Let me say first off, I have an amazing midwife!
Unlike a trip to the dentist, or even a trip to my lovely GP, I LOVE going to see her.
It's equivalent to how excited I used to get when I had a few quarters, and free reign in the penny candy section of our neighbourhood convenience store.
How can I get so excited about what is essentially a medical check-up, besides the obviously amazing fact that I get to hear baby heart-beating and kicking away? Because being under the care of a midwife has, in my experience, been a holistically wonderful experience.
Whenever someone asks me if I'd recommend going the midwifery route, I practically shout "YES! DO IT!" Here are just a few of the reasons why...
1. I have never waited more than 10 minutes to see my midwife. No 11 am appointment time and noon arrival of the practitioner. No, thank you. I have an appointment at 11 and she sees me at 11. Heck, I've arrived early twice and she was able to take me right away. I know this isn't a reality in all practices, but it's definitely more of the rule than the exception.
2. I never feel rushed in my appointments. In my first pregnancy, I was also blessed with two amazing midwives. I was new to EVERYTHING about pregnancy and birth, despite copious hours of reading up on the topics. I had a LOT of questions. Each appointment lasted at least 30 minutes, often closer to an hour. Yet, I never felt like I was an inconvenience.
This time around, I have a fewer questions and fewer anxieties, but our midwife still makes a point of spending a good amount of time with us just to be sure we're totally comfortable and reassured.
3. My midwife acknowledges I have a brain. She gives me the facts and then let's me make my own, educated decisions. I feel like I have an expert guide for this pregnancy journey - not an iron fist imposing absolutes for my baby and body.
4. My midwife knew my strength before I knew it myself. Our first birth experience exceeded all of my expectations. I was surrounded by people I loved, I laboured at home up until the very end, and I felt in control the entire time. For a type-A personality such as myself, one of my greatest fears leading up to the labour was that pain and fear would overtake me and I would lose control of what was happening to me and baby. Instead, my midwife was there, quietly reassuring me that I was doing an amazing job. She sat on the floor of my living room and encouraged me, alongside my wonderful family, for hours on end. Her presence was steadfast but far from intrusive. She trusted my body to do what it had to do and in turn, I felt empowered to do the same.
5. I was home on day one and I got to stay there. Under the care of a midwife, I didn't have to stick around the hospital for days. We were home within hours of Judah's birth- in our own bed- surrounded by our own bacteria. Admittedly a gross thought, but far less dangerous than unfamiliar bacteria you can pick up in hospital. Best of all, we got to stay there, snuggled and adapting in our own environment- our midwife came to us. For the first week of Judah's life we were encouraged to rest, get to know each other, and leave any travelling back and forth up to them. That's right- they do house calls! It was bliss.
6. Midwives are generally really amazing people. Seriously. I know a lot of midwives and they are kind of an awesome bunch. If you meet one, invite her out for a drink- a.) she'll have great stories. b.) You'll get to meet a super cool person- I promise.
Judah, at home on his birth day - July 14, 2009