Random Blatherings

It’s late right now…and you know when you have those thoughts that go through your head but you don’t actually SAY them until you get together with your friends and say, “What I wanted to say to that jerk was, ‘Oh yeah? Well you look like you’re having twins, too!’ and pat his beer belly….but instead I just smiled and said, ‘no, there’s only one baby in there…'”

You know we all do it…think of a thousand comebacks but never say them. And if you’re anything like me you continue to think of comebacks – sometimes for weeks! Well, I consider you my friends (heh)…so I’m going to unload some of my thoughts that have frequently come up and I just don’t usually say them. (again, may I repeat…it’s late right now, so these are the ramblings of a tired midwife that should probably be in bed right now)

First off, we have this wonderful thing called the internet – it’s AMAZING! Has all of these things called websites with interesting and often educational things on them!! If you are a student midwife and expect me to take you seriously, the first order of business is to prove to me that you are at LEAST smart enough to know how to use the internet. What this means is that you don’t call and talk to me for an hour (sometimes more) asking me questions such as “so what is the difference between a CNM and a CPM and an LM?” That’s a very quick search right there.  If you have to say to me, “what is a doula?” then you aren’t even close to being where you should be in your education/career to be calling me and asking about apprenticing with me! (that’s putting it nicely)  A midwife is more than thinking birth is cool, more than just attending a birth – it’s about many hours of forging a relationship and getting to know the clients, it’s grungy paperwork and cleaning up carpets and scrubbing toilets, and it’s about late night phone calls and interrupted date nights and missing events.  If you can’t be bothered to look up with a midwife IS or to learn even the basics of childbirth before calling a midwife, then I think you’re looking at entering the wrong field.  (and it always makes me wonder…would they call their DOCTOR to ask about med school and residency and such??  I don’t think so…)

If you are an expectant mother – please please PLEASE do not choose a homebirth because it is the more affordable option (and don’t choose a hospital birth for that same reason). You only have one chance at birthing this baby – interview, ask questions, explore your options…and then go after what you think is best for you and your baby and your family. While I understand that some people will read that and shout at their computers, “But we aren’t rich! We don’t have the money to make that decision!” Well…how much did you spend on eating out the past year? How much did you spend at the movies? How much did you spend on your baby’s nursery? The crib? What about your wedding? honeymoon? Car? Gaming systems? While I understand that yes, for some people they really truly don’t have the money … for the majority of the people they just don’t THINK they have the money or they simply don’t place the birth in a high enough priority to make adjustments for it. Go where your heart leads you…give birth where you are comfortable and feel safe and protected and where you WANT to birth. Don’t choose the economy version.

I think it’s funny (and not in a laughing type way) that I get asked frequently by my clients what they should do if their labor is so fast that I can’t make it – how would they clamp and cut the cord! You know, when one of my clients births – truthfully, clamping and cutting the cord is one of the LAST things I”m thinking about! And it’s not something I do until that baby has transitioned and is stable! I’m thinking about baby’s color and breathing – about mama’s bleeding and how she’s feeling – but not about the cord!! And please, for all that is holy in the world…no matter what television show you watched or what you heard from your grandmother’s best friend…please do not listen to those dorky people and attempt to tie the cord off with a shoelace and cut it with a knife or scissors!! (the mere thought makes me shudder) Please please don’t do that…there is no problem in waiting until after the placenta is born. In fact, there’s no problem even if you NEVER clamp/cut the cord (see “Lotus Births” where the placenta is allowed to detach on its own without ever being clamped/cut)

Oh…and no, I can’t tell you when your baby will be born.  If I could I would be a very rich midwife with people lined up around the block and down the street – I very much wish I could, but there is no way to know when your baby will be born.  But why is it that we can trust our body to grow a baby without much thought and work, and our bodies can do this miraculous thing..and then we start to doubt it’s capabilities when we get near term rather than appreciating it for the perfection that it is?

That’s enough ramblings for one night – I’m heading to bed now.

3 Comments

  1. Amy Drorbaugh wrote:

    So true about the money! I didn’t think we could afford a homebirth, but when I really decided I wanted it we paid for it in just 8 weeks!

    Stephanie, I’d love to see a post about what it does take to become a midwife. Don’t worry, I already know what a CNM, CPM, and a LM are. 🙂

    Tuesday, March 16, 2010 at 9:08 am | Permalink
  2. Judit wrote:

    WELL one of our reason for the homebirth WAS: MONEY!!!!
    WE HAD NO maternity coverage from my insurance and SINCE we had an AWESOME experience in the hospital with our 1st birth w/ Stephanie as our doula WE KNEW EVEN BEFORE WE WERE PREGNANT that we WOULD HAVE her as my midwife 🙂
    IT was MUCH CHEAPER then hospital birth ( even if I had insurance it was cheaper ) and IT WAS THE BEST DECISION WE MADE 🙂
    THANKS FOR TAKING ME AS YOUR CLIENT 🙂

    Tuesday, March 16, 2010 at 10:14 pm | Permalink
  3. Pippa wrote:

    Ugh, my friend had a hospital birth “because it is cheaper” (stupid Kaiser with their minimal out-of-network coverage) – and they took her perfectly healthy and normal yet unusual labor and “managed” her right into a C-section. She’d had some contractions during the night, they quit when the sun came up – and her water broke around 10 am with no contractions. When she sent me that text, I very nearly went out and kidnapped her and dragged her to the birth center where I work, and I still rather wish I had done so because she wound up with a section, they then decided that the baby had low blood sugar, he had an IV in his foot – oh, and he was posterior and got a pretty nasty cut on his forehead during the surgery. And was bottle-fed formula. And to this day has never latched (though he is very lucky in that his mother is committed to breast milk so is pumping like a fiend, so at least there is REAL milk in his bottle).

    The irony is that she is (or at least claims to be) totally fine with how it all went down. And the whole situation just infuriates me. I seriously doubt that she did any research about birth options, the realities of hospital interventions, or even listened to half of what I had to say during our conversations. *sigh* I’m glad that she’s not having emotional fallout from it – but I do wonder if she will have some later, and I certainly wish that her son had had a better welcome into this world than a knife to the head, followed by all the hospital routines.

    Saturday, November 6, 2010 at 1:46 am | Permalink

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