HerStory: Michele

Michele

Michele is the wife of one of my husband’s best buddies from childhood, Tim. Oddly enough, Josh and I and Tim and Michele share the same anniversary date, only five years apart. So last year, for our 10th and their 5th, we decided to take a couples vacation to Mexico together to celebrate. You cross your fingers and hope for the best when you decide to spend your one week away from the kids with another couple, but it worked out so well, that we did it again this year. (I was actually on the flight home as I wrote this). Michele and I share a love of running and enjoy making that part of vacation, while our husbands’ love of food is truly at the comical level when you watch them go nuts in an all-inclusive. (We may or may not have watched my husband eat four entrées on his last night in Mexico).

I have enjoyed getting to know Michele on a more personal and spiritual level during our runs or while bobbing in the ocean. We discuss everything from women’s roles in the workplace and home, to justice and missions, to the philosophies of care of pregnant and laboring women. We share the same annoying habit of bursting out into song when certain words or phrases prompt the recollection of a song that includes that word or phrase (much to our husbands’ chagrin).

Her good-natured laughter and joy in the Lord is evident, and I can’t wait for more trips with her in the future. In this week’s HerStory, I thought it’d be fun to introduce her to you! Meet Michele.

What is your story in just a few sentences? I was born into a pastor’s family and moved around in the Midwest a lot growing up.  I remember deciding to follow Jesus from a really young age and also wanting to be a doctor.  I went through all the steps required for a career in medicine, completing my OB/GYN training at age 30. Shortly after starting my first “real job,” I met my husband.  We married 2.5 years later and now have two amazing, energetic sons, ages 2 and 3.5.

As a young woman, you wanted to be a missionary in Africa, but right now you’re living in Midwestern town, far from that dream. Thoughts on that? My 21-year-old self would be horrified to see the life I’m living right now; when we’re young we’re full of ideals and things seem black and white.  I think I’m learning that my motivations wanting to be in medical missions were that it seemed like the most spiritually glamorous Christian thing to do…but there was some pride there.  I also wrestle now between the feeling that there’s no time to “do ministry” while I have young kids; OR is it that the greatest discipling work I’m going to do is with the two boys in my home? Africa may be in our future, but I have to challenge myself: if I can’t tell my friends in America about Jesus, what makes me think I can do it in Africa? It doesn’t matter where you are at, it matters how you approach your work, time and opportunities.

Tell us about your day job? It’s really a day job and a night job because I’m on-call a lot at night.  I’m an OB/GYN in a group practice in a medium sized Midwestern town. I like the variety of things I do in a week, but the narrow focus of things you have to know about. I deliver babies, perform GYN surgery, do office visits, etc. but I focus on one population in medicine.

Talk about the juggling of full-time work out of the home and raising two little kids: It’s always a work in progress. I thought it’d come way sooner, but since my first son was born almost four years ago, we’ve been struggling to figure out the balance. There’s constant pulling, wherever you are, you feel like you’re selling the other one short (career or family). We’re able to do it because my husband is willing to step up and do a lot of primary parenting, even with small kids. Having kids has made me more motivated to be purposeful about my work, and recognize it as part of my mission, part of what God created me for. There has to be some purpose to it, if you’re going to be away from your family that much. It’s humbling at work to realize that I can’t be there all the time or do all the things I might want to in my career because I want to be with my kids. We couldn’t do what we do without our parents’ help either. Probably one of the biggest positives of my having full-time work hours is the amount of time our boys get to spend with their dad. (Her husband works in healthcare as well, 7 days on, 7 days off).

What are your hobbies? Running, playing the piano, playing with my kids.

What has God been teaching you lately? I guess just how to be a better wife and mother. I almost hate to reference it because it’s such a cliche, but in Proverbs 31, the verse that states, “she brings him good and not harm all the days of her life” has really stood out to me. What does it mean to bring good to my husband?

I can’t live without my: I-phone. Just to feel the connection, the constant information, the time wasting…

If I had unlimited funds and a free weekend: I would meet some girlfriends in in St. John’s. I like the idea of talking, sitting on the beach and having someone else cook for us…

A few words that describe you (with her husband’s input): Strong, independent, smart, funny, loyal

I hope you enjoyed getting to know a bit about Michele!

Blessings,

Heidi

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. fun hearing about you and michele’s connection, heidi. appreciated your “missionary in africa” response, michele. well said.