Humans of UCSF: Lured by the Pacific

Thursday, October 12, 2017

“I’m from the east coast and never ever in my dreams thought I’d come out here. My whole immediate family is in New England. We could talk to each other out the window if we want to. My mom said, ‘don’t ever look at the Pacific. If you do, you’ll never come back.’ And sure enough I came out for an interview, got a tour of the city, and FaceTimed with my mom with the Golden Gate Bridge in the background and told her she had been right

My mom sent me a picture of herself when she was younger in bell bottoms, vest and hair down to her hips. I put it on my dining room table and lived with it for 6 months or so. She came to visit and finally told me the origins of the photo. She said it was taken in Santa Monica when she was exactly my age, doing her medical residency. I could never place the same person who had so carefully and thoughtfully fully raised me as having the same uncertainties in life as I felt when I moved across the country.

I like to come home to that photo and feel tremendous comfort knowing that Someone who has such direction and purpose in her life went through the same period of exploration and redefining themselves. When I see my mothers face I am reminded that hope is not lost. I am reminded that I too will find a clear self direction in the future."

Jeremy Williams

UCSF Department Biomedical Sciences, 2nd Year BMS PhD Student