a new season

I have been the most slack blogger imaginable, but as med school is kicking my tail and taking up all of my time, I just haven't thought to sit down and write out how wonderful, crazy, and fast-paced life has been over the past six months or so!

As I type this, I am on a fifteen minute break between two lectures, one on genetic causes of cardiopulmonary disease and the second on non-pharmacologic cardiac interventions. And I have to say, I am loving it all.

Ok...the lecture started, and I had to run...but I am back now! Break #2 :)

Here are some updates on what is going on in the Baur household:

Mikey is changing jobs (but not careers!)
My wonderful and talented husband had his last day at Northwood Assembly on Christmas Eve.  We are both stepping out into the unknown to plant a church in the North Charleston area inside the I-526 loop with some friends.  AJ Rankin was a youth pastor at Northwood and left about six months ago to begin work on The Hive Church.  Over those six months, Mikey and I prayed about where God wanted us to be, and it became clear that we were meant to join AJ and his wife Alison in planting the Hive Church.  Here is our website, if you are interested in seeing what we are all about!

We are both extremely excited about the path our new church is taking as we start to set up missional communities, groups of people coming together to encourage one another, talk about how we can make an impact for Christ in our city, and just live life together.  We are in the process of raising funding for the church, and services will start in August or September.

In the mean time, Mikey is in search of a job to pay the bills.  He is very involved in meetings and such for the Hive Church, so he needs something with sufficiently flexible hours.  Please pray with us that he finds something quickly that will meet our family's needs.  We are extremely blessed to have loan money to depend on until then.

I started taking dance classes again.
Most of you know that I danced ballet for 10 years, starting from when I was 8.  I absolutely loved it and spent most/all of my "free" time in class, rehearsal, or stretching on my living room floor.  However, half-way through my senior year of high school, I was diagnosed with Iliotibial Band Syndrome (IT band syndrome), which means that the tissue stretching from my hip to my knee got really tight and was causing significant knee and hip pain, exacerbated by dancing.  I did 6 months of physical therapy, but dancing was still difficult, as it would cause a flare up of knee pain.  So with marriage and school soon taking up most of my time, I ended up taking about 5 years off of dance, the whole time desperately missing it.

A couple of weeks ago, a friend mentioned a studio really close to MUSC that has dance classes for adults, and I checked it out.  I am now officially registered for two classes a week.  I am not pushing myself to do ballet, although I would love to, because it is harder on my knees, but I am so happy to be taking a modern and a contemporary class.  As cheesy as it sounds, taking a couple of dance classes a week makes me feel like I am finally myself again.  I have missed this artistic side of my life so much, and I feel incredibly blessed to be able to jump back in!

I am 5 months away from the most important test I will ever take.
In mid-June, I will be taking Step 1 of the USMLE.  This is the first part of a board exam to become a doctor.  In May, I will have finished my two years of classes in medical school. I will have about a month of studying devoted solely to reviewing the material that has been covered over the past two years, and then, the test.  It is a day long exam, which I have grown accustomed to in med school at MUSC, but the outcome of this test could determine the course of the rest of my life.  No biggie.  Basically, you get one shot to take the test.  As long as you pass, you are stuck with whatever score you earn.  If you fail, you can retake it.  The score is the way that residency programs weed out people for the interview process.  Certain specialties and certain programs will only look at people with certain Step 1 board scores.  As I am hoping to enter into a surgical residency (at least that is the plan at this point), I need a moderately competitive score to get into a program.  At least I am not shooting for orthopedics, dermatology, or ENT! :) So fingers crossed...the studying has already begun!

In summary...
Life is insane right now...with changing jobs, tons of schoolwork, and a little extra time devoted to one of my greatest passions (besides medicine, of course!).  But it is also absolutely wonderful.  I cannot complain at all. Mikey and I are both working towards jobs we love and about which we are extremely passionate! We have two adorable dogs to love on as we are waiting for the right time to start expanding our family.  We have amazing families that support us (and feed us often! Thank you!) And we have wonderful friends who are patient with our hectic schedules and always there when we need them.

We are blessed and so thankful for all we've been given.