Tuesday, December 20, 2011

My Year in Review

Merry Christmas!
No worries, I'm still alive!  But seriously, I'm sorry I haven't posted anything lately.  With the end of the semester, finals, projects, and life I have been quite busy since Thanksgiving.  I feel like I blinked and it is five days until Christmas!  And to top it off, a lot as come forward in the name of science and news not to mention just the normal current events.  I have a folder of links to items that either I find really fascinating or I feel could use discussion.  But I feel with the end of the year I should give a little perspective on this past year.  It will probably be more of a personal review than that of big events but we will see where it takes us (it's kinda like a Christmas letter from me to you without the hassle of buying a whole bunch of cheesy Christmas cards with puppies in Santa hats on them).

The beginning of 2011 brought about changes much like the beginning of any new year seems to do.  It is ironic that just changing the number we associate with the year can cause such dramatic changes in life because of our symbiotic relationship with time.  I was beginning my second semester of graduate school and looking forward to enjoying a few more months of college with some of my best friends.  Now life doesn't always work out the way you think but in the end I believe everything happens for a reason.  I struggled with moving on in my life without my close friends always by my side.  But I am so proud to be friends with each and every one of you in our unique relationships!  The rest of the spring was a typical school semester with finals and the normal ups and downs of school.

The SC wolfpack!
The summer however is where I believe 2011, for me, began to take an identity for itself.  It began with possibly the best trip I have every taken with a few of my closest friends.  Spending a week on the beach in South Carolina, literally shooting the breeze (it was really windy all week) was amazing.  Thank you goes to my grandparents who set us up with the awesome condo next to the beach.  It was a very fitting way to  bookend that chapter of our lives!

Once back from the vacation, I began the summer at Purdue working on research.  I was able to really get my hands dirty for the first time and begin interacting with other students and professors in the lab.  I essentially used the summer to gain momentum towards my work in the next few years; learning my way around the lab and how the system works so I can just focus on the science of it now.  Outside of lab, I spent the summer trying to find my new identity.  I was at a crossroads in my life, a quarter-life crisis if you will. And so I made it a mission to challenge myself in every way I could think of.  Socially, physically, mentally, I spent the summer stepping outside of my comfort zone and I can honestly say that I have grown as a person since then.  Life isn't always easy or perfect, but understanding the big picture is important and I am much more confident person because of it. Between destroying "Droids" with the guys from MCUT to running around the state of Indiana with my pharm friends, I had a ton a fun with friends old and new!  I challenge you reading this to step outside your comfort zone at least in the coming days.  It doesn't have to be a large step but do something you normally wouldn't.  For example, go visit a friend in another city on a whim with no set agenda or arrangements; or try a new cuisine with co-worker who you haven't connected with yet. Obviously anything that you feel is outside your comfort zone will work those are just a couple examples of the many things I did this summer. Remember, you only get one life to live so you should do the things you want, be with the people you want, and be where you want to be! Don't wait for tomorrow!

Tough Mudder team!  You all are so awesome!!! Hoorah!
The momentum of the summer literally threw me into the fall school semester.  I began following a friend around the state as he expanded his stand-up comedy routine.  That is a totally new scene for me and I appreciate the opportunity to be a very small part of that.  It gives me a sense of perspective from my sheltered lab life.  Tailgating and weekend excursions seem to highlight my fall.  Can I say that I didn't make mistakes during the fall?  Absolutely not!  But you learn the most from mistakes and failures.  In all areas of my life I have learned a lot about myself and carried those experiences, good or bad, with me everyday.  Oh and let's not forget the 4 month adventure that was training for Tough Mudder!  I hope anyone who wants to see what they are made of as a person has the guts to try TM, goes for it.  I truly believe anyone can succeed if you put your mind (and body) to it!

Overall, I enter the holiday season with a new perspective on life and myself.  I am far from perfect (not that I thought I was before) but understanding this concept has led me to develop my confidence and expand my horizons.  The take home message from this post is that in the course of a year, I have been on a roller coaster of emotions and experiences.  But if you can open your heart, you can come out the other side with a smile and know that you are living life to the fullest.  You can do anything you put your mind to!

Writer's Note - Obviously I couldn't fill in all my 2011 experiences into this post as it would get unwieldy.  But I promise if you want to trade stories about your year I'd be happy to tell you about the rest of the shenanigans and professional experiences that I had this year! (Evil Laugh Here)

Thursday, December 1, 2011

End of an Era - Lipitor goes off Patent

This is a great snapshot of the pharmaceutical industry. And it's the end of the reign of Lipitor as the best selling drug in the world! I will probably go into more detail about this situation soon but for now this will have to do.

Why There Will Never Be Another Drug Like Lipitor - Forbes:

'via Blog this'