Tuesday, July 13, 2010

It's OK, I'll Just Reschedule My Wedding

True story from the OR today

Attending: We've got a really interesting case on the schedule for tomorrow.
Resident: Oh, really? I guess I can come in for it.
A: Ahh! I'm sorry, I forgot! Tomorrow is supposed to be your day off.  Did you have something planned for tomorrow?
R: It's fine.  I'll change my plans.
A: What did you have scheduled?
R: Nothing. It's fine. I can make it.
A: Seriously, what did you have planned?
R: Just my wedding.  It's ok, I can re-schedule it.
Everyone in the OR (almost simulataneously, thus causing a six-way jinx): ARE YOU KIDDING?!  GO TO YOUR WEDDING, CRAZY LADY!!

We spent 5 mintues convincing her that she needed to go to her wedding.  Granted, tomorrow is just the courthouse wedding and they are having a big ceremony in a few weeks in their hometown.  But she had a dress and hair appointment and family in town for he wedding tomorrow and was going to reschedule it all so she could see a "cool case".

I think life is about balance.  If you're willing to give up your wedding, I think you've already given up too much of yourself.  Surgery residency is a commitment, but you also have to be commited to keeping yourself true to who you are.


  1. Remember this. REMEMBER THIS POST. Cut it out and put it on your fridge and keep it and read it every week. I RESCHEDULED MY WEDDING TOO once I in school and I had a "courthouse wedding" and something came up and my faculty appointment mattered more to me than my "meh" wedding. But you are right. YOU ARE RIGHT. :) Adoring your blog. Cheers.

  2. Love your blog! Dh and I got married after first year medical school. Your post is also a good reminder for those already married to have a life outside of medicine. We are the only couple still married out of 10 class couples. 90% intra-class divorce rate, pretty scary.

  3. So I definitely agree that postponing one's wedding for work is not acceptable and is cause for one to re-evaluate priorities. What I'm about to say doesn't make an excuse for the resident, but I hope it might offer a different perspective. I used to work in the corporate world/defense right out of college (before I went pre-med) and saw the effects of double standards for women and saw these women coworkers cope/compensate by sacrificing some aspects of their personal life in order to not be cast aside when promotions and higher responsibilities came into play. There is such a fine line for women between "leaning in" (per Sheryl Sandberg) to further our careers (and risk losing ourselves) or stepping back and risk losing advancement opportunities indefinitely. As women in male-dominated fields it's unfortunate that we still sometimes have to stretch ourselves far further than any man would ever consider doing just to get the same opportunities/recognition (and even still there's no guarantee of any of that coming into fruition.) Just some food for thought!