Dear Wise Woman,
There is a "Meet Dr. Carlson" page with information on where I came from, but it really doesn't tell you much.
Like many of us, real life is a different story and the best roads on the journey are not the straight ones. They are the fabulous curvy and scenic byways that make the journey more amazing than the destination.
This is how I came to medicine and even further to gynecology. After my children were in school, I started college myself and then medical school. I started in Family Medicine because I loved taking care of the "whole person". I found that I felt so comfortable in Women's Health, probably because I had been taking care of women all of my life. I switched my training to OB/GYN and I've never regretted it for a moment.
After thousands of babies and SO many hours in the operating room, I joined Mayo Clinic and they asked me to stop all that and teach. They wanted me to teach and see patients, which I did. As I taught, I found that I didn't really miss surgery or obstetrics at all. Although gynecology is a "surgical" specialty, most gynecology really doesn't require surgery.
I love teaching. Because I have been through so much life myself and still remember how to speak English, it was and still is a joy to explain long crazy medical words to my patients and to the residents and other doctors I taught there.
As I listened to my patients, I realized that they were really just like me. They wanted an office where there was time to talk, where they didn't have to wait so long, where everyone wasn't pregnant or sitting with children. They didn't want to be processed through like widgets. They didn't want to be handed a pamphlet and rushed out the door.
Live a few years, and maturity changes the conversation as well. It's hard to explain to someone in their 30's what it feels like to be past menopause or going through it. Many of us have had at least one bad gynecology experience. I decided to make Wise Women the place where I would want to go to the gynecologist.
So Wise Women exists because I want women to feel comfortable here. I want you to know that I've been there, I've gone through most of the things that I help patients with, and I understand. I hope you'll stop by for a cup of coffee if you're in the neighborhood. Kenisha and I love it when folks stop in to chat.
Jane Treat and Nancy Geha described "Middlehood" as those ages between 40 and 65 - "a rich and challenging time of life". Let's go through Middlehood and beyond together.