Sunday, March 20, 2011


I've done it! I've successfully completed my first term in graduate school, and I didn't even end up in the mental asylum! (I did find a couple gray hairs, but we'll address that on another day... ;)

These last few days have been a complete blur with me scrambling to get things finished.  Today I spent several hours camped out in the bedroom churning out a 9 page paper for my History of Nurse-Midwifery class. At this point I don't even care if I get a bad great on it, I'm just so happy to be finished.

Now I get to enjoy 2 whole weeks before starting it up again.  The next term's classes are Decision Making in Health Assessment and Theories in Advanced Primary Care Nursing....and I just bought the required 5* books. Ugh.

* There are actually 6 required books, but the other one is an APA manual.  I'm not buying it because I already own 2 of them and have the PERRLA I really don't feel like cluttering up my bookcase with another book. I'd appreciate it if you didn't tell on me. 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I'm finished with Pathophys!

It seems so surreal that I have (successfully) completed my first graduate-level pathophysiology no less! At this point I have taken 3 courses in this subject alone...and it is by far one of the most difficult ones for me.   Not only that, but I was 1 point away from an A too!  I refuse to be discouraged about my grade, because I am absolutely flabbergasted that I was able to get through it successfully without going completely insane!!!

Today alone I took 3 exams, listened to a 71 minute long lecture, wrote a paper and completed a homework assignment.  If only I was able to plow through like this all term I may have been able to finish it sooner!  Well, no not really because I still had to listen to her lectures as she put them up...oh well.

I AM SO RELIEVED TO BE DONE! (with pathophys...I still have to write 2 papers for my History of Nurse-Midwifery course...which shall be completed by this weekend)


Go, Go, Go!

I completed a homework assignment and an exam during Allie's nap today! (oh and took a was definitely a necessity)

Now I only have 1 exam and 3 homework assignments (1 large and 2 small papers) to go. I can do this!

Go, Go, Go!!

Friday, March 11, 2011

A couple of thoughts...

I have two reflections to post about:

1) I am utterly sick and tired of typing out the etiology, pathophysiology and clinical manifestations of various disorders. Seriously.

2) I just realized that I have 2 weeks to complete 4 exams, 2 homework assignments and 3 papers.  Will I be successful??  Time will tell! (insert *goingcrazy* emoticon here)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Exams, Exams and more Exams!

I had a minor nervous breakdown the other day for multiple reasons, but one being because of school.  I'm finding it more difficult to set aside homework time than I was hoping it would be, which really shouldn't be any surprise when you think that our household has 2 adults working full-time with both in school part-time and a little monkey who's main goal in life seems to be to completely destroy this house ;)    Oh, and let's not forget the minor fact that we are also trying to get said house ready to put on the market!  (which brings in an additional set of complications)

Anyway, I started this week off being 2 weeks behind in patho since I had taken some time off of that to devote all my time to a paper due in the history course.  Thankfully I was able to take one exam on Sunday and have gotten prepared to take another exam tonight (Wednesday) and that will bring me up to speed. Then I can start working on this week's homework ;)


I'll be so glad when I am finished with Pathophysiology.  It is by far the most difficult subject for me.  Next term I will be taking courses in Nursing Theory and Decision Making.  Not specifically midwifery related, but oh well.  Hopefully they won't be too difficult.  I think I get something like a week and a half off between these two terms, but I'll have to double-check.  Not much of a break....

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Emotional upset surrounding milk letdown...

Navelgazing Midwife has a blog I follow and she posted a topic today that I find simple fascinating.  Apparently, there is a condition known as Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex (D-mer) that causes some women to have intensely negative feelings when their milk is letdown and all throughout the feeding process. Can you imagine a new Mother with her first child, who is already struggling to adjust to her new life and little one, only to have this extra situation piled on?  These poor women, and I am curious to see if this is corelated with PPD and a more difficult bonding between Mother and Child.

Her direct link is below:
Terrible Emotional Feelings Surrounding Letdown

and this is what it says:

Terrible Feelings Surrounding Letdown?

You might have something called Dysphoric Milk Ejection Reflex -D-Mer for short.
I stumbled across an article a couple of days ago and while I’m still reading about the condition, I didn’t want to wait until I was more knowledgeable before sharing it here. 
Just-Identified Breastfeeding Disorder Gives New Meaning to ‘Letdown’,” written in Babble’s Strollerderby, speaks D-Mer, a negative visceral reaction surrounding the let-down reflex while nursing. It seems to have been begun being studied in 2008… that’s the earliest studies I can find. (A list of the available studies is found on the D-Mer.orgwebsite.) 
While the causes are still being explored and studied, it seems there’s a glitch in the dopamine receptor and its regulation. This is the more scientific area I’ll look at later. 
It’s the information that women aren’t nuts if they feel these feelings during nursing that I want to get out right now. 
Alia Macrina Heise writes in “Opening the Door to Breastfeeding’s Best Kept Secret”: 
“The birth was a fairytale and my babymoon was like a dream. Then the babymoon came to an abrupt end as I started to find that just before my milk released, each and every time, I had an overwhelming sensation of guilt, dread and horror. I didn't have any pain, no physical problems, just a surge of negative emotions that hit me in the gut out of nowhere, only to fade away a few moments after my milk released from my breast. I felt great otherwise.” 
Michelle writes in “A Feeling of Dread – Michelle’s Story”: 
“I asked myself if maybe it was postnatal depression, but that didn’t sit right. I was actually elated to have birthed at home and to have had such a great experience. Maybe I was coming down from that high? I wasn’t sure. At first the bad feelings were like an intuition, that something really bad was about to happen. There was nothing I could put my finger on, but I had been trying so hard to tune into my intuition over the final weeks of pregnancy and during labour, I thought I was somehow now psychic and that bad things were about to happen to me, the kids, my husband, the house. Once I even hobbled out of bed to check my older son, not really sure why, but so sure that something was wrong.” 
This is fascinating. And is a testament that even someone like me who reads nearly everything she can find on birth and nursing, there are still black holes of knowledge that need filling. I wrote in Facebook: 
“It's when topics like this come up... a very, very important link in the birth process... that I've never heard of before that keeps me humble as all get out. You all see only a part of what I read on a daily basis and... for goodness sake,... I was a La Leche League leader for 10 years! I just cannot believe I've never heard of this. 
And yes! When I take this new color to the breastfeeding spectrum and hold it up against the misunderstood or confusing situations I've seen over the last almost 3 decades, some of them make perfect sense. As Erin said, ‘I never understood why some women said they hated breastfeeding... now I get it.’ 
And, beside the humbling aspects, this also serves as a GLARING reminder of the massive amounts of information still yet to be ‘discovered’ and named and studied... experiences women right next to us... or even ourselves... have no explanation for that, if we had the future knowledge, might change the entire relationship with our bodies/our breasts/our babies/our partners/our minds. 
Just wow.”
I hope this information resonates with any of you that might not have heard of D-Mer either.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Passed Exam 2

I passed Exam 2 after stressing out about it for two weeks. I am so glad that is over with!  I've also already taken the open book exam covering chapters 44 and 45, which luckily I did well in. Now to move forward and prepare for Exams 3a and 3b...only 6 more exams and a few homeworks to go and I'll be finished with this class.

At some point I really need to work on my Midwifery paper or my partner is going to beat me.  Perhaps I'll do that tonight or tomorrow after Andrew comes home.

Ugh. Remind me why I thought going to grad school was a good idea :S

Disclaimer: After having my brain melt over school, I have apparently lost the ability to form proper sentences and follow grammatical rules.  You're stuck with this because I am too tired to change it ;)