Author: Patricia Harman

Reviewed By: Dotsie Bregel

The Blue Cotton Gown: A Midwife’s Memoir &Raquo; 156 Bbook Photo

Patricia Harman is a nurse midwife in her husband’s gynecology practice, so you must realize that not only are you getting up close and personal with her teen through 80 year-old patients, but you also get a behind the scenes glimpse of what it’s like to own a medical practice during an age of upheaval in health care.

Wander with Patricia throughout her days of caring. Meet the teen who becomes pregnant, the young mother who is trying to escape abuse, the Midlife woman who fears for her daughter’s life of bulimia, or the one who simply needs to learn how to find pleasure with her body. Many of these topics are held captive by women who haven’t a soul to share with, but find a friend and comforter, a healer and loving spirit in their health care provider, and get relief.

Learn about what it takes to be the spouse of a gynecologist who wants to do what is best for his patients but forever fears being sued, or reviewed, then losing his license to practice for some ridiculous reason or another. Recognize the frustrations shared by the physician and staff when insurance companies are withholding payments. Shiver at the financial nightmare that is often behind some of the most successful practices that are doing their best for the good of others.

Patricia reveals her personal story that is intricately woven among the daily life of being a nurse midwife. She’s a hippie from the 60s who lived in a commune with her current, doctor husband. She’s a loving mother of 20-somethings who is trying to figure out the role of parenting kids who no longer live at home. The author is me, she’s my sister, she’s my friend who can’t sleep, my friend who cares too much. Perhaps she’s you too.

It was refreshing to know that health care providers still wrap patients in their arms, carry their stories into their sleepless evenings, and reach out in ways that were used in days of old. Upon finishing her book, I felt like I’d lost friends along the way. My only wish is that I lived closer so I could be their patient, because nowhere, do I believe, could a woman get more loving health care.

Originally Published on

Anne Holmes Boomer-in-Chief of NABBW
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