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Noticing Love: An Experiment

Today, I am determined to notice love.

The sun comes up bright and full each morning to keep us warm.

RH does a word search every morning, even today, the morning before her death. Her shaking hands struggle to make a complete oval around the words, but she persists. She says they’re more fun to do drunk, laughing uncomfortably as she looks down at her shaking, jaundiced hands.

LA puts three creamers in her decaf coffee with a wide smile and everlasting hope that the French Vanilla flavor might be restocked tomorrow.

DE is the first baby I get to feed. I didn’t have younger siblings or baby cousins growing up, so he truly is the first. I hold him on my left side, elevated at approximately 35 degrees – the sweet spot.

AJ laughs whenever SpongeBob fails to catch his jellyfish.

The movie “Up” is on the TV in the lobby and I can’t watch it without crying.

MH tells me all about how much he misses playing football, and how he loves seeing his grandkids play even more.

My husband texts me a picture of a folded stack of laundry.

In the hospital, people look at each other like it might be the last time. 

As I head home, a blue Honda Odyssey has been in the far-right lane for the past 30 miles, refusing to pass even semi-trucks, the driver calmly bopping their head to the smooth sounds of the Beach Boys. It’s December in Michigan.

I tear up when I see small, white hairs of my childhood dog still stuck in the red Mickey Mouse blanket she used to burrow in.

The squirrel that lives across the street has left a slice of pizza on my windowsill for the second time this month, which I see just as I am about to remove my margherita masterpiece from the oven. My insatiable desire for cheese-covered carbs must be less of a secret than I thought.

The moon gently pulls tides forward and back, a lullaby.

My eyes take rest after a long day of noticing, eager to find more love tomorrow.

Image credit: fish bowl (CC BY 2.0) by Dean McCoy Photography

Mallory Evans (5 Posts)


Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine

Mallory Evans is a third-year medical student at Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine in Rochester, Michigan. She graduated from the University of Michigan in 2019 with a Bachelor of Science degree in cellular and molecular biology and a minor in German. When not studying, you can find her running many miles on woodland trails, perfecting a black bean burger recipe, or saying answers to Jeopardy! out loud at the TV. One day she hopes to pursue a career in internal medicine and pediatrics and travel to at least one place on every continent.

This is Water

This is Water is an attempt at documenting intentional living. This column will strive to highlight the extraordinary meaning of the often unnoticed, and to greet the hard and joyful parts of the medical school experience with gratitude (even when, especially when, we don't feel like it).