The sunshine and rain accompanying the warmer weather on my side of the world are a welcome change to the chilly weather that lingered through May, and I’ll take that as enough of a sign of changes to come. With that, and a deep breath, I greet you with a smile and a hug, and am looking forward to enjoying a cup of chai along with you. (FYI: I am feeling pretty distracted these past two weeks, so likely this post will reflect a bit of hyperactivity!)
I would suggest we take a moment and raise our cups to the women and activists who paved the way for us. I have spent the past two weeks reflecting on the awesome power of two amazing souls who died. Maya Angelou lived a life filled with purpose and love, and her words will resonate in my life and how I interact with others. Yuri Kochiyama, introduced to me initially through the Blue Scholars song, lived a passionate and activist life, and the fire she started will continue to burn in every advocate’s work. I am pulling the strength of these individuals into my thoughts and works, and thankful to have known of them and experienced this world with them in it.
Moving past the foam and onto the good stuff, I would admit that I am still recovering from ACNM last month, and catching up on everyone’s thoughts about ICM in Prague. Midwifery is at such an exciting time, and the spirit of our work is coursing through my veins. I was so inspired this past week that, when I typically remain quiet, I spoke up when the MFM was speaking about labor curves during rounds. I commented on how Friedman versus Zhang (which he was describing as not mattering because it’s impossible to measure every woman’s labor with each outlying factor of induction method / epidural /etc.) actually was incredibly important because it increased notice of the individuality of each woman’s labor, and the personalization of each person’s care, and that a labor curve is most likely each woman’s, rather than every woman’s. And in the afternoon one of the Attendings told me how proud she was that I spoke up and participated in the discussion, for the Residents to see and hear. So that felt great.
Other examples of how great midwifery is? The State of the World’s Midwifery 2014 Reports is now available! A great infographic providing an overview is below.
Other examples? Midwifery students at ACNM told me that they are going to use my Midwife to Resident: 20 Things I Want to Talk With You About, and Often Do post in an interprofessional obstetrics class this fall, to get conversation rolling. Midwifery students are so effing awesome. Huge props to the UCSF crew. I am humbled and honored that the post will continue on in such a way, and look forward to hearing the feedback!
Other examples? Lena Soo Hee over at Notes from a Student Midwife is joining me in these Monthly Chai Dates. Not only is she an awesome blogger (see here my favorite post from her recently), but she is taking it another step further in working toward blogging in community. Would love for others to join, and what an incredible opportunity to further the conversation!
Alright, on to self care. Sip, breathe, repeat. On a scale of one to ten, how would you rate how well you have been taking care of yourself? Last month I’d rate myself around a three, but I am already feeling positive about what I’m planning for June. I will be running a half marathon over Labor Day, and training started yesterday. The introduction page of the race says: “This is the year of you. The year to go the distance. The year when anything’s possible.” That’s all the motivation I need to sign up! I have also committed three months to CrossFit, to try and increase my overall body strength. After a few months of work strengthening, I am moving on to my physical strengthening. And, finally, I started biking to/from work (4mi each way). My body feels tired, but stronger every moment! (Remember that instead of a new year’s resolution, I chose a theme for 2014? Strengthening life in all ways possible!)
Warming my hands and wondering why I haven’t switched to iced chai, I’d move on to my media enjoyment! My summer reading project is Margaret Atwood’s trilogy: Oryx and Crake, The Year of the Flood, and MaddAddam. Friends and I will be doing a virtual book group to discuss the series. (I will likely chronicle the reading and the book group over these summer monthly updates, so feel free to read along with us!) And in the latest news, HBO will be releasing its own version of the Trilogy with Atwood intricately involved! Thrilling. And then I would beg of you, please, no spoiler alerts for Seasons 2 of OITNB, because I haven’t had time to binge watch it just yet. My partner wanted to get in on the fun, so we’re re-watching S1 in preparation.
Latest possible adventure? This.
Absolute hilarious moment? CrossFit, Inc. contacted me regarding the use of the word CrossFit in my Kegels post. However, given that I’m a blog, I can use the word in a humorous way. In signing off on the email correspondence, the representative wrote: “Kegel on.” LOVE IT.
Finishing our last sips, I would ensure I have asked as much as I have shared. What was your most hilarious moment over the past few weeks? What possible adventures do you have coming up? What have been your sources of strength and growth? What awesome works in your profession have been lighting your fire lately, and what changes in yourself have you noticed?
Here’s to strength throughout this month and into the next!
Warmly (and next month let’s feel warm enough to have iced beverages!),