Pomp and Circumstance

by clevercupacakes from Flickr

by clevercupacakes from Flickr

I’ve worn my share of caps and gowns.  First there was high school.  Then, three days later, there was junior college (long story).  Then, there was undergrad at Westmont College, 3 years after that.  And finally, there was my master’s at the University of Vermont, in 2005.  And oh, it was nice to know that I was done wearing caps and gowns for awhile.  It wasn’t so much the graduations that bothered me, it was all that work leading up to them that was the problem.

But then there’s my husband, Dr. Dan, who seems to wear a new one every couple years.  I wish we could recycle the things, but at least he’s getting a nice collection of them for Halloween costumes or wall art (a.k.a. Edward Cullen’s, “We matriculate a lot.”). 

Awhile ago, we were trying to figure out the Seattle bus schedule, and neither of us could understand it.  Finally, Dan said, “Between the two of us, we have a bazillion years of education.  We should be able to figure out this thing.”  But we never did.  We drive everywhere.

This week, he’s adding another diploma to his wall, and we’re praying that it’ll be his last one for a very long time.  He’ll finish his residency, which has been three years of hard work, taxing beyond anything I’ve ever seen anyone go through.  I thought med school was tough.  And before that, I thought college was tough.  And before that, I thought junior high was tough (notice the glaring omission there?).  But nothing prepared us for what we were going to go through in residency. 

Sure, Dan was the one pulling the long hours at the hospital.  But we very much consider this a team effort.  Somebody had to pay the bills, pack his lunches, clean the blood (not his) off his clothes, and prop him up long enough to poke food in him when he came home after his second 30 hour shift in a week.

I’m wondering how in the world single people manage to make it through residency?  Okay, and maybe I’m congratulating myself a little bit for surviving as well.  Because this is my graduation, too.

Marriage is a team effort.  And your spouse’s successes are your successes.  His failures are your failures.  It’s not a popular notion, especially when the wife is the one at home, doing the domestic duties that are the less glorified “behind the scenes” work.  But they’re important.  God knows the job is important.  And my husband knows it too.

One of the greatest compliments I’ve received during Dan’s residency was when one of his female colleagues told Dan that she wanted “a wife” (she’s not a lesbian, so THAT’S not what she was talking about).  But by serving my husband, I’ve ministered to others, well beyond the four walls of my home. 

 So when Dan gets his diploma this week, I’ll be earning a piece of it as well.  If it were my own name written on it, I couldn’t be more content.  We both accomplished this, the whole way through, starting on that second day of college when we met.  And I plan on seeing him through the rest of his goals, which hopefully don’t include any more school and graduations.  I need a break!


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10 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. “… starting on that second day of college when we met…”

    I think there’s a story within these ten words. Where’d you meet?

    AL: There’s always a story! How about I save that one for our upcoming anniversary (next month). I think that sounds like a good way to celebrate.

    • Looking forward to reading it.

  2. Work together, dream together, reminisce together, celebrate together. This is a great reminder about how teamwork can bring joy to the journey, and how sweet it is to do life together. Keep it up, the best is yet to come!

    ross and taya

    AL: Thanks R&T! I love the marriage ministry you two are doing (with Family Life). You’re an inspiration and encouragement to us. Keep up the good work!

  3. Congrats to both of you! I praise the Lord for your joy in being Dan’s helpmeet, even though it meant a lot of helping and not always a lot of Dan.

    A college in ND actually does give a HHT degree for spouses of grads – Helping Hubby Through.

    Make sure you celebrate!!!! So happy for your both.

    AL: I love that idea, a HHT degree! We’ve got a nice relaxing summer planned to recover!

  4. Congrats to you & Daniel. Dr. Dan couldn’t have done
    this without you, and only you know the amount of time and sacrifice it took. God’s hand was clearly upon you both as you walked this long path. Let the celebration begin!

    AL: Thanks mom!

  5. Great post, Amy! Congratulations to Dan for getting through residency, and congratulations to you for all you have done and gone through. We praise God for your godly teamwork, and pray his richest blessings on the next steps of your journey together.

    AL: Thanks Mary. We wish we could celebrate with you guys. You two have done your share of work these past several years too! Congrats to you on Logan’s graduation as well!

  6. My husband was the one who was the behinde the scenes helper for my MLS degree. There wasn’t a single paper written or article read that he didn’t get to read or hear about. Degrees really should be shared between spouses!

    As to the robes: If you teach, you get to wear the things at least once a year. Sometimes I consider just piling in with the rest of the robed ones at the local U just to justify keeping the regalia in the back of the closet.

    Now for questions: He has finished residency…to become what kind of physician? And where? Is a fellowship next on the agenda?

    AL: I miss out on the regalia wearing being an online instructor. I like the idea of hopping in on somebody else’s ceremony, just to dust them off.

    Dan is a family practice doctor. He’ll be practicing here in the Seattle area in a group practice affiliated with a hospital, but no more late nights at the hospital, thankfully. So far, he isn’t planning on a fellowship, but it’s always a possibility in the future. If anything, it would probably be sports medicine, but he’s content doing general practice for now. He likes seeing whole families and a variety of different things. No baby deliveries for now either. He says that babies have an annoying habit of popping out outside of regular business hours. I’ll be happy to have him around in the evenings.

  7. Great post Amy! I’ve been thinking about these same issues in marriage, lately. The teamwork and such.

    Congratulations to you both!

  8. Well if you chose to have a baby someday, remember not to go into labor outside of business hours then. It is the least you can do….

    Just sayin’, since Dan will be around more in the evenings now…(wink)

    AL: Not you, too. =) I’ll keep that in mind, should the occasion ever arise.

  9. Amy, watching you as an amazing helpmate to Dan has been an inspiration! Thanks for letting us ride along for the journey! We are so proud of BOTH of you! Love you guys! We wish we could be there for the big day! The Mickleys

    AL: Awwww! Thanks Kate. You guys have been a huge support for the both of us as well! Wish you could be here to celebrate with us!

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