For The Selective Palate

 

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I’m not sure what brought me to this path of being a picky eater. I could say money was a factor or the fact my mom worked long hours. Truth was, the last thing on her mind was to come home to cook a Lebanese Thanksgiving meal. Even if she did cook like that, I already made my mind up that if it’s not the texture then it’s the presentation of food that will make me cringe. Also, the fact I had people that supported my picky outlook on food rather than push me to try new things.  Why change when you already know what’s best for you, right? Well this all started to change once I got married. For my husband’s birthdays he likes to try new dishes and for some reason I started having the same craving to try new things as well. Rocky start but eventually I became open to new possibilities.

This continued in the workplace as well. My business trip to New York interrupted my comfort level greatly especially with food. We went to restaurants I would probably pass by in order to get some pizza and was served beverages that reminded me I was not in the south.  I did have a chance to visit a French restaurant and for the first time I tried macaroons!  Who would have guessed this picky person would one day open up to opportunities and try something better than the ‘norm’?

The way I am with food is sometimes translated in my relationship with God. I’m very persistent (okay, stubborn at times) and I like to have things done a certain way because that’s what I’m used to. However, I’m also learning that with God his way is better and part of understanding his way requires faith. It’s not easy. It’s like having a plate of some of the nastiest vegetables and your parents saying ,”Eat it, it’s good for you”.  Eventually , your taste changes and you become sensitive to what you eat and open to new dishes. Once you ( including me ) realize God’s hand in your life , you’ll become sensitive and willing to submit to his path.  So for the selective palate, I dare you to go out and explore not only food but God’s will for your life ūüôāimage1 (2)

The Waiting Room

You’ve arrived on time for your checkup appointment and pretty excited because you know the time you sit down you’re going to be called. You already gave the receptionist the necessary paperwork and you’re ready. Hmm.. they will call me soon, you think to yourself, so to help pass the time you start to notice your environment. The waiting room is filled with people that need to be seen as well.

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One by one, everyone is being called to the back and it’s starting to get frustrating because there were people that did not have to wait as long. Your frustration builds to anxiety and now you’re going up to the front desk asking questions. They reassure you that the doctor will see you soon, he’s preparing some things for you; however, your patience grows thin. Your phone goes off from people sending messages asking,”why are you still waiting ?” “When are you going to move forward?”

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You don’t respond because they wouldn’t understand. You did everything you were supposed to, now it’s your job to wait and be called. Finally realizing your pacing back and forth is not changing the outcome, your attitude changes while you wait. You take advantage of the wait by embracing small opportunities like reading the magazines or checking your email on your phone. Time goes by but you’re gaining wisdom and understanding. You stopped focusing on the messages, the people that were seen by the doctor before you, at that moment the door flung open and you knew the wait was over.

door-240x300 How many of us had moments like this? We ‘wait’  anxiously for God’s big call while overlooking small opportunities to grow. I know this is a challenge for me but as a father, God, constantly reassures he will not forget about me. It may seem like everyone is moving forward before me but God knows I did everything I was supposed to and now it’s my job to wait for the door to open.  So stay encourage and know that soon our wait will be over ūüôā

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Facing the DAT: Take 1

I knew once I made the decision to become a dentist I also accepted the path God created for me. The courses I took in college felt like  boxing matches ..I gave it my all but there were some fights I left without having victory so I already knew within myself I needed some rematches. As time passed, my self esteem grew as I became inspired from networking and it was at that moment I said to myself “I’m going to take the DAT”.

Now in order to become a dentist , like any other career , there’s a process. It’s something like the following: HS >College>DAT>Dental School. So I got my test preps together ( most were free from networking with other students and the people I knew from college) and I created a study schedule to go by for those months.

After getting my dental application complete (recommendation letters, transcripts, $$$$,personal statement, etc) it was finally time to  face the Dental Admissions Test, better known as the DAT. The DAT is a 5 hr test taken over the computer made of a variety of subjects from natural sciences to perceptual ability test (viewing 3d shapes). All of this is required to show how committed you are to dentistry.

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I remembered waking up hours before the test to have breakfast and look over notes. I kept praying for God to lessen my test anxiety and to help me with the test. When I arrived at the testing center I saw other students putting away their things in the assigned lockers. I sensed all types of emotions but I tried to remain focus.

As I started my test my mind literally went – blank-. I became distracted as fear crept into my mind paralyzing my thoughts. I became frustrated because of the money I wasted and the score I knew I wasn’t going to get at that time.

TN-26439_iNSIDETESTCENTER35..4..3..2..1.. My computer screen says I’m done. “noooo!!!” I screamed to myself. I sat at my seat for a moment holding back tears and the feeling of defeat then I stood up and walked slowly over  to the lady that printed test scores.  My scores were awful and I knew schools would not consider me . Understanding this much allowed me to come up with the idea of just wanting to go home in my bed and cry for at least 2 hours.

illustration-cartoon-vector-of-a-white-man-holding-a-birthday-cake-and-balloons-by-bnp-design-studio-365However, my fiancé changed my plans rather quickly by surprising me with my favorite cupcakes and balloons. He said no matter what was the outcome he was still proud of me . I contacted the admission committee from each school with my scores and I kid you not it was like they were waiting on my email because their response was less than 5 mins apart. I did not get in but received a lot of advice that would help me for the next cycle until then this is what I learned from taking the DAT::

  • Retake the classes necessary in order to have a strong foundation for the DAT as well as show the dental committee I can handle their course load
  • Continue volunteering
  • Stay consistent with  studying so I will remain confident once its time to take the test.
  • Keep a support system
  • Never give up

Keep an eye out for Facing The DAT : Take 2 very soon but until then I hope my experience will help you as you take tests or face other obstacles in life ūüôā

 

Dear younger Ash, (Pt. I)

First, I have to thank my WP friend, beautybeyondbones , for inspiring me to write a letter to my younger self. Make sure to check out her page!!

Dear younger Ash,

Where do I begin? You, my friend, will come a longggg way! Let me say your confidence¬†will¬†improve. I know for the moment you think you can’t do anything without¬† your friends. Matter of fact , your first year in college you’ll be so nervous to eat by yourself in the cafeteria that some days/nights , you’ll rely on your snacks in your dorm to get you through the next day. You won’t walk with¬† your head down and you’ll recognize your unique style ,no longer following the majority.¬†The year you transfer schools, you’ll not only be changing location but it will be a complete transformation for you.

Your relationship with God will continue to get better. He’s not someone from¬†your history textbook, he’s real and will reveal himself to you on a deeper level. Now,¬†the¬†college you transfer to will not be easy. You’ll cry from the threats they will give¬†¬†when you can’t¬†afford tuition. You’ll cry from the roommates because they are the worse..except for one.¬†You’ll still have a hard time expressing yourself , walking past crowds of people to get to the library ,¬† trying to fit in, and sadly it¬†now reflects your grades.¬†However, through all of this God will be at your rescue I promise.

Lol, I know you’re like “great! now do I ever get into a true relationship with a guy?” Well , yes you do..eventually. I wish I could somehow let you know how beautiful you are.¬† Let you know you can stop flipping through the magazines to read horoscopes that will never happen. I wish I could stop you from the people you think you’re attracted to and the weird online chats. You’ll be heartbroken ..plenty of times ..but you will heal. Going through this builds character, you won’t be na√Įve , and you’ll finally meet someone who gets you. This guy loves your flaws and all, you can¬†truly be yourself¬† and he loves you .

Well, I guess that’s all I will share for now I just wanted you to get excited about your future. I’ll share more when the time is right.¬†

Untill next time,

Older Ash **