Friday, August 21, 2015

How I Take Care of Myself as a Medical Student's Wifey

Last night in the soft glow of Ron Swanson and Leslie Knope, Jeff was studying and I was working on my blog (too typical). About an hour passed without a word until I realized and said, "Wow. It would really stink if I didn't know how to entertain myself right now." Jeff agreed, put my head on his shoulder (maybe that's fictional), and we went back to our projects.

Being married to a medical student, so far, is not half bad. I have said this before and many of my cohorts agree. However, some times are super busy (read: have potential to be super lonely and boring) and it's critical that I meet my own needs. Here are my three best tips for taking of yourself while your partner is stressed out of his or her eyeballs.

1. S T A Y  B U S Y

This was all too easy when I was working full-time. It is still pretty easy with a four-month-old, although it would be easy to slip into a pattern of being bored at home doing nothing (with a four-month-old).

Here's what I do now. I work my hardest to accomplish everything that Jeff would do during his study breaks. I cook, I clean, I maintain our cars, I grocery shop, I pick up dry cleaning (that happened, like, once), and so on.

This sounds subservient, but it's in my best interest, too; I know that if I do the laundry, make dinner, check the mail, straighten the house, and all of that the reward will be twofold: 1. Jeff will feel relaxed and 2. He'll have extra time to spend with Riley and me. It works and I stay so occupied I hardly notice our time apart.

This also bolsters my self-esteem because I am productive for the better part of every day (except Sundays when I take a three-hour nap. Ahhh).

2. K E E P  S E P A R A T E  I N T E R E S T S

One blessing of my marriage is how many separate interests Jeff and I have. We are so different. I say it's a blessing because it fosters my own independence (which is key in a good relationship).

I love doing Zumba, blogging, window shopping, crafting, watching So You Think You Can Dance, etc. Those are all things that make me feel human. I don't feel bad doing these things without Jeff (watching Parenthood, Parks and Rec, eating out, and reading Harry Potter, on the other hand, are "our" things we mostly only do together.)

3. M A I N T A I N  R E L A T I O N S H I P S

There are other people in the world that love you!!!

When my husband is away at school or otherwise unavailable I like to call people and/or make plans with friends. I am lucky to have many friends who have med-student spouses. We have girls' nights, go to each others' pools, craft together, and organize activities.

This is a game changer for me. I love having friends that relate. I know this will just become more important as Jeff gets into residency, fellowship, and what have you.

This is also a good time for me to touch base with faraway friends and family.

I learned early in my marriage to have more than just your husband to meet your needs. It is asking a lot for my husband to be my cheerleader, exercise buddy, and life coach in addition to being a (great) spouse and co-parent. Especially because sometimes I just want to be heard. Girlfriends and grandmas are good for that.

T H E  T A K E A W A Y

All this is to say BE INDEPENDENT. Look at what needs to be done, what you love to do, and who else you have in your life.

Take your happiness into your own hands. You probably know what to do.

How do you keep yourself entertained? Holla at me and have a great day.


  1. #3 is so true. Maintaining relationships are so important. you never know who can cheer you up when you need it

  2. All very true, a lot of people should read this x

  3. I'm so glad you wrote this! My husband is starting his PhD in mechanical engineering and I've been worried about how I'm going to entertain myself and spend my time when our baby arrives and I'm home alone all day!

  4. So true! It is so important to maintain your independence in relationships. I am a strong believer that it is important to do things together and apart as well.

  5. Paul Speaks, I totally agree! Stressed Mum, Thanks. I appreciate you saying that. Madeline, eeek! Good luck! I am sure you will find good ways to occupy your time. Life of Liss, glad we agree. :)

  6. I love this post!!! You definitely need to exhibit some form of independence from your spouse which is so important especially for you as a wife a med school. Thanks for sharing everything you do to stay independent this will help me in and out of relationships! Great Post I'm loving your blog and every aspect that you are doing with it!

    Jasmine :)
    P.S thanks for stopping by my blog for "5 Blog Myths Busted" article Glad I was able to give you some helpful tips aaaand you ask my opinion on your blog(I replied) ;)