It’s been a long day. I came home feeling like a not-good-enough resident, mother, woman, housekeeper, dog owner, driver, you name it. I have loved ones in the hospital in other states. I have friends hurting in other states that I wish I could help, or at least hug. I haven’t bought one present. I haven’t put up a tree.
I shared this old post about things that brighten my day with one such friend. Then, I let go for a moment. I let my teen son sleep on the couch, I left the dishes, the bills, the evaluations and logs, the laundry, and I stepped onto my back patio. I plugged in the Christmas lights my sons and I put up yesterday. I felt the cool breeze, listened to it rustle through the palms, and took in the twinkling lights and the full moon.
Howdy. I’ve been busy doing residency stuff, family stuff, house stuff. I passed my Step 3 boards (woo hoo!) so now I just need to scrape enough money together to get licensed.
Anyway, I posted about Thanksgiving on my mostly dormant food blog, Almost Healthy, if you’re so inclined.
Here’s a taste (see what I did there!)
I love this time of year. I cook. A lot. Not all of it is holiday themed. My garden is going, and I try to get time off with my family. It’s been relaxed and good.
Howdy, blogland. Long time no see. Oh, and happy Mother’s Day.
It’s been a rough string of months. I had personal changes, a 40th birthday, a malignant rotation, a psoriatic arthritis flare, the stinking IRS is holding my refund for some sort of random review, a struggle with the black dog, and now I topped it off with a nasty viral infection that doesn’t want to leave my lungs.
But, things are looking up. Or, I have to start looking at the positive. I got my schedule for next year. Most rotations, I will be doing two days a week of clinic, which I am really looking forward to. I have zero nights, zero swing shift for the year. I’ll get to do some rotations I am looking forward to, like radiology (I hope I get to focus a lot on ultrasound) and hematology. I also will get to do a full four week block of clinic and one block in a community health center, so I’ll get my share of outpatient medicine. Hooray! I also have a block of NICU and a block of obstetrics, among other hospital based blocks.
I went to a social event with a lot of members of the local natural birth community, and everyone seems to be eager to work with me in the future. I see a lot of possibilities. I have always kept myself motivated by imagining what my future would look like. I am imagining a future with a practice in a freestanding birth center, doing women’s health, prenatals, family planning, lactation medicine, pediatrics, and possibly even some births. One of the local obstetricians said she would welcome me into her solo practice to see her clinic patients. This may be a more compatible future than doing hysterectomies and cesareans.
So, the future is bright. I just have to free myself from the gloom of the recent past.
1. Two elevator repairmen in the lobby this morning: “I don’t know how those Seaman systems work.” I snickered, because I am really mature.
2. A medical student: “What’s water boarding?” I overreacted. “Are you SERIOUS? You have never heard of waterboarding?!” I gave her a two minute synopsis on so-called advanced interrogation techniques vs. torture, the Geneva convention.
3. A patient: “Someone is taking medications out of my purse!” I rocked this one. No ableism intended, but I am known as the “crazy whisperer” at my site. I didn’t come up with that name. A lot of practitioners / caregivers take an adversarial communication style with patients that are combative, delusional, or simply question or want to refuse treatments. I try as hard as I can to meet them where they are. The patient is intermittently in florid psychosis, is paranoid, and is refusing treatments, tests, meds and food. She is sick, in many ways, and some of her meds can literally be a matter of life and death. I had a good, long conversation with her. I am going to let her use her home inhaler if she informs us, instead of confiscating it and making respiratory document every administration. I am ordering sealed cans of dietary supplements to her bedside to accommodate her fear of “dirty hands” contaminating her food. I told her that her 1:1 sitter will help keep track of her belongings, trying to establish trust with her sitter and to help her feel more secure. I let her know some of her meds are refuseable, even though she has been involuntary committed and deemed confused and inappropriate. I find that when patients feel like the have some respect and control, they are more secure and cooperative. She immediately agreed to her most critical meds, and is much more calm.
I am going to be a family practice physician.
I have mixed feelings about this. I think I will make the best of it, and I can have a rewarding (and hopefully successful) career in family medicine. I can still do a lot of women’s health, and even possibly some obstetric care of sorts.
Anyway, here’s to the future.
Check out my post over at Mothers in Medicine:
Should I go to medical school?
It is an answer to a series of emails I have received over time asking me advice about the whole single parent medical school doctor used to be in the natural birth community thing.