Tuesday, February 5, 2013

The Next 16 Months Are In God’s Hands

I cannot believe the amount of LIFE that will be lived slightly more than a year. In the next 16 months, our lives will change drastically due to some factors in our control and many of them OUT of our control. We are in the stage of researching orthopedic surgery residency programs for him to apply. All these apps are due around Thanksgiving of 2013. Most who have been through the process before say that he should apply to about 50 or more of the 80 programs nationwide. The application (like everything else these days) is not without cost. I guess they operate on a “if you apply to X many programs, the price is ____ ” and “If you apply to Y many programs, the cost is _____”.  I think this will definitely eat into our honeymoon money. Sad face. Once his apps are sent into the different programs, we wait…. and wait.. until a school calls or most likely sends an email asking for us to travel to the school for a few days. AS I have said before, some schools have a “dinner” the night prior to the “real” interview just to see how your dynamic meshes with the existing/ newbies. (This gives me about 8-10 months before I need to look like a trophy fiancé. Not joking unfortunately.) My appearance is directly proportional to his first impression. No pressure.

After all he interviews have been completed, we as a couple will literally rank in terms of #’s which program we like best, 2nd best, and so on so forth. (Spark Curiosity Here!) Where would l be ok with spending the next 5 to 7 years of my life?

We have so many options to consider!

His main concerns:
  1.   Does he fit in with the staff?
  2.    Does the program have a Sports Medicine Fellowship to prevent moving again?
  3.    How selective/ competitive is the school interviewed? prestigious?
My main concerns:
  1. How close is it to both our hometown for future Grandparents?
  2.  How is the cost of living in the area?
  3. Is there a job for me? Can I easily transfer my teaching license to that state?
  4. Should we rank Columbus, Ohio in the top 5 simply because I have a job I LOVE already?
  5.  Would buying a house or renting be more cost effective?
  6.  What are childcare costs?
  7. How many hours does a typical resident work at that program?
  8. When it all boils down, I struggle with only one thing:
Is a prestigious residency program worth putting my goals aside?”

The answer 9 times out of 10 is, “YES”. Although I would love for him to create a seamless transition for me and end up at OSU in Columbus, I feel so selfish. He has a great top 15% of the country Step 1 score, potential AOA, and few research articles. As far as I know, is CV looks pretty good! What if he can get into say psh…Harvard? Is it worth the cost of living and putting off having kids? I think I’m starting to surprise myself. YES! HANDS DOWN I would go to a prestigious residency program for the bragging rights! Haha. Of course, I am likely over estimating and dreaming too big. You know what though…. It gets me through the days of long distance knowing in the end this craziness will all be worth it in the end. Sigh.

Top 10 World New Ranked Ortho Programs as of 2/5/2013:
National Rank
U.S. News Score
New York, NY
Ranked in New York metro area and New York
Rochester, MN
Ranked in Minnesota
Cleveland, OH
Ranked in Cleveland metro area and Ohio
Boston, MA
Baltimore, MD
Ranked in Baltimore metro area and Maryland
New York, NY
Ranked in New York metro area and New York
Philadelphia, PA
Saint Louis, MO
Ranked in St. Louis metro area and Missouri
Durham, NC
Pittsburgh, PA
 I need to start researching these teaching hospitals HARD in the next few months. Ultimately to keep from going insane, where we end up is the work of God. Everything happens for a reason.

This wedding video hit home:

"It feels like Home" might be the theme song of our wedding. After long distance and the process of moving together in a potentially new city for residency all that matters is you ARE my "home".

Song found at:


  1. Oh the match... It's great to makes plans, but what will help you make to the end with your sanity mostly intact is the ability to make the best of whatever life throws at you. That said, going to a top tier programs opens doors for you, but it is not the end all. My DH went to a middle tier MS [got mostly Honors and Near Honors, lots of pubs, junior AOA, high board scores, lots of extracurriculars] as well as a middle tier residency program. Neither prevented him from getting his #1 choice in a very competitive fellowship [less than 40 spots in the country, 20 people didn't match the year he applied]. In a perfect world, you would want to end up in a big name program with great teaching and lots of OR time. I'd say programs that are strong in all three are few-- particular the OR time. That said, my DH applied to about 30 programs, received 18 interviews, went on 13, and ranked 15 [two of them had 5 and 6 year tracks]. 5 years is a long time to be miserable. Though we didn't end up at our top choice, we lucked out because we shared those years with some pretty awesome people. DH got along great will all of the residents and his staff. It made the years go by fast. Good luck with the match. DH is in his fellowship year. Can't believe this 10 year journey is finally coming to an end. take care.

  2. So glad you visited my blog so I could find yours :) Sounds like we are in the same boat! We're researching programs as well for the lovely application process this fall. I'm going to go right now and use the website you sourced above to see what some top programs are!

  3. Thanks for linking up with Medical Mondays, I am glad you did and see that you've already made new friends. That's what it is all about. There are so many things to worry about, but don't let it get the best of you. Your title was right, it is in God's hand. You do your best so he can put you where you need to be. Only when you get there will you possibly find out why things worked out they way they did. Or at least that was our experience. The hard truth is that not every gets their top program, gets to be near family/friends, or gets a lot of OR time. There are only so many spots, but you can't control that. Focus on the things you have control over. Depending on what your dreams are they may be compatible anywhere, or you may find that dreams change. Good luck on this amazing journey. Can't wait to read along.

  4. I totally agree with Jane above. As someone in your shoes 2 years ago I know how you feel and I am even more close to it because my hubby has the same specialty. MUCH of the start of the rank process will begin with where he gets interviews as you can't get into a program without getting an interview. Keep that in mind. That is why you shouldn't go crazy researching too many places now. Apply to a bunch (my hubby was on the low end at only about 25 schools but he was a strong candidate and hence ending up at one of the top 10 in your list) but then wait to see where he gets interviews. Also...let's be in touch right before interview season....my hubby said for Ortho NOT alot of significant others went and sometimes if you go on a lot of interviews you can't make all the social events anyway because they overlap. I didn't go to one social event but I had been to all of the cities of the schools he applied to. Everyone is different but will totally be there to answer any questions for you as it gets closer :)