Friday, March 30, 2007

So Much

that I have been meaning to blog about: stories, concerns, joys, pains. Now I feel like if I write it all, it'll end up being so long that no one will even care to read it. I probably wouldn't if I were you. Instead, I'll give tidbits. I'll hit the gist, leave it a bit vague, and then we can actually converse about things if you'd like to know more...this is assuming we know each other, of course.

Topic 1: If you read below (my earlier post from today), you can see that my beloved alma mater has joined the ranks of every other private educational institution in the state in believing it, too, needs a pharmacy school to serve the needs of our state. I believe they have heeded incorrect information, and beyond my feelings of anger and concern, it can be safely said that this is a bad idea for all parties involved. More of the reasons to come.

Topic 2: I am very sad to see my month at TPA come to an end. It culminated in an opportunity to sit on the Floor of the House during session yesterday with Representative (and pharmacist) Dr. David Shepard of Dickson. He's great, and I have immensely enjoyed working with him on issues this month. Pharmacists in our state are blessed to have him in the Legislature. During my Floor experience yesterday and throughout the month, I was also able to meet and cut up with other members of the General Assembly from various parts of the state. Just the networking has been amazing. And if you know me and know how I LOVE to meet people, you understand how well this fit me. Above all of these things, the ladies in the TPA office are such a great group of people. They gave me a card today to say goodbye and filled it with encouraging words to send me on my way.

Topic 3: Maybe the best topic would be certain growth that I've experienced recently. I have been praying that God would let me get a hold of my true identity in Him and stop battling certain insecurities that I allow Satan to beat me down with frequently. Most of them revolve around my perception of what a godly woman looks like (she's usually petite, sweet, quiet but strong, and outwardly compassionate). She has that shyness that guys see as mystery and come after her in search of the treasure they're sure they're going to be the first one to find. Then there's me: loud, animated, opinionated, boisterous, and outspoken- especially when it comes to matters of the Word and Biblical Truth. Most of the time I embrace these things, but like I said, sometimes I allow Satan to win. Well, this week, God answered my prayer in a couple of ways.

  1. This kid I barely know from church shares some encouraging words based his limited observation of me. He even saw me in a game of Catchphrase, which can be translated as my loudest, most obnoxious, competitive, sassy form. But he seemed genuinely signed on to the Lauren Webb fanclub, and I was deeply encouraged.
  2. An even bigger part would be Thursday night when I went through the PLACE class at Brentwood Baptist Church. It is a required class for new members, and it evaluates your personality, spiritual gifts, abilities, passions, and experiences in order to show you where you fit in Kingdom work. It is one of the most revealing and enlightening programs I've ever been through. It help me make sense of me. I learned how my being passionate, driven, persuasive, analytical, and intense could help me and hurt me in various settings. It explained so much. I think everyone should have to go through this. It could help you find a more fitting job, become more comfortable and in-tune with yourself, and ultimately free you to be all of you for God's glory. The instructor quoted St. Ireneaus, "the glory of God is man fully alive". I meet with a connection coach this Sunday night to interpret more about my results.

Thanks for reading. I tried, but I'm just too wordy. I hope everyone has a great weekend, and I challenge you to think about how alive you would say you are. How much of who God created you to be do you use daily and further- specifically for His glory?

Here's one for ya:

I'm mad and sad and I'll write more when I've calmed down.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I don't think I've told you...

Reema's home. She's back in the 'Natti trying to nurse her shoulder back to health. She hasn't set definite plans for after that. Please pray for her as she adjusts to the U.S. culture after being away from it for two years. She talked like she had been in a time warp. We set her up a myspace page, so we're slowly bringing her up to speed. I'm thankful she's back and excited to see what God will continue to do in and through her.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

The Good, the Bad, and whatever else...nothing ugly

  • had a blast doing some salsa/other Latin dances Thursday night with my buddy Phillip, who-by the way- is for sure and by far the best guy dancer I've ever seen. He's a ballroom instructor, but anything from Jay-z to JT to Frank Sinatra, this kid can own it. NO question.
  • went to Variety Show and my sister Daron won the small group competition! She came out in this stunning sequined dress and honkin' wailed "I heard it through the grapevine". Homegirl's got pipes. That's my dawg, right there.
  • Got to see some of my fam for just a second this wkd.
  • I'm really glad to finally have my car back. I drove it home yesterday, and I fell in love with it again.


  • had a little drama with my fam on Thursday night
  • the Chi Omega's got absolutely robbed to the point of absurdity during Variety Show. ZTA's dance wasn't good nor had anything to do with the mo-town theme. If I were Chi Omega, since this happens every year, I've already told the girls, I would just boycott and not be in it next year. Seriously, I never thought I'd be on this side of things, but there's no question. I don't know if it's the judges they pick, or whoever tallies the scores, but ZTA undeservingly won...again.
  • the processes that go on in the legislature kinda hack me off sometimes. It's just that justice is no where to be found sometimes. It all has to do with who wants what and what they have to do to get it. Some of the legislators aren't intelligent. That's the nicest way I can say it. Why they're up there, I have no idea. Overcoming hurdles such as that one and the fact that some of them are moral cowards makes progressing and protecting my profession difficult at times.

That's about it. I'm about to finish my last week at TPA. I'm kinda sad to leave. I love the ladies that work in there, and I really enjoy the activities on the Hill, as frustrating as they can be. And we all know I'm passionate about my profession. Getting to work on the front line for it has been very gratifying. Next month I'm doing psych at Centennial. That should be interesting. And that's my last one! After that, I'm off until graduation! How crazy is this?!

Thursday, March 22, 2007


I was on gmail today at the TPA office, and my Hungarian friend Gergo (pronounced Gad-guh, kinda, but not really) was online. You may or may not remember that this guy was the only Christian that I met during my trip to Hungary, and he was well-versed in the Word. Kid knows some Scripture. I was very impressed. Anyway, we were chatting about life, school, etc, and then he asked, "How are things spiritually?"

I was kinda stunned at first. I don't know if it was because he asked or because I didn't know what to say or why this was so odd to me. But I was wierdly pleased that he did. I found it neat that this guy who I barely know, who I struggle sometimes to communicate with secondary to the language barrier, who I have spoken with just a few times at length about spiritual matters, was concerned about where I was in it all.

So there is God at work around me. There He is using whatever means He chooses to remind me that He's here, and He wants to hear from me. He wants to be intimately involved in every part of my life. I was faced with the question, "Why am I not letting Him?" after Gergo inquired.

But it was a good conversation that followed. Gergo, as usual, referred to many passages of Scripture to encourage and spur me on. How God works is beautiful.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007


That's where I'm headed. I just received the email. Thanks for praying!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

After a fun but long trip to Atlanta, Donna and I trucked it back to Nashvegas late last night. I wanted to make sure I was here for a specific bill that was coming up in the house health committee. Ugh. I should have taken the hint about what kind of day this could end up being after I locked my keys in the car this morning. Yep, sat my bag in the driver's seat, and then shut the door. Thankfully, I have the best roommate ever, and she brought me my spare this afternoon.

Sidenote: that whole rumor about if you hold the remote up to a cellphone that's connected to a cellphone near the car, you can unlock the door's a lie. I called katie from a cell as I was standing at my car. She held the spare key remote up to her phone and clicked it as I held my phone next to the cardoor. NO magic. So tell all your friends: It ain't happening.

Then the legislature. On the health committee there were two people directly associated with healthcare making a point. Ask me if any of the other legislators voted with those two individuals. 3 others did. 9 did not. All of this secondary to politics. It was ugly. You can only imagine: I was ill. My personal sense of justice was extremely violated.

But hey, there's still a chance that someone down the pipe will understand the ramifications of the current language and choose to move past ignorance in order to see the greater good of the patient. They just don't understand what they're doing. I hate to think how often this happens.

In other news, I hear about the match tomorrow. Translation: I get an email tomorrow mandating where I will live and work for the next year of my life after graduation. I'm excited, and honestly, not very nervous. We'll see!

Thursday, March 15, 2007


I'm here in HOT-lanta a.k.a. the ATL or just Atlanta for those of you unfamiliar with the ghettro-fabulous nomenclature given this town. I rode down with Kam Nola, the associate executive director of TPA to catch the meeting of the National Alliance of State Pharmacy Associations (NASPA). It's so neat to get to sit in on meetings where the heads of pharmacy from the various states are here talking about legislative concerns, professional development projects, and other topics. I just eat it up. I also had the pleasure of meeting a few of them during the meeting and the reception that followed. I was introduced to the Executive Director from Alaska, and we sat together during the reception talking about culture, pharmacy issues, and her experience with her association. I had a blast.

I'm actually here for the American Pharmacists Association (APhA) annual meeting. This will be my fourt year, and it's wierd not running around as chapter president of our APhA-ASP (Academy of Student Pharmacists) chapter from UT. I don't have to be mother hen, making sure everyone else is where they're supposed to be and going to a million meetings of my own. I'm just riding Baeteena and Kam's coattails, meeting influential people and getting fired up about the hot topics in pharmacy. It's so funny how I get this desire to jump right in, gear up, and get ready to battle for the progression of this profession. I have no idea what that means toward my career path, but it's wierd how at-home I feel around people pioneering our futureas pharmacists. Who knows?

Another thing I LOVE about these meetings is seeing people I haven't talked to in a while. I've been around here long enough to establish a small network of friends that also frequent these meetings. Whether from UT, Tennessee, or I've just worked with them in APhA-ASP, it's always a joy to reconnect and then branch out further. I know all of my close friends are laughing as they read this because they understand my strange fascination with meeting people and building relationships.

And amid all this chaos, I'm still sitting in waiting to hear about where I'm gonna live and work next year. AAAHHH! I'm so excited to find out. I'll be pumped about any of my choices, but I accidentally kinda set my heart on one. Whatever, happens will be find. We'll see.

Brooke Off-the-wall, if you're reading this, it was a great surprise to see you and Meredith today, and I hope you have fun with us here in the ATL.

Monday, March 12, 2007

I went to visit my nanny yesterday because she has recently been in and out of the hospital with heart issues. Knowing what I do now, it was really hard to hear her story and the chain of events and not drive down to JMCGH to tell them what I think about their care. That's a sermonette of mine that I won't expound upon today.

Instead I'll talk about the great conversation I was able to have with my grandparents about life, politics, and the upcoming presidential race. It's very intriguing to me to see where people fall in their support of the presently-running candidates. I have my own opinions, and I get to read the left-sided view of Newsweek on a regular basis. But it's always new when you talk to each individual, especially when they're loyal to a particular party. It just seems like they're aren't any winners on either side of the race this time.

DISCLAIMER: The following is just my conclusion from the information I've gathered so far. It IS subject to change, and I reserve the right to do so at my choosing.

You've got Hillary, who in my opinion, overcompensates for the perceived weakness of women by just being harsh and a bit scary. I would never want to spend time with her. She never smiles, and when she does, it's a bit evil. She just has too much to prove to not be a liability.

Obama, he seems great, but what's he about? No one really knows. And he ain't saying. Sure, he's a stud and all, but does the kid have a backbone? And where will he stand on things? Is silence his leadership style? Not working. Plus, being a Democrat from the north, that just makes me a little weary of his moral stances - again, assuming he has any.

Then the Reds, McCain, who's one of the 5 people left in America who support us being in Iraq. Seriously, we screwed up. We really flubbed this one. Let's all admit it, and try to get out without shanking all responsibility. Mitt Romney. Right... Seriously? You think you're just like the Christian right? Are you kidding? My personal belief is that Mormonism is a cult. And you operate under a belief that you'll become a god when you die? Trust me; we have nothing in common. Then Giuliani, who stepped up as a leader during crisis but is actually a Democrat on every possible moral issue.

As I was discussing this with my grandfather, he made some great points. One hit me the hardest. He noted that all these "Christians" are up in arms about abortion being wrong, but none of them adopt children that they encourage people to have. His simple view of Biblical principle was dead on. I was proud to be his granddaughter. I respect his outlook. He has lived through and has seen a lot of things over a lot of time. He remains true to his wife, committed to his family and his church, and lives by his faith in Christ. I know he's not nor has he ever been perfect, but he's an example of a life lived well.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Lovin' some Legislature

I just started my rotation with the TN Pharmacists Association on Monday, and I love it. You may remember from previous blogs (or just because you know me) that when I served as president of our APhA-ASP chapter, it automatically made me chair of the TN Society of Student Pharmacists (TSSP), and as the chair of that society, I sat on the TPA Board of Directors. So I've had a great opportunity already to see the ins and outs of the association as well as build good working relationships with Baeteena, the Executive Director, Kam, the Associate Director, and the other great ladies in the office.

Today I got to follow Baeteena over to the State Capitol building to let some legislators know where we stood and where we'd like them to stand on a few bills. I loved it. I met Chris Crider, the rep. from Milan. What's wierd is that tonight at Kairos, the huge Bible study (seriously about 800 peeps) at my church, he was there with a new rep. from Germantown, Brian Kelsey. It was great getting to solidify our meeting-in-passing earlier that day. I got a chance to really talk to them about TPA, my future in lobbying (or lack of), and my opinions of the US from the world's perspective. It was good stuff. It kinda makes me a little sad to get connected, then jet off across the country next year. (No, I don't know where I'm headed yet, but they're all far away).

This whole legislation circus is a bit scary. Lobbyists get painted ugly sometimes, but trust me, if they weren't there, there's no telling what would come down the pipe and actually get passed into law. It's a fragile game. But it's fun.

As for the residency drama...I submitted my rank list tonight. I'm allowed to change it up to 11pm on Friday night. But I think I like it. No, I can't tell you what I put. (unless you call me and you are in no way connected to any of the programs). lol.

Here are some pics and a video from my Alaskan adventure.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Back in the lower 48...

I flew home from Alaska today. It was such a great trip. So much cool scenery, neat people, fun activities, and great conversations. I got to see the teams in the Iditarod. I got to see the sun set over the range near the Alyeska ski resort. I went skiing and almost killed myself trying to make it down the mountain. I wish I could have just taped some of my falls. They had to be priceless. Well, actually, they did cost me. I'm pretty sure my knee got bent a little further than it's used to, but no major damage.

So on the 5-hour flight from Anchorage to Minne-haha, I start thinking about the decision before me and become overwhelmed. I start crying in my seat because I have no idea what I'm supposed to choose. I read in the Word, and no verses are putting these fears aside. So when I land in Minneapolis, I call my mom, dad, and Buckle. A poor girl in the airport brings me a tissue because I'm on my cell crying in the terminal. I'm such a girl sometimes. But I really felt like I was at a crisis point. Trying to discern God's ultimate plan for my life as much as it depends on my choices is BIG and daunting and risky. There's so much to weigh out in a decision like this, and I didn't want to be making it alone.

Evidently their prayers worked because over the course of the two-hour plane ride back to Nashville, I feel like I know what I should do. I'm open to God changing my mind tomorrow, but for now, I think I've decided my rank order.

So that's as far as my decision goes. After this point, it depends on how the programs ranked me. So there's still a decent chance I could end up at any of my choices. I'll keep you posted. And now I feel like a fool for losing my grip so quickly. If there's any lesson God has taught me on multiple occasions, it's that He's faithful. Father, heal my unbelief.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Alaskan Adventure Part 2

When I arrived at the hospital yesterday morning, I was 30 min early. That's usually my plan. Get there early, read a little in the Word, call Mom for a last minute pep talk, get pumped and ready to meet people. Yesterday I got the greatest verse:
Proverbs 16:3 "Commit your works to the Lord, and your plans will be established."
How great is that? After reading that, I moved over to sit by a window waiting for the residency director to meet me. I met the neatest group of people. They had come in and were waiting to start work for the day. The hospital has a program that provides work for developmentally-delayed adults, and so I made about 5 new friends during my wait. It was the perfect start to the day.

The interview went well: beautiful facility, great preceptors, love the director, and of course the residents are super-nice. Yesterday afternoon I hung out with Bert, one of the residents while Adam worked a night shift. We had a good time discussing theology, hunting two bald eagles, and seeing Anchorage. We stopped at Cook's Inlet (I think that's the name) and watched these massive pieces of ice move with the water. It was amazing. The winds were about 20mph, so the Explorer was rocking as we sat on the bluff. We went to Earthquake park where the quake of '61 caused a piece of land to basically dive under water when the plates shifted. Really neat. The mountains are phenomenal. They surround the city. BEAUTIFUL place.

I'm watching the Iditarod start tomorrow. I think there are 83 mushers in the race. That should be great. We may ski tomorrow as well. I'm having fun. I hope y'all have a great weekend.