3 Months Old!

It's here. Evelyn is officially 3 months old. I do not know how this happened...time must have sped up over the past month. Maybe the earth is spinning faster. But however it has come about, it's here. My baby is growing up!

Evelyn's Stats:
-Eating 5 oz 5x/day
-Sleeps 11 hours a night!
-Weighs over 12 lbs!
-Not a fan of tummy time
-BIG fan of sleep
-Loves to listen to her Daddy beat box
-Loves watching fans and lights
-Getting more and more smiley every day :)

This month, we have had a lot of fun together! Including...


Road trip to Orlando / Harry Potter World!

Evelyn's first butter beer :) JK!

And so many other sweet moments. I am so blessed to have my beautiful family! Love you, Evelyn Grace! You are such a precious gift!



TWO months old!

Evelyn is 2 MONTHS OLD!

It is hard to believe that two entire months have passed since this beautiful, sweet, thoughtful girl came into our lives. She is such a good baby, and we are so incredibly blessed to have her in our growing little family!

Evelyn’s stats:
-Eats 4.5 oz 6x/day
-Sleeps 9 HOURS at night!
-Loves to play with her jingle giraffe
-Still loves her “Goodnight Charleston” Book
-Getting better at holding her head up and pushing up with her arms
-SMILES! Especially at her Daddy
-Wearing size 0-3 month clothes and size 1 diapers

This month has been quite a busy one for our little girl! She has had a lot of firsts:







I went back to work on September 15, and Evelyn and Mikey have been having so much fun together during the days. I miss her so much, but Mikey is the most amazing Daddy. I  just have to get lots of snuggles in when I get home!

Happy 2 month-aversary, Evelyn! Your mommy loves you SO MUCH!


a healthier me

Being a new mom is hard.

Don't get me wrong. When I look into Evelyn's face or even just think of the amazing joy she has brought to our family, it is all worth it. But that doesn't change the fact that motherhood involves some serious challenges

I am especially learning about balance...how to spend your time, restarting work and still being a mom, giving baby daddy some attention too, what to eat, how to get back in shape. There are a lot of challenges.

One of the ones I plan to conquer first is getting healthy. When I got pregnant, I was already the heaviest I've been my entire life.  Part of that is getting older, and part of it is a combination of poor diet and not much exercise thanks to the rigors of medical school, marriage, and an attempt to maintain a semi-normal social life. Now that I'm a mom, I want to put my health a little higher on the priority list again.

So my goals are:
1) lose the last 5 lbs of baby weight (...and maybe 5-10 more?!)
2) find new recipes and snacks to support a healthy diet...one that I can stick with long-term
3) find forms of exercise that I ENJOY so I stick with them
4) keep up my high water consumption from pregnancy...at least 64 oz / day

Tomorrow marks Evelyn turning 6-weeks-old. My midwife just gave me a clean bill of health at my post-partum check-up this morning. So today is the start of my campaign to start a new, healthier lifestyle! I got a bit of a head start over the past few weeks with a couple of new recipes and a pact with my friend Lyndsey to workout together twice a week (and a plan to workout on my own 3 times a week).

Here are some of the recipes I've found that I really enjoy:

Parmesan Garlic Quinoa:
-Cook quinoa in vegetable broth on stovetop according to package instructions
-Season with fresh minced garlic (or garlic powder)
-Add parmesan cheese to desired taste...I did about 1 tbsp in 1 cup of quinoa

Roasted Brussel Sprouts
-Clean sprouts and cut in half
-Toss in (small amount of) oil with salt, pepper, and paprika to taste
-Place on greased baking sheet
-Top with minced garlic if desired
-Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes

Baked Caramelized Chicken (not as healthy, but SO good and still semi-healthy!)
-Mix 1 cup soy sauce, 1 cup honey, 2 tbsp ketchup, 2 tbsp oil, and 1 minced garlic clove in dish
-Place boneless skinless chicken breasts in greased pan and top with sauce mixture
-Bake on 350 for 1 hour or until chicken is cooked through and sauce is caramelized
*You can use the extra sauce on your veggies!! YUM!

-Apple with PB
-Trail mix
-Cheese stick
-Leftover veggies...brussel sprouts and asparagus especially!

And some of my go-to workouts are:
-This bollywood inspired dance workout on youtube...fun, not too hard, but challenging enough to keep you interested. 30 minutes long.
-"Workouts with Jessica" on youtube...you choose the workout by song and can do as many as you want! She's great, and the songs are really fun, which helps to keep me motivated. Some of my faves are this and this.
-Zumba classes (technically my first time back at Zumba will be tonight, but I know I love it from classes I've taken in the past!)

Let's see how this goes! I'm excited to start a new healthier lifestyle! I hope to set a good example for Evelyn and to be happier with myself, as well :)


my 1-month-old

Evelyn is 1-month-old! How is this possible?!

The past month has been a beautiful, messy, challenging, rewarding, and amazing time in our lives. We have really started settling into our new life together as a family of 3. Evelyn is such a wonderful blessing! Mikey and I have loved getting to know our precious little one over the past month!

My little munchkin is:
-about 9 pounds (aka growing like a weed)
-sleeping a 6 hour stretch at night
-eating 4 oz at nearly every feeding
-almost outgrowing her newborn clothes
-holding her hands together
-focusing on objects and tracking with her eyes
-getting better at holding up her head
-loving her bird toy
-loving her bedtime story (Good Night, Charleston)
-loving her paci
-loving bath time
-loving her mom, dad, Gramma, Grampa, Gammy, Papa, and all of her aunts and uncles!

Evelyn on her 1 month-aversary :)

Family picture from Evelyn's newborn photo shoot...she was 2 weeks old :)


Evelyn's Birth Story

Here it is. The Birth Story. Disclaimer: it is super long and pretty detailed (aka not for the faint of heart), but I wanted to share my amazing birth experience...to share it with others and for posterity's sake, as well!

Evelyn's due date was August 9, and beginning around 36 weeks into the pregnancy, I was getting antsy to meet my Little One and to NOT be pregnant anymore. I was so worried she would be late and I would lose some of my precious weeks off with her, as they were pre-scheduled to start right on her due date! But lucky for me, on Friday, August 1, Evelyn decided to make her appearance.

For the few days leading up to August 1, I was feeling like things were progressing. I was 3 cm dilated and 50% effaced on July 31 at my prenatal appointment. I felt like she was sitting lower and lower in my belly. My swelling was getting worse. And my braxton hicks contractions were getting more frequent and a little bit stronger. However, I wasn't yet in labor, so I was still going into the hospital for my hematopathology rotation. I had a half mile walk from the parking lot to the hospital every day, and then I spent a lot of time walking around the hospital once I was there. However, my work on this rotation was sitting in a scope room, looking at slides of blood smears and bone marrow biopsies under a microscope. Over lunch, I walked to the library on campus to lead a suturing workshop for the third year medical students on their Ob/Gyn rotation. The suturing workshop went great...just like every other one we'd done. And then, I headed back to the scope room to finish off my work day.  I was a little late back to the room, but I had warned the resident that this might be the case. When I walked into the room, the residents and attending physician looked up and starting joking about worrying that I had gone into labor when I didn't show back up on time. We all laughed, and then I am pretty sure I got the funniest look on my face because, as I was laughing, I felt a little gush of fluid. With wide open eyes, I told the doctors, "No. I wasn't in labor, but I'm pretty sure my water just broke. I'll be right back." And I took off to the bathroom down the hall.

I called Mikey, then my mom, and then the birthing center from the bathroom. Every time I stood up, more amniotic fluid started leaking out, so I sat on the toilet for about twenty minutes. The resident brought me my bag, some paper towels to use as pads (and luckily I was wearing a black dress!) and offered to take me to MUSC's labor and delivery floor. When I told her I was delivering in N Charleston and not at MUSC, she offered to walk me downstairs and wait with me for my mom to pick me up. The plan was for Mikey to meet us at the birthing center and for my mom to pick me up from MUSC, as she was much closer to downtown Charleston. When we got to the birthing center, I was still only having weak Braxton Hicks contractions. I was given the option of waiting it out on my own or drinking a castor oil concoction to help me start contracting. I chose the nasty cocktail, as I was more than ready to get this show on the road. Mikey drove me home, where I drank about half of the cocktail, and about two hours later, I started having contractions.  They were instantly strong and 3-4 minutes apart. After 2 hours, I called the midwife, but I decided to wait another hour at home before heading into the birthing center.

When we arrived, the midwife, Laurie, checked me, and I was 5 cm dilated. I labored in the bed, on a birthing ball, and in the shower. After a few hours, I had the most painful contraction I could imagine and started vomiting uncontrollably. After a couple of minutes of straight pain and severe vomiting, the contraction finally eased off. But after this, all of the contractions were much stronger than previously. I'm fairly certain this is when I entered the "transition" period of labor. I'd been nauseous and vomited some before this...likely thanks to the castor oil and my generally weak stomach when stressed. I kept inhaling the peppermint oil they put in a little container for me. After that terrible contraction, I decided to sit in the shower, but kept my little container handy. Throughout all of this, Mikey was the most amazing birth partner. He held my hand, rubbed or pressed on my back, got me whatever I needed, and was absolutely present and exactly what I needed.

Mikey told me after Evelyn was born that during transition, when I started screaming during contractions, vomiting, and generally feeling like I must be dying, he had started to send my mom a text. We'd planned ahead that she would be on standby in case Mikey couldn't handle the labor process. However, before he got the text sent to her (in which he was saying that he was starting to feel a little lightheaded and uneasy due to my intense and obvious pain), I told him that I felt like I might need to push. He immediately informed the midwife. When she checked me, I was about 9 cm.

I transferred into the birthing tub. I started out leaning on the edge of the tub, stomach down, but this was not comfortable to me, so I switched to leaning back into Mikey, with my arms draped over his legs. Every contraction, I would squeeze down on his legs so hard that he was sore for a few days after the delivery! For a number of contractions, I really felt like I needed to push, but I didn't know how. I couldn't mentally make myself push with all of the pain I was feeling. I was somewhat frozen...in fear, in pain, in denial that this baby was coming out one way or another. It was at this point that I asked Laurie what pain control options I had. The birthing center we used had three options: a TENS unit, sterile water injections, and self-administered nitrous oxide. I asked for the nitrous. We discussed the utility of it...Laurie thought it might not be worth it for me since I was so close to delivery, but after another painful contraction, I told her I definitely wanted it. It took a few tries to get used to inhaling through the mask during contractions, but once I did, it made a huge difference! It didn't really take away the pain, but it helped me to get out of my head enough to push through the pain. I got in the zone. I stopped talking, closed my eyes, and just listened to my body and to the instructions Laurie was giving me. After the birth, I learned I had pushed for forty-five minutes. I had absolutely no concept of time during the entire labor process, but especially during pushing. It was such a relief to have some purpose to the pain, something to put my effort into. The last ten to fifteen contractions, Evelyn was a little stubborn about making her appearance. She was almost here, but I couldn't quite get her out. Finally, her head came, and after one more contraction, the rest of her followed. Laurie took her out of the water and placed her on my chest immediately. I hugged my baby girl, in absolute awe of her existence and of what my body had just done. It was the most amazing feeling in the world.

After the birth, we transferred back to the bed, and Mikey, Evelyn, and I all laid in the bed together. I got to just enjoy my beautiful little family. I felt exhausted and elated and amazed at the miracle of childbirth. I am so thankful for my birth experience. It was life changing to go through such an incredible process. I'm not sure what I will choose to do for our future child(ren), but I would not change Evelyn's birth story at all! I feel like it gave me an amazing perspective on childbirth, especially as a future Ob/Gyn.

I am incredibly thankful for my healthy baby girl, for my speedy recovery from a very smooth labor, for the Charleston Birth Place for providing such an amazing experience, and for the most wonderful and supportive husband known to man!


a new beginning

Meet Evelyn.

The most perfect, precious, beautiful little girl I have ever laid eyes on.

She is smart and adorable. She is nursing like a champ. She is great at taking good long naps, although most of those are in the arms of someone who loves her dearly. She makes the funniest little serious faces and loves to look at and learn about the world around her. She prefers keeping her hands by her face, so she normally has them curled up in a ball or is sucking on her thumb. Her yawns are the cutest.

I could go on...but I'll just give you her stats real quick so I can get back to snuggling with my precious little girl.

Born on: August 1, 2014 at 10:05 pm (at 38 weeks and 6 days)
Weighing: 7 lbs 2 oz
Measuring: 19.5 inches
Labor: 9 hours
Pushing: 45 minutes

She is happy and healthy as can be, and we are so incredibly blessed and happy to have her in our lives! Every day, nearly every second, I pray for her to be healthy and safe and to know how loved and cherished she is. Now I better get back to showing her...


the waiting game

Up until about 36 weeks of pregnancy, I would ponder in my head when the best time for little miss to arrive might be. I figured (subconsciously) that she would choose the perfect timing, considering others, our commitments, our desire to meet her...after all, she is my daughter, so she must be a planner, right? And I decided on sometime in the 39th week...I'll be finishing up my last rotation before my six week "maternity leave." My externship in Ob/Gyn will be done. Mikey will have lined somebody up to lead worship at church that Sunday. All will be well. And exactly as it should be.

Then I hit 36 weeks, which is when one of my best friends gave birth to her healthy and beautiful little girl, and my spirit started to get a little antsy. Next I hit 37 weeks and I thought, "Well, now wouldn't be so bad...she's still just early term, but she'd be safe and healthy if she would just come now!" I have become so impatient to meet her. Not only is my desire to see her tiny face and count her fingers and toes growing minute by minute, but I am also growing increasingly uncomfortable in my increasingly large body as I near the end of this pregnancy. And I am starting to get a little nervous about her being late...with a due date still nearly 2 weeks away, I just feel unreasonably nervous that she will never come, or at least not for another 4 weeks or so. Coming after her due date would mean cutting into my 6 weeks of pre-scheduled "maternity leave," which is actually just six weeks of the usual time off all fourth year medical students receive, and that would mean less time home with her after her delivery.

In these past two weeks, my soul has been very restless. Worrying. Wondering if today is the day. Wanting to plan, but knowing so much is out of my control. And I realized this morning, while reading a devotional about wrestling with God and with your place in the world, that I am never really in control. I like to think I am. Just as I like to think that Evelyn would choose to arrive exactly at the most appropriate and convenient time. But truly, we are all just pieces in the huge puzzle of life. Sometimes, we find where we fit perfectly, and we can rest there. We feel that we belong and that all is right with the world. But just as easily, we can wake up on any given day, and it looks like the puzzle has changed completely. Where everything around us is harsh edges and sharp angles, we can't seem to fit comfortably anywhere, no matter how hard we try. And those days we get frustrated or dejected with what is around us, with ourselves for not fitting perfectly into the life we are living.

And I would find this lack of control utterly distressing if I were to look at it from the perspective of my one poor little piece. It would all seem so meaningless, so frustrating, so demeaning. But when I look at my piece as a vital part of completing the puzzle, a piece cherished by a God who knows exactly where I fit in, every day, no matter what my perspective may be, I find it somewhat freeing. The big picture is always there...the whole puzzle put together. Even when I feel like I am totally out of place or that the world around me is out of place, I can trust that I am where I need to be. I can learn from every season. I can rest in God, knowing that He has a plan, a place, for me.

And so as I start this new week and am about to go get ready for church, I want to take a moment to thank the Lord for being the one who knows the big picture and for giving me seasons of rest and "fitting," as well as seasons of wrestling and growing. I pray that every season would draw me closer to Him...to trusting Him and knowing Him, and to becoming more like Him. I pray that He would give my heart a resting place in these upcoming weeks, as I wait for Evelyn's birth and then as I learn how to do this whole parenting thing with a newborn.

"I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word, I hope" - Psalm 130:5


Happy Fourth of July!

I know I am a little bit behind the times, but I wanted to wish everyone a happy 4th of July and share what we Baurs were up to last weekend :)

Mikey plays with a cover band / wedding band / reggae band in the Charleston area known as the Charleston Groove Factor (or Holy City Hooligans for their own work). Unfortunately, I am normally working or he is playing at a wedding whenever he performs, so I rarely get to go see him play with this amazing band. However, this past weekend, he played at the N Charleston Riverfront Park for their 4th of July festival! AND we had friends from church and tons of family come to the event, so I had plenty of company to sit with while I could hear him play. My mom and Gwen (my mom's BFF and my "second mom") came to the show, and it was wonderful getting to sit with them! (And explore the food trucks at the event after the show!) Mikey did an absolutely amazing job! I am always impressed by his talent and dedication to his art. I was so proud of him and happy I could actually come support him in person!

After his show, I said my hellos to new friends and family that had shown up, and then I spent the rest of the evening with friends from the Hive Church, while Mikey jetted off to Folly Beach to play another gig with the band there. Staying at Riverfront was great, even though I had to miss watching the fireworks with my honey, because I got some great time with amazing friends, and the fireworks display at Riverfront is the largest in South Carolina! It was amazing.  The whole night was a blast.

Last weekend also marked 35 weeks of pregnancy...making this weekend 36 weeks! Which means I am only one week away from being term, and hopefully not too much farther away from meeting my little girl! Mikey and I are both getting extremely impatient for Evelyn to make her arrival...I feel like it is all I think about when I am home. Luckily, I've been kept quite busy with my externship, which helps to keep my mind occupied and to make these last few weeks go by more quickly. But still...I'm so ready for Evy's debut!


the difference a year can make

Tomorrow, I start my fourth year of medical school. By the end of July, I will have completed my externship and started my application for residency. It is hard to believe that I am nearing the end of my medical school career. Over the next ten months or so, I will continue rotating through different areas in the hospital, but there will be no shelf exams, no die-hard studying, no wondering what I want to do with the rest of my life. I'm there. The decision's been made.

I was talking with Mikey this afternoon about where we were one year ago. I was anxious about starting my clinical years of medical training, having just finished classes and taken Step 1 of my medical boards. I felt unprepared and uncomfortable with the hospital system, with seeing patients on a day-to-day basis, and with my own abilities and role as a member of the medical team. I was just about to start orientation for my family medicine rotation, where I would spend 5 weeks living with my grandparents in Spartanburg and working on weekdays at a small family practice in Gaffney. This was my introduction into medicine. I went on to rotate through Internal Medicine, Surgery, Psychiatry, Pediatrics, and Ob/Gyn. I learned so much in such a short period of time. It is hard to believe it has only been a year since I started that first rotation.

And now, only a year later, I am about to start my externship in high-risk obstetrics, and I feel confident in my place in the medical team. I know how the system works. I feel comfortable with my level of knowledge and skill, while knowing there is still so much learning and growing ahead of me. I am not scared to enter a patient's room and answer questions they may have about their illness, the risks of a procedure, or what the plan is for their care. And I hope to be a friend and help to the new third year students starting their rotations this year, remembering my fears and self-doubts just one year ago. It is breathtakingly wonderful and awe-inspiring (all of the glory to God!) to look back and see how much I have grown as a future physician in 12 short months.

And I have grown as a person in even more ways. Mikey and I just celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary on June 20, and we are expecting the arrival of our daughter in August. I have made so many wonderful friends through working with different students on my rotations throughout the past year and through my new church family. I am truly blessed.

Now, I can start to look forward to what this next year has to offer as I continue growing...as a future physician (less than 10 months until I am an M.D.!), as a wife, as a friend, and as a mother.


Cute as a Button Baby Shower

I've been busy studying for Step 2 CK of medical boards, which I take this coming Friday, but I wanted to take a moment to post some pictures from my baby shower last weekend :) My mom and sister did an absolutely amazing job, with help from my mother-in-law, my grandmother, and Gwen (aka my second mom)! Beautiful decorations, yummy food, fun games, and best of all...a group of ladies that means the world to me.  

This shower was filled with the women who have shaped me into who I am today and who, I know, will play huge roles in shaping Evy into her beautiful self :) It was such a joy to have so many of them together in one place at one time.

I was absolutely humbled by the effort that went into preparing the shower and by the family and friends who came to support me and Evelyn, many of whom came from out of town. I felt incredibly loved and so thankful! Unfortunately, I totally spaced and didn't get pictures with/of so many of these wonderful ladies, but here are a few shots from the shower:

-- Cute as a Button pictures of Mikey and myself as babies --

--a chance to give (much-needed and appreciated!) advice to the new mom--

--drink table (taken before everything was ready! oops. But still lovely!)--

--just the beginning of the table of gifts...we were so blesssed!--

--Jennifer and Rabun with the cutest little shower attendee--

--opening presents with Nina, Mom, and Glenda looking on--

--a little time with Gwen before the shower--

--overwhelmingly happy and blessed by all the love and support!--

Thank you to everyone who made it! And to those that were unable to attend, you were missed, and please know that I am incredibly thankful for your impact on my life and your future impact on Evelyn's life!


On Being "Severely Pregnant"

I've been on the small side for most of my pregnancy. It wasn't until about 25 weeks that people start guessing I was pregnant, at least to my face :) It is still shocking to me to look down and see my giant belly protruding or to have somebody ask me when I'm due because I am so obviously pregnant.  At work today, I had a resident refer to me as "severely pregnant." Which is true. I am really, really pregnant.

At 31 weeks and 4 days, I have just over 8 weeks until Evelyn is due. I am less than 2 months away.
And the weird part is, I don't feel that different. I thought that by now, I would really feel like a "mom," or at least a "pre-mom." But as excited as I am for Evelyn's arrival, I am mostly just shocked that it is almost here. Someone is about to send me home with a BABY, and I am going to be responsible for feeding her and clothing her and generally making sure she turns out okay. What?! How can this be possible? I feel so small and inadequate compared to this huge task. I know when she gets here, my ineptitude will only be more apparent. But thank goodness I am not alone!

Every mom friend of mine has told me their own version of this story...coming home with a tiny, helpless human being who is totally in your care...the excitement, the fear, the overwhelming gravity of it. I am so glad to have these friends to call on for reassurance when Evelyn gets here. I am beyond thankful for my amazing mother and mother-in-law, who have already assured me of their excitement and willingness to help in whatever way is needed. And mostly, I am thankful for my wonderful, caring, strong, calm, considerate, and devastatingly good-looking husband, who happens to charm every baby he meets. There is nobody else in this world with whom I could see myself entering this strange new world of parenting.

And so with Evelyn's due date fast-approaching, I guess I need to get used to strangers asking if "it's a boy or a girl" or telling me not to sneeze or I might go into labor. I'm only getting more "severely pregnant" until I go on a major weight-loss program via the birth of this baby. And even if I don't yet feel quite like a real-life mom, I am a mom already. And every comment and joke just serves as a reminder of how close I am to meeting my precious little girl. And that's alright by me!


hello again. nice to see you.

hello again.

it's been awhile.

The past 10 months or so have been a whirlwind. A lot has happened...

ONE - We are having a baby!! In August :) We announced to the family on Christmas and to the world a couple of months later. And now we are only two months away from Evelyn's arrival! It is absolute madness, but we could not be happier. I've had her nursery ready for her arrival for, oh, 3 months already. (Can you tell I am one excited mama?!) I just cannot wait to hold her in my arms and to see her sweet face!

TWO - The Hive Church is alive and well in North Charleston. The church plant that Mikey and I are apart of will have its 1 year anniversary in August, and we are so proud of our church and its vision..making disciples who make disciples. Preaching Truth from the Word of God. Sharing our lives with fellow believers…encouraging one another, laughing and crying together, discussing important things and not-so-important things together. And working to make an impact on the city around us. It is beautiful. And I am so thankful for our church.

THREE - I have chosen my career. After much struggle, heartache, and deliberation this year, I have settled on OB/GYN. I am extremely excited about this choice. OB was my last clerkship of my 3rd year of medical school, and frankly, one of the lowest things on my list coming into school. However, 3rd year and impending motherhood really showed me what is most important to me in my future career…
  • Be able to help people. Duh. That's why I went to medical school in the first place! But it helps to remind myself of this ultimate goal, and it also helps me direct which area I feel like God has best equipped me to do this through
  • Have some life outside of work…time for my amazing husband, for my daughter, for my family and my friends and my dogs…and time for myself! This is ultimately what led me away from general surgery, where a balance lifestyle is much more difficult (but not impossible) to come by.
  • Get to do surgery. I couldn't give up the OR completely. I tried to love other specialties, but the drama, excitement, and tangibility of the OR is too intoxicating for me. I need it in my life.
  • Get to do medicine. I also really enjoy complicated patient with presentations that give me a real puzzle to solve. Getting to do surgery AND medicine…who can resist that? Not this girl.
And SO…I chose OB/GYN, which gives me a nice mix of surgery and medicine, the opportunity to shape my career to have more of a life outside of the hospital, and the amazing ability to help women through crazy times in their lives…pregnancy, birth, hospital stays, gynecologic surgeries, battles with cancer, and plain ole year-to-year life! And I really, really want to do medical work abroad through programs like the fistula clinics in Africa, where I can leave a lasting impact on the women I meet there. Basically, I am pretty stoked about my choice, and I feel like it is exactly where God wants me.

FOUR - I am less than a year away from being a real doctor! This seems like absolute madness. But all of the "fourth years" who are in the class ahead of me have now graduated, are officially "M.D."s, and are about to start residency programs across the country! And the thought of that being me in a year is magical and rewarding and terrifying all at the same time. I can't believe it is that close. So the next couple of months are filled with taking step 2 of boards (June 27!), completing my externship in OB/GYN (July!), having a baby (August!), and applying for residency (September!)…then residency interviews October through January. And in March, we'll find out where we matched and will be spending the next four years of our lives…whew.

So to sum it all up: baby, church, OB/GYN, and almost a doctor! :) Now you know why I have been a little too busy to post on this blog. However, I hope to rectify that, if for no other reason than to give me a place to share the joys and madness of having a newborn and finishing up medical school over the next year…but I am so blessed to have family and friends who try to keep up with us and what we are up to, so I hope this is cool for you too :) Talk to you in a few days!