Is It Really Halfway Over?

Hello from Dublin, Ireland! Today is June 27 and it feels like a crisp spring morning at a ripe 62°! I have to admit it’s pretty weird being in a place that doesn’t get much warmer than 65. For my whole life, I’ve been used to wonderful Pennsylvania that is both extremely hot, extremely cold, and rainy all in between! This past weekend I went on the journey of a lifetime in Galway! I am not much of a city girl and usually enjoy being in nature whether it’s hiking, walking, or even just cloud watching. So, Dublin was definitely a leap out of my comfort zone in a good way, but in something that was very new. I love Galway because even though it’s a city it’s smaller and the people are very friendly in a way that feels more personal than in a bustling big city. The water was stunningly beautiful and I had a great time immersing myself in the culture.  I took a 5-mile hike along the cliffs of Mohr which is one of the most beautiful scenes I’ve seen in my life! The rugged cliff face as the ocean relentlessly beat against it was so moving to see. It was such a show of power in nature! I made several new Irish friends after going to a few pubs along with a pair of hikers who shared their stories about starting at the very top of Ireland and hiking on a four-week journey all the way down to the bottom! The people you see and meet here are incredible! This is been an opportunity of a lifetime. 

Now that I’m back in Dublin I am getting back into my 9-to-5 internship! I am developing quite a few soft skills throughout my time in the country! For example, I have learned a lot about assertiveness and positive thinking. One of my very first tasks at my internship this summer was finding a list of contacts for the company to reach out to. I fully completed my tasks far within the deadline and only struggled with finding certain contact information. Because I couldn’t find that last bit of information, we are not able to use those people as contacts and cannot reach out to probably 90% of them. It was kind of a tough day because I was so excited and invested to see my potential work lead to an actual sale. However, I know rationally it’s ok and that is a part of the business that I will need to get used to if I ever pursue that aspect of sales. It’s unfortunate but it’s also a big learning lesson and even if we can’t reach out to them maybe next time the companies at a conference or are affiliated with that hospital, they can say they know and have researched these people which will make them look better in comparison. It’s all about finding the silver lining! I talked about assertiveness a little bit in my last post, but I have learned to step up and ask for more work when I don’t have too much going on. You would think it would be nice to just relax and not do a lot all day, but to be honest, it’s extremely boring and I found that if I have something I’m invested and interested in the day flies by versus watching the minutes tick down on my clock.  Again, this was an extremely hard lesson to learn because in my head relaxing and not having a lot to do is a good thing but now, I may like the American bustle in the workplace more than I thought I did. 

I have gained many hard skills such as integration of language, a wealth of knowledge in very specified lung diseases, and even something as silly as operating an Irish keyboard. One of the main reasons I chose the Dublin program is because I was able to experience cultural diversity while still being able to understand the people around me. I had an interesting conversation where my coworker called Americans lazy because we only know one language and to an extent he’s right. It’s interesting to learn different dialects terms and information exchanged between our team from across the globe. I have never worked in the medical field before and the terms/information I have picked up will last with me for a lifetime whether I go into a healthcare system or not.  I love learning so this is a pro in my book of working for this very specific place. And finally, the Irish keyboard! It is very similar to the regular American keyboard but a lot of the keys are switched around and have different symbols on them! It is very interesting to learn about and see.