When I wrapped up the last series I thought I could make weekly posts…I was ambitious.  I was correct in my suspicion that my workload would increase near the end of the semester. I am now in the midst of a working break between semesters and I don’t see an end to the heavy workload for a few months.  The trick is figuring out how to balance the blog with my “real” job. I do have some things to show for my hard work.Read More →

Last week I challenged you to use spring break to plan out some educational opportunities for the upcoming year. If traditional courses don’t fit into your weekly schedule, you do have other options. Check out edX, a totally free way to take classes for major universities. There are several classes wanna-be midwives could benefit from. Food for Thought looks at the role of food in health.  Introduction to Global Health teaches you to identify and analyze variations between countries. Health and Society looks at the social variables that affect health. Behavioral Medicine teaches concepts to help clients make healthy changes. Plus a whole section onRead More →

I’m afraid I’m not adjusting well to the time difference on this trip.  I’ve been struggling with headaches, and found it just as difficult to sleep last night as I did in Honduras.  I’m hoping .it will get better. Today was my orientation at the hospital – and since it was a quiet day (meaning not much staff) I attended my first birth.  Having so many clinical sites and so many preceptors has prepared me for the first couple births with a new midwife – when you are not sure what she is expecting of you, and you don’t really know what the set-up isRead More →

Today’s environmental health class was on toxicology, which reminded me of a great book I read this summer.  The book is called Origins, and it is all about epigenetics of fetal development. Don’t worry, it isn’t a scientific text. The author explores the latest research into what affects who your baby will be in simple English. Enjoy.Read More →

I saw a series of articles from the NYT today. Warning, there are no photographs, but the articles deal with mass rapes. Here is the first, from earlier this week: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/24/world/africa/24congo.html?partner=rss&emc=rss And the second from today: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/26/world/africa/26congo.html?partner=rss&emc=rss War and violence have been such a part of the lives of families in this part of the world, building a strong foundation seems impossible. My heart aches for these women and their families who continue to be terrorized.Read More →

I wanted to share two recent newscasts with you. The first is a PBS segment on the need for midwifery post earthquake in Haiti. It can be viewed at the PBS website here: http://www.pbs.org/now/shows/605/index.html The second is a BBC documentary on the efforts to reduce maternal mortality in Afghanistan. It can be viewed at the BBC News website here: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/newsnight/8326102.stmRead More →

Amina had left from Nayngezi with the women to Uvira since she did not have the right papers to go through Rwanda. We left with Flory to go through Rwanda since we did not have the right papers to take the good road straight back to Bujumbura. We piled into a taxi and headed for boarder. In just a few minutes we were there and safely on the way to the bus station. We knew we would go through the rain forest, so we got our cameras ready. I don’t remember if I described the bus rides to you. Very crowed, driving fast up andRead More →

We wanted to share with you some of the funniest things the women asked us, and a few things that were hysterical because of the translation. Please keep in mind that we really do love most of these women and understand we were the first people that taught them anything about their bodies._ “Why is it when you stick your finger in a woman’s anus that in some women the finger stops, and for other women the finger can go deep in?” Jennifer’s answer “Why do you stick your finger in omen’s anuses?” We found out the next day about the level of internal cleanlinessRead More →

We enjoyed the night in Bukavu, it was the first and still only time we had hot water on this trip. Tammy took two hot baths before we left. Georgette left before dinner, and we didn’t hear from Flory until the morning so we were on our own for food. We were a little freaked out by the overly helpful security guard, so just ate some protein bars in our room. We had beautiful views of Lake Kivu. We had printed up a report for the Ministry of Health at the hotels internet cafe, and in the morning we walked over to deliver it. WeRead More →

We had lunch with Senator David and learned that our ride back to Bukavu was arranged with him. He allowed us to bring Georgette back to Bukavu with us to translate so we could shop. We talked a bit about the conference over lunch, and I took the opportunity to tell him about the women not going to the clinics because of the bad treatment they receive. He asked Georgette a lot of questions about the clinics and what the women say. I didn’t know if he could do anything about it, but I knew from the little time I spent with him that ifRead More →