had
And I will always be the, best thing you never had.
Best thing you never had!

I used to want you so bad
I'm so through it that
Cause honestly you turned out to be the best thing I never had
Oh you turned out to be the best thing I never had
Oh I will never be the best thing you never had
Oh baby, I bet it sucks to be you right now

Goes around, comes back around
Goes around, comes back around
Bet it sucks to be you right now
Goes around, comes back around
Bet it sucks to be you right now
Goes around, comes back around
Bet it sucks to be you right now

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Hot Chocolate

One of my best friend's recently flew all the way to Chicago from LA to run the Chicago marathon- that's over 26miles! I woke up the morning of the race to watch him run through my neighborhood, and I have to admit watching the thousands of people- old, young, one-legged, pregnant, dressed in costumes, and so on...- made me feel really inadequate as far fitness goes. Now don't get me wrong, I'm pretty good at yoga, but my endurance in terrible. Absolutely terrible. So, in attempt to challenge myself with something new I have registered for my very first race. :) It's a 5K, 3.1miles. And thank God, there is chocolate, lots of it, at the finish line! LOL.

I want to send a huge CONGRATULATIONS to Eddie! I knew you could do it!! And a big thank you to him for his inspiration, and thank you to my friend Caroline, who has continued to encourage this running thing for years, despite my lack of "catching on". Wish me luck as I try to prepare for my very first race! Yikes!! :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Right as Rain

Because these photos are too cool not to share- gorgeous places, gorgeous animals, and gorgeous workouts. Life is beautiful!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Picnik Photo Effects

In Halloween spirit.... Mwahahahahahahahahaha

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Steve Jobs, RIP

"Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.”-SJ

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”- SJ

What a technological genius Steve Jobs was! His brilliant innovations have made my life and the WORLD an infinitely better place. I'm so saddened by the news that pancreatic cancer has taken his life. I <3 Apple, forever.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Your book

While working with my mentor, he posed a question to me and it really got me thinking... If you were to write a book, what would it be about?

First let me say, I think it's awesome that he asked this question. To me, it meant that he was actually interested in getting to know who I am, what I am about, and what my passions in life are. I'm humbled and honored by that.

So after some thought, I decided that if I were to write a book today it would be some kind of memoir with lots of travel to search for healthy lifestyle secrets from all cultures. An Eat, Pray, Love kind of thing... only with a quest for health instead of a quest for spiritual growth. I would practice yoga in India, muay tai boxing in Thailand, surfing in Hawaii, snowboarding in the Swiss Alps, belly dancing in Turkey, and so on. At each place I would find some really healthy food that fits with the culture. Then, I would share recipes and tips for how we incorporate that healthy food into our lives. It's such a far out, wild idea of a book that I'll probably never get to do, but hey there were no restrictions on how big of dream this book could be! :)

So what would you write a book about? Please share!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Happy Me

Have you ever had a month so full of fun and learning and challenges and making new friends that you just wanted to stop time so it would never end? Well that's how I feel today! It was the last day of my plastic surgery rotation. Part of me just isn't ready to move on! I thought I would share some fun, key points I learned: 1. Botox is the most amazing drug ever! 2. Beauty can be measured by symmetry, sizes, shapes, and ratios, but the key to attractiveness is feeling good about yourself and smiling during a first impression. Ultimately the job of a plastic surgeon is to help the patients feel better about themselves! 3. Creating a brand for your business, dressing the part, building "facts" to support you, and aequanimitas are essential in building a successful practice. And 4. Get a mentor. A really freakin' awesome one.

"Whatever the future may have in store of success or of trials, nothing can blot the memory of the happy days I have spent in this city, and nothing can quench the pride I shall always feel at having been associated, even for a time, with a Faculty so notable in the past, so distinguished in the present, as that from which I now part."--W. Osler

I was so blessed to have the opportunity I did this month. Just a shout out to the Big Man upstairs who is always looking out for me- thank you! I know there is so much more to learn in the field of medicine and about myself, so third year, bring it on! General surgery starts next week.

I also wanted to send congratulations and well wishes to two of my best friends, Gosha and Anh, who have amazing things going on in their lives right now. I'm so happy for you both! For Alex, wishing you luck and skill in your training camp. I'm still your biggest fan. :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Simple, Yummy Sugar Cookies


2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup butter, softened
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
2. In a small bowl, stir together flour, baking soda, and baking powder. Set aside.
3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and vanilla. Gradually blend in the dry ingredients.
4. Roll rounded teaspoonfuls of dough into balls, and place onto ungreased cookie sheets.
5. Bake 8 to 10 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden. Let stand on cookie sheet two minutes before removing to cool on wire racks.

Friday, August 26, 2011

5 Rules for Life

1. Challenge yourself.
Set goals that make you s-t-r-e-t-c-h! It is a cop-out to make things too easy- always take it to the next level and don't be afraid to fail. Wouldn't you rather fail trying to do something that makes you expand your abilities and work harder than you ever thought you could, rather than succeed at doing something you knew you could accomplish with your eyes closed?

2. Make yourself a brand.
Sit down and decide what you want to be, and what you want people to associate with you. Map it out and then work hard to make it a reality. Think of at least three things you want people to think of you as. For example, I am... someone that enjoys helping others- humans and animals alike; a dedicated, passionate, and hardworking medical student; a loving daughter, sister, and mother to my pups. That is my brand. Who are you?

3. Realize that happiness isn't something you "obtain".
The sooner you realize that happiness is not something you obtain like a piece of furniture or a job, the more likely you are to achieve it. Most people think they will be happy if they get a promotion, make a sale, start a relationship with someone, or buy a certain kind of car. But happiness is created, not acquired. Have you ever wondered why- as a general rule- people with less are happier than people with more?

4. Live responsibly.
This has many meanings, but basically it means don't ignore injustices, treat others with respect, do what is right for the world and environment, and quit thinking it is "someone else's" job.

5. Get a dog.
A dog loves you unconditionally. A dog thinks you are the greatest, coolest, smartest, most successful person in the world. Get a dog and work hard to live up to its expectations.

(This is posted on the wall at the psychiatric hospital I'm currently working at. Though it was written for teenagers to read, the rules are applicable to all ages! I loved it so much that I wanted to share it on my blog in hopes that other people will see it's truth! I have no idea who wrote it, so unfortunately I can't give credit where it's due. Since it was originally written in first person by someone else, I changed a few things to make us think about ourselves and gave a personal example in rule #2. By far my favorite rule... #5!!!!!!)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Summer Indulgences

Black or White, Hazara or Pashtun... Who cares anymore? We are all people. That's what I love about living in this country, during this time ie. post-segregation. Both of my summer reading choices thus far have been incredibly enlightening, inspiring, and heart-wrenching stories that I will never forget. If you haven't read these books yet, you must. They're fantastic.

Another summer indulgence, I got a new bike! Upon insistence of a friend, I named her. Raleigh. She and I will share many rides through Chicago, I have no doubt!

I'm sad to say that one of my first friends in Chicago has moved away... on to bigger and better things! Good bye Sir Gosha, you will be greatly missed, but I am so happy for you!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Emulating my fashion icon

(Both photos taken in Paris)

Yikes, does this make me a wanna-be? Carrie Bradshaw does this look so much better than I do. :)

And for all single women:

Amen sistas!

Monday, August 8, 2011

Love them!

These things are making me sooo happy right now! :)

1. My new membership to Vessel Yoga. It's a small, incredibly challenging, and perfect yoga studio. The work out is keeping me balanced, and other attendees/ instructors are so nice! I love the way I feel when I'm actively practicing and meditating through yoga.

2. Foster the People's album. They were in Chicago for Lollapalooza, and my dear friend, Sir Gosha, shared them with me. I'm obsessed.

3. Bare Minerals makeup. I recently made the switch from MAC's powder to Bare Minerals foundation. I was really nervous at the time, but it was a great change! There is a lot of hype around their products, I know, but it's well deserved. :)


Nashville is the name of the editing format I used for these photos. :) They were taken this weekend when one of my girlfriends from childhood came to visit Chi!

In typical tourist fashion, and the FIRST time I have done this... taken a picture with "the bean".

Enjoying Lollapalooza, from the outside.

...Because I love hipster/ indie fashion.

Artwork by the incredible Banksy.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Miss Sunshine

What a lovely day! I made it through my first shelf exam, went to Chicago's beach for the first time all summer, and read a really good book, The Help! I'm so looking forward to having this weekend off before starting psychiatry on Monday! :)