I am the little engine that might be able to

First day: mischief managed. Earnest, kind, smart, engaged co-interns. Compassionate, committed faculty. Training-wise, this will be a phenomenal experience. Feeling extremely lucky.

Personally speaking, I’m beginning to get the lay of the land. Wake up at 5, pump on the way to work, work 12-14 hours, pump while driving home in a desperate hunger for E, hang out with her for 1-2 hours (QUALITY NOT QUANTITY, RIGHT? *strained, pleading smile*), bath, bedtime, some amount of housework to keep up my end of the bargain (see above re: quality), pumping while studying/readying/finishing work/WRITING (please, goddesses, let it be possible), sleeping 1-3 hours less than the recommended amount, then starting it all over again x 5-6 days a week x 36 months.

In the age-old debate over whether women can have it all, I am ready to weigh in very prematurely: Women can have 3-4 things that are really important to them.

Here are the things I’m going to try to preserve: My marriage. My close friendships. My current weight or a reduced weight (IS THERE NOT ROOM ON GOD’S TO-DO LIST FOR ONE SELFISH AND UNIMPORTANT REQUEST?). My sanity.

Here is what I will not give up on no matter what: E’s well-being.

Here are things that will have to be deferred: Fitness. Eyebrow tweezing. Thank you cards. Baby scrapbooking (ok, that was never going to happen). Reading for pleasure. Vitamin D via exposure to the sun. Tidyness (ok, that was never going to happen either).

I am hoping to be a really excellent doctor.

Too much to ask?

Quick! Only twenty minutes to write a poem:

Dear you

Dear you, who have mastered so much

Growling, for one,

Whose fingernails fall to the ground like tiny flint specks

as your legs flail and your gums echo your lips impotently

Are beginning to known gravity’s grab

Can be as wooed by waves of reflected light on the pond’s surface

as by a towering giraffe bowing its legs outward to drink

Can absorb with aplomb so much desperate, lunatic love

that we are not yet the masters of, your two lunging

drunk labile lovers. Avid always while awake,

small sylph, teach me how to inhabit my body

with curious fervor, no skin

can contain

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