Tone-setting Gifts

I didn’t specifically set any New Year’s resolutions this year. It was partly because I didn’t want to be associated with the hoard of hopefuls who set lofty goals every single New Year’s Day but never see them through, but mostly because I already had so much going on that I didn’t have time to think about it. Ironically, this whirlwind of events that I have already lived through during these first 2 weeks of 2014 has indirectly caused me to realize a few things that I am promising myself to be more mindful of this year.

Life’s Gift #1: A much anticipated vacation to Taiwan and Hong Kong at the end of 2013.
My Realization: I truly love residency and the work that I do, because by the end of the trip I could not wait to return home to start the second half of my residency and go back to work.
My Promise: To cherish every moment and seize every opportunity to learn, on-wards to the rest of my residency and beyond.

Life’s Gift #2: A viral infection and secondary bacterial infection of the sinuses, eyes, and throat, with which I was out and under the weather for a whole week, and had to call in sick for the first day of my ICU rotation.
My Realization: I too often take my health for granted.
My Promise: To be more aware of when I am stretching myself too thin, and how to take better care of myself (which includes getting enough sleep, keeping up with exercise, and eating well) so that I can continue to do everything that I love doing.

Life’s Gift #3: A friend who loves me enough to tell me the truth, even if it may be the painful truth.
My Realization: I have been a fool.
My Promise: To spend more time thinking of myself, and less of certain others. As well, to live in the present. It’s okay to learn from the past, plan for the future, but I need to limit the time that I spend wishing for the future in my mind to come now, because the future will come soon enough, but it is never of the same substance as we may predict.

Life’s Gift #4: A friend who loves me enough to help me through an inner turmoil that was at risk of overflowing.
My Realization: I am so blessed to have such caring friends in my life.
My Promise: To reciprocate all the love I have received, and to make a more concerted effort to show that I care very much about and appreciate each of my friends.

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