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Sunday, August 13, 2017

Street Cred with a Belly

Hello everyone - I joined this blog so hopefully I would remember to take a moment to reflect on my experiences and have the chance to learn and share from you all, so I wanted to share some reflections from my last couple months.

I've always joked with people that I planned on starting a family as a family medicine resident to give me a little more street cred. I am one of those people that still gets carded walking into 18+ establishments - and hopefully someday I will be grateful for this, but at times it's hard to take advice seriously from your teenage-appearing doctor. The most common look I get when telling parents they need to wake up their baby more often because they are not gaining enough weight is the one-eyebrow-raised "mmhmm. Get back to me when you've had kids" look. So I thought on some level, baby = credibility.

I am enjoying being pregnant and seeing patients much more than I thought I would. I'm 31 weeks along now with a very obvious belly. One parent recently pointed at my belly in the office and told her 2 year old "See, she's having a baby too!". I am having so so so much fun seeing my OB patients in the office and commenting on our bellies at the same time. I feel like my advice is taken a little more seriously ("I know it's hard, but..."), but it's more so I am developing wonderful relationships with my patients. I have one patient that is due within a week of me - so we are hoping she goes first so I can still deliver her before having my own. We are delivering at the same hospital, so chances are, we'll be right down the hall from one another if that plan doesn't work out.

Something else that has been surprisingly enjoyable is the change in my interactions with patients in the hospital. Especially my lovely little old ladies. My rounds have become much less efficient as my patients are starting to ask me more about my life as I try to ask about theirs - but again, so much more enjoyable. It reminds me why I like medicine and connecting with people.

My favorite patient encounter this week was with one of my stroke patients in the hospital. She was recovering well from her stroke physically, but she continued to be unable to speak and express her thoughts. I was going in the room with one of my other senior residents to try and assess how much she was able to understand us. While the other resident was talking to the husband, my patient looked at me, looked down at my belly, looked up with a confused look at my face, looked at my belly again, and looked up at my face and smiled. I thought to myself "Ma'am, you know exactly what is going on here". She just left to a rehab facility and I hope she's doing well.

Thanks for letting me share with you all :) I am just eternally grateful for this experience right now. If you have any stories from times you were glad you were a mom or expecting while you're a doctor I would love to hear more!

3 comments:

  1. Since I didn't see patients when I was expecting I didn't make that sort of connection, but having a baby definitely made me more efficient with my time. I connected with my attendings (was a resident at the time) who were moms but definitely had to hide my delight with others. Loved reading this today and big Welcome to you - can't wait to hear more:)

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  2. I have felt like having a child has made me more relatable to nurses, patients, and many attendings. And definitely more efficient as Gizabeth said. Good luck!

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  3. I’m a third year student that did kids before career. The patients that I have interacted with so far really freak out when I tell them I have kids. Apparently I still look like a kid even though I’m 43. They REALLY freak when I tell them I have three grandchildren. I started REALLY early with the kids. But it’s so cool that most of my kids are grown and I still have time to do this! I’m loving connecting with patients, and it does help to have a little experience to draw from in my interactions.

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