halloween and other stuff

posted on: Wednesday, October 31, 2012


this is my halloween costume.
i'm going as an exhausted emergency medicine resident.
super original.


i just got off the phone with my husband.
it was the first time i've talked to him in three days
and we needed to discuss who was going to pay rent and buy milk.


my next day "off" is saturday.
and i'm on call, so if anybody calls in sick, i'm going in.
right after i smother the "sick" person with a pillow.
jk. first do no harm, remember?


work has been a little brutal.
crazy busy.
sick patients.
shaken babies and shattered pelvises.
i might've cried once.


 i'm feeling pretty depressed about the holidays too.
usually i'm all about them.
LOVE the decorating, the christmas cards, the meals, the weather
the time spent with family.
but i got my schedule for the next couple of months
and it's bad, y'all.
real bad.
as it stands right now, it looks like i'm working Thanksgiving,
and Christmas
and New Year's
and my birthday.


then there's the loneliness that comes from working weird hours.
no one to talk to or interact with.
not seeing my husband for days at a time.
carrie bradshaw has been my closest friend.
and she gives me major closet envy.
bitch.


so all that to say, i had big plans for editing photos
and sharing them with you all this week.
obviously that hasn't happened.
i'm feeling a little frazzled and strung out.
not too mention sad and lonely and depressed.
so thanks for your patience and support.


and here's to keeping it real?

georgia weekend preview

posted on: Monday, October 29, 2012

photo by me.

my baby brother got hisself hitched.
the wedding was beautiful...
a true testimony to what families can do when they work together.
can't wait to share more images.
but for now,
just this one. 


because i'm exhausted and have to find the strength to go to work.
whew.

on women having it all, part three

posted on: Thursday, October 25, 2012

photo by Christine Kim

i had visions of bringing this little series of mine to a close with thunderous declarative statements.
instead, i'm still pondering and asking questions.
this bothered me a little, initially. the persistence of the questions.
but then i got over it.
because that's the point, isn't it?
to keep asking the hard questions?
even if you never find the so-called "answers"?


it's always been my opinion that a life that is not well-examined is not fully lived.


so i don't have any answers.
but i do have a point.


and, as an aside, i should probably disclose that i now realize
that the title of this series is a bit of a misnomer.
i was never really writing about "women" having it all.
i was always just writing about me.
i recognize that there are women everywhere who don't face the same issues i do
for a number of reasons, including, but not limited to,
their financial situations
their biological situations (addressing the infertility issue here)
their social situations
their preferences


i'm blessed and thankful to be in the conundrum i find myself in.
loving and hating where i'm at all at once. (:


for today, i want to address again the concept of balance.
i've been reading/watching a few things lately that have got my wheels spinning
(like this article, and this one, and this one)
is balance even possible?
is it actually attainable?
is it even desirable?
i've always felt that it is, but i wonder if that is more me conforming to a social construct
rather than an actual desire of my heart to be in a state of balance.
(and yogis everywhere are namaste-ing in disgust)


a friend sent me an article that had an idea i really love:
"constant motion is what makes sustained balance a go"
the author likened this concept to a four-year-old learning to ride a bike.
good imagery, right?
this really resonated with me.
i feel like my life is most zen when it is in constant motion
i thrive on the challenge of keeping all my balls in the air at once.
this is why i'm so well-suited to Emergency Medicine
multitasking is my forte.


but then i caught the end of Eat, Pray, Love on tv the other night
and was reminded of this concept from when i'd read the book:
it is worth losing your balance for love

 
hearing that made my heart sing.
my own life has proven this to be true
since i fell in love during medical school, most definitely losing my balance along the way
and it was SO worth it.

it made me feel like it would all just be okay.
losing your balance is a scary feeling
but to be reminded that it's worth it to let all those balls drop out of the air
to make room in your life for love
was incredibly comforting for me.


there are people out there who think that it is a shame
that intelligent, high-powered women would choose to drop out of the work force
to go home and be with their families.
and there is a part of me that agrees with them.
i WANT women to hold positions of power
i hate the fact that so many executives and big-decision-makers are men
i would love to see women occupying those positions
i think we'd be phenomenal at it.


but at the same time, i get it.
i understand why they leave the work force to go home to their babies
even if their babies are teenagers.
i struggle with it too.
if having a baby is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body,
then how could you possibly sustain the same level of passion for your job
that you did before your babies were born?
maybe you can. i don't know. i'll keep you posted.
but i'm skeptical.


and there are those who say that your partner should really BE a partner
that your husband (in my case) should equally share the work of the household
to prevent the woman with a career from having two or three "jobs",
when the man only has one.
i know that i find this concept to be completely unattainable in my own life.
the way my husband and i make our household work (now. even BEFORE kids.),
is by acknowledging that there are tasks that we each are better suited for
and assigning those tasks to the person who is better at them.
him-- taking out the trash, paying the bills, picking up dog poo
me-- everything else. (:


my point today is not to tackle the topic of gender roles.
just to point out that women are so good at SO many things.
from making big deals
to making the diagnosis
to making baby food
to making things beautiful
and everything in between.
i'm thankful that America is in a place today where we can tell our daughters
that they can do ANYTHING they dream of doing
and believe it.


i guess this is all just me wanting to believe that i can not only do anything,
but also do everything i've dreamed of wanting to do.
maybe "having it all" is a big fat lie.
maybe you just can't have it all at the same time.
maybe it means something different for everyone.
but dammit, i plan to try.


thank you all for bearing with me as i shared my heart about all this
my deepest heart of hearts. my hopes. my fears.
you've comforted me with reminders of things i knew, but forgot
like, when it happens it will be the right time
or, you'll know when you know.
(i'm paraphrasing, but you get the gist.)
i wanted to argue with you...tell you that you didn't understand...
my birth control is the Fort Knox of birth controls
this wouldn't happen by chance.
i would have to willfully make a choice to allow it to have a chance to happen.
and even then, maybe nothing.


but when it comes right down to it, you were all right.
when it happens, it WILL be the right time.
and i won't be ready, but it will be okay.
i thrive on chaos, and will find a way to keep my balance anyway.
and if i happen to lose it? this mythical sense of balance?
so what?
it'll be worth it.


domestication

posted on: Friday, October 19, 2012

Laundry Room by The Avett Brothers on Grooveshark
a little music for you to read by.
isn't it amazing how music works?
you can be transported back to a concert experience you once had
just by hearing that song again
in the comfort of your own home.
it's magic.


i've been missing in action this week
to state the obvious.
i finished my last night shift yesterday morning
and between working nights
and being sick with a nasty cold
i'm in survival mode here.


the cold is still kicking my ass
but nothing rejuvenates me quite as much
as knowing i'll get to sleep at night like a normal person for a while.


last night i slept like a baby, thank you Ambien
and woke up feeling inspired to do a bunch of domestic ish
 i cleaned the house
did laundry
washed the sheets
cleaned the litter box
used vinegar to get all the hard water gunk off the faucets
basically living out the most glamorous life imaginable.


but i also did some contemplating.
some blog reading
some coffee drinking
some toasted pumpkin bread with cream cheese eating.


i had planned another "on women having it all" post
a conclusion of sorts
and am still planning on it
i haven't sorted through all my thoughts yet
but i will share this one with you...


i treasure my domestic-goddess days.
like today...i am blissfully content folding socks and making the bed
i think i'd come to loathe these days if they were all i had
just like i'd hate going to work all the time if that were all i had.
it's the concept of balance.


i know i'm not really breaking any new ground with that statement.
everybody knows you need balance in life
between self...family...work...faith...and everything else
it all needs to hang in elegant balance.


i know you all have crazy schedules too
probably not exactly like mine
but not all that different.
if none of you could relate, you wouldn't be reading, right?
so maybe you're in the same boat.
loving and hating where you are all at once.
 

gosh this post is all over the place.


might as well quit while i'm behind and go shopping.


 

ACL

posted on: Tuesday, October 16, 2012

and i don't mean the kind in your knee.

it's an armadillaccordion and i love it.


so after last week's deep discussion posts,
i had a terribly exhausting day
made even better by the fact that my post for that day was all screwed up
there was a video. it was epic.
and only i could see it.
travesty.


so i gave up on blogging and went to Austin City Limits.
for the weekend, anyway.

the ladies of Emergency Medicine
 if you follow me on Instagram, you've seen some of these.
but not all.
no...not all.


like that one?
Flemings playing with sausage?
only for the blog.
you're welcome.


the Civil Wars.
everyone else i came with went to Two Door Cinema Club
(except for Nick, who was being a die-hard and watching the 49ers game in the football tent)
so i stood there as Joy and JP and a guitar literally brought me to tears.
so good, y'all. so good.

 and then there were the Avett Brothers


 Seth Avett's view of the crowd was not bad.
not bad at all.
then we found this wall in Austin
on our way to Hopdoddy's burgers.
side note: i have a huge thing for lamb burgers these days.
and i'm way okay with it.


ACL was phenomenal.
i saw Florence and the Machine (love me a redhead)
the Black Keys (top 5 fave band of all time)
Metric (that girl's legs...omg.)
the Shins (SO good. and i knew every word.)
Jack White (and his all-girl band that kicked ass.)
Gary Clark Jr. (hometown Austin boy that jams. for serious.)
the Civil Wars
and the Avett Bros


my heart almost couldn't take it.
and my body DEFinitely couldn't.
yesterday i was majorly under some weather.
made working last night super fun, let me tell you.
so immediately after i post this, i've got a threesome planned
with my bed and some Ambien.


we'll get back to the heavy stuff later this week
you guys have got me thinking...even more than i already was.
and it's GOOD! so good. i love you for it.
give me time to process and recover and we'll have some deep chats, eh?

on women having it all, part two

posted on: Wednesday, October 10, 2012

first of all, i have to say i love you all.
your responses yesterday were so wonderful
i loved the insight into all of your lives
and having you all be so open to me sharing mine.


[via]
a word about infertility:
i have an irrational fear that i will struggle with infertility.
as a physician and a scientist, i have no evidence upon which to place this on.
yet, i worry.
the only way to answer the question is to try
but for all the reasons mentioned yesterday, that's not happening.
so for those of you struggling with it right now, i hear you.
i don't expect having a baby to be like walking up to a vending machine
pushing a button
and having a kid.
the possibility of it being much more complicated than that is very real to me.


but i digress.
part deux.


guess which day this was?
my mom stayed at home.
i think she'd probably resent the title "Stay-at-Home Mom"
i know she always felt (and STILL feels) that she did more work
than that title implied.
and i'd have to agree with her.


she raised five kids.
cooked every night of the week.
homeschooled five kids.
held part-time jobs some years.
shopped. cleaned.
kissed. hugged. loved. 
made countless personal sacrifices to give us what we needed.
she is the glue that holds our family together.
i don't think i could ever do all that she's done for our family.


for me, having a career has never been about wanting to do what my mother never did.
i just wanted to be a doctor.
from the time i was 16 years old, i knew it.
as a junior in high school, i certainly did not sit down with myself
and hash out how i was going to be a doctor AND a mom someday.
even though i always knew i would want them both.
it's been a work in progress, figuring out how i'm going to do both.
and do both WELL.


this is part of why i'm waiting until i'm done with residency to have babies.
i get distracted from medicine enough as it is.
there are blogs to read
shows to watch
music to listen to
great meals to cook
i barely find the time to do the reading that is required of me
much less do all the reading and research that my patients deserve
i could do more. i SHOULD do more.
even though the learning never stops,
i'll get better at doctoring.
and it won't require so much of my attention all the time.
i owe it to myself and to my patients to dedicate this time
to learning how to be the best doctor i can be.


and i owe it to my babies too.
they're already going to have to deal with their mom leaving them to go to work
i can at least spare them my learning curve
right?


but i struggle with my choice all the time.
as much as i hate the idea of leaving my kids with someone else
while i go try to save people's lives and make strangers feel better,
i also struggle with the concept of working part-time.
or not working at all.
by the time i'm finally done, i'll have gone through
four years of undergrad
four years of med school
three years of residency
and four years of Active Duty service
all so i can cut back to part-time to be with my kids?
surely medicine deserves more of my time and attention than that
after all that hard work...


but then again, so do my children.


there is no easy answer.
i know motherhood is hard work.
being a doctor is hard work too.
my best friend is a lawyer.
she has a daughter, and another baby on the way.
she inspires me to the point of bringing those stinging tears to my eyes 
i'm so freaking proud of her
but she always says that motherhood is the best THING she's ever done.
but it's not the best JOB.
being a lawyer is her job. and she loves it. wouldn't trade it to be home full-time.
motherhood is still be best thing ever.
i know she struggles sometimes.


having never been a mother,
i don't know whether i will feel like motherhood is a job or not
i know medicine will. but it will also feel like a calling.
mostly because i know that it IS my calling.
maybe motherhood is my calling too. who knows?

i guess it's becoming clear that i don't necessarily have a point
that i'm trying to get across.
this is just my head and my heart
on display for all the interwebs to see.
 thoughts?

on women having it all, part one.

posted on: Tuesday, October 9, 2012

i'm about to get a little deep on ya.
hold on...this could be a bumpy ride.
(how many sexual innuendos can YOU make out of the above sentences?)


i was reading a post yesterday that got me thinking
about working women and motherhood.
--women having it all--
now i know what you're all thinking...
"she's not a mother. what is this? some kind of announcement?"
in a word...no.
but just because we aren't actively trying for a baby
(we practice a lot. but we haven't pulled the goalie ifyouknowwhatimean.)
doesn't mean i don't think about what my life would look like with babies in it.


i've talked about the baby fevah before on this blog
but i didn't really go into any kind of timeline
(and none of you asked about it, God bless you all.)
we still don't have a timeline.
but these are a few of the things that go into the thought process


i'd like to wait till after residency is over to have babies.
having this insane schedule
while being nauseous for weeks
and carrying around an extra 30lbs or so
just sounds incredibly unappealing.
not to mention the fact that i'd have to make up the time i spent on maternity leave
which would delay my graduation date.
not the biggest deterrent.  but a deterrent nonetheless.

so. after residency.
but whose residency?
i finish residency before Nick does.
which means i'll be an attending physician for a whole year before he will
which is cool.
bigger salary. more power. get to throw my power around at home.
(okay that last one...not really.)
but it also means that i'm at the disposal of the Air Force
and they could potentially send me somewhere that isn't San Antonio
which would mean living apart.
not ideal for making babies. or having them. 


then there's the fact that once i'm out of residency
the Air Force will expect me to deploy.
some place where there is lots of sand. 
and no ocean. probably.


as hard as it is for me to imagine deploying
and leaving my husband for months at a time
it's even harder to imagine leaving my babies.
so maybe i should deploy before having babies?


then there's the small little detail that Nick's final year of residency
also known as my first year as an attending
will be the year he has the most free time
free time that he COULD be spending with me
if i weren't in Afghanistan
or someplace equally delightful.


and THEN there's the fact that Nick isn't ready
and that he wants us to be living near family when we have kids
any family. his. mine. doesn't matter.
he grew up having all his aunts/uncles/cousins live in the same town he did
both mom's side and dad's side
raising our family near family is very important to him.
we just can't guarantee that until i'm done with my military service.
but by the time i'm totally out of the military,
i'll be 34.
which is a little scary.


so that's some of what we're dealing with.
it's a lot.
and i have more thoughts about this tomorrow.
but for now...what are yours?
what kinds of things go into your decisions about starting a family?
 or not.

Oktoberfest!

posted on: Monday, October 8, 2012


glory be!
we had a day off together!
and we played!


it was a chilly day here in south Texas.
perfect for celebrating fall.
so we found our nearest Oktoberfest
in Fredericksburg, TX
and got our German on.
 

getting ready for our trip to Salzburg.
i think i look great with braids.

 

the five-year-old inside of me was cracking up.

 
sooo many tickets.
and all were gone by the end of the day.



 
don't be fooled by appearances.
this ish was delicious.


 
get your hot Wisconsin cheese!

 
i know.
i know.

 
i love him.

 
this child was being accosted by a very phallic cluster of bubbles.

 
water wheels! yes!

 
oh funnel cake.
no fair or fest is complete without you.

 

and here is what my Instagram feed had to say about the day


 
if you follow me on IG (emflem),
you already knew that.

here's what i'm wearing, in case you're interested:
jacket: Target, sweater: anthro (old), orange shirt: anthro (old),
jeans: Paige, boots: Frye, bag: Urban (old), gloves: Nick's


clearly we had a lovely time.
right up until the moment i got my very first speeding ticket on the way home


happy Monday!

oh my Darling

posted on: Tuesday, October 2, 2012

artwork by Angela Duncan

...
tell me you don't feel inspired after reading that.


this is the mission statement of Darling Magazine
a new magazine that celebrates the art of being a woman.


i caught wind of this beautiful little upstart from my friend Rachel
remember her? (hint: she's the bride) photo credit: jessica lorren organic photography
who is way cooler than i am
and lives in L.A.
and goes to magazine launches and stuff
rach and one of the amazing women behind the launch

they had a teepee. at the launch. i mean...
needless to say, i couldn't wait to get my hands on a copy
so i ordered one




and it's simply...darling.
152 pages of deliciously thick paper
full of gorgeous photography (think Elizabeth Messina-gorgeous)
recipes, fashion, beauty, tips on how to be a more perfect hostess
and most endearingly...
...words


article after empowering article
inspiring me to be better, yet affirming that i am good enough
each exploring Darling's eight personas:
the dreamer, the stylist, the achiever, the confidant
the hostess, the beautician, the intellectual, the explorer
i'm still in the process of devouring them
but i can honestly say, i have never had such a raw, positive, emotional response
from a publication before.


intrigued?
you should be.
get yours. it's published quarterly.
like seasons.


and, oh.
i'm not getting any compensation from Darling for telling you about this.
i paid for my own magazine because after perusing the website
i knew this was something worth believing in
and i support it.
just wanted you to know.
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