Stan and I are in Augusta all week because his school is hosting multiple events for…drumroll…………graduation! Four years of med school gone by, three of which we were courting. 🙂
It’s been a long, hard road, but a very worthwhile one. We began dating a few weeks before he started his second year, and when the summer ended, we started this quasi-long-distance relationship. Anyone who knows what med school is like, or knows what it’s like to be in a relationship with a significant other in the medical profession, knows the difficulties involved in making these kinds of relationships work. Of course, there are obstacles and compromises to make in all kinds of relationships, ones that I would never undermine. I’m just saying that dating a soon-to-be doctor is no joke. Especially when he started rotations at the hospital during his third and fourth year. Patients are a doctor’s top priority, and Stan had to be in doctor mode. When can a doctor stop being a doctor? It’s hard to distinguish the line between Mr. Stan and Dr. Stan. And I, of course, am the top priority in Mr. Stan’s life. HAHA! Basically, we struggled with time. We struggled with nuances like when would be the best time to call each other, especially during his long overnight shifts at the hospital. We struggled with priorities, emotions, with his manhood and my womanhood, with the world and expectations, with being Christ and the Church to each other.
I even struggled with my parents’ attitude about Stan in med school. You know the whole pressure of Asian American kids growing up to be doctors or lawyers? Well for girls, it gets a little more complicated. It’d be okay for a girl to be a doctor or lawyer, but she would also have to think about the repercussions of her future husband and family. So preferably, instead of being a doctor or lawyer, she should just marry one! Eazy peazy lemon squeezy. Marry a doctor, my mom would say. You know, just find one and get him to pop the question. I resisted any sort of persuasion from my mom. I argued and scoffed at the idea many times. It made me so angry. It made me want to burn my bra and grow out my armpit hair in a feminazi-like fashion. And then I met Stan and we got along so well and he asked me to marry him. Perfect. Take that, mom.
I have to admit that there were many times I actually resented Stan studying to be in the medical field. Not trying to toot anyone’s horn, but there is a lot of…prestige, a lot of respect, in the profession, whether you like it or not, whether you’re in it for a wholesome reason or not. It simply comes with the territory. A blessing and a curse, depending on what perspective you have and how you use it. There were moments where I felt like what he did overshadowed what I did. Or there was just a greater importance in his life than mine. He never did anything to make me feel that way, but I just thought it because of the internal conflict I felt. Weird thing to think when you’re talking about someone you love. And on top of that, I felt like my mom had won with her faulty ideology. I can’t blame her for thinking the way she does — it’s definitely a generational thing I can’t understand. She wants stability and comfort in her children’s lives that she didn’t exactly have or ever feel secure about in her own life, perhaps. Anyway, I resented the pride she took in her daughter marrying a doctor. It felt like my worth came from the fact that I was with him. I resented it on all sorts of levels.
But here we are, three years later. Not too worse for the wear haha. There were a lot of struggles, but I have never been happier. We may have maintained a lot of our relationship over the phone, but we’ve learned how to communicate really well with each other. We may not go on regular dates, but the time we get to spend together is always so much fun. A lot of these thoughts have come and gone. Some I still wrestle with. I love that my parents love the guy. They definitely see a lot more in him than just an MD behind his name and a bankroll. Not me. HAHA! There are times that it’s still hard to cope with the expectations and stereotypes of being a soon-to-be doctor’s wife. I told Stan that one of my unfounded fears is that people will automatically assume that I’m a gold digger. I mean, I think that about other people sometimes haha. Eeks. Even though we desire to live as Christ lived (and praying we’re not just blowing hot air), you will rarely see a poor doctor. I get terribly frustrated by the looks of pity from people who know Stan will be super busy when we’re married. I am sick of hearing people say, I could never do that…I could never marry a doctor. I’m tired of people telling me to make sure I stay busy so I won’t get lonely when Stan’s not around. Come on. The situation is just what you make of it, and I don’t carry around the conscious thought that this is tough. He is just Stan to me. I don’t know it any other way, and I don’t want to. I know and can see the effort he puts into making this relationship work. I trust in his reliance on God and following after our Father’s ways. I totally believe that has been crucial if not the thing that carried us through. I pray, pray, pray that we will continue to rely on him. I know this is the man God had planned for me, with all these internal and external tensions included.
It’s been a fun week so far, and it’s only Tuesday. We played competitive bowling (for free), ate greasy bowling alley food (for free), and our team won the prize! I’ve never won anything in bowling. Actually…I don’t remember the last time I won a prize, period. We got to go to a fancy dinner reception last night and had a blast with all the friends he’s made. Friends that I am so glad to have met. Stan got so excited dancing last night that he scratched me. That makes me chuckle.
I guess I made this post all about our relationship…but uh…oh yeah, he did all this studying and stuff. He learned about the medulla oblongata diverticulum septal pancreatitis of the pancreas. I’m very proud of you.
I’m You’re so lucky to have you me.
Congrats, all you soon-to-be doctors!