November 30, 2022
by Dr. Plastic Picker
Yesterday was a wonderful climate day and just a wonderful day in general. I was sitting having a quick lunch with Dr. Dear Friend. I often just go into her office and grab one of her prepared meals (yes, we are those kind of friends). I was sitting crossed legged and walking around in my socks (I’m Asian) in her office, and we were catching up. Dr. Dear Friend was busy multi-tasking making phone calls at the same time. I told her, “I’ve been truly happy since May 24, 2022.” Dr. Dear Friend kind of paused and said, “Have you been really happy?” I looked at her, and yes this is in the midst of one of the busiest respiratory seasons of the century and life is crazy for everyone and I haven’t really given many of my overtime shifts away, and I looked at her and said, “Yeah. I’m truly happy and I kind of feel guilty because everyone else is kind of sad and stressed.” I happily finished my meal, and said good-bye to her as she finished her phone calls. It was my off-time and I certainly was no longer being paid to do my clinical work, and I had worked the late shift the night before. So I left. I left the office when my allotted work time was done, and I left to be a parent.
It was certainly busy yesterday. I was amazed I was able to do all my afternoon errands which is a mix of climate work and parent work. I picked up scout patches for the Green Team IRC clean up event in early December. I’ll interoffice it to my program coordinator friend. I picked up my daughter’s Silver Torch Award for Girl Scouts at the same time. After leaving the Balboa Girl Scout Campus, I headed to pick up my daughter but stopped by a local Starbucks near her school. I felt so luxurious and bought a $5 matcha green tea soy latte, and I sipped that warm cup of goodness and I was so happy. I then picked her up at her school on time. She was happy and we went off to DSW to shop for shoes. She’s going to a speech tournament the Winter Invitational at La Costa Canyon High School. We bought the cutest pair of boots for her. She has a burgundy wrap dress, and the small little boots have a little heel and she feels very pretty in them yet professional and they are comfortable enough to run to the events. I even signed up for the rewards VIP program, because we expect to be buying other fancy shoes as she explores being a “fancy lawyer lady” (her words) which warms my mommy heart.
I was even at some time in between all this had time to get gasoline (we are not fully electric yet) for our plug-in hybrid. And we stopped by CVS to get two shades of nail polish to match her dress. (yes she is much more girly-girl than I am, and I love it).
And after we settled at home, I spent two hours in climate related virtual meeting. Riley Gilbertson , one of our premed interns, and I spoke at the Youth Advisory Council for the UCSD Refugee Health Center. It was a worthwhile presentation, and oh yes – I had in the morning spent about an hour updating a presentation for them. And then we spent an hour delivering the presentation and leading the discussion. And then our SDPCA and AAP group met, and it was a joyous and time efficient meeting lasting 30 minutes. Lots of discussion and work and projects planned out. I need to kind of sort everything in my brain, and then I’ll summarize things this afternoon and send out the updates.
And during this entire time, especially when I’m with our daughter running our errands and having her live her 14-year-old beautiful cocooned and safe life, I have lingering thoughts and smiles and sadness and curiosity regarding our family’s own Kdrama. I see pictures pop up on Instagram once in a while of someone, and I think about emailing someone I admire that I still think would be a wonderful person to be related to. But I stop myself and realize that it’s not my Kdrama but belongs to two young people. I still think there is destiny and fate, but I’ll let things happen or not happen and just be the shoe-shopping chauffer for a super cute 14-year-old.
But it was too much last night. The solar panel inverters were fixed. I saved thousands of dollars managing our finances correctly by electing to participate in AB150. I can’t believe my fellow physicians did not partake. It was a lot of money. And our children went to bed semi-reasonable time. I went to bed early and got a good amount of sleep. And then everything became not too much, but just enough. My mind is so clear in the morning, especially after blogging.
I sometimes am not sure why I am happy these days. But I’m grateful for it. I get to type out thoughts to myself and do meaningful climate work, and live in world filled with youth and students and be the encouraging cheer-leader to my climate friends and to my own children. We had two papers rejected yesterday and I was kind of peeved at the editors, but our two respective teams are going to resubmit and we’ll get it done. Those editors have NO IMAGINATION. None whatsoever, and are so scared of the world. Little do they know, that they have actually moved the climate work backwards. But there are so many of us now green warriors and we are SO POSITIVE and HEALED, that we will push forward because there really is not choice. Our motivation in these papers is simple. It’s really to avert cataclysmic climate change, and advocate for children’s health.
I whispered to Mr. Plastic Picker several times last night, that I still think our family pseudo Kdrama will in a decade be what I imagine. But certain people are growing up and we hope that they will meet again when it’s up to them. At least they know each other exists. Mine is super-cute wearing a burgundy wrap dress and low heeled boots to the next speech tournament. She is so cute! We are too busy in our house for actual boys, but not too busy to dream innocent dreams of saving the world and future cute little grandchildren. I think I’d be a really good grandmother, after she finishes graduate school and wins a bunch of fellowships of course. We dream big at our house.
Much love to you and my rambling thoughts and dreams of your local litter-picking pediatrician.