Sunday, July 26, 2009

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Midwifery Student

So, of course I was KIDDING and have not continued to demand things like pancakes from Rob just because the fortune teller said I should.

However, seeing her has given me some food for thought. I find myself considering her statements on how everything in my life really just looks so good right now and for at least the next year, and how I need to focus on enjoying what is happening now instead of worrying about things down the line. She repeatedly said my worrying is unfounded.

Isn't it always? I've always kind of known that in my more laid back moments.

But, ever since she said it, I have been working harder on it and it has been effective. I have been appreciating what is around me more deeply. I have been worrying less. I am less anxious about the fact that Rob doesn't have a job, or that I should be doing more. Instead I think about how long we spent living apart, and how lucky we are to have this whole summer together. Overall I've been feeling grateful for the simple things. More aware of how small my negativity really is against the universe. I feel I have a little more perspective.


With these thoughts in mind I've been considering my relationship with midwifery - and with being a midwifery student in particular. I've been so afraid of school starting again in the fall and so preoccupied with feeling bruised by last year that all I could feel when thinking about midwifery was... well, dread. Some time has passed and I have been able to reflect and consider why this is. I have considered why it was so hard. Not just hard, but so, so, so hard. Surely it must all be in my attitude and my approach. I don't want to feel so unhappy, so afraid of the pager going off, and so afraid of whether I know what I'm doing or not. So afraid I might never "get there." I can't live like that! I'm in the MEP to learn, and I want to learn. I really do think I could be good at this job if I can just survive being a student. I have to figure out how to do that.

I need to remember to have gratitude. My friend Dawn always speaks of having gratitude, and it's a wonderful reminder. It's so important. And I do feel so grateful to be a midwifery student, to be on my path to midwifery, to be able to build relationships with these women and be with them during their own journeys, and to have met the friends I have in the other students.

So then, the hardest parts of placement. I have been considering what they were for me now that I have had some time to think about it. The hardest of all for me were feeling awkward and feeling stupid. I didn't want to be asked a question I couldn't answer. I didn't want to have to stumble through an awkward newborn exam while everyone looked on.

But isn't that all ego stuff? I'm not always going to know the answers - and no one would expect me to. And maybe awkwardness is part of the student game. Can I picture any of my colleagues running through all their newborn exams, informed choice discussions, and vaginal exams without any awkwardness? Surely I can't be the only one. I can't be the only one feeling at a loss in the delivery room at times. This is new to all of us.

But maybe I'm one of the only ones who fears it, hates it, dreads it. Maybe, like so many have said, I need to stop worrying so much. Which brings me back to the fortune teller's message. So simple and yet so difficult!

Back in May, I knew I was going to use my time this summer to attempt to process last winter's placement and try to find my way towards feeling ready to continue. But, the truth is, I honestly didn't believe I would achieve any of that, and so, of course, I worried. Finally, though, I'm really starting to think I WILL be able to continue... and, well... it's a really good feeling.

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