Great and Small Things I Learned This Semester

{Second Semester of Grad School}

It’s been another relatively long hiatus, but we BACK. Finals were stressful. This senior year of undergrad/first year of PT grad school was wild. But we did it; we finished undergrad!!

I graduated with my Bachelor of Science in Health Studies this past weekend. People call it a “fake” degree, because it’s sort of just a dummy bachelor’s degree to acknowledge that we’ve received an undergraduate education, but the Doctorate of Physical Therapy at the end of this 6-year program is what we’re really here for. Two more years until that, God willing!

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Although I haven’t been blogging much at all in these past 9 months, I can’t neglect to do my traditional “what I learned” post at the end of the semester. I have no idea where this one is going to go, to be honest. I have learned truly countless lessons that cannot be exhaustively listed in this blog post. However, I’ll do my best to recount this grand ol’ journey in list form!

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1. Dairy probably makes me break out, but not enough to make me want to give it up for more than the 40 days of Lent.

2. I do laundry more often than most college students (I do it every 7-12 days), and it’s costing me a FORTUNE (especially since it’s $10+ for wash and dry at my laundromat!!!).

3. Alllllll about the lower extremity. Hip, knee, ankle problems? Let me have a look at it (with my non-professional student PT eyes)!

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4. Also a whole crap ton about neuroscience that I did not expect I would learn going into PT school. Even my neuroscience major BFF (Rachel) was impressed with how much we were learning.

5. The pain of doing God’s will.

6. The incomparable beauty of doing God’s will.

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7. How to do split screen on a Mac computer.

8. How to set aside time for people who mean a lot to me, despite a busy schedule.

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9. I like Shawn Mendes’ music (“Youth” is my JAM currently).

10. Curried tuna salad is a FANTASTIC Friday meal.

11. How to have a little less of a big mouth.

12. How to be less judgmental of others.

13. The discipline of not listening to music after 10pm (as I realize that it’s 10:30pm and I forgot to turn off my Spotify… whoops).

14. I can blog if I set aside a short time for it every day.

15. How to be okay with the mess.

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16. How to communicate better and to be honest with myself and others.

17. How to fall in love with God even more.

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18. Body shape-wise, I’m the roundest/fullest I’ve been in several years (or ever?), but I’m probably the happiest with my body and can do more physically than I ever have been able to do.

19. I have medial tibial stress syndrome (aka shin splints), and I don’t even run that much. The best/worst part is that I know how to help myself.

20. Long term acute care PT is right up my alley, and I could see myself working in that kind of setting.

21. I’m still into selfies.

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22. How to lead a retreat.

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23. Uncomfortableness is a very good thing sometimes.

24. How to reflect on all these things that God does in my heart, just like the Blessed Virgin Mary did throughout her life.

25. God is good. All the time.

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That’s what I have for now! Hopefully the first half of summer will lend to some more blogs (maybe VLOGS!?). I’ll be staying in Boston working as a gross anatomy teaching assistant again, and then I have clinical starting in July. It’ll be busy but good (hopefully)!

Thanks, Madre and Pop ♥

So tell me:

What are some things you’ve learned this year!? 

 

 

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Nighttime Silence

Sunday, April 22nd

Spring

“Your dress makes you look like a spring flower and I love it.” – Rachel to me.

Indeed the spring weather has finally sprung, so I took the opportunity to wear a dress today! I love dresses.

Speaking of dresses, my friends and I have tossed the idea around to have some sort of party where we all dress up really nicely, and I want it to happen SO BADLY. Confession: I brought my prom dress to Boston last year because I really want to wear it again.

Monday, April 23rd

Silence

I was reading about nuns and how some/most/all (idk) convents have a time at night called the “Grand Silence,” after which no one talks to each other. That might sound miserable to some, but I’ve actually been trying to *sort of* adopt the idea by not listening to music after 10pm (I still talk to people though). I freaking love listening to music, but sometimes I feel like it’s a sub-diagnostic addiction for when I’m just bored/stressed and want to be emotionally moved by melodies and lyrics.

So at 10pm, a mental voice (not unlike the deep, rich voice of Dumbledore) goes off in my head saying, “GRAND SILEEEENCEEEEE,” and I turn off my music and focus on doing the rest of my nightly tasks/studying without music.

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It helps me think about ending my day with God in mind and with a more reflective, grateful mindset.

Tuesday, April 24th

Smiles

Today’s reasons to smile:

  • A third beautiful spring day in a row
  • Working out on the esplanade in between classes
  • My PT friends who make me double over in laughter even amidst the stress of exams
  • Praying for a while in the middle of a busy day
  • Hugging my friend Fiona, who I hadn’t seen in a while
  • A free confetti cake cookie (omg)
  • Also free pasta dinner and Kraft Parmesan cheese dusted dumped onto it
  • A funny and very smart priest who came to give a talk at the Catholic Center
  • We are one more day closer to the weekend, hallelujah
  • Dying on the inside

So tell me:

Do you have a designated quiet time in your day? (Does that sound like something for preschoolers??? Let me know.)

The Stuff of Life

Wednesday, April 18th

Interaction

I ran with my well-conditioned, Colorado-raised, track athlete friend first thing this morning (hi, Abby!). It was a quick 3 miles, but she helped me push the pace (which was probably her easy pace). It was a glorious morn though!

I feel like I have a tibial stress fracture and patellofemoral pain syndrome though #PTschoolsyndrome.

Today, I was blessed with many fun conversations and social interactions… or at least, with more people than usual. And it’s entirely because I chose to not be a studying hermit who has her nose buried in her book laptop all day. I mean, I have to do that a little bit in order to actually get work done, but today I let myself talk to and just be around more people who I see every day but never really interact with for more than 30 seconds at a time. I know I have to sacrifice fun time for study time very often, because then I’d never get work done, but my heart is filled with extra joy because of these new and life-giving interactions.

It’s the stuff of life. Good for ya.

Thursday, April 19th

Snooze

I don’t usually hit snooze these days, but I hit it three times this morning instead of going to the gym, and I don’t regret it.

Randomly, there was a free clam chowder tasting/voting at the student union this afternoon. New England student perks!!

Particularly welcomed on a cold, rainy day like today.

I’m currently listening to “You’ll Be in My Heart” by Phil Collins as I type this on my phone. Thought some of you would appreciate that.

Friday, April 20th

Skills

My PT friends and I worked a lot on our skills today for our practical exam coming up next Thursday. What that means is a) stress; b) we have to be able to examine, treat, and rationalize anything and everything about the lower extremity; c) stress.

Luckily, we like doing this stuff.

I even got to examine my friend’s knee today and {unofficially} “diagnose” him as the student PT that I am. I told him to take everything I say with a grain of salt and to go to a real PT, but it was still good practice and fun to help someone with a real musculoskeletal issue rather than hypothetical ones. I also taught him how to deadlift (“from the H I P S”).

Other things: I did half of this workout this morning, and it killed me (as it always does). I played soccer with some friends (although I wasn’t aggressive because I really think there’s something wrong with my tibia / I suck at soccer). I ate ice cream twice tonight. A good day!

Saturday, April 21st

Human

60 and sunny, yes puh-lease.

I spent the beginning and end of my day with my dear friend, Kelsey, and one thing that she reassured to me repeatedly as we had some heart gushing sessions was: “It’s okay to feel that way, because you have a human heart.”

So often, I am very hard on myself for feeling upset or frustrated about certain things that I know I should get over or not be upset about in the first place. But our hearts do feel things for a reason, and it’s not our place to judge ourselves, just as we wouldn’t judge others. This doesn’t mean we need to sit in melancholy or sorrow for ourselves, because that’s not good, but we don’t have to beat ourselves up for feeling a certain way. We just take that opportunity to know that Jesus felt exactly what we feel, except in the deepest, purest form, so we can unite our human heart to His human yet also Divine heart.

We had cider flights to celebrate Kelsey’s birthday that was on Thursday!! So fun.

Happy Sunday, friends.

One Word

I have this idea to select one “word of the day” for each mini blog post that I’m now doing. It came to me in a vision (i.e. random shower thought probably).

Sunday, April 15

Restore

Today was a good day. However, today was also an emotionally hard day, and honestly, many days have been that way these past few weeks. But at Mass today, the priest preached about the difference between rightful sorrow and just plain ol’ wallowing.

I’m a wallower sometimes. If I’m sad about something, turn up the sad songs and cue the heavy hearts, because sometimes, I’d rather feel melancholy than feel nothing at all. But w h y. Yes, there is so much to be sorrowful about, because there are many things that happen in this world that ought not to happen. But this is not how things end. Christ gives us hope through His Death and Resurrection, and He restores our joy. He weeps with us, but then He raises us to new life with Him.

I cried many tears tonight, but this thought remained with me and consoled me.

Monday, April 16

Heart

We had pancakes and mimosas to start the day!!

Because it’s Monday. Also, because it’s marathon Monday / Patriot’s Day here in Boston, and some of us had a day off from work/School. Rachel, Zoe and I celebrated with some goods to start our day off on a highly sweet note.

I only watched the marathon for about 30 minutes to catch two of my friends running it. The conditions were disgusting out there — torrential rain, wind, 40 degrees. I had to keep myself from complaining walking in it all day when so many people were running/arm biking/walking/rucking 26.2 miles in it.

This year more than ever — perhaps because my heart has been drinking in every ounce of inspiration and encouragement it can get (or perhaps because it was straight up miserable outside) — I noticed how much the marathoners endured the course with their hearts, more so than their bodies. Trudging through that weather at mile 23 (where we were spectating), was symbolism and grit at its best, and I am so grateful to have witnessed it. No better way to start the week, I say. #GoDesi!!

It almost makes me want to run a marathon. But the other day I told Rachel that I don’t see the need to run 26.2 miles in my life. If there’s an apocalypse and I need to run 26.2 miles from zombies who are about to eat my brains, I’m willing to take the L on that one.

Tuesday, April 17

Waiting

Alllllllright, we are ready for warm weather here. It’s crisp and beautiful outside, so I’m grateful for that, but winter jackets need to go. May is almost here, so we’re just waiting for those consistent 60-70 degree temperatures to hit any time now…

Other things I’m waiting for:

  • Graduation
  • A couple fun trips this summer (dying to go camping to see stars)
  • Rachel’s pre-wedding festivities/actual wedding
  • …just whatever the next hour/day brings, because “life is a highway; I wanna ride it all night long.” ← name that artist!

Today’s moves and grooves was a quick 20 minute workout, 30 seconds on, 10 off, 5 rounds:

  • TRX rows
  • around the world ball toe taps
  • TRX ab rollouts
  • TRX atomic pushups
  • ball jumper-over burpees
  • situps

 

 

A Wise Friend and a Bunch of Little Things

G o o d. G r i e f.

I got charged by WordPress the other week for my annual fee to keep the dailymovesandgrooves.com domain name, and I was in awe of how much this blog has fallen to the wayside (also in awe of my credit card statement #yikes). I have no regrets though. Honestly, blogging is nearly impossible given my other priorities in life right now.

But a wise friend once told me that if I blogged 5-10 minutes per day, I could rack up some decent content by the end of the week. So I’ll try that now. Might as well bring it back to the DAILY in DAILY MOVES AND GROOVES. Unsure as to why I capitalized all of that, but there it is, in case you forgot the name of this blog.

Wednesday, April 11

We’re heading into Marathon weekend here in Boston, and as I was walking to get my PPD shot, I’m pretty sure I passed by some elite marathoners. I didn’t actually know who they were, but I took this stalker photo anyway in case they’re famous. Fun to be back on the blog (feels like my first time riding a bike after a decade or something though; I can do this, but also whoOoooOA).

Thursday, April 12

I’m sitting in the gross anatomy lab having just lectured on the compartments of the lower leg and how to find muscles and tendons by your ankle. I also just perused bridesmaids dresses for Rachel’s wedding and I am stoked. I LOVE DRESS SHOPPING AND I LOVE WEDDINGS.

But also, what the heck!? My best friend is getting married this year. My best friend who I met as a derpy freshman four years ago. Even though I have two more years of grad school left for a fairly promising field of work, I’ve never felt so blind to the future. Yet I’ve never felt so excited for the future. Not just my own future, but that of all my loved ones as well. It’s certainly not because any of us knows what’s going to happen. Rather, it’s because none of us has a freaking clue. We have no idea what lies ahead, but we know that God does know, and that’s everything. He’s pulled us in the most unexpected and tumultuous directions in these past four years throughout our whole lives, but it’s all unfolded as a painfully beautiful and beautifully painful story — all of it very good though.

In other news, I finished a large tub of cookies and cream ice cream by myself since Easter. I gave up dairy for Lent, so I went all in with alleluias and celebrations.

Lastly, moves and grooves from today…

20 min workout (30 seconds work, 10 seconds rest, 5 rounds):

  • battle rope alt. arms
  • reverse lunge to front kick R (25#)
  • reverse lunge to front kick L
  • pushup DB pull through
  • alternating step up hops (20”)
  • hollow flutters to double v-ups

Friday, April 13

Today I ran my first over-4-mile run of this semester! It was 4.7 miles — a decision made on a whim. I wore a tank top and shorts outside. Weather says 33 degrees and wintry mix on Sunday though LOL.

I also happened to walk another 10 miles today and eat a sufficient amount of peanut butter to match that.

Including this crispy peanut tofu for dinner

Saturday, April 14th

Sights and sounds on my one-hour walk from home to downtown Boston for Mass:

  • A little boy excitedly petting a corgi puppy
  • A tiny wiener dog wearing a t-shirt
  • A little girl running with her large dog, followed by her sister and mom
  • My friend, Ray, who often sits in front of the local Whole Foods
  • A quick stop to my friends’ apartment to drop off Worcestershire sauce
  • Boston accents loudly advertising hot dogs and programs all along Landsdowne Street next to Fenway Park
  • What seemed like thousands of people wearing their Boston Marathon jackets and picking up their bibs
  • My friends praying before Mass
  • And best for last, Jesus waiting for me at St. Francis Chapel in the middle of the bustling Prudential Center

It’s really cool living in Boston.