Breathe Easy, You've Found Me ((HUGS))

People will wonder why this blog is needed, why minority midwifery student? It's very simple actually; I was looking for this blog...but I couldn't find I created it. We all have unique experiences, and every experience, every story, can help someone else. I am a black girl from the hood at an ivy league professional school. That, alone, is reason enough to write. Somebody was looking for this blog. Someone wanted proof that what I'm doing can be done - even when you come from where we come from.

To that person especially, WELCOME.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

My Mind

I have been out and about reading blogs on break. I am here to let the anger at not being able to write what I want and say what I want regularly out onto the page so I can move on. My mind isn't even my own anymore. Someone else tells me what to say. What to think. How to think, and then how to say what I think. As I sit here in a basement library, I memorize diagnoses and treatments irrelevant of whomever's history. I am supposed to construct these "plans of care" in isolation of the whole person...or rather, keeping the whole person in mind in theory but in reality fitting ABC and XYZ in a 10 minute appointment. I was thinking that midwifery was a way to melt the medical/biological information with the woman who is actually standing in front of you. A way to give the power back to women. But really, it's so much like medicine when you're here. Yes it has its pot lucks, and sisterhoods, and warm and fuzzy feelings...but the meat of it is the same. The physiology, the details, the stress. I am tired of memorizing. That's all. And I am tired of fighting the oppressiveness of this learning style. I know it's easier to give in to it. I've done it before, successfully. But success is relative. My grades were fine but my mental health was crumbling. I have been told that you just do what you have to do to get through it, and then you take your life back. I hear it. And I understand the wisdom of it coming from someone who knows it to be the only way she survived it. But I'm not sure if it's right for me. I keep trying to stop reading the stuff I'm not supposed to be reading...books and blogs about everything BUT what the hell I'm studying. But my mind is fighting with itself about what is important. I keep telling myself that this is only the stepping stone. This, too, shall pass. But in reality...this might be it. After this, there is more of the same. More school. More people telling me what is right and wrong with what I am saying/writing. More feelings of personal betrayal for not having the time...real time...full write about what's in my head...for always responding and never really initiating. I have something to say and it's being stiffled by my education. And my time constraints. And my mental fight with anonymity. I have something to say and its choked up behind my tongue and I'm only realizing the full weight of the censorship right now as tears are being held hostage by eyelids. Only as I type this post am I realizing the real cost of this education. My time. My thoughts. My mind. My mutherfuggin mind. I signed up for this. I agreed to turn my mind over for the next three years. And I think it was an experiment. What happens when we apply this kind of education, in this kind of place, taught by these kinds of this kind of girl... Why shouldn't it have been an experiment to them? It was certainly an experiment to me. Can I do this? Can people like me do this? Here? With what I came with? With who I came with? My hypothesis was that, YES, I can do this, even with all the constraints. But right now, in the analysis of my experiment I notice some variables that I had not planned for: mental exhaustion and guilt. Guilt at not doing this my way. Wait, this is my way...but it's the comprimised version. The version that took all the facts into consideration...the liability, the truth about which populations use which kinds of midwives, the resources available to those who choose to go the path of least resistance and of safety. The uncomprimised version allowed me to explore more. At my own pace. With other women of various educational levels. With respect for those who came before me in unknown towns with cotton lined dirt roads. I would not feel disconnected because I would BE connected. I would not have to wonder what it would be like to sit in a room full of women who look like me at a blessing of the hands ceremony. Wondering if I will be welcomed at in this community that actually does exist, and what my role could be. But mostly I am frustrated with my inability to really make all of this work. How come I can't learn what I'm supposed to...and what I WANT to? How come my fighting the assimilation that seems so inevitable is so hard? I mean really? I've been doing this all my should be easier.


Dark Daughta said...

If I was your teacher you'd be getting straight A's right about now. Brilliant, thinking woman. :)

that big girl said...

the things that I have found myself putting aside for school are not the things that I ever expected that I'd be able to put aside. And, yes, it is worthwhile to put some space and thought into that decision to put them aside, to not do it automatically. When one of the problems is that space and time are in short supply already, though, I feel stuck and only able to get stucker.