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I woke up this morning and after getting some breakfast I stepped out into the dim light of predawn and stood barefoot in the grass. I felt the dew on my feet and the soft cool morning air on my face and hands. I listened but the birds were still asleep. Taking a pair of scissors, I cut a bloom from the rose bush outside my back door. 
Life is messy. And sometimes unkind. It is confusing, painful and discouraging. But an amazing thing happens when we decide to take it just one day at a time. It is a lesson I have to learn over and over. Sort of like Charity or Humility or Optimism.
I have decided to have faith over fear. To trust that although I can't know what will happen, that a perfect Being who loves me does. And trusting in that is more important to me than knowing. So while it is difficult, and some would say perhaps a cop out for dealing with life, I choose to trust that God cares enough about me to have my best interests at heart. And if He has decided to not share those w…
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Fear as a now third year medical student

It would not be a trial of our faith if our faith was not actually tried. Trials are essential, obviously, but how much of a trial can it really be if all the time we feel His guiding hand and Comforting presence? Can those really be considered trials?
Today I am officially a third year medical student. Reflecting over the last two years, I want to take a moment to write down my thoughts. As a missionary, when the Spirit said I would be going to medical school it was a huge relief. I had struggled up to that point to really know what to do with my life. I knew I wanted a good career, a steady paycheck, a job that I loved. I knew I wanted to work outside the home, make a difference, help people. But I didn’t know exactly what that looked like for me until that moment in Virginia. And when I got home and got to work researching and then putting into action all that would be required to be accepted into a medical school in the US I had multiple moments of doubt. Heavy doubt. But I presse…

Cool Blue of Morning

I love the cool blue of early morning. When you know many of those around you are still asleep and you open your blinds. That soft cool blue spills into the room bringing with it the idea of a calm morning, expectations, possibilities.
In the early morning I feel the most peace. That is why I like getting up at obscene hours. My Spotify says “good evening Melissa” even though I have woken for the day. 
The hope I feel in the mornings for how the day will go is a stabilizing factor in my life. I believe we all need to recognize these and hold on to them. Life is a fast paced, too full, sometimes heartbreaking adventure filled with the ups and downs that we never could map out even if we tried. And yet we make it through every day. And there is something miraculous in that - in the tenacity of our willingness to start the day anew despite difficulties that arose the day before. 
My step dad was recently diagnosed with a terminal illness. It has come as a shock and a terrible realization of…

Weaknesses got you down?

I wrote this in an email to my sister who is on her mission in Texas(for only SIX MORE MONTHS) and I needed the reminder so badly this week that it was kind of amazing to read exactly what I needed to hear in my own words - a little crazy that I didn't learn the lesson well enough the first time but at least the Spirit guided me to where the answer was.. in my Sent box of my email account. Kiiiiinda crazy! Talk about using your resources - God is pretty thrifty 😉 But mostly He is awesome. Go use your Talents and Gifts to be great knowing you've got Heavenly Father solidly in your corner, just as you always have.  ❤️

We have been given a challenge in my branch to read the book of Mormon before April General Conference by reading 3 chapters a day. I am a little behind as of right now but plan to catch up on Sunday. I am loving this challenge! I haven't spent this much time in the Book of Mormon since my own mission. It is wonderful to be in the scriptures every day and be t…

getting to and through YEAR ONE

Hello? Oh, Hello there! I am excited to talk more about my summer as I enjoy the last few days before I dive into studying hard. It is almost the beginning of the second year of medical school.

Last year was one of the hardest years of my life. I experienced more pain, suffering, doubt, tears, and heartache than I have ever before in such large doses. I staggered under the weight of my fears and found myself often on my knees with no where else to turn.

It was a beautiful place to find myself.

Of course it is easy to say that now, looking back as I stand proud.

There was a lot that went into my decision to go to medical school. Ultimately it took a lot of prayer and a lot of planning. It took a lot of service hours, a lot of hard work in my undergrad, a lot of conversations with my mother. It was a grueling process which no one can understand until you've been through it. I often doubted I was making the right choice.

As I was preparing for the MCAT, which is the entrance exam for…

ten points from a 1/4th doctor

*As a disclaimer, the author wrote this post the day she finished her first year of medical school and was in a pretty awesome place. Let the increased incidence of the word "I" stand as evidence of her need to talk about herself because she currently feels awesome and full of gratitude. She wants you to know she obviously doesn't feel like this every day and that's fine by her because life is messy and wonderful and its good to talk about when you feel up as well as when you feel down. (But that doesn't make her point any less true)**

When do you feel the best about yourself? When are the moments when you catch a glimpse of yourself in a storefront glass or in your rearview mirror and really appreciate you - whether that's the way you look that day, or something you accomplished, or just you being the great person you are.
I go probably too long in between these moments. Some days after I wash my makeup off and am ready for bed, I look into the mirror over m…

Feb-RU-RARY and Med School Semester #2


Click on that. It'll make you happy, I promise. Make sure your sound is on first.
So it is the second semester for me here at PNWU. I almost put BYU. I don't know about that haha The semester has been interesting. Enjoyable. Trying. And while I am still not doing as well as I would like to be doing, I am enjoying myself much more than last semester. You do really sort of hit a stride. That's not to say it's any easier or that I've gotten any better (or smarter, unfortunately). I still perform subpar in my exams and that comes with it's own stress and depression. I have learned where to go to get help, how to be better to myself, how to balance my time so I'm still doing some of the things I love.
They told us at the beginning to keep up with your school work but keep working out, get enough sleep, continue with your hobbies, keep in communication with your loved ones, eat healthy - DO ALL THE THINGS! And throughout the last semester I rea…