Sunday, January 23, 2011


Hey! Thanks for the questions. They actually made me think quite a bit about various aspects of my life which was not the intention but still very interesting. Ok for some answers:

On Being a Vet:
I'm not sure I remember the "why" of becoming a vet. I know it's something I always wanted to do, from the time I was little. I very vividly recall taking our Irish Setter, Clover, to the vet when I was around 6 or 7. It was fascinating to me. At that age I was already obsessed with animals - we lived across the street from a kind-of wildlife preserve and my sisters and I were always finding various animals in our yard and trying to bring them inside to be our pets - toads, garter snakes, salamanders, birds. One time we *almost* tried to pick up a rattlesnake that was in the corner of the yard. Luckily it was dead. Anyway when we took Clover into the vet I was so impressed with him, his office, the fact that she was up on a fancy metal table, the bags of dog food in the front...everything. I actually talked to that vet (Dr. B, he's still in business in Denver!) 2 weeks ago. Talk about full circle. I love animals - not in a creepy dress them up in clothes and act like they're people kind of way, but I find them endlessly interesting and fun to work with. I also LOVE medicine, the science, doing surgery, looking into microscopes every day, thinking about physiology and how the body works. You put the two together, and you've got yourself a vet.

The best thing by far about being a vet is the feeling of helping the animals and the people who take care of them. I have a soft spot in my heart for the elderly pet owners who tell me that their pet is the only companion they have, "all I have left." People love their animals, and even if they're not rich they usually try to do what's best, and I'm always trying to help them do that.

On the flip side of that same coin, the worst part about being a vet by far is the money aspect. We don't have the HMOs/insurance/government to help subsidize what we do, so it's all fee-for-service. People realize that veterinary medicine is really in alot of aspects at the same level as human medicine, and they want/expect us to treat their animals at that level. But what they don't always understand is how much that costs. I could go on and on about this but I'll just say there is nothing more demoralizing than spending days agonizing over a case, even coming into the clinic in the middle of the night to check on it, laying awake wondering if an animal will get better, getting the animal better, going to discharge it and when the people don't want to pay the bill having them say something like "All you vets care about is the money," as if the way to show I "really care" is working for free. Yeah, I hate that.

On Kids:
I know people who will hate me for saying this, but I didn't find going from 1 to 2 kids all that difficult. For me, going from 0 to 1 was MUCH harder. When J was born I struggled with what I now realize was mild PPD, and I had a very tough time adjusting for the first few months. Having Jr. has been very different. Sure there have been long nights and stress and exhaustion and a few freakout moments, but overall the experience has been very positive. I think the spacing does have some to do with it, my boys are about 3.5 years apart, so J has his own life with preschool, soccer, friends, etc and doesn't spend all his time with me anymore anyway. Even the sibling rivalry that I notice between them doesn't stress me much - maybe because I'm a twin and I always had a sibling to compete with so I'm used to bickering?

Laura, the most unexpected part about having two kids...I'm not sure. I think the differences have been related more to going through the whole process a second time as opposed to having 2 kids. The logistics of 2 was a little hinky at first, but it's been alot easier to integrate a baby into a family with kid(s) than it was to integrate a baby into a childless couple's life, if that makes sense. I've often thought about what it would have been like if we'd had twins this time, and I still think it probably (for me) would be easier to deal with twins the second time around than it was for me as a singleton new parent. That's how hard it was for me in the beginning with J.

I've loved having 2 kids. Having Jr. was one of the best decisions we ever made for our family. That said...we are definitely done at two. I'm very happy with two boys. I don't feel like I "need" to have a daughter. I will say that with 2 kids, I now have absolutely ZERO time for myself. ZERO. I'm never "off." 3 would be insane, I think.

How not to screw up being a twin mom:
Remember that twins are just siblings who happen to be the same age. They're not a unit. They don't want to be a unit. Separation is not always bad. Try not to compare them because everyone else will, for their WHOLE LIFE. Recognize that they're different but don't point out the differences (The "quiet one," the "social one."). It's hard to live down labels that people put on you, even innocently. Encourage them to be individuals the same as you would any other siblings.

I'm very close to my twin sister. She's my best friend. But I can honestly say I don't view our relationship as being much different or more "special" than I do my relationship with my younger sister.

On everything else:
Claudia, I'm sorry to inform you...I most definitely did not go to East LOL. I am a GW Patriot through and through. :-)

We're working on going back to Colorado. This has been a huge, drawn-out decision making process. We really enjoy the lifestyle and quality of life we could have for our kids in Colorado. I miss the mountains terribly. I miss my sisters even more. Vegas is dry, and kind of dirty, and more than a little seedy.


Professionally, leaving and going to Colorado now would be starting over in alot of ways. We've been in Vegas for 7 years. I've never practiced in Colorado, we came here right after vet school. I'm established here (and so is TH). I know other vets, I'm familiar with all the specialists, I still have loyal clients. I know I could open a practice here within the next couple of years and be successful. If we go back to CO I think it would be at least 5 years before I could do that. Plus we do have friends here. And a good childcare situation. And a house that we can't sell anytime soon.

We're still undecided. There are huge pros and huge cons to both. To say we've been agonizing over this would be an understatement. Stay tuned on that one.

Hair: The jury's still out. Going to the hairdresser this week. We'll see if I have the cojones to make a radical change. Probably not.

Running bra: I don't have one!! I need one!! Currently I strap my DD's down with two sports bras on top of each other. I've looked into better bra situations but they're pricey and until I start working full time again it's a bit of an extravagance to spend $60 on a bra. Suggestions?

And finally. I met my husband in high school...wait for it...because he had a crush on my sister and he saw me in the hallway and only talked to me because he thought I was her. This is a true story. Let's call it fate -- here we are twenty (!!) years later, high school and college sweethearts beating the odds.

Whew! I'm more interesting than I thought LOL.

Monday, January 17, 2011

I''m actually a very interesting person.

You just can't always tell from my blog :) I have blogger's block something terrible. So many things are constantly on my mind, and now I even have the free hours when I'm working at night to write some good posts....but I gots nothin'.

So. What do you wanna know? Is there anything you're just dying to ask me? I don't imagine that I have "lurkers" but if so I'd love if you would de-lurk and prod me in a direction. Any direction. What can I write about, what can I write about....

I'm an open book. I'll talk about anything. Well, except for the stuff that I don't talk about on the blog. Leave me a question or Deep Thought in the comments and I'll pretend it was an original idea of mine and write about it. Deal? Deal.

This should be fun....(sound of crickets)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Middle of the night Randomness

  • It's 2:26am. Why am I up, writing a blog post, you ask? It's not insomnia, it's called What People Do When They Have to Cobble Together a Living. Or, in other words, until February when I start at the full-time gig that I just secured, I'm having to work part-time and relief shifts here and there to make ends meet, including doing overnights at an emergency vet hospital every weekend this month. As you can see, we haven't been super busy tonight.
  • I've kind of wrestled with what I should do next in my life and career. I was pretty burned after Jobgate 2010 on working day practice and the ER thing was very appealing. It still is, actually, but there's not a full-time opening so there you are. It is interesting, though, working this long overnight shift (6pm-8am). I've found that it's better for me to just try to stay awake the whole time rather than take naps on the futon they thoughtfully provide for the attending overnight doc. If I fall asleep, I may not get back up. I've had to devise various methods for staying up - lots of caffeine, going outside in the cold, running back inside when I remember what part of town I'm in, knitting, relentlessly surfing the internet...oh yeah and doing doctor stuff, too:) I honestly prefer when it's busy because then the time flies by.
  • Speaking of time -- my birthday is in 6 weeks. 34. Yowza. I didn't do resolutions because I set some goals last year on my birthday so I'll wait until then to reassess and come up with new ones. I already have a few big goals for 2011...stay tuned.
  • Pajama Jeans. Ridiculous, or intriguing? Talk amongst yourselves.
  • Jr. has his 15-month ped. appointment this week (I know, a couple weeks late. Sue me.) He's so ridiculously great at this age. Curious, funny, affectionate, loud, cute as a button. I wish I could bottle this time up and uncork it every now and then, it's so delicious. He's finally starting to make sounds that are a little more deliberate than babbling. So far he only says one word that is halfway recognizable: "Touchdown." Or, more accurately, "TOUCHDOWN!!!" I've got to get this on tape soon. TH had 3 weeks off at home with the boys over the holidays and this is the result :)
  • J goes back to preschool today after a looooong winter break (5 weeks!!). It should be interesting. Before the holidays I had a meeting with the preschool director about moving him to a more advanced/older classroom as part of an "individualized curriculum" they've devised for him. I think this is totally appropriate given the many talks we've had with his teacher about how he really needs more stimulation than he's getting. The new classroom is right across the hall from the old classroom and the kids all play together at recess (do they still call it "recess?" I don't even know) but it will be a transition. J LOVES his teacher, and so do we. She has taken such an interest in coming up with innovative ways to challenge J in her classroom -- and therein lies part of the problem, she has 15 other kids to look after and couldn't spend all her time making up projects for him. It's so weird to me that we're even having conversations like this IN PRESCHOOL. It's a little overwhelming at times trying to make these decisions. J's teacher bluntly told us at one meeting, "You're going to spend alot of money educating a kid like this." (Referencing our crappy ranked-at-the-bottom-nationally public school system and its, ahem, drawbacks).
  • Speaking of school - as I've lain awake at night pondering the future I just can't get rid of the idea of going back to school for more training and specialization. This is one of those things I really regret not pursuing right after vet school - unlike physicians vets don't have to pursue residency upon graduation, we're all general practitioners out of the gate. The thought of going back and being a resident (at a resident's paltry salary) at this stage of the game is very scary. But I can't shake it...
  • I'm officially addicted to running now. And that's not to say that I'm even a "good" runner, I'm pretty slow and I'm still done in by hills but it's become one of those things that I feel like I need to do regularly. I get antsy if I go more than a few days. It's so super cheesy but true - when I'm on the road it's my only time to myself, just me and my thoughts. And I think. Alot. There's a line in one of my favorite Outkast songs where he says "I missed a lot of church/so the music is my confessional." That's how I am about running now, if there's something on my mind (and lately, there's quite a bit) I can leave it on the road. My favorite time to be out is right at dawn, when there's not really anyone else out but me. I even like it when it's cold and I can see my breath. The other day right as the sun came up I saw 2 coyotes cross the road maybe 50 feet in front of me. In my previous life I might have been scared but I was more awestruck than anything else, just me and the coyotes traipsing around before the world wakes up...and anyway being a vet I've been vaccinated against rabies so I'm good :)