What do we do when things in our lives change? Are we able to predict changes and anticipate what will happen far in advance? Or are the changes sudden, surprising, and sometimes bad changes that we wish never happened? As vet students and future vets, we are presented with changes all the time. They appear in our medical experiences as well as in our personal lives. Just like all people, it is our job to know how to handle these changes in a safe way that lends itself to our health and, in terms of our jobs, the health of our patients. We are no different than other people in ways we are confronted with the challenges of life, but we are at a particularly tender time in our lives where a strong current of change is under our feet. Do we fight to swim against it, or find a way to navigate the current without being overwhelmed by it?
I bring up this topic because there have recently been many changes occurring in my life as well as the lives of my classmates. We are all deciding what we will do after school, where we will go, and what kind of life we want to lead. These are big decisions that can bring about feelings of excitement, confusion, self-doubt, and even sadness when thinking of leaving our current situations and to move on to live somewhere else. Heck, I know many people that have loved their vet school years so much that they are planning on staying in school for more education or to work in the vet school. No matter the situation, that important next step in life can be a difficult decision to make.
Many of us have other considerations that go into determining where we will reside after school. Children, pets, family, and many other factors all play a role in influencing our decisions. For myself, family and friends play a large role in my decision. With aging grandparents and new nephews, those fleeting moments that I get to spend with my family have become important now more than ever before.
What can we do during this time of transition to keep ourselves safe and happy while still remaining totally present in our current environment? It is a balance that does not always come easily. I think that we have to take this situation in stride, recognize that this time can be difficult, and utilize our support networks and healthy lifestyles to get us through it. Resorting to behaviors that support our health are essential in making sure we can navigate this time. Friends and family that understand us and value us are of utmost importance to keep close during this period of our lives. It may seem distant now, but I believe that we will all look back on this time with fondness and with pride for how we handled ourselves while managing to take the next best step in our lives.