Saturday, August 16, 2008

I Survived

When a dream you have finally happens and the person who started you on that path is no longer in your life it makes for some crazy mixed emotions. Kelly, my ex-girlfriend is the one who pointed me down the path towards pharmacy school. I haven't heard from her in several years now and as I sat at the pharmacy today, my first day as a pharmacist, this was what I thought about.

Dear Kelly,

As I sit here behind the counter of the pharmacy, my first day as a licensed pharmacist, you are on my mind. What a strange thought to occur after not having heard from you in several years. But then I realize that maybe it's not so strange because had it not been for you, I may very well not be where I am today. Life is strange sometimes, the twists and turns and blows we have to survive to get to where we dream of being. I think I thought about you today because this was a dream we started together, me being a pharmacist. And now, this is a dream I've realized without you. It was a lonely first day at the pharmacy. I thought about how I was going to come home to my empty apartment and it made me miss having someone to share my dreams with. I am the only one of my friends from pharmacy school that comes home to an empty house. It's not usually something I think about. I have plenty of friends and family that have pulled me through pharmacy school. Who have dealt with the blood, sweat and tears that came with it. And part of me is glad you didn't see that side of me. But part of me wishes you could see just how strong all this has made me. I don't mind being alone. I know that if it's supposed to be any other way, it will happen when it happens. Until then I'm happy with my life.

I've done some pretty amazing things since I last saw you. Not the least of which is finishing pharmacy school and getting licensed. I've also traveled around the country. Trips that at one time I probably would have liked to take with you, but I've gone with friends or even total strangers who became friends and I've loved every moment of it. I've spent almost two months on Indian Reservations in the past year. I've been from Arizona and New Mexico to Maine, from Florida to South Dakota, from Missouri to Wisconsin and back home to Massachusetts. I've seen the beauty of this country and grown to love it in a way that I never had before. It's amazing the layout of this country and the dreams it inspires.

In the past nine months my friends from school and here in Massachusetts have watched as I've transformed my somewhat goal-less life into a path of change which the momentum has yet to slow. I joined a fitness program after my life changing experiences in New Mexico. I've lost nearly 50 pounds and found a new life and a passion for life that I never had before. Chances are, a year from now I may just be completing my first triathlon. The long term goal is to be a head turner! For now I'll settle for the small goals that add up to that one big goal. It's been one baby step at a time and I finally managed to run a mile without stopping the other day. In ten minutes and seventeen seconds. Not bad considering in April it was taking me eleven minutes and fifty-four seconds!

I'm also getting ready to move to Maine. I'll be living up near my grandma and working at the pharmacy where she gets her prescriptions filled. It'll be nice to be out of the city despite the many people I will miss when I leave. I'm sure it'll be like when I moved down here, I'll be back as much as I can. I'm excited to be living near family for the first time in my life. Speaking of family, it's grown in the last year. I now have two nephews and a niece. My sister adopted an adorable two year old, Matthew. He's certainly going to keep them on their toes! Erin starts school on Monday. Can you believe she's nearly six now? Ethan's going to be in fourth grade and is a smart little man! Now that I'm a pharmacist though, I don't know when I'll see them again. I'm hoping that I can get back to Iowa for Christmas but the move to Maine and all will determine if that's possible.

I wondered today what the journey of the past few years would have been like had I had a partner to share it with. I'm sure some things would have been different but I'm sure I wouldn't be who I am today if I did have a partner. The struggles I've been through with school and my personal life over the last four years have shaped me and made me the person I am today. So, I survived pharmacy school and I survived my first day as a pharmacist. And here I am now. Turning the page on the past and wondering where the future will lead me. It's scary and exciting and overwhelming all at once. Ah, the possibilities!

I hope life has been as good to you as it has to me in the past years!

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