While this summer is passing by rather quickly and picking up a great sort of productive rhythm, there are still some things that I'm struggling with quite a bit. I've learned a handful of things and set some personal goals already this summer. Here goes.

1. I know they always tell you to ask questions no matter how trivial they may seem (aka how stupid they may be) and I totally accepted that but I never really seemed to apply it. I still had this hesitation. But after spending just three weeks with the doctor I'm shadowing, I have probably asked more questions than I asked all my professors my whole freshman year combined. And the fact is, unsurprisingly, I understand most of what he's saying and I keep wanting to know more. Curiosity for me tends to stay in my head and learning to express it is starting to become easier, I hope. Speaking of curiosity, my sister had an evolution project at school and so I taught her a lot of the things I have learned over the years about evolution. She then followed to send me a list of about 25 questions she had while she was thinking about what I had said. I thought, great, she wants to know more, let me check these out.

1: Is the sun a living organism?
2: Is the earth a living organism?
3: Is fire a living organism?
4: Are mood swings genetic?

And then they got a little better but the first couple made me laugh for, like, ten minutes. While it seemed so hilarious to me that anyone could think the sun was a living organism, I realize that I only know that because I have been taught what constitutes a living organism. I mean, she's in the 6th grade. Somebody is slacking off, her or the teachers. But just like that, I figured when I ask questions to an older, more experienced mentor, they may feel the same way about what I am asking as I did with my sister. And that's okay, it's how we learn. I'll answer her question list sometime soon and she'll come back with double the questions. She's a curious one, and while that tends to get annoying sometimes, I'm glad that she's not afraid to ask questions. That's an important feature to have. 

Speaking of evolution, her entire class almost unanimously does not believe in evolution. It might be (is probably) because they're in the 6th grade and don't understand the concept of evolution, but I have a strong feeling that when a kid says, "My mom says the Bible says that God created people and evolution isn't real," that their parents don't believe in evolution either. I just can't even take it, I was so tempted to jump up and explain to them all everything I learned in BIO202. But then I remember they were 6th graders and would probably understand none of it. I mean my sister understood for the most part. Their teacher didn't even say anything. What is Texas. I wish I still lived in New Jersey.

2. Everyone is a person. You can quote me on that, beta. Dr. Mummaneni, the doctor I'm shadowing, has taught me lessons not just about medicine and neuroscience, but about people and life. He told me that he thinks Indian people tend to think that white people, or to be politically correct Caucasians, treat them differently, but the fact tends to be that Indian people just tend to act differently on their own. I've been known to be biased against my own race; I tend not to hang out with other Indians. But why is that? At the core, I really couldn't give you a good answer because there really is no good answer. Personality is not defined by race, ever. It may be defined by culture, which we correspond with race, but never by race itself. I can't say I haven't been judgmental in my life, I think we all have to some degree but that's a personal goal of mine for the future. Dr. Mummaneni says that he acts the same way around every person that he meets, no matter their color, culture, personality, and most people like him for it. He makes close relationships that way. While this has never been a huge problem in my life, stereotyping, because I don't judge people negatively because of their race ever, I still think I have some sort of bias when making friends. And that's something I want to work on, being fully myself with everyone that I meet.

3. Another personal goal of mine I've developed is to find balance in my life. My mom complained to me that I spend too much time talking to my friends and not enough time with the family. In her mind, there's friends, family and academics. With those I must find a balance. Academics is fine and she knows I will put all the time necessary into keeping my grades up and making sure I pave a good path for my future. The struggle is between friends and family. Back in the day I would refuse that the time I spent talking to my friends was too much, but I'm starting to mature and see from her point of view. While I still don't think the amount I talk to my friends is a problem, I do agree that I haven't been spending enough time with my family. I haven't been taking up the responsibilities that I should be at this time in my life. Remembering and taking up my responsibilities is another big one. I'm so lazy. I need to not do that.  Balance. It is awfully difficult to find balance.

It's so difficult to make everyone happy. I know I said I'd stop trying, but it's a hard impulse to fight.

Some nights I just think, there's too much going on up there, I'll just put off thinking until tomorrow. Procrastinating thinking. In the end i end up thinking too much anyway. Sleep is, as they say, often a much better option.

I have to do this six hour online course before I can take my driver's test to get my license. I fell asleep three times just trying to complete it. It's pretty much a shortened form of driver's ed, with all the nonsense about drinking and driving that I clearly never plan to do and I kinda wish they'd just do a background check on me and not make me do that part. There was literally a 30 minute skit of people drinking and getting into problems from the 70s that is supposedly supposed to stop someone who plans to drink and drive from doing so. This is like Alcohol Edu and four years of Health class all over again except it costs money and it makes me wait a certain time until I can continue because it needs to take up 6 hours. At this point, I have it split screened with another browser page so I can just press the next button when the section is over. What is Texas.

My summer is going well, thanks for asking. A month has gone by already, it's crazy. That was a lot faster than I imagined. Here's to hoping the rest of the summer stays productive, relaxing, preparatory, and fun. 


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3 Responses so far.

  1. Anonymous says:

    I think your sister is perfectly normal for asking questions like that. You shouldn't blame her for asking questions like that. DONT MOCK YOUR AMAZINGLY TALENTED LITTLE SISTER FOR THINKING HER SISTER WOULD KEEP ALLLL HER QUESTIONS PRIVATE BECAUSE THATS THE ONLY REASON SHE ASKED THEM. GOD.

  2. Sonal says:

    Hahahah Sanjana can you not

  3. Anonymous says:

    You're so annoying. What happened to privacy?? A simple "no" would've been fine.

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