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Robert La Bril — 1st year Solnit Fellow

I typically roll out of bed on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays from 7am to 730am take a shower, get dressed, have a cup of java, a light breakfast and then head out from Waterbury to Middletown for a 30 minute scenic drive. I arrive at about 830am, drop my belongings at the resident room, then head to the unit to complete any needed orders before 9am morning huddle. On Monday’s I try to complete all of my progress notes for my 4 patients in that way I’m freed up for the rest of the week at Solnit allowing me to spend time with my patients such as going to art therapy and doing fun stuff with them. On Mondays and Wednesdays, I leave at 430pm and on Thursdays I leave no later than 11am and head back home for virtual young child supervision and other well organized and insightful virtual didactics that could range from the topic of cyber bullying to career development. Imbedded in those two and a half days at Solnit, over the course of a month I also attend neurology rounds, progressive gender and sexuality didactics, and a watershed of other interesting seminars. Tuesday is the day dedicated to CL didactics, outpatient supervision, and seeing my patients in clinic. In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, all of those things are done virtually from the comfort of my home. I normally see 2-3 patients in clinic on Tuesdays. My case load is diverse in terms of issues, demographics, and treatment. For some patients I exclusively administer pharmacological management or psychotherapy and for others I am responsible for doing both.

Friday is my favorite day! Friday’s are dedicated to a weekly virtual psychopharmacology seminar and checking in with Dr. Stubbe (our totally awesome PD) and my extra-ordinary peers. At the start of check-in, we participate in mindfulness medication led by a 2nd year fellow and then we all give each other a brief update about our lives. It’s not uncommon for one of us share a new active personal or professional challenge. In that case, we all offer encouraging thoughts and will brain storm some interventions or connections that could helpful. Those Friday check-ins are the epitome of two corner stones at Yale CAP: (1) “NEVER WORRY ALONE” and (2) “DUDE ME TOO.” We are always encouraged to reach out to our peers and supervisors for support no matter what the issue. The mantra “DUDE ME TOO” speaks to a culture whereby we acknowledge that we all are in the process of becoming better human beings and embrace our growth edges and hurdles to overcome. We believe that doing so adds to our humanity and makes us better clinicians. As such, YALE CAP has done a superb job in creating a culture of acceptance and growth rather than judgment and demotion.

I chose the Solint track because I wanted to be equipped with rich resources to offer my patients while being exposed to severe psychopathology in a setting with a slower operational tempo. With those things in mind, I have the luxury to spend quality and quantity time with my patients to achieve diagnostic clarity and meaningful long term interventions. As a Solint tracker, I live a wonderfully balanced life whereby I’m able to spend time with my family, go to the pool a few times a week to swim laps, study independently, and even play video games (which always makes me popular with my patients). I chose YALE CAP, because I wanted to be steeped in a world class university environment that is nurturing, culturally sensitive, and challenging. At YALE CAP, I’m surround by a cadre of ultra-talented and unique peers, supervisors, and staff who feel more like extended family than people whom I merely just work with. I could not have made a better choice and I am so grateful to be here!!!