As salaam alaikum,
At the time I'm posting this, I'm sleeping soundly in my hotel south of San Francisco right now, hopefully, the day before my first residency interview. As I'm writing this, though, I'm procrastinating my final residency interview preparation, which will entail me verbally answering a series of questions that could come up during the interview, reading about ACOs and PCMHs, and reviewing Contra Costa's residency program and coming up with questions tailored for both residents in the program and faculty.
One of the blessings of going into medicine with this rigorous training is that you're always on the cusp of something bigger, and you're constantly growing. Even though we sometimes feel stagnated, like we're in suspended animation, or that we our adolescence has been perpetuated in this odd state of arrested development as many of us don't marry and have children during this time, and we, unlike our peers, are yet to own salary, I think this extended development really affords us an opportunity to grow past what we otherwise would have been if we were dropped artificially into the hands of adulthood with the advent of paid employment.
It was a big thing when I held a human heart in my hand the first time in anatomy class. It was greater once I learned its physiology and pathophysiology. It was greater when I held a live, beating heart in my hand during surgery. And even greater will it be for me to actually be a partially-licensed doctor and finish my training in residency into the physician I intend to become. And even greater will me be completing that residency. And even greater will be my learning through my career. All insha'Allah, of course.
And the greatest, insha'Allah, will be when I end my career and end my life and can reflect on all I have learned and all I have done.
Without foresight, which few of us actually have, life can seem stagnant at times when we are on the verge of great things. And I'm one of the more anxious ones who feels antsy and itchy and fidgety at those times when lives pauses. Instead of being anxious during the quiet times, I should relish those times and use those times to do some of those other things that I love that are not medicine...
This life, just like we are, is God's creation. It was not merely created to teach us to avoid haram, because there is so much more in this life that is actually halal...and it's not just halal meat! We can strive to live this life to the fullest while being God conscious, and if we are in that place spiritually, we can tie everything to the afterlife, or if we are more evolved spiritually, we don't have to make that mental circuit to recognize those things that nourish our souls and Heaven, insha'Allah, will be a given.
I have found a way insha'Allah to live Islam more organically and a way to live my reality more organically and to anticipate my life partner more organically. I therefore feel more comfortable in my own skin, in my own way of being. It is not the type of comfort that keeps one from striving in the way of Allah (swt) but is rather the type of comfort that allows one to strive more in the way of Allah (swt) because they are no longer paralyzed by fear of abstract and intangible things of their own minds' creation.
I am no longer paralyzed by the fear of abstract and intangible things that I created in my mind that made the life Allah (swt) always intended and intends and will intend for me impossible.
And I am more myself now than I have ever been.
More to come...