Do you ever get inappropriate song lyrics stuck in your head on constant repeat? (Whoop! Shakalaka-shaklaka-shakalaka, whoop!) Just me? Damn. The inspiration for my chosen song of the weekend is not so funny, unfortunately. It seems that Bean may be in the early stages of whooping cough or pertussis. A child in the daycare was just diagnosed this week, and yesterday he started with the characteristic cough. Since he is such a little man, and has not completed his vaccinations yet, he is now on antibiotics to (hopefully) keep him from developing the paroxysmal coughing spells that are pathognomonic for the illness. Poor guy. He actually otherwise seems very happy. He is eating and sleeping well, so that is all that I can ask in this situation. Hopefully we have caught the illness in the mild stage in time for him not to develop the severe symptoms. Fingers are crossed.
Did I mention that I am playing single parent this weekend? Well, I am, and boy, is it rough. Mr. Whoo is off in the woods with his (boy)friends, acting like 13 year olds (video games, junk food, staying up late, oh and also with beer, lots of beer). They do this trip once a year, and I think it is great for their friendship, but man, it is difficult at home. When CindyLou was a baby, she decided to get her very first stomach bug when Mr. Whoo was off on his "guy" weekend. Bean just had to do her one better, I guess. You may remember at the onset of this blog that the wives started their own little get-away weekend. We didn't do it this year (logistics were tricky with pregnancies and whatnot), but are in the early stages of planning next year's trip. (A whole lot less video games, same amount of alcohol, and more spa time.) CindyLou and the Bean have actually been angelic, though, so I have been really lucky. She is off on a playdate right now, and he is sleeping somewhat peacefully in his swing. Hence, blog time! Woot!
I am taking a little longer to adjust back into a full work schedule than I anticipated. I am booked for new patients out into April, with women approaching me personally in the hospital and elsewhere (!) requesting to be seen sooner. I also am trying to decrease my patient load for less deliveries per month in hopes of eking out some sort of better lifestyle. I am going into the 3rd year of a 4 year contract, and I have a lot to consider. Now, with two children, I am finding that lifestyle is becoming increasingly important. I came in to this opportunity with the attitude that I could do anything for 4 years (just like residency). When I come out of this contract $200,000 of my student loans will have been repaid. (You read that figure correctly.) This is huuugge. I will not be "debt free" but the amount left over to pay after that is entirely manageable. I love the location and the patients. I do not love the call schedule...at all. I am still only getting 4 days off per month (every other weekend). I am on call 24/7 all week long and 2 weekends a month. This is too much. I was led to believe that call would be 1 in 3 when I arrived here. This never materialized, and I am somewhat bitter. My employer is looking to expand, and I am hopeful that adding one or two more OB physicians is in their sights in the coming years. If I could have a true 1 in 3 (or 4) call with 1 in 3 (or 4 )weekends, I think I could be a very happy camper. If this does not happen, I'm afraid I may have to start the process to look elsewhere. Bleah. I hate moving. I am trying to be patient.
I am glad to be back with my patients. It is awesome to get back into the OR, and catch some babies. One of my favorite patients is due this month, and I can't wait to deliver her second baby (I delivered her first about a year and a half ago). That is the part that I love about OB, the continuity of care and the relationship with the patient. It is such a privilege to be a part of such an intimate occasion as childbirth. I wish sometimes that I didn't love my job as much as I do. I wish it would be an easier decision to scrap years of training and debt and say "I'm staying with my babies." I just can't. I love my children immeasurably, but I know that the work that I am doing is more than a job, it is a calling; just as much as motherhood is a calling, and so I do my best to serve both of my passions in an equitable way. It isn't easy, and I will state now that I am choosing not to engage the work vs. stay home debate mongers here. A few of the comments I have received and chosen not to publish are hurtful, not only to me, but to women in general, and I will not allow this misogynistic rhetoric on my blog. If you are looking for a fight, please look elsewhere. We women are doing the best we can, and we don't need members of our own sex seeking to tear us down for the choices we make in life. With that, it is time to nurse the little man. Happy weekend, one and all...thank you for reading my stream of consciousness. :)