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I saw my first patient last Friday! My excitement of finally being an intern at The Eye Center has taken off! I would like to share a little with you about my second-year experience at SCO. My thoughts come from some lessons I have learned this past year which include the value of family/relationships, taking care of myself, and how life can be good amidst trials.
Second year started after a 10-week break during which I worked at SCO as a work-study student. It was enjoyable to help with graduation events and interact with the great staff on the 11th floor. As the summer semester began in July it started off quickly with classes and labs that were different from first year. We jumped into disease and more advanced clinical techniques that took more time to learn (still becoming more efficient at these). I sensed that the second year would be more difficult...I was right. Last fall semester has been the most trying semester of my life. It was filled with many classes that stretched me to begin thinking differently, hundreds of drugs to memorize, and more disease that did not come easily. In November, my wife lost her father to cancer. This loss added heartache to an already challenging time. I look back now and see the blessing it was for us to be together as a family even though I was overwhelmed with school. I share this to emphasize the importance of family and other relationships. As we all go through school, or life, we need help to press forward. For me, having meaningful connections with family and friends has allowed me to do so. I finished up that grueling fall semester because of the love and support I had from them.
After time spent with family during the holidays, spring semester rolled around. I felt ready to tackle this semester with more focus and dedication! 2020 is the year of the optometrist...and also the year that COVID-19 spread throughout the world. I remember coming home from a spring break trip to Utah and preparing for school to resume. The Sunday evening before Monday classes we received the news from President Reich that all SCO campus activities were to be suspended. Nobody knew for how long we would have class and limited labs online with no opportunity to practice certain skills for our upcoming pre-clinical checkouts. This was a surreal time. During the months of off-campus education, I learned more about the importance of eating better and more consistent exercise. Because of these unprecedented circumstances, I have been able to improve my overall health. I did not expect this. My wife and I have had more time to make new meals at home. Favorite snack: homemade fermented salsa! We enjoy going on walks in our neighborhood. We have a favorite spot that is next to a large pond where we sit and converse about life or just sit and soak in the beauty of the water and luscious green landscape.
As I walked into The Eye Center on Friday I realized that even though there had been many adjustments and postponements made I was still there furthering my optometric education. I am grateful for Dr. Walker who was very understanding and helpful as I assisted her in helping my first patient receive the care I have been learning about for the past two years! Things work out. My second year at SCO proves it! I am thrilled to continue forward with what I learned this past year!
Have a great day!
Life is good,