18 May My Midwife, My Advocate
Most moms are happy to share the details (all the details!) of their birth story to anyone who asks. So, when we recently asked for responses on Facebook about midwife birth experiences, the answers came rolling in (thank you to our volunteer moms)! What we were hoping to discover were commonalities between typical midwife experiences and opinions, locally and nationwide. And boy, did we find them. We were delighted to hear the overwhelmingly positive feedback, across all locations. What these women had to say about their midwife experiences speaks volumes – certainly more than any article or fact sheet can tell you – about the intangible differences that Certified Nurse Midwifery care provides.
Christina from Florida
Christina P., made the decision to embrace the gentle, nurturing, low-intervention care provided by her Florida midwife almost by “accident.” When asked about her journey, Christina explained, “It was my first pregnancy, and I was attending an office that had midwives on staff, alongside the doctors. During an appointment in my 4th month, my regular OBGYN was called out for a delivery during my scheduled appointment, so they asked if I would be okay seeing a midwife instead. Jeff, my husband, just looked at me, we shrugged, and said, “Okay”. So, the choice to see a midwife kind of happened by default.
“We didn’t know what to expect, but in the first 5 minutes, it was obvious that she treated her patients like friends – personable, approachable and warm. And since our certified nurse midwife was a part of the practice with OBGYN physicians, we felt reassured that (if anything went wrong) the doctors would be right there to assist. So, deciding to stay with our midwife for the remainder of the pregnancy was an easy move.
“I felt relaxed and comfortable with my midwife. We felt so loved by them. They were sensitive, truly caring, and gave us an amazing experience.”
Brenda from Texas
Brenda M.’s experience with her Austin, TX midwife was similarly warm and nurturing, but Brenda specifically sought out a midwifery practice early in her first pregnancy. She and her husband, Will, were introduced to two midwives in her chosen practice who instantly made them feel like they had a voice in the process. Brenda explained, “It was a mutually beneficial partnership. My questions were always answered with respect and kindness. The care that I received was outstanding. Even down to being seen at the time of the appointment, I never once felt rushed”.
Brenda continued, “I think, often, women’s health care is treated like a mystery, as if it is “too much” for even the patient to understand. That was completely untrue. We found midwifery to be gentle and informative and capable. It was a safe place.”
For pain relief, Brenda chose the Bradley Method. “No medical interventions, and no complications (although we had a contingency plan in place if we needed one). Using a midwife helped me to feel confident and powerful. The entire process was intimate and precious.”
Amanda from North Carolina
Amanda S., of Holly Springs, NC, has used a midwife for much of her OB and GYN care through the years – well visits, general questions, appointments, ultrasounds, pregnancy and post-pregnancy care. Her decision to work with her certified nurse midwife was easy, because their personalities “just clicked.”
“She’s always provided me with such tender care and personal dedication, and seems to have much more time for me, per appointment. She knows me, my husband, and my story, and I feel she truly cares for me as a person, not just another patient.”
Apart from her midwife’s bedside manner, Amanda never had any doubts about her clinical qualifications as a medical provider, saying, “in no way did she ever seem “less qualified” than my doctors. If anything, she was way more in tuned with me than a busy doctor would be able to be.”
For pain relief, Amanda chose to have an epidural, but her midwife was on hand the entire time, sitting side-saddle on the bed, “rubbing my leg and telling me I was beautiful and doing such a great job. Her comfort and love for me made the delivery one of the most joyful moments of my life.”
The reassurance of having the obstetrician partners available within a moment’s notice, should an emergency arise, gave her an added level of comfort, even though her CNM proved to be more than up to the task, including her suturing after the delivery.
Carrie from Washington
Mom of two, Carrie W., from Seattle, WA, chose certified nurse midwives for both of her pregnancies, because she wanted a “larger voice in determining the level of care and intervention needed for a successful birth”. Carrie believes, “most of the time, for an uncomplicated pregnancy, a woman should be able to successfully birth a baby without surgical intervention”.
She shared, “I was an “old mom” (of advanced maternal age), having my first child at almost 36, the second at almost 38. I had a premature birth and retained placenta for my first pregnancy, and gestational diabetes with both pregnancies. So, I had plenty of complications, and still, the care I received from my midwives was capable and outstanding. They had access to all of the same prenatal care and technologies that I would have had access to by choosing an OB physician for my primary care”.
Self-professed as one of “those moms”, Carrie came to the hospital armed with a detailed birth plan, and knew that an emergency back-up plan was in place with the practice’s OBs, in case her delivery escalated beyond the expertise of her midwife. Looking back, Carrie says she “would absolutely make the same decision again. I feel like I had the best possible care for me and my family. My midwife (and the rest of her team) was the best!”
Follow Your Gut
Every woman is different. Every pregnancy is different. Every provider is different. The bottom line is to follow your instincts and choose a well-woman and maternity care provider that you feel comfortable with, who makes you feel empowered and comfortable, and who lets YOU take an active role in these important moments of your life. At Triangle Midwives, we pride ourselves in being one of these providers and look forward to talking with you at the next Meet & Greet event!
When: 2nd Tuesday of every month
Time: 6:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Where: Triangle Physicians for Women
600 New Waverly Place; Suite 310 Cary, NC 27518