On August 1, 2013 I left my homestate of Michigan and headed west to Colorado. I started this blog as a way of keeping my friends and family in touch with my mile-high adventures, as well as my new life in dental school.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Surgery, exams, and a little bit of family time

My surgery last Thursday was successful!  I got in a 20 minute argument with my anesthesiologist over local anesthesia vs. general anesthesia (I insisted on GA because I'm a baby and the thought of being awake while being sliced and diced freaks me out), but everything went well as far as I can tell.  I have a plate and a couple screws in my foot now, and will need another surgery in the future to have the removed, but I'm happy that I'll hopefully recover more quickly now.

This week I had exams in both microanatomy and craniofacial bio exams and they both went better than I expected.  It was definitely a struggle to study while on painkillers that affected my cognition and made me want to sleep all day, but I had a whole weekend beforehand to study.  I have some room for improvement, but I'm so happy that I did as well as I did given my circumstances.

My dad and his girlfriend, Chau were also in Denver this weekend to visit on their way to California for a vacation.  It was so nice to have them here and see some familiar faces.  They took care of me after my surgery and cooked me a ton of food that would be easy for me to reheat.  I only get to see my dad one or two times a year since he lives in Virginia, so it was so nice to have him here!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

the difference between dental school and medical school is...

I overheard someone say this today when asked the difference between dental and medical school:

"Dental school and medical school are about the same right now.  Except dental students are more fun and exceptionally better looking."

I don't know, but it made me laugh.

Anyways, I spent a lot of this week in the wax lab finishing my wax card for dental morphology.  Since I'm missing lab this week for surgery, I spent a few hours at the end of my day today getting started on our first "real" project... waxing #8 (for anyone non-dental, it's the upper front tooth on the right side of your mouth)!  While the wax cards were good practice on how to work with our waxing instruments, building up an actual tooth is MUCH more fun than making shapes and letters.  I'll post some pictures when I've finished, but I need to bring my camera since I'm irresponsible and smashed my phone on a rock, scratching the lens.  Whoops...

Friday, August 16, 2013

Survived Week One as a DS1!

It was long and crazy but I made it through my first week of dental school!  I'm very fortunate to have such great professors with so much energy and passion for helping their students!  This semester I'm taking microanatomy, craniofacial biology, dental materials, intro to dentistry, and dental morphology.  Human gross anatomy will also be added to our schedule in a couple of months.  So far microanatomy and craniofacial biology are a little overwhelming, since we're covering about a semester's worth of undergrad biochemistry or molecular biology in every lecture.  We started in the tech lab this week with dental morphology and I'm excited to see what's to come.  This week's assignment is a wax card, on which we'll practice working with wax by molding it into various different shapes using our dental instruments.  Once we've mastered wax, we'll be moving into the sim clinics to start drill-n-filling on our mannequins!

I also saw an orthopedic doctor about my foot this week.  We looked at my x-rays, and due to the severity of the break he told me I'll have to have surgery in order to guarantee full function of my foot after it heals.  Not exactly the news I was hoping for, considering I'll have to miss lab and lecture for the surgery and recovery.  However, I know I'll be better off in the long run, and surgery will likely get me back on my feet sooner than going without.  In the meantime, I was given a weight-bearing boot to try and I bought a knee scooter on amazon to help me get around.  The boot is too painful on my sprained ankle/ligaments on top of my foot, so I'll have to wait on that, but I'm really looking forward to getting my scooter and actually being able to do things myself.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

All Moved in and Orientation!

I can't believe I've been in Colorado now for two weeks!  I finally finished moving in, and I'm obsessed with my apartment!  We're not finished decorating the living room and dining room, but I have my bedroom finished, which is such a relief!  My bedroom has always been the one place I can go to have peace and relax when things get crazy, so getting it together was my main priority.

 This last week was orientation and totally not as much fun as undergraduate orientation.  However, we all went out and had fun afterwards to celebrate our last few days of freedom before school starts.  I love all of my classmates and I know for sure that we're going to have an incredible 4 years together!

Unfortunately last night, while out in downtown Denver causing a ruckus on the bar scene, I managed to break my foot.  Of course this would happen to me of all people.  I'd like to make a shout out to my friends who took care of me (Tim for carrying me to the cab, super nice cab driver to took me to the hospital, Billy/Doug for picking me up from the hospital and getting me home/carrying me up the flight of stairs to my apartment, and my awesome roommate Camille for doing pretty much everything else!)  You all rock, and I'm so grateful to have you as friends.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Colorful Colorado

Two long days of driving and I finally made it to "Colorful Colorado!"  My roommate, Camille, and I are in the process of moving in and getting settled [insert frustrated remark about building Ikea furniture], and the reality of being in Colorado is finally starting to sink in.

To break in my sea-level lungs at altitude, I spent yesterday hiking my first 14er, Grays Peak, with about 15 of my future classmates.  (In case you don't know, "14er" is the nickname for the 14,000+ ft. mountains in the Colorado Rockies.)  The hike was definitely more challenging than I expected, and I slipped and busted my bum a few times on the way down, but I made it to the summit in 2 hours and 40 minutes!  On the way up I became a little dizzy and delusional, and much to the amusement of my classmates, said some strange things, like "sea-lander" as opposed to "sea-leveler"... thus creating my new nickname, "Sealander."  Despite my comical struggles, I can say that I'm definitely proud myself and can't wait to hike another one soon... although next time I'll wear hiking boots :)