I’m exhausted, but wanted to get this written before the feeling subsides. Being on-call for births can be stressful. I need to be able to balance my time between births and studying, and I never feel ready to do births – at least not yet – especially at the birth center where it’s just me and a nurse.  And honestly, sometimes I hope there are no labors so I can get some sleep or study. But tonight I had a labor – and of course there were things that happened that I was not ready to handle on my own. But that is to beRead More →

I just found the webcast from a 2005 conference on war and gender.  I share it because there is discussion about rape as a weapon of war. This still happens today in the DR Congo, and I’m sure it still exists in other parts of the world as well. Does the idea of rape as an act of war surprise you? Rape is always about power and control, whether used in war or not. Here is the link to the conference recordings: In the War Zone.Read More →

I don’t feel any great passion for working with HIV.  I have a passion for pregnant women. But I have to accept that to be effective in areas where HIV rates in women are high (which even includes groups of women here in Atlanta), I need to have a good working understanding of HIV treatment and the health concequences. I decided I’d better make sure some of my educational time is spent focusing on HIV and women.  Too met that aim, I have asked my program director about doing clinical time with an HIV specialist who treats women. As luck would have it we doRead More →

I’ve made a decision that I need to have a real working knowledge of treating women with HIV. How I could pretend it doesn’t matter to my learning for so long amazes me. Perhaps I should have done more thinking about the experiences I really need to work in developing countries, in areas where the health status is very different from what I see here in the US. Unfortunately, I let myself believe that training at the birth center was enough because I wouldn’t be in areas where there were many medical options anyway. But to think that way minimizes women’s health.  Do I really believe the high ratesRead More →

Sent my passport out for my visa yesterday, and today was travel health day.  I ducked out of class early to ensure my shots were up to date and grab a prescription for malaria prevention. Struck me as funny that I received a Hepatitis A vaccine just a few hours before our lecture on hepatitis for family practice.  Coincidence? I’ll try to get some information from Tammy to let you know more about this trip.Read More →

Midwives are protectors of the perineum, even as students.  I have to admit, the few times I’ve found tearing I’ve cringed. It means I didn’t keep a mother intact, and my goal is to keep the mother intact. Which means I don’t have much experience with suturing – but I still need to learn the skill. But it turns out learning to suture is more than learning about how to hold the needle.  It means I need to be able to identify what tissue needs repair, and what the best way to handle that repair would be.  With the limited experience I get, I needRead More →

Title:  Guide to Culturally Competent Health Care Author: LarryD. Purnell Quoting the author: Culture is defined as the totality of socially transmitted behavioral patterns, beliefs, values, customs, lifeways, arts, and all other products of human work and through characteristics of a population of people that guide their worldview and decision-making. I bought this book because I am taking a culturally competent care class this semester.  It was not required for the class, but was on the list of useful resources.  I’m actually torn on the book. The author breaks down populations by heritage, (so you will have a chapter on Arabic, Bosnian, Chinese, Cubn, etc) and thenRead More →

As I was updating all my emails, calendars and blogs I thought it might be interesting to some readers to hear about the crazy schedule my family has had to keep this summer. Part of my summer semester of midwifery school was attendance at the ACNM conference in San Antonio Texas.  I also signed up to participate in a two week program at a farm workers health center in southern Georgia. Unfortunately, the farm worker program was at the same time as a conference my husband would attend. We decided it was a great time for the kids to visit their out of state relatives. Since theyRead More →

I know I have been busy, and believe me when I say I have a long list of information I would love to be sharing on this blog.  I have been spending this summer away from home – literally.  I started by attending the ACNM conference in San Antonio, TX.  I had a week or two of class and then spent two weeks working at a Farm Worker health program coordinated through my school.  Fabulous experience, but not easy to keep up with six classes when you have been gone  three of the six weeks of classes!  July is spent in class two days a weekRead More →

I’ve hesitated to share about an upcoming trip because it was only speculation.  But last week the final decisions were made and I am happy to announce that I will be traveling with Tammy to Nairobi to assist her in a doula training. Tammy is a doula trainer for the organization DONA – Doulas of North America. She has been asked to assist in the formation of a doula group for the hospitals in Nairobi.  This has made the trip rather easy on me–Tammy has been doing all the planning!  I will take my exams a week early and we will leave for Nairobi rightRead More →