I’m finding less time to blog, so my entries are getting less frequent. I’m gearing up for a trip home to Michigan at the end of the month on top of that, I’m trying to setup the next international speaking engagement. I’ve been invited to speak at the Michigan Physical Therapy Association Student Conclave and the Michigan Physical Therapy Association Spring Conference in Bay City Michigan at the end of the month. I always look forward to coming back and reconnecting with old friends and family! Growing up, I always felt different from everyone because I was ALWAYS the smallest and most shy kid in the room. Sports brought me out of my shell. I finally met more people similar to me in college. I got involved in the Asian American and Filipino American student groups because I felt like I had to get involved and spread my new-found pride about my heritage. I’ll admit that I probably had too much fun in college, but it really helped to form who I am today. I learned so much outside of the classroom at the University of Michigan!
I then moved to LA to go to school full time and improve my GPA before applying to grad schools. After a year in California, I moved back to Michigan to start physical therapy school at U of M-Flint. Before I left for LA, I applied to the U of M-Flint Physical Therapy Program since I still had my Michigan residency. I graduated from Physical Therapy school with a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) degree in December 2003. I woke up one morning and decided I should move to San Diego. So I did. I’ve done the Michigan-California drive five times, three times with a companion and twice by myself. I knew 2 people in San Diego when I moved. I made some good friends in San Diego, but in the back of my mind I still missed everything and everyone I left behind in Michigan. This is when things got interesting!
Surprisingly, I’m finding that I don’t mind public speaking. I’m very comfortable talking about my experience as a healthcare professional turned neuro rehab patient/brain tumor survivor. In the beginning, I couldn’t get through the presentation with out getting emotional. Over time, I’ve learned how to get through the “tough part” of the presentation. Making people laugh has made it easier for me to talk about my experiences. I have now spoken all over the country and am starting to speak more internationally. Coming back to Michigan is always special because it toughens me up every time. My family and friends have no problem reminding me who I am so they keep me grounded. They have no problem calling me out on my “laziness” and refocusing me on what I should be doing! My family and close friends in Michigan ALWAYS “keep it real” with me, which I find refreshing. I know that they can dish it out and won’t be easily offended when I “return fire.” This should be a very interesting return trip to Michigan.
I got some more cool stuff in the works… stay tuned…