In my OB clinicals, I have noticed the prevalence of the use of birth control. Today it struck me especially. I was in my patient’s room with the nurse midwife and interpreter (the patient spoke very little English) getting her ready for her discharge this afternoon. One of the things the midwife asked was if this patient had considered what kind of birth control she would like to use. The way the question was asked made me feel like no one but myself would consider the option of none. It struck me that in our health care system, it is assumed that all women who are post partum will go on some sort of birth control. I know as a nursing student that it is best for a woman not to get pregnant immediately after a birth, but there are natural ways to achieve this. Aside from any moral objections I might have to birth control, I find birth control odd. Healthcare is supposed to be about fixing bodily systems that are not functioning as they should. Things like pace makers to regulate the beating of a failing heart, or dialysis to augment toxin removal by damaged kidneys. But birth control does the opposite. It takes a system that is working exactly as it was intended to and messes it up. This doesn’t sound to me like something the healthcare professions should partake in. It pumps the body full of extra hormones and poses risks to other systems within that body. It just doesn’t make sense to me, even without taking into account the moral aspects of this so called medical treatment. I just wish people would at least take into account the validity of natural forms of birth control (that do not alter the functioning of the body) when these forms are taken seriously.
Here’s another number from a band that was a part of my childhood…about 3 decades after their time. Here’s a Spanish Christmas Carol from the Monkees!
Today in RCIA the topic was the old testament. Father Mark talked a little about the 3 different kinds of books in the old testament: history (Genesis, Exodus, 1&2 Chronicles, etc.), prophetic (Isaiah, Jeremiah, Amos, etc.) and wisdom (psalms, song of songs, proverbs). And he gave us an assignment for next week. We have to each bring a passage from each type of book and then talk a little about it. Some of you may be thinking, “What?! Catholics reading the Bible? That can’t be right!” But, despite popular belief, Catholics are encouraged to read the Sacred Scriptures and learn God’s word. I’m excited to do this assignment and find a few passages that speak to me this week. I’m also excited to hear what the other RCIA candidates pick!
1. My brother tried teaching me how to pray the liturgy of the hours. I got very confused and honestly don’t remember much of what he said, but he showed me a website that should help me understand it. I’m waiting until Sunday when the new liturgical year starts. Might as well start at the very beginning.
2. It’s Friday, so I have to do this. At least for my first quick takes. Sorry everybody!
3. I am becoming quite fond of praying the rosary. I still have trouble focusing on the mysteries, but I’m getting better.
4. I went to my first adoration as a Catholic (to be), twice actually. I went once last winter with my brother when I was still very Protestant (not sure why). It was actually probably the official turning point in my journey, but I didn’t realize it until recently. It was nice to return actually professing that Christ was physically present with me. I need to look into whether or not my parish has perpetual adoration.
5. I feel like a real adult because my childhood home doesn’t really feel like home anymore. More like a place I used to live and now come to visit during the holidays. I’m excited to return to my home in the cities.
6. I made the entire Thanksgiving dinner this year, without any help from my mother. And I didn’t burn any of it or undercook the turkey. It was delicious (not to toot my own horn).
7. I have recently become addicted to The Big Bang Theory. Sheldon is hilarious. I think I might want to date a nerd/geek.
For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary.
It’s turkey day! I hope you all had safe travels home to be with your family. Let’s take the time to think about all of the great things that God has put in our lives on this day of thanks. Here’s a list of some of mine:
1. God’s saving grace.
2. Finding the Truth of the Catholic Church
3. My mom is doing well considering all of the health issues she has had lately.
4. My entire immediate family was able to make it home this Thanksgiving.
5. Supportive friends who have been there for me during this stressful semester.
6. Having the privilege to receive a higher education.
7. The joy of getting to see 2 births last week.
8. I get to go to mass and adoration with my older brother this week.
9. I am learning to pray the liturgy of the hours.
What are some of the things you are thankful this Thanksgiving?
Today’s society makes it hard at times to remain strong in our convictions to maintain our purity. We are surrounded by sexualized advertisements, movies riddled with- sometimes very graphic- sex scenes, and peers telling us that it’s just sex, lighten up a little. Society tells us with all it’s propaganda that sex is just sex. Its only purpose is for our enjoyment. “Hey it’s fun! Everyone’s doing it. Stop being such a prude!” But I have to say no to that message. Its not just sex. It’s not just for enjoyment purposes. My beliefs about sex and waiting until marriage are sometimes ignored by those around me because I believe that’s how God intended it to be. They hear the word God and shut down. They have no use for my silly religious ideals. They think I’m just stuck in a time long past where everyone was uptight and women were just considered baby making machines by the religious male leaders. But I have reasons aside from “God says so.” And here are just 3 of them for now:
1. No matter what you believe about how we all came to exist (God created us verses it’s all a happy accident, and everything in between), the main purpose of sex is reproduction. The healthiest environment for a child to grow is with 2 parents in a loving, stable marriage. Many couples have intentionally taken this purpose away with contraception, (a post for another time) but sex always comes with the chance of a pregnancy and so, in my humble opinion, it should wait until marriage.
2. The other purpose of sex is to create a bond between the man and the woman that helps them remain committed to each other. This is a bond created by the chemical oxytocin that is released during the act. Oxytocin creates a very strong emotional bond between the 2 individuals (it’s the same chemical that is released while a woman is breastfeeding to promote a bond between baby and mother). This bond is not broken just because the couple decides to end things and it becomes progressively harder for either party to truly commit to another as they create these bonds with, potentially, multiple people in their lifetime.
3. This one is more personal to me. There is a chance that as I look for my future spouse I will end up sharing my heart and soul with more than one guy. I may share my deepest fears and dreams with multiple young men. But by waiting until I’m married to have sex, I have preserved one thing that only my husband will get. I will be able to say to him that he is the only one I have truly given all of myself to. He won’t have to wonder how many men I’ve been with before him and I hope to find someone about whom I won’t have to wonder either. He won’t have to worry that I’m comparing his “talent,” so to speak, with my ex. We will have something between us that is just ours, never shared with anyone else before. And I think that’s pretty darn cool.
Maybe my view on sex is a little prudish for this sexually revolutionized society. But if wanting to wait and believing it’s the healthiest choice for everyone makes me a prude, well then call me a prude, old-fashioned, uptight and I’ll be proud of it!
This week’s music Monday is brought to you by my favorite band from my youth…all grown up! That’s right, it’s the Hanson brothers!
Once saved, always saved? I’m not so sure.
Not that I have become perfect yet: I have not yet won, but I am still running, trying to capture the prize for which Christ Jesus captured me. I can assure you my brothers, I am far from thinking that I have already won. All I can say is that I forget the past and I strain ahead for what is still to come; I am racing for the finish, for the prize to which God calls us upwards to receive in Christ Jesus. (Phil 3:13-14)
As many of you know, I am a nursing student at the U of M. This semester I am in a clinical rotation in an OB/midewifery unit at one of the local hospitals. Each week, 2 of the students on my unit get to spend their Wednesday watching labors and deliveries. Today was my turn. I watched 2 baby girls enter this world and never before have I experienced such a joyful situation! The deliveries were very different from each other, but both ended with parents tearfully holding their brand new little bundle.
I arrived at the clinical site at 6:40 this morning and was immediately ushered into the midwife unit by my instructor because there was a birth about to happen. By 6:52 am this mother had delivered her precious little girl. It was amazing. The parents almost collapsed with joy! It was beautiful. I had to fight back my tears. I’m not easily moved emotionally by situations that I have no real connection to (I don’t typically sob at movies or reading books), but this just got me in spite of only being there for the last 10 minutes. You could just feel the love and happiness emanating from the parents as they held their little girl, who, by the way, has about 6 names right now because they can’t decide on just one. Another amazing thing about this birth was that she had been pushing for about an hour before I got there and had been in labor since Monday night. She did all of this without any pain meds. That takes some strength and courage.
The sad thing about today was that it reminded me of all the babies who are intentionally not given a chance to experience the love of their parents and warmth of their touch. It reminded me that everyday thousands of babies lose their life before they get to experience all the sensations that life outside the womb greets them with. It reminded me of all the loving couples who want to have children but are unable to for whatever reason and the nameless children who didn’t have a chance to be adopted and loved by them. So today after witnessing the joy of birth, I will grieve for the lost souls and pray for the end to abortion. I will celebrate the life of all babies, born and unborn. Will you join me?
I’ve noticed a trend of bloggers sharing music on Mondays. I think I’ll jump on the bandwagon. To start off, a very entertaining Japanese music video. I only wish I knew what they were saying and that I could move like they do!