Wednesday, November 10, 2004

Why I am not allowed to take care of myself

I finally started using my light box this week. I'm supposed to start around the end of September, mid-October at the latest. Whoops. So now I'm impatient for it to work (i.e. remove my narcolepsy), and I keep forgetting that before I get to "OK" I have to slog back up through the ground I lost by waiting a month and a half too long.

In response to the comment I got two posts ago about winter and depression: yes, I want to eat and eat and eat. And sit at home on the couch, dozing on and off, with the TV on to something mindless while my servants bring me Cheetos and Coke. Ah. I feel lucky, in a completely ungrateful way, that I have a PE class this semester, so that I have GPA pressure to motivate me to work out (if it was for my own good, well...see post title). We don't have cable (gasp! yes, we're taking donations right now! kidding), so I'm stuck with network, but I'm oddly comforted by PBS. I'm a sucker for period dramas and anything with Abraham Lincoln. Speaking of which, tonight is the second episode of Regency House Party, which I'm ashamed to admit, I'm kind of taken by.

I'm still thinking about where my life is going from here. I think it's an artificially imposed decision (good question, Rachel- and thanks, both Rachels), but at the same time, it isn't. If I was planning on becoming a midwife, for instance, I'm in the wrong school. Most CPMs, if they go to school, go to a three-year midwifery course (two years study, one year supervised practice) and then take an apprenticeship. CNMs are different, of course- a BA or MA in nursing plus three years of obstetrical specialization. But they practice in hospitals, and I'm really convinced that I don't want to be part of imposing hospital routine and procedure. I just think I'm too emotionally tied to birth to be a good hospital midwife- if I was just doula-ing, I would be able to grieve with a mom about an unwanted procedure, whereas I think as a CNM, my first priority would have to be keeping everyone safe, and preserving the emotional distance needed to make good, objective decisions.

So here's the rub. Part of me feels like getting an education might be wasted money and effort. If I'm honest, that feeling probably comes from the idea that I enjoy school, therefore it can't be good for me. Something like that. Or I'm going to school mainly out of pleasure-seeking, and I don't deserve pleasure, therefore I must stop. I have a really hard time believing the things that come out of my brain sometimes when I stop and look at them. Despite having a very egalitarian marriage, I still try to stuff myself into the subservient-female role sometimes (and I hope some of you are laughing, because if there's one role I don't fit, it's that one). I don't know why. I suppose that is just the part of evangelicalism I absorbed best- my role as a wife and mother, quietly and steadfastly supporting my intrepid husband as he makes his way through the dark and dangerous world. Yeesh. Yeah, it still doesn't fit.

So I sit here and second- and third-guess myself about my place in the world, but in the meantime, school is fun (for the most part). I just wish that didn't make me feel guilty.

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