Wednesday, July 15, 2015


This summer, it seems I've had a cataclysmic weekend at every turn. I'll face a few days of relative calm, and then BAM disaster. Usually, it has to do with the clinic.

Here's something to think about: this past Friday + weekend, I have spent 18 hours at the clinic. No rounding up: 18 hours over three days. I went to two parties over those three days, which were seriously fun, but 18 hours is ridiculous. As a note, though I am a coordinator (read: an administrator on good days, an autocrat on bad days), I am still a volunteer. If I'd been paid at my high school part-time wage, I'd be pushing $200, which is about two secondary applications for medical schools.

All that was furthered by personnel issues and the fact that I have taken on a behemoth project to implement (read: force) my section to use our electronic medical records system correctly. I'm not entirely sure how this happened, but sometime in the winter, our section (either I decreed it or somebody pushed it onto us) became the one to pioneer EMR. Of course, all this is good fodder secondaries because it shows leadership and struggle and this and that, but good God is it a headache.

I am told that this is usually the responsibility of an IT team. Though I am sure their timeline is much shorter, I carry the burden for an agonizing amount of time. But what about delegation? Don't make me laugh. Delegating in a volunteer organization with a collective structure is tough shit. People are lazier here. People don't need to care because they don't have accountability. Furthermore, the oversight and accountability administrator is me. More responsibilities, more headaches.

Why the hell do I do this to myself? God complex? Masochism? Not sure.

As this lovely picture shows, this weekend was a mess of clinic obligations, personal deadlines for secondaries, and social engagements. I didn't really sleep much, and towards the end of Saturday, it was already pretty clear that I was in foul weather again.

The Han Solo to my Luke Skywalker when I was a wee trainee (and he was a coordinator) always warned me about burnout. My parents and boyfriend do it all the time, but when it comes from my peers at the clinic who were in my same training cohort and have watched me grow into this responsibility say so, I feel it. All weekend, I was griping about not being able to finish my Duke secondary on time, not being happy with anything I wrote; I was really complaining about being overextended.

I think I burn out quite often, and just after I submitted my Duke app today (!!!), I felt rejuvenated. Fair enough, but I still have a marathon ahead. I want to really change the clinic, and what sort of change is truly good enough if someone didn't have to get tired over it?


  1. Ah hope you managed to find some time for yourself! Good luck with those apps.

    1. Thank you so much! Last weekend was a whirlwind and I got away from all these apps and had a great time. I love reading your blog, by the way.