“You had a baby at home? So did you like, have a midwife or something?”
Yes, actually I have THREE amazing midwives. I say have because my midwives were not just someone there to deliver my baby, they are lifelong friends. They were my teachers, therapists and support group throughout my pregnancy. They were my caretakers, cheerleaders and masseuses during my labor. And now, they are an encyclopedia of answers to my endless questions and they are my friends. Heather, Pam and Yuliya – I am so blessed to have found you and to have experienced your kind of care! This blog goes out to you!
A Thank You to my Midwives!
From the first time I went in for my consultation with Heather I felt at home in their office. Before trying to sell me on their practice, before explaining anything, she asked me in her insanely calming voice, “How do you feel?”. I could tell in her tone she did not mean physically; she wanted to know my fears, what excited me and what made me nervous. Sitting on their couch with my fiancé while listening to her describe what they do and how they do it had me so confident in this path I was choosing for my birth. As we walked out of our consultation and back to the car I told my fiancé how just her voice alone settled every fear I had and how awesome it would be to have her calming aura at my birth.
A couple visits later is when I met Pam. Another beautiful women with such a soft, soothing voice. Something about the way these ladies spoke was like tranquility to me. Pam has been a midwife for many years now and for every question I could ask, she had two stories to incorporate in her answer. Her experience and knowledge was so impressive and I loved hearing the stories of other women she had shared this moment with. I would be so lucky to have her at my birth.
Somewhere in my first couple visits is also when I met Yuliya. She was their student midwife at the time (she graduated and became a CNM very shortly after my birth!). She began taking over my appointments and was seriously just the cutest thing! Sweet and smart, I was so ecstatic to hear that whether Heather or Pam came to my birth, Yuliya would be there no matter what!
For the first 20 weeks of my pregnancy I was just a name on chart at my OBGYN. I sat in a cold room in a hospital gown and waited a good 20-30 minutes for a different doctor every time to ask me the same 20 questions on his/her chart. Without making eye contact, without asking me how I really felt, without making me feel like this was an important day or visit, they would check off their boxes and send me on my way. I would leave feeling confused and uncertain about my whole pregnancy.
Each visit with my midwives I would get to the office and first I would see Linda at the desk. Linda would welcome me with a big smile and tell me how great I looked every time. I never waited too long for Heather or Pam to walk out of the room to greet me, but while I did wait, I sat on a comfy sofa and chatted with Linda about my pregnancy milestones and she would keep me entertained with stories about the births they had been to lately. She always made me feel like I was at home, an important guest…a friend.
Once I got into the cozy and welcoming visit room with Heather or Pam, and Yuliya who was there every time, we would talk. We would just talk. For 10 minutes or for an hour, we would talk about what is happening to my body at whatever stage I was at, we would talk about how I felt physically and how I felt emotionally. We would talk about how my fiancé, my mother and my support system felt emotionally. They would share stories about other births, they would tell me I was healthy and normal. They would encourage me to laugh, to cry and to ask questions I would never feel comfortable to ask my OBGYN. I would tell them my fears and my concerns. They would educate me, comfort me and inspire me.
Once our chat was over, they would check my baby’s heartbeat and my blood pressure and then measure and feel my belly. Then they would reassure me how healthy I am and how well I am doing at growing my baby. They really made me feel like I was an important part of their day, that they were excited about my pregnancy and birth, and that they genuinely cared about me and my baby…and that’s because they did.
National Midwifery Week
The National Midwifery Week was created by the American College of Nurse and Midwives to celebrate and recognize midwife-led care all around the country. Midwives are passionate people with extra large hearts. They are people that have their own families, babies, problems, fears and lives but they make you feel like you are all that matters when you are around them. They give you their all, every time. Each baby they help bring into this world, each mother they get to know, each birth partner they come across, they make another space in their hearts for.
Heather, Pam, Yuliya and Linda – Thank you for being such amazing women and guiding me through this journey. For always making me feel like I belonged and that I was important, making me feel like a guest rather than a patient and for all that you do. Thank you for answering my calls and my texts 24 hours a day and for doing so with happiness. You have truly touched my heart.
Heather and Yuilya – Thank you for being my rocks. For being my walls to lean on, my shoulders to cry on, my cheerleaders, my fanners, my feeders and my water holders, my masseuses, my doctors and my confidence. I am forever indebted to you for all you did that day. You safely got me through some of the roughest hours of my life and kept me calm with your gentle care and affirming words. I never once felt worried or scared throughout my entire labor. You are both wonderful at what you do.
To all of you, and to midwives everywhere, Happy National Midwives Week!!
Missed my birth story? Here it is: Part 1 and Part 2.
Don’t forget to thank your midwives this week and let us know your midwifery experiences!
Be sure to join us in our social media accounts to be up to date with the progress of our project!
And… Don’t forget to share your brelfies using our HT #BreastfeedingWorld
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