Brave Woman

Adventures of a future nurse-midwife


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Cancer Scare

Posted by Lucille on March 27, 2017 at 3:15 PM Comments comments (0)

(Spoilers: I'm totally okay, just magic.)

Spring break was a more anxious time than I anticipated.

I finished writing my last post about how relentless this term was and decided that before I started studying for my last final, I should take a bath. (Procrastination is a personal strength.) So I drew up a bath and got in and relished in putting off thinking about all the studying I had to do for an extra twenty minutes, and then I felt a weird...

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Crawling to Spring

Posted by Lucille on March 21, 2017 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)

I have one final exam left. Spring break is so close I can taste it. We actually made it through this term. Alternative titles for this post include Holy Shit, Y'all and It Feels Like I Just Drove Through a Car Wash with the Windows Down.

So two and a half months ago when I last wrote, I promised there would be a post soon with pictures from DC. I haven't even put those photos on my computer yet. I got stuck in DC due to ice on the runway, made it t...

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Resistance, Day 30

Posted by Lucille on December 29, 2016 at 2:25 AM Comments comments (0)

Dec 8th marked 30 days after the election, and 30 days straight that I've completed and posted a daily act of resistance. I didn't commit to daily acts of activism at the outset, I just started doing it- it didn't feel optional, and honestly I mean that less because of moral obligation and more because contributing tangibly to the resistance was necessary for my own sanity. I have been so full of anxious/angry energy this month that daily activism has been imperative for my own grounding. Alt...

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Vignette: My Brother's Birth

Posted by Lucille on December 29, 2016 at 2:10 AM Comments comments (0)

My mom had a tubal ligation after I was born, and by the time I was 7, she was in her late 40s and perimenopausal. Then she started getting nauseous, a little bit at first, and then throwing-up-every-day nausea, complete with swollen feet, headaches, and a whole host of other things. Her doctor did lots of tests, moving from testing for more common things to progressively rarer and more serious things. Mom thought she had cancer (not an unreasonable conclusion, considering that she had alread...

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Resistance, Day 1

Posted by Lucille on November 10, 2016 at 5:50 PM Comments comments (0)

So much time has passed in the last day.

On the evening of November 8th, I remarked that I was nervous, but excited. Excited to witness the election of the first woman president. Excited to be done with this surreal reality show of an election. Excited to, sometime soon, watch an entire news cycle that didn't include Trump's latest violent obscenities. I remarked that there was literally nothing Trump could do that would surprise me. He could murder...

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Vignette: My Name

Posted by Lucille on November 3, 2016 at 12:10 PM Comments comments (0)

My maternal grandmother, who died before I was born, was named Lucille. But both of my parents insist that I was really named after B.B. King's guitar. And B.B. King named his guitar after a bar fight that started over a hot waitress named Lucille that ended up burning the bar to the ground. So technically I'm named after a hot waitress. I can work with that.

Also at my little brother's birth, they were talking about potential baby names and Dad mad...

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Vignette: My Birth

Posted by Lucille on November 2, 2016 at 8:35 PM Comments comments (0)

My parents met in an evening French class. Both of them had been in a previous long term relationship and both wanted kids, so when they fell in love they didn't waste a lot of time before getting married and trying for a pregnancy.

Four years later, Mom still wasn't pregnant, time was ticking by, and medical tests hadn't found any causes of infertility. Dad came up with a theory that the issue was stress, so-- the way I heard it-- he showed up at h...

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Introducing: Vignettes

Posted by Lucille on October 26, 2016 at 4:10 PM Comments comments (0)

I am a storyteller. I take stories in and breathe them out, not as a hobby but as a fact of my being. It is a privilege to be going into a profession where I will get to hold listening space for many people's most intimate stories, and a challenge and responsibility to honor their trust as the gift that it is by protecting their privacy with HIPAA-level vigilance. I know some nurses and midwives accomplish this by creating a boundary around their work life and resolving not to talk about thei...

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Posted by Lucille on October 8, 2016 at 5:40 PM Comments comments (0)

I had a month off between nursing school and the start of the midwifery program. At the start of the break I wondered what I would do with myself for a whole month. I knew I needed to catch my breath, but a month still seemed like a long time. I was wrong. A month was exactly as long as I needed.

To be fair, it was an eventful month. I graduated, got engaged, went to California and back with camping stops both ways, got my nursing license, applied f...

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Love Story

Posted by Lucille on September 30, 2016 at 3:55 PM Comments comments (0)

Sometime last winter, I came home from clinical with my heart, mind, and body aching from caring for a patient whose situation I can only summarize as a profoundly tragic love story. I cried all the way home. I got myself under control in the parking garage, made it into my building, and then lost it again in the elevator.

This was right around the time that I had decided there was no hope of me getting into the midwifery program this time, and I wa...

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HIPAA Disclaimer

Sometimes I have the privilege of being a part of intimate, powerful moments in other people’s lives. I cannot and would not share these stories, because they are not mine to tell. However, they touch my life and become part of my own story. When I share these moments here, you can trust that I have not broken anyone’s confidentiality. The characters are invented. They are not real, but could be. I take creative license to communicate the essence of my experience while respecting the privacy of others.