As we kick off another year of HOAA and welcome new members, we would love to take this opportunity to share what HOAA has meant to our current and former members. Today we are blessed to have former HOAA president, Tiffany, sharing her thoughts on the importance of HOAA…
My name is Tiffany Murdoch and I first want to say that I AM MISSING HOAA & MY UNMC and CREIGHTON LADIES!!!! I am a high school history teacher by trade, though now I am a graduate student and stay at home mom to our two boys (ages 5 and 3) and Baby on the way in October.
My husband just finished his five year Radiology residency at UNMC in June and now we are in Rochester, Minnesota for a year for him to complete a fellowship in Musculoskeletal Radiology. Then, we are DONE and headed back to Nebraska for my husband to join a private practice group in Grand Island. I was involved in HOAA for four out of our five years in Omaha and served as an officer and then as president for the 2011-2012 year.
I was blessed by the support and understanding that I found in the HOAA members from the very start. There are very few other social situations where you can show up to a couples or family get-together WITHOUT your spouse and feel welcomed and at ease! EVERYONE understands “call” and taking care of things alone while trying your best to support your spouse as he goes through the roughest years of training known to any profession. I have even been at HOAA events (single mom style) where other husbands were playing with my kids so that I could have an adult conversation with other members! What a blessing!
I have loved getting to know other spouses through the organized events but then more importantly, forming lasting friendships so that I had someone to call for random play dates or much needed Ladies Wine Nights! I was a part of book clubs for the first time ever, playgroups, crafting nights, volunteer events, and Bible Study, all of which were great ways to get to know other people going through the same things that I was going through and encouraging me to be a better wife and mother, raising our boys to appreciate their Daddy’s sacrifices and passion for helping people, instead of resenting his lack of time with them at times.
I have learned and grown through residency and HOAA has been a huge part of that. If I could have one recommendation, it is to GET INVOLVED! HOAA CANNOT exist to support resident/fellow families without everyone participating and helping out. Members need to continue to feel welcomed regardless of how many events they are able to make it to each year. Reach out to those isolated from family and provide a safe-haven and helping hand when needed! We are often the only life-line for members displaced by this crazy system of “matching.”
Medicine is such a looooooong road and can be such a struggling process for marriages, so ANY and ALL support in that journey is helpful. My husband loves what he does now but there have been ugly times in this 10 year training process (studying for Step 1 and boards, 30 hour shifts, sleepless nights, the dreaded pager going off during birthday parties, etc…) where we were both wondering what we had gotten ourselves into! It helps to have people that understand that. Looking back this year Nate and I have both said that residency was a good time in our lives and I know that we wouldn’t have been able to say that without the support of HOAA and other residents. Enjoy your year!
If you are the significant other of a resident or fellow at UNMC or Creighton and would like to know more about joining HOAA, please visit our membership page! Please let us know if you have any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org!