I had just finished presenting my body of research for the prior six years in hopes of convincing the committee I was worthy of promotion from Assistant to Associate Professor of Medicine when the chairperson said, “It is clear palliative care is your passion, so you should stop wasting your time with the dental research." I. Should. Stop. Wasting. My. Time.
I am a woman of my word. At least I try to be. Ten years ago, when I said to Robert, my boyfriend at the time, “We should try to see if I can give you a kidney,” as we sat in a clinic exam room for his transplant evaluation appointment, I wasn’t just talking.
2015 is shaping up to be an even busier year than 2014. In order to be successful, I can’t waste time in my usual “process” as my husband Robert calls the self-flagellating, anxiety-ridden sometimes week-long trudge I go through every time I’m working on a creative writing piece or a research paper or putting together a talk.
I was glad I brought my water bottle with me. I sipped every few seconds, swishing the water around before allowing it to pass down my scratchy throat. My mouth felt like I held cotton balls in it the entire sleepless night before.