Med-School Rotations & Positive Reinforcement

Bonni Brodnick
Oct 31 · 3 min read
Perfectly organized, she even left time for the dog.

Lucy, my daughter, is now in her fourth year of med school. What that means is that she is on rotations at hospitals around the country. Having just moved from an apartment she shared with a roommate in Chicago during third year of med school, she came home to sort things out. What that means is she’ll have to pack both a winter- or summer suitcase because, this year, she will be in all kinds of climates this wonderful country has to offer.

Yesterday, or more specifically, last evening, Lucy started packing for her upcoming rotation in Florida. She had to be at the airport at 10 a.m., and counting back the hours for check-in, we’re looking at departure from our house at about 6:00 am. She had so much stuff to sort through and separate. Why did she wait so long to pack when she could have at least started days ago? I was panicky.

As of 11:00 p.m., she was making no progress with the packing. When I went into her room, she was talking on the phone, playing with her dog on the bed, and still surrounded by all the junk that needed to be packed. I was on the verge of … well, FREAKING OUT. My nerves were on the third rail.

“Uhm, excuse me, Lucy,” I said as calmly as possible.

“Wait a second,” she told her friend on the phone. “Yes??” she said to me.

“Lu, I don’t want to see ONE thing left in here,” I whispered crisply. I was eager to have the bedroom back to being neat. “Maybe get off the phone so you can concentrate on packing?”

My negative energy wasn’t helping things. I could see that it was also starting to stress out my daughter.

Before I let this vibe take over completely, there was a flutter of wings around me. Suddenly, I felt angels swim over and around me. I was hit with enlightenment and a feeling of zen. I felt reenergized. Transformed. Dare I say I felt a new positivity?

The question was: Can I be upbeat and let her know that I believe in her? After all, my daughter is 28, responsible, successful, going to be a doctor, and plain and simple: she gets sh*t done. She wouldn’t be where she is today if she weren’t as focused and organized as she is. I would take the principles that I learned in meditation to claim this new clarity on the packing situation. I didn’t even notice there was a single sock in the corner of her room. I hoped that my quick-personal renaissance would inspire her.

I took a few deep breaths and walked back into her room. I felt my third eye-opening as I spoke to her.“Honey, I know you can do it!! Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help.”

By morning, Lucy was completely organized. (My deeper self that couldn’t be bothered with negativity had worked!) She perfectly coordinated which suitcase she would bring to which rotation and whether the hospital she was going to next required wearing burgundy scrubs at night or the blue ones. Before getting in the taxi to the airport, she even left time to play with the dog.

We hugged and kissed, and then she left for her first rotation in Florida. (Now, where did I put that divine self?)

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Bonni Brodnick

Written by

Author of “Pound Ridge Past”, blogger at “Bonni Brodnick Blog,” contributor to HuffPost, and a really fast typer.

The Startup

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